A Lesson in Aesthetics…in cooking

I need one. Or maybe I should have titled this “A Lesson in Presentation” instead?

pDaddy’s really the chef around here and cooks most of our dinners during the week. Yes, I know I’m a lucky gal 😉 There are times when I get into a cooking whim and I go and make things I learned from Mommy Dearest or even venture out on new recipes I find via the internet or PDub’s Cookbook (which was given to me by the ever so thoughtful, MissZoot, for donating to her TnT efforts…go ahead go, read and donate, I’ll be here when you get back 😉 ).

So welcome back…Where was I? Oh yes, the food turns out great and it tastes yummy – as everyone says…Of course, they could just be being polite, but I digress. Anyway, they say it tastes great, but I need a lesson in presentation. The food is good once it’s eaten, but it doesn’t necessarily look yummy.

A couple of weekends ago, I cooked a feast fit for Thanksgiving – sans Turkey. Why? Well, my SIL and her fam were headed back to TX on Monday after a 3 week visit and it was their last weekend here. We were going to go out to eat, but forecast was snow and we decided it was best to stay in. On the menu? Siomai (pork & shrimp dumpling type things), Nilaga (filipino soup), Asian Beef in the crockpot and Baked Salmon w/mayo and tomatoes.
The spread

EVERYTHING turned out YUM! But again, not so appetizing looking…

These right here are the Steamed Pork & Shrimp Shumai. I must have steamed these puppies too long b/c the wrapper wasn’t sticking. Then again, I think I just realized that I doubled the recipe, but didn’t double the egg…hmmm…that could be it too. Maybe that missing egg was what I needed to hold everything in place.
Pork & Shrimp Steamed Siomai/Shumai

Over here is the Baked Salmon w/mayo and tomatoes. I took the foil off too early so the mayo looks all burnt, but it was still YUM and was all gone (I had 2 trays of this, by the way).
Baked Salmon w/mayo and tomatoes

This is Beef Nilaga w/beef bone marrow (so not healthy)…This is a staple Filipino soup and is even more yum during the cold winter months.
Beef Nilaga

I also need to get nicer serving dishes, tablecloths, serving spoons, etc… I just don’t have the space to store it all (our basement isn’t finished and I would hate to have to go up and down to get what I need, but maybe that’s what it takes). Then again, we don’t have the spare cash to get nice ones anyway…ah such is life…Still, note to self: bigger kitchen w/lots of cabinets for our next house – whereever it may be.

On a separate day, but keeping with the subject, I made Prairie Moons (pDub’s cookbook calls them “Egg in a Hole”). I have been making these for years now, but still can’t make them look pretty. Maybe I have the burner on too high? Maybe I need new pans?
prairie moon aka egg in a hole aka a gazillion other names

Well, hot damn, now I’m hungry. Think I want me some of that Beef Nilaga soup to warm up…Girls are a bit under the weather and soup is good for them…Too bad our freezer is looking pathetic. Do I even have all ingredients for this – namely the beef? lol Actually, I wish we still had leftovers! That was good food and I need to just remember to make it look good for next time 😉

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One thought on “A Lesson in Aesthetics…in cooking

  1. LOL, oh my gosh, everything you made is everything I would eat! I make my Salmon with mayo too, but I’ve never tried the tomato. I will next time! We LOVE dim sum here, and now I’m craving for nilaga! I don’t know how to make it, but my mom does!!! YUM!! Now I’m hungry!

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