Adventures in Cooking

This past weekend, over Easter, I decided to attempt a 3 course meal for my friends. It was an interesting experience to say the least. Sourcing the right ingredients was frustrating and confusing. For the most part, it was simple. I was using ingredients I was familiar with, but there were a couple things that I wanted that I had never used before.

I originally wanted to make a brisket. I love brisket and the tender flakiness of the meat. Plus it would be easy to make. Just simmer it for a couple of hours to develop the flavour and its done. But it was nearly impossible to find the cut. I asked a few of the stalls at the big central market and they either didn’t understand what I wanted or just laughed at me. One told me they only sold the back of the cow which I guess is fair enough. That is where the money is. But that makes me wonder, what do they do with those parts of the cow?

I had google translated brisket into Hungarian. One of my friends had found a picture of a cow that had the different parts labelled in Hungarian. I’m pretty sure I was right, but seeing as I didn’t double check with a  Hungarian friend, I could’ve been wrong. I eventually gave up the idea of making a brisket, instead opting for chicken. Something nice and safe.

Cow Parts Hungary

The next major obstacle was trying to figure out how to make a cake. I have never ben so frustrated by a baking process than I was by this. The recipe called for egg whites to be whipped to stiff peaks. I’ve done it by hand before at home, so I had no doubts about it working. Except it didn’t. I whipped and whipped it with no success. I don’t have a hand mixer, but after this disaster, I went out and got one. I was going to need it anyways to make whipped cream.

Making the whipped cream was another adventure. I had asked my colleague what is whipping cream in Hungarian and she gave me the name. I had no problem finding it in the grocery store despite it not being in the fridge like back home – instead its on the shelf. I don’t want to know what is in it!. I added the required amount of sugar and mixed it and mixed it. 20 minutes later it was still flat and I knew something was wrong. I went back to the grocery store and managed to figure out that what I original bought was only cream, not whipping cream. I located the right thing and thankfully it whipped up.

Never was I so happy to eat a piece of cake. To see what else I made for dinner, check out my Tumblr.

Japanese Shortcake