And now… WE EAT!

I get it that you can’t cook but it is obviously not your fault. I realized when I wanted to become better at making food that I was missing some knowledge that would take me beyond making Hamburger Helper or putting a frozen pizza in the oven (think of it like the science behind cooking or cooking common sense). You need this knowledge because reading a recipe is different from reading instructions on the back of a prepackaged meal and this is why it is not your fault. Feel better about yourself now? Example:

Beef tips and Noodles

Prep time: 10mins         Cook time: 1hour

  • 1 pound sirloin tips, cubed
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 (1.25 ounce) package beef with onion soup mix
  • 1 (4.5 ounce) can mushrooms, drained
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 (16 ounce) package wide egg noodles
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
    2. In a 13×9 inch casserole dish, combine the mushroom and beef onion soups, canned mushrooms and water. Mix thoroughly and add beef tips. Turn to coat well.
    3. Bake in a preheated oven for 1 hour.
    4. While beef tips are baking, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Serve beef tips and sauce over noodles.

This recipe has been reviewed and rated 656 times with 4 1/2 stars out of 5. If you were to make this dish exactly as written you would have a pile of garbage. The meat would be dry and super tough and you wouldn’t have any gravy left for the noodles because it would have all evaporated in the oven.

Cooking Science! Knowledge that has to be used that is not in the original poorly written recipe:

Sirloin tips or stew beef are a tougher cut of meat but when cooked longer and at lower temperatures it becomes super tender. 400 degrees for an hour?!? It should be more like 250 for 5 hours.
1lb of sirloin tips cubed will give you like 15 or 20 1 inch cubes, The amount of ingredients used to make the sauce when combined will yield less than 2.5 cups of liquid and all of this goes into a 9×13″ pan. A 9×13″ pan has of area on the bottom and the recipe says that you are to put 15 little cubes of beef and 2.32 cups of liquid then bake at 400 degrees uncovered for an hour. Mathematically this makes no sense. My dish turned out to be totally rockstar heres how:

Cook it “slower and lower” (yes slower and lower are in quotations I made it up.. as we speak, it’s awesome and I would like to believe that I coined it) so the meat will be more tender

Double the amount of mushroom soup and add an equal amount of milk. No water.

Add brown gravy mix along with the beef onion soup mix so the sauce will have a better consistency

Cover it while it is baking so the sauce doesn’t evaporate, this will also make the meat more tender.

FYI: This post will seem lame in comparison to future ones. pinky promise.