I was thrilled to be selected as Cook of the Week for our local newspaper Daily Herald. You can read my interview with Sally Eyre in the Food Section online here or in today's print edition. Cooks of the Week can compete in the grueling Daily Herald Cook of the Week Challenge. Sixteen home cooks will compete in a bracket-style competition over 12 weeks to pick a winner. My friend and fellow foodie, Penny Kazmier, was a past winner! The finalists are seriously talented cooks, and I am looking forward to testing my mettle next year.
That statement of bravado said, my photo shoot did not go well. This was one of my first publicity photo shoots for the blog. I was very excited to have the Daily Herald photographer come by to take pictures of my Baked Clams. But as all home cooks know, not everything turns out like you plan or hope. I made a huge rookie error! I burnt the Baked Clams! Yes, that's right, I burnt them. I lost track of time, and let them overcook. They had burnt edges and were dried out. If this was Christmas Eve, I would have had to start over and make them again. Home cooking is full of failures as well as successes. The lesson learned was to pay more attention to my nose, and less to to the oven timer. I smelled the clams and knew in the back of my mind they were done, but waited for the timer to go off. #fail.
Laura Stoecker, staff photographer for the Daily Herald was very nice and helped salvage the clams for the shoot. Instead of the large platter of two dozen clams I had planned, we selected the best eight or so, and scraped off some burnt edges. I used lemon slices and parsley to cover up the bad spots. I threw the rest out.
I have a long way to go before I can compete under pressure and with lots of distractions. I thought growing up in a large family would have prepared me better for that. LOL.
Click here for the Baked Clams recipe. Let me know if yours turns out better.