Thursday, March 21, 2013

This 'n That Thursdays: Cooking Methods That Are "Just Plain Damn Weird"

If you've watched the movie "The Spirit" (2008), you may remember this scene about an experiment that is "just plain damn weird" (okay, I admit I have quirky taste when it comes to movies).  I would apply the same description to some unusual cooking methods I discovered recently.  I have yet to try most of them, but I do have to wonder how anyone came up with these in the first place!  Without further ado, here are some truly unique ways to prepare food:

1) Boil-in-Bag Omelet


This is one I had never heard of before, but it has apparently been popular with campers for quite a while.  Of course you end up with a bag-shaped omelet, but the advantages are that each person can make their own individual omelet with preferred added ingredients and there is no cleanup.  Some concern has been expressed about the advisability of heating plastic storage bags to high temperatures, but since no definitive conclusions have been published it seems to be a matter of deciding for yourself whether or not the risks, if any, outweigh the benefits.

I suppose I would try this cooking method at least once just to say I did, since it is so easy!  There are a number of recipes available -- the one from Mr. Breakfast is simple and he does warn about the possibility of the bag melting, but goes on to say that it has never been a problem for him.  The most important tip to remember is to squeeze all of the air out of the bag before boiling or you risk getting exploded egg everywhere!  The bag can also be microwaved instead of boiled.

2) Ironed Cheese Sandwich

From wikiHow

This is the only oddball cooking method that I have actually tried, and it was my mother who taught me how to do it!  I don't know where she learned about this alternative to grilling a cheese sandwich, but her favorite sandwich made this way was mozzarella cheese and ham in an onion bun, which I still think is the best combination.  Basically, you just wrap your sandwich well in a piece of foil (making sure there are no gaps where cheese could ooze out), then iron both sides, 30-60 seconds each, with your iron on its highest setting.  Check to see if the cheese is melted -- if not, rewrap and iron a little more.  You can butter the outside of the bread slices if you like, but it is not necessary.

Once again the advantage of this method is the lack of cleanup, and you don't even need a plate since you can use the foil wrapper instead.  This is also handy for anyone who does not have access to a stove (college students come to mind).  I haven't read about any deleterious effects of this method to one's health, but your iron may suffer if the sandwich is insufficiently wrapped!

3) Dishwasher Salmon

From I'll Send You a Link

No, no, not like that!

From Mama Tommy's

Okay, that's better -- it needs to be wrapped in foil first.  You can even do the dishes at the same time the fish is cooking (as long as the foil is well sealed), and vegetables can be prepared using the same method!  The end result of Mama Tommy's recipe actually looks pretty good:

Unfortunately, I dislike salmon, so I don't think I will be trying this one any time soon, but from what I've read salmon cooked this way is exceptionally moist.  Maybe I'll pass the recipe on to my salmon-loving husband -- I might even be able to get him to do the dishes that way!

4) Beer Butt Chicken

From WasabiBratwurst

Now this chicken cooking method is probably familiar to just about everyone.  I haven't tried it yet, but one of these days I will get around to it.  My husband and I are not big drinkers, but we always seem to have cans of beer sitting around forever in our basement fridge, left over from potlucks or other events.  I would have to get my husband to drink the extra beer that must be removed from the can before use since I don't like beer either (picky, aren't I?), but I don't think he will mind.  The recipe from WasabiBratwurst sounds like a good one, but there are numerous ones out there on the Internet if you care to shop around.  All I have to say is, who in the world managed to think this one up anyway?

5) Ice Cream in a Bag

From 2 Little Hooligans

This novel way to make ice cream is popular with mothers of young children.  It is a unique activity for a child on a hot summer day, and also results in a treat for the child.  The ice cream can be eaten right from the bag, so once again there are no dishes to wash.  The only caution needed is to be sure the child who is shaking the bag does not freeze his or her little fingers, so gloves of some sort might be a good idea.  The recipe from 2 Little Hooligans is well written.  The only thing I might do differently would be to double bag the ice cream mixture, as suggested on a few other sites, as extra protection against leakage (no one wants added salt in their ice cream!).

So there you have it -- five different methods for preparing food in offbeat ways!  As long as the end result is tasty, I don't see any reason not to try them.  For me, even the salmon sounds much more appealing than these:

From Burger Broads - The BrOadHouSe

Now those really do look like a science experiment gone horribly wrong!

1 comment:

  1. Nice round-up there. I bet there must be more. One that comes immediately to mind is cooking on your car engine. Grab your meat 'n veg, put on butter or oil, wrap it in a few layers of heavy duty tin foil, lash it to a hotspot on your engine and off you go. A lovely hot meal when you arrive at your destination.  ツ