Burnt eggs and savory chicken

What you need to know prior to reading the following post:  I can cook scrambled eggs.  I’ve been doing it for years.  I could do it with my eyes closed.  Which is an interesting thing to say, considering my eyes were open when this fiasco occurred.

I’d also like to throw out there that I had not yet had any coffee to drink.  Just sayin’.

I don’t normally cook breakfast.  I just toast an English muffin and smother it in peanut butter.  But I’ve had a recent hankering for oatmeal and scrambled eggs, so that was what I opted for this morning.  I had turned on the burner to warm the frying pan while I readied my eggs.  It turns out that at 6 a.m., I have little patience for cooking.  In my zombified, coffeeless state of mind, I broke a golden rule:  I cracked an egg straight into the pan rather than into a bowl.  Of course, what happens?  The shell breaks and spills the gooey insides not into the pan, but on to the burner.  Immediately the air was filled with the nauseating odor of burnt egg.  In a panic, I grabbed (of all things) a paper towel to sop up the mess.  By then, the egg had begun to scramble on the burner while I nearly caught a paper towel on fire trying to wipe it up.

Meeeeeanwhile, I had moved the pan to the next burner over and turned the heat on.  Did it occur to me that the bottom of the pan was sticky with egg whites?  No, of course not.  I cracked a new egg into the pan and as I measured out my oatmeal, I heard a crackling and realized what I’d done.  I snatched up the pan to find the burner coated in crusty brown burnt egg.

Damn damn damn damn damn damn damn.

I grabbed a rag and vigorously wiped the bottom of the pan, which I then moved to a third burner.  Even then, I didn’t manage to clean the pan well enough because it still left some crusty egg residue on the burner.  Needless to say, my morning didn’t get off to a great start.

Fortunately, it was not a sign of things to come.  Come dinnertime, I do feel I redeemed myself.  About freaking time.

I made Pecan Parmesan Maple Crusted Chicken with a side of green beans and roasted sliced sweet potatoes.  The chicken was actually pretty simple–it was just breaded in a mixture of a beautiful combination of ingredients–but my goal tonight was to pull off the roasted sweet potatoes.  A couple of months ago, I tried to make homemade sweet potato fries and I failed miserably.  They were burnt on the ends and not cooked enough in the middle, and I’d used way too much oil so they were slippery and greasy-feeling.  Tonight I tried again, only I opted to simply slice them.  I also brushed them very lightly with oil–last time, I had dumped the fries and the oil into a bowl and tossed them (lesson learned).

The chicken was delectable and the sweet potatoes did turn out much better than they had in my first attempt.  A few of them still crisped along the edges because of uneven cuts, but I’m working on it.  I feel I’m making progress.  Except from now on, no more cracking eggs directly into the frying pan.

A proud moment for the bad chef.


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