Wine Soup: A Celebration of Failure

Recently I’ve been sharing my successful cooking experiences. The ones that I write down after I cook them up or the ones that I bookmark to cook again. 

But my cooking adventures aren’t always successful. 

Sometimes my empanadas end up looking more like bao buns. 

Sometimes my frittatas end up as sad-tasting egg crust. 

And sometimes my seafood stew ends up as wine soup. 

(Okay just once, but I was feeling the repetition. Sue me.)

Now let’s unpack that. 

Wine. Soup. 

Soup. Whose primary liquid. Is wine. 

My earliest post-high school cooking adventure started as an order from my mother. My friend and I were to cook a meal for my family because sitting in the living room watching YouTube videos was starting to aggravate her. She didn’t think we could do it all, much less anything beyond salad and chicken; so of course, in typical 18-year-old fashion, we decided to do the most. Or at least what we viewed at the time as the most. 

Thus, we decided upon seafood stew. We found a recipe we deemed fit and got to it. My dad accompanied us to the grocery store to buy the wine for the stew and seemed a little confused when we told him we needed two bottles, but ran with it and kept moving. In fact, it wasn’t even until we finished pouring the wine into the pot that we thought maybe, just maybe, things weren’t right. We read the recipe again, and then again and except for minimal amounts of stock and water, that was it. Wine was the main liquid. 

We told ourselves it would cook off. That the wine mom that undoubtedly wrote the recipe knew what she was doing. I don’t think she did. Or maybe she did, and was finding clever ways to get through the next PTA meeting without actually holding a bottle in hand. Whatever the case, the 1500mL of wine did not cook off. 

And when I served it to my family? Well, they all took one taste and pretended to be varying degrees of wasted. My failure was made known very clearly to me and despite my disappointment with the dinner, looking back, my mom did end up cracking some pretty good jokes at my expense. 

I didn’t want to cook for a while after that. I accepted my fate as a young professional that survives off takeout and forgot about the good parts of that day. I forgot that I loved every minute of the cooking process. From planning the meal, to going to the grocery store, to stressing over the wine ratio of the recipe, I loved it. 

It took me a while to realize that. To get that just like any other thing in life, you probably won’t be great cooking right off the bat. To remember that you can suck at something and still love to do it. 

Thankfully, I’ve come a long way since that night. I cook often and dare I say it, well. But I have a lot to learn and my failures are as frequent as my successes. 

That being said, it’s nice to know that when I’m stressing over the structural integrity of my empanadas, it could be worse – I could still be making wine soup. 

Bon Appétit. This is all your fault.

I wish I could say that I came out better on the other side. 

That following a Bon Appétit recipe would appease the Condé Nast gods and I could move on. 

Forget about the BA Test Kitchen. Forget Claire, forget Brad, and Chris, and Sohla, and Carla, and Delany and all the rest. And just. Move. On.  

But it only confirmed what I already knew. 

I’m in too deep. 

Bon Appetit ignited a fire inside of me that cannot be put out. 

I love cooking. 

I love blogging about cooking. 

I love learning about cooking. 

And I love watching talented people talk about cooking.

Now I know I might be coming off as just a smidge dramatic but I promise this reaction is very appropriate. I’m 21, with no job prospects in sight, and all I want to do is  talk about food, buy gochujang and recipe test. Why apply to jobs when I can make homemade scallion pancakes? Or go through $30 of chocolate while trying to temper it?

And listen, I fully understand that I have no right to recipe test my days away – my understanding of food is minimal and my budget is even smaller but here’s the thing: I really want to. 

So cheers Bon Bon Appétit. I can’t get over you and I don’t think I ever will. 

Without further ado, here it is, the recipe that made me realize that this isn’t just a phase, mom. 

Basically’s Shockingly Easy No-Knead Focaccia.

And here is, as promised last week, Miranda Veal and I making it. 

For the best viewing experience, I highly suggest watching it on 1.5 speed.

Chaos Cooking with Claire: The Threequel

The roommates!

In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been spending a lot of time in the kitchen.

Online school and National Student Advertising Competition deadlines have taken away my ability to enjoy being on my computer. After spending 18 hours a day on my laptop for a week straight, it is safe to say the Adobe Suite isn’t calling my name like it normally does. Creativity once funneled into poster design and silly videos is now being redirected into “recipe testing.”

(once again, Bon Appétit I am asking you to hire me). 

Don’t worry, I am not abandoning my art direction dreams. I am simply trying to give my eyes and computer a break. 

Spending more time in the common area of my apartment also means engaging with my roommates more frequently. While we still cook our own individual meals most of the time, recently, we have been sharing food and meals more often. Last night, I made In-N-Out style burgers for the house – yes, that means I made homemade In-N-Out sauce (and no, I do not know if it actually tasted like In-N-Out sauce because I have never been to an In-N-Out but I’d like to imagine it did). A few nights before that, one of my roommates made a homestyle southern meal for us all to enjoy. 

As fun as cooking for each other and eating together is, finding food we all agree on can be difficult. 

Difficult. But not impossible.

With that being said, I would like to share with ya’ll an easy food experience that satisfies my entire house.

What you’ll need:

Cherry tomatoes, whole garlic cloves, olive oil, pesto, parmesan, red pepper flakes, salt, peper, pasta of choice (I used linguine), spinach if you want

Now before you call me out, I know this is very similar to my previous pasta recipe but it’s different. 

I promise. 


Heat a saute pan over medium-high heat, once hot, add olive oil.

Throw a few handfuls of cherry tomatoes into the saute pan and blister them – you essentially want them to burst in the pan.

While you are blistering the tomatoes, go ahead and cook the pasta how you’d like.

Once the tomatoes are blistered, crush a few skinless (that can’t be the right way of saying it but you know what I mean) (I hope) garlic cloves and toss them into the pan still whole. 

Toss in some spinach if you like that and once it’s wilted you are ready to finish assembling your pasta. 

Smash the tomatoes down so more juices can escape (they will still be pretty whole, we just want a more saucy pasta moment than what we would have without doing that). 

Turn the heat down on your pan. 

Add the pasta into the pan (hopefully getting a tablespoon or two of starchy pasta water in there too). 

Then add two large spoonfuls of pesto.

A few shakes of red pepper

Salt and pepper to taste. 

Mix it all together.

And of course, freshly grated parmesan to top. 


The best part? That only took, like, 12 minutes tops. 

Well, that’s partly a lie. 

The best part is getting to sit down at the dinner table with my roommates to talk and laugh and have them undoubtedly praise me for my incredible culinary skills. 

And in case you were worried about connecting through food starting and ending at roommate “family dinners,” I am ending this blog with wonderful news to ease that worry. 

Next week, Miranda Veal and I will be baking bread over Zoom and vlogging the entire experience – surely redefining how chaotic a kitchen (or two kitchens connected via the Internet) can be. 

Chaos Cooking with Claire: The Sequel

So I wanted to make a pizza. 

Just a simple little margherita moment. 

Some tomato sauce, some basil, some fresh moz. Keep it simple. 

Keep it real simple. 

But of course, nothing is ever simple. 

This plan was hatched when I laid eyes on Trader Joe’s pizza dough. 

This plan was promptly destroyed when I forgot to pick up mozzarella and fresh basil on my grocery store run.

Due to the current state of the world, it feels irresponsible to go to the grocery store just for two items that I don’t actually need but the pizza dough needs to be eaten today so get ready folks because we are improvising. 

So what do I have? 

Pizza dough, Kale, potatoes, red onion, pesto, Parmigiano Reggiano, gruyere, eggs, salt, pepper, sugar, butter, garlic, olive oil, a cast iron skillet and hope.  

So what am I going to  make? Potato and Kale Pizza 

Or at least we are going to try. 

First I need to think about cook times. 

The pizza dough only needs to be cooked for 10 to 12 minutes at 450 degrees Fahrenheit  so there’s that.

The potatoes. Roast at like 400 degrees for thirty minutes then turn the oven up and finish them on the pizza dough? Roast cloves of garlic to throw on the pizza with them because roast garlic is the most important food group. And I can heat up my cast iron in the oven while the potatoes cook. 

I want to caramelize the onions. Melt some butter in a pan over medium heat, chop the onions up and add a little salt and a little sugar. Cook them for twenty minutes and make sure they don’t burn. Shoutout Joushua Weissman for inspiring me to caramelize them in the first place (in n out video). That’s going to take like twenty minutes. 

Kale will just be cooked on the pizza. 

Kinda worried about the eggs. Do I start them in a pan and then finish them sunny side up on the pizza for like the last five minutes?

Maybe grate a little more cheese and drizzle a some olive oil once it gets out of the oven? Sounds good to me.

And now that I worked all that out with ya’ll. Let me tell you: 

I went off. 

And would I recommend you making it? 

100%

But this is all the more instruction you’re going to get so next time you get your hands on some dough, head to your fridge and use this as inspiration to make your very own pizza. 

Chaos cooking with Claire: forget the recipe and do what you feel.


Me and my pasta.

It would be a gross offense to anyone with any culinary expertise to call myself a chef and yet four times a week, when I find it in myself (and my pantry) to whip up a full meal, my whole apartment complex can probably hear me yelling about being a chef or being ready to face off against Gordon Ramsey or having unmatched talent in the kitchen. 

That means I have to be cooking elaborate and technically complex meals. Right? 

Well, no. 

The truth is I’ve probably just cooked pasta. 

But like, really good pasta. 

Right now, my pantry is looking pretty barren and my fresh food supply is at an all time low. This means that recently my meals have been reduced to rice and beans and whatever frozen vegetables I find in the depths of my freezer. 

But last night I needed good food – a little Monday pick me up amidst very scary and stressful times.  So I scavenged the kitchen for any ingredients that I deemed acceptable to mix together and decided that I could make some homemade pasta sauce to go with angel hair pasta. 

And not to brag, but that shit was absolutely delicious. So delicious in fact, that I am going to share it with you. 

Warning, this is NOT a recipe, this is a cook along. If you don’t vibe with an ingredient or technique, don’t use it! This is all about cooking through feeling, so grab your pots and pans and get settled in, we are going on a culinary adventure. 

What you’ll need: white onion, kale, canned diced tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper, tomato paste, parmigiano-reggiano, angel hair pasta, red pepper flakes, dried oregano 

  1. Heat up a large sauté pan over, like, medium but lower medium heat and once it’s hot put however much olive oil you think would be good to coat the pan and cook things in. That feels like two tablespoons to me but who knows, I didn’t measure mine.
  2. Then you’re going to want to dice the onion. I only used half because I wasn’t trying to feed a village and also because dicing onions is hard and my roommate had to do it for me. 
  3. Throw the onions in the not hot and oiled sauté pan. 
  4. While the onions are sweating, mince some garlic. I used three large cloves but garlic to your desired taste, I don’t make the rules. 
  5. Once the onions are almost translucent throw the garlic in the pan. I did this because the garlic cooks faster. I’ve burnt the shit out of some garlic before and you don’t want to have to start over and chop more onion, that’d truly be a disaster. 
  6. If you’re me, you had the pan too hot and almost burnt your garlic so turn the heat down a little bit. 
  7. Then add some tomato paste. Approximately two tablespoons but just do what feels right. I don’t really know if I should have added the tomato paste before the tomatoes but I think I saw Andrew Rea from Binging with Babish do it once so I figured, “Hey, why not?!”
  8. Stir the tomato paste and onions together and let them cook a little more. Don’t really have a reason for this one
  9. Next dump in a can of diced tomatoes, whatever kind you have around.
  10. Mix that all in together. 
  11. Grab a few handfuls of kale (I filled my strainer to the top and just went with that as a measurement) and rinse them off. 
  12. Throw the kale into the sauté pan,  add a splash or two or water and cover with a lid to create a steamy environment. 
  13. Start heating up a pot of water for the angel hair. I wait to put salt in until it’s about to boil so I don’t make the boil point higher but I could also be lying about that and just not know. 
  14. Once your water is a’boiling, add the angel hair (I used half a box and am managing to get around 5 servings out of it) and cook until your desired al dente-ness. This was about four minutes for me. 
  15. Strain your pasta. If you’re smart, you’ll save a little bit of the pasta water to add to the sauce so the pasta and sauce mix together better because I forgot and only remembered once my pasta water was making a haste exit down my drain. 
  16. At this point your kale/tomato solution has hopefully been steaming for 10-15 minutes and the kale has turned bright green and shriveled down. 
  17. Add a few shakes of dried oregano (if you want)
  18. Add a few shakes of red pepper flakes (if you so desire) 
  19. Now personally I like putting parmesan directly into the sauce so if you too like to do that or if you want to try something new, grate some parmesan into the sauce. Pecorino is also good, you could try that ( I couldn’t, I didn’t have any pecorino) 
  20. Throw the pasta into the sauté pan with the sauce ( and a little of the pasta water if you have that). 
  21. Mix it up
  22. Plate it up
  23. Grate it up (more parmesan that is) 
  24. Eat it up

So there you have it. 

The first and probably only chaos cooking with Claire. 

Well.

 I could vlog it next time?

Jk…jk…

Unless?

A lesson in preparedness (that I’m still learning)

Credit: Laura Hutton/Collin

The first day of spring semester, sophomore year. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2018. 8 a.m.

Carroll Hall. The UNC School of Media and Journalism (currently the Hussman School of Journalism and Media). The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

MEJO 121: Intro to Digital Storytelling. 

Now that I’ve set the scene. Let me tell you the story of how I learned about Murphy’s Law. The hard way. 

It was my first day as a student of the J School. I was bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and beyond excited to take classes I was actually interested in. As someone who made countless “music videos” and “audition tapes”  throughout my youth, I was pumped to actually learn how to properly use a camera. 

Our professor walked in and after introducing himself he got serious and told us if there was anything to remember before we started the semester, it was Murphy’s Law: anything that can go wrong, will go wrong. 

And I should have listened. 

I did the first assignment the day before it was due. I’d done it plenty of times before and things had gone off without a hitch. But the assignment had to be done outdoors and it was raining. I had to be careful to shield the school’s camera from rain – afraid even one drop of water would result in damage and thus a large fine. 

Then my files wouldn’t upload to the class site so I had to email my professor, let him know the situation and bring all the files to class on a USB. He had told us to plan for these things and I hadn’t. As I finished uploading the files, he reminded me of Murphy’s Law and sent me on my way. 

However, I was convinced this was a one off occurrence. I

It wasn’t. 

The second assignment, done fairly last minute went wrong as well. My mic didn’t work and all the audio was fuzzy, deeming the entirety of the interview I had gotten unusable. 

And that wasn’t the end of it.

The week leading up to our final project due date, I got the flu. When I realized I wasn’t going to get it done on time I requested and was granted an extension. Three extra days to compile my mini documentary footage and then edit it. Don’t worry, it gets worse. My flu led to a kidney infection. I couldn’t walk but it needed to get done. 

Surprise, I got it done. 

But if I had just gotten a head start on the half a semester long project, I could have spent those two weeks in bed editing instead of crawling out of my dorm attempting to get footage. 

Everything that could have gone wrong did. 

It was a hard lesson to learn and I still struggle sometimes with putting what I know to practice. Projects occasionally get done at the last minute, even still, two years later. 

Sometimes you can’t plan for what will go wrong. Every once in a while everything in your life spins out of control and there’s nothing to do but adjust and keep moving forward*. With that being said, after my many lessons in preparedness, I urge you to plan for the things you can control and stay on top of them so when life hits hard, adapting is just a little bit easier. 
*Or maybe Mercury is just in retrograde and there really is nothing to do about it.

In defense of the group project

Lindsey, a group project member turned close friend, and I on the streets of London.

Talk to any college student about group projects and the overwhelming majority of them will gripe and complain about the inconveniences of having to work with their classmates. 

I would know. I used to be one of them. 

But the Hussman School of Journalism and Media opened my eyes to just how fun group projects can be. 

Looking back on it, the group project that changed my mind should have been a disaster. I knew absolutely no one in the 50 person media ethics class so when the professor announced we would be choosing our own partners I was stressed. Bracing myself for the response, I emailed the professor telling her I knew no one and if there was any way I could write the group paper by myself. She responded by putting me in a group with two other students with the same request. 

Something about it just worked. We got our work done and had fun doing it – but I thought the semester would end and that would be it.

Fate seemed to disagree. 

On the first day of the next semester, one of my former group project members was sitting right at the front. 

Gabri and I now have shared Google Calendars.  

Gabri capturing the first day of an advertising networking trip in New York.

Sure it is difficult trying to fit schedules together and make time to work on things as a group, but after that is worked out the process can be made to be enjoyable. Building a friendship with your project members makes everything easier and the work better. 

Meetings can move off campus and into coffee shops, wine bars (shoutout Tru) and people’s living rooms where work begins to feel less like work and more like fun. 

Maybe I’ve just had incredible luck with group project members or maybe I’m biased because advertising is inherently group work but I stand by my opinion: College level group projects are a good thing. 

From the National Student Advertising Competition to an international media class, some of my dearest friends have been made in group projects, so before you write them off, try to make the most out of them. 

The Envision Carolina team celebrating the end of our campaign at He’s Not Here
Alicia Nam, a National Student Advertising Competition member, and my official work wife.

It’s the little things that count

I’ve had an incredibly busy, stressful and upsetting week. It feels weird to just write that down without padding it with a crappy joke and an awkward dance move, which is generally how I let people know that I am having a bad time, but I think it’s important to just say it like it is. 

Right now the things I usually enjoy feel like hindrances and every time I have a brief moment to myself I find myself focusing on the bad. For that reason, I’d like to use this blog to make me focus on the good. 

So without further ado, here are some things this week that made me smile:

  • Two of my friends, who are also my National Student Advertising Competition teammates, stayed with me until 2am to help mockup some ads. We all sat around my computer and moved things pixel by pixel until we had something we could present to our Professor. Technically, I was the one responsible for getting it done but they wouldn’t let me stay and struggle alone and that really warmed my heart. So shoutout Alicia and Blaine.
  • At risk of coming off as materialistic, I got a new pair of tennis shoes and it got me pretty excited. I love the Adidas Ultraboosts but they are too expensive for me to comfortably afford them regularly, however by chance, they were 50% off and they shipped quickly. My feet will now be far more comfortable when I run and there is nothing quite like a pair of clean tennis shoes. 
  • One of my professor’s, Dana McMahan, organized a career week for all of her students (and anyone else who was interested). I went to a small group networking dinner but was stressed out about it putting me behind in some work. But the people of EP+Co were so kind and easy to talk to that I managed to completely forget about my worries and just enjoy meeting new people.
  • I cooked a frittata and for the first time ever actually made a full dinner in thirty minutes. Normally I drag cooking out but it was nice to go from ingredients to eating in exactly half an hour. 
  • I ate a Merritt’s BLT. For anyone who has ever been to Merritt’s, why this made me smile should be self-explanatory. For anyone who hasn’t been to Merritt’s, go. If you ever find yourself in Chapel Hill, please go have a sandwich at Merritt’s. I promise you won’t regret it.
  • My brother sent me really cute videos of his dog. 
Meet Chewbacca the German Shepherd
  •  Claire Safftiz didn’t even get stressed out in her “Gourmet Makes” episode this week. As someone who has definitely said, “I would die for Claire from the Bon Appetit Test Kitchen,” too many times to count, this was immeasurably exciting.
#IWDFCFTBATK

There you have it, the small things that made me smile amidst a week of desperately trying and, to be completely honest, failing to meet deadlines, stay creative and take care of myself. 

Life will beat you up sometimes but taking a moment to focus on the good, no matter how small, can help you pull yourself out of a downward spiral, even just for a moment. It’s kinda like meditating for the people who haven’t quite managed to nail down meditating.

Irresponsible Advertising: Preying on body image

CW: eating disorders, discussion of body image

From the Bruegger’s website

In high school, I ate Bruegger’s Bagels like it was my job. Friday mornings were for siracha, egg and cheese bagels and taking a breather before inevitably hectic days full of meetings, classes and practices began. I noticed then that they had an option to make their bagels “skinny” but never gave it much thought beyond the odd, “who would want less bagel?!” 

Last weekend I found myself craving a bagel and nothing could satisfy that itch quite like a Bruegger’s run. But as I was ordering, I noticed that Bruegger’s seems to have expanded their “skinny” options. Or at least ramped up the advertisement for those options. 

Looking up at the menu made my skin crawl. 

Plenty of people want less caloric options at their favorite restaurants but calling it a “skinny” option? That’s irresponsible advertising. 

Studies have shown that only about a quarter of men and women are satisfied with their bodies. Almost everyone has something big or small that they would like to change about their body. This can lead to a fixation on dieting, working out excessively or purging. According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders ,30 million people in the US are dealing with eating disorders. That’s almost ten percent of the entire US population. 

But despite society clearly struggling with body image, Bruegger’s Bagels presents their lower calorie option as “skinny,” a word that is steeped in preconceived notions and internal and external biases that are hard to understand. At their core, the words “skinny” and “fat” have absolutely nothing to do with health. They are both descriptive words that have been consistently misrepresented and manipulated in public to convince people to buy the latest diet book, gym membership or gimmicky product. 

The Cheesecake Factory online “Skinnylicious” cocktail menu

I can’t just let Bruegger’s take the fall for this one though. The Cheesecake Factory also uses “skinny” as a marketing tactic. They’ve even copyrighted their lower-calorie menu option: Skinnylicious. This menu even includes cocktail options that are just regular cocktails with the word skinny thrown in front of the cocktail name.

Then there are companies like FlatTummyCo. Much worse than just calling low-calorie options skinny, they exist to sell “detox” teas and appetite suppressant lollipops. And even worse, people like Kim Kardashian promote them on Instagram to tens of millions of followers. 

It’s endlessly frustrating to see companies and people perpetuate and take advantage of the public’s mental health. As consumers, it is important we call companies out and hold them responsible. 

Just seeing an option being called “skinny” can make a person question everything. Is what they are ordering now inherently unhealthy? Is this the only place they can go if they want said product with fewer calories? Are they making the wrong decision? 

The simple answer? No. But it isn’t simple. 

It may seem silly but just seeing an option being promoted as “skinny” really can affect someone that much, even if they aren’t already struggling with their body image. 

The issue of body positivity can’t and won’t be fixed by just removing the word “skinny” from a menu but it’s certainly not a bad place to start. People are going to struggle with how they perceive themselves and they shouldn’t be made to feel bad about it. Let people choose the lowest calorie option or the highest calorie option without being chastised by menu messaging. Cater to everyone without calling them out. 

Irresponsible advertising is found everywhere and a lot of times is intentional. Everyone is groomed by media to be on the chase for the younger, hotter, skinnier version of themselves. It’s not just the food industry, it’s the fashion industry and it’s in the general underrepresentation of all types of bodies in almost all media.

And there is no easy fix. Just diversifying body sizes in ads won’t fix the issue. If companies advertise inclusivity, they need to consistently make their products cater to everyone. No more ad campaigns that showcase a curvy model without actually making products in higher sizes. Inclusivity cannot and should not be a cash grab. 

I often describe the media ethics course I took my junior year of college to be a 16-week lesson in not being a shitty person. And since corporations are pretty much people in the eyes of the law I would like to take a moment to look Bruegger’s, The Cheesecake Factory, Flat Tummy Co, Everlane and almost every other company and corporation in the eyes and say, “Don’t be shitty people.” 

Note: If you want more information about the media’s influence on body image, the documentary series “Killing Us Softly: Advertising’s Image of Women” is a pretty good place to start.

If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, information can be found at https://anad.org/our-services/ or call the eating disorders helpline at 630-577-1330

Avocado Supreme? Yes, I’m just as confused as you are.

This summer I came into possession of a cookbook. 

This isn’t just some run of the mill cookbook, it’s The Illustrated Encyclopedia of American Cooking, by the editors of FAVORITE RECIPES PRESS. 

When I say this thing is a beautiful nightmare, I mean it with every fiber of my soul. Why do 75% of the recipes call for mayonnaise, cottage cheese, Worcestershire sauce, gelatin or some combination of those four ingredients? My theory is that this cookbook was actually engineered by 1950s housewives that didn’t feel they had the agency to initiate a divorce so instead, they decided to cook the most horrible meals in an attempt to get their husbands to divorce them. 

For reference, here is one of the recipes I stumbled upon in this hallowed cookbook. 

Avocado Supreme

3 tbsp of butter

3 tbsp sugar 

3 tbsp catsup 

3 tbsp vinegar 

3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 

1 avocado 

And what are the cooking directions you may ask? Basically, just heat it all up and pour that shit into a half of an avocado – genius. 

I’m sorry WHAT?! 

So, of course, I had to make it. What else is a girl to do?

Avocado Supreme as told by my Instagram story

It was quick and easy but dear God it was horrible. 

My takeaways?

  1. Never make avocado supreme 
  2. If given the opportunity, always buy the cookbooks at estate sales.