Growing up I was a terrible cook. I was impatient with instructions, impatient with waiting, impatient with mixing things properly. I wanted to cook everything at once, on the highest heat and without reading directions so that I could eat faster.
That hasn't really changed.
But over time I have learned to make the things that I love and do them well, as long as I can avoid rushing. With some painful exceptions.
On my sisters birthday two years ago we had a party for her at the apartment I had just moved into with two new roommates. I wanted to make an apple crisp. These are kind of unrelated facts. She had a cake. I wanted apple crisp. It happened to also be her birthday party. I chopped and tossed and sugared and threw it in the oven.
This is when things went bad. I still think I would have been fine with my hasty decision to broil the top of it if GUESTS hadn't started arriving. I was laughing and talking and having a great time with a whole bunch of partygoers when I smelt it. FIRE.
I ran to the kitchen and smoke was pouring out of the burners. I could see that the entire inside of the oven was filled with flames. I did what I always do, which is to scream for my roommate. Except it was a new roommate. (Then, anyways. She knows better now.) So she didn't come.
Fortunately, my previous roommate was there and the second she heard me raise my voice she knew it was a fire and began sprinting for the kitchen, stopping in the bathroom to get damp towels and something to wrap her hands in. I am nothing if not predictable in my cooking.
I'm living on my own now. So I bought some crappy towels and huge oven mitts and I am going to pick up strong tongs in case I need them.
Which I won't because I am never broiling anything again.
Until the next apple crisp isn't browning properly.