Thursday, March 27, 2008

Magnificient disaster

i love fish. never met a fish i didn't want to eat, cooked or sushi-like.

that said, i haven't a clue how to prepare fish at home. witness this steaming disaster that happened, oh, about an hour ago.

i had dreams. . . perfectly steamed tuna steaks with capers and tomatoes, served atop buttery linguine. sigh. . . it was not to be.

came home from work to perfectly thawed tuna steaks. mixed up the following in a small bowl: about a half cup diced tomato (out of a can), one clove of garlic minced, maybe a tablespoon of minced onion, a few tablespoons of capers, splash of olive oil, salt, pepper,done.

made some adorable little aluminum foil packets, each with a peice of tuna and some of the tomato mixture. now, how to steam these darn things? i don't have a steamer, and "the joy of cooking" was rather useless in it's description of steaming. but i went to engineering school! i can improvise! 2 quart sauce pan half filled with simmering water - check. metal grating )you know, one of those curly cue things?) hotplate set on top - check. tin foil packets set on top grating hotplate - check. turn packets every 5 minutes for equal cooking.

when the packets began dripping all over the place, husband suggested we put an old metal baking sheet under the sauce pan, to catch drips. done. it worked. good thing i hate that baking sheet, because it's now going in the trash. it can withstand 500 degrees in the oven, but not direct stove heat.

20 minutes later, the tuna was cooked to death on the outside, raw in the center, the baking dish was obviously warping (and turning a lovely rose color) under the heat and strain, and husband was asking if we were still going to have linquine studded with veggies, and i was starving. and suddenly everything began to smell of tuna.

frustrated, i turned the stove off, popped the tuna into the oven, and sent husband off to taco bell.

10 minutes later, i enjoyed my cooked to death tuna steaks. i hope he brings me back something from taco bell.

folks, this is why i only get fish at restaurants. i know i'll be happy.


Penny said...

sciff, next time, try putting the steaks directly on the steamer basket without the foil wrappers. or, you might try poaching the fish in say half an inch (or less) of gently simmering water. good luck!

sciffy kitchen elf said...

me thinks i better suck it up and make a trip to Bed Bath & Beyond one of these days, and quit with these home built steamer rack/basket/thingys.

i have had good luck poaching.