Sometimes it just can’t be fixed

Some of us just can’t help it.  When something goes wrong, we get out the magnifying glass and go at it hard.  We analyze, research and obsess, thinking if we just do it meticulously, thoroughly, exhaustively enough we can fix it.

We read books and articles on relationships to try to search within with enough honesty to try to ascertain just what the f*ck we are doing that perpetuates this state of being alone.  We take the blame.  It must be us, right?

The hamster in our heads will not stop running on that damn wheel – ALL.NIGHT.LONG.  What did I say?  What did I do?  We examine and analyze looking for the clue of where it all began to unravel.

Now clearly, none of us are perfect.  We’ve all been in situations where, looking back, we recognize that we could have handled something better or differently.  But what if it isn’t all us?  Maybe sometimes you can do absolutely everything to show your best self and it still isn’t enough?  I once read a quote that said something like, “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, but there’s still going to be some dumb-ass (my word) who hates peaches.”

What if it’s them?  What if their own history and wounded cores make it impossible for them to appreciate what’s before them and receive love?

As in cooking, some things you can fix and some things you just can’t.  They’re unsalvageable and you simply have to write off your time and all you invested and just scrape it into the wastebasket and begin again.

Did you over salt a dish, as I’ve done many times?  If it’s a piece of meat, poultry or fish or perhaps some potatoes or vegetables, try rinsing it off.   A quick fix, if it’s a soup or stew is to add more broth or water.  Pumping up the volume of acid in the dish can also help. (i.e. Lemon juice or vinegar)

You can also add more starch (potatoes or rice) to the dish

If there’s a creamy element, add a bit more dairy and sometimes a sprinkle of sugar can counteract your blunder.

When I had my gourmet shop, I was asked to participate in the town’s annual chili cook-off contest.  The sheriff dropped off some of his precious, hard won venison and asked me to use it for the dish.  I knew all eyes would be on my entry.  Expectations would be high for the “Butterfly Gourmet” so I chose a recipe with a fairly complex flavor profile.  It called for chocolate and various hot peppers including Bhut jolokia or ghost peppers – the hottest in the world.  I started on it and planned to let it simmer most of the evening in the slow cooker.  I went to bed and then awoke to the pungent, fiery smell of the chili.  I decided to go down and check it.

All I can say was this concoction was nuclear – totally inedible!  I didn’t have any more venison or other ingredients to start over and in a few hours I had to hand over my entry.  The research began.

I tried everything.  I rinsed it.  I added more liquid.  I added sugar.  I even added peanut butter!  I know. . . . . .  I was desperate.

Baking screw-ups are usually fatal, as well.  It’s such a complex/delicate chemical reaction that all you can do is throw in the towel and start over.  The same goes for soufflé.  Sometimes there’s just no fixing it.

. . . . . And that’s okay.  Like in life, shit happens.  You can always try again.  You’ll do better next time so be kind to yourself.

The chili?  I managed to tone it down a notch or two and it won the trophy for “Best Kick Ass Chili”!  So cut yourself a break and go kick some ass!


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