Recipe translations from someone who makes microwave burritos. Regularly.

This morning, I was reading a recipe for Ginger, Coconut and Ricotta Pancakes. Because sometimes it’s fun to pretend that I’m a cultured, worldly woman with an eye for fashion and design who whips up gourmet dishes with more than five ingredients.

But, being that my experience with fashion and design is only through the blogs I read, and the only thing I tend to “whip up” is toaster waffles, I knew as soon as I saw the word “ginger” that I was never going to make these pancakes. In the kitchen, my motto is exotic ingredients = difficult recipe = DANGER! DANGER!

And I was right. One of the ingredients in this recipe is decimated coconut. To me, this means that I have to blow up a coconut using some forceful explosive device. Not safe.

When you don’t cook at all much, sometimes recipes sound like they’re written in a different language. Here are some examples:

Recipe: Cook bacon in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally, until crisp. Drain on paper towels; discard drippings from skillet.

My interpretation: Find a skillet that seems pretty big and is hard to lift with one hand. Put bacon in it and turn on the burner so the heat coming out seems to be a medium amount (?). Flip bacon like pancakes whenever you feel like it. Touch bacon really quickly with finger – if it feels scratchy, stop cooking it. Wring out greasy bacon meat over paper towels. Wash skillet.


Recipe: Preheat broiler. Lightly oil a 17- by 12-inch shallow baking pan.

My interpretation: Pour oil (olive? vegetable? motor?) in a pan. Then dump most of it out. What’s a broiler?


Recipe: Toss together asparagus, oil, and a pinch of salt in a large bowl.

My interpretation: Put asparagus, oil (again, what kind of oil are we talking about here??) and several grains of salt in a bowl and kind of throw it around a little bit.


Recipe: Fluff couscous with a fork.

My interpretation: Stab couscous with a fork a few times. Check for fluffiness. This is stupid.


Basically, I have no patience for this lofty language of the kitchen. All I want to do is take something frozen and put it in the oven or microwave. And if I can skip that step? Even better.

Image from Houndstooth NY

3 thoughts on “Recipe translations from someone who makes microwave burritos. Regularly.

  1. I don’t think I could possibly relate to this any more. I’ve been experimenting with a crock pot cuz you just throw stuff in there and it cooks it magically.

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