The above out-of-focus, off-color picture of dried-up Brown Sugar Pineapple Ham looks really unappetizing, doesn’t it? I always have high hopes and expectations that when I follow a recipe, it will be a success. After all, I’ve been cooking for more than 40 years and with 40+ years experience, it’s not a stretch to anticipate that a recipe will work, right? Well, my recent attempt at a Pinterest-inspired recipe of ham in a slow cooker was a miserable mess, a colossal catastrophe, an utter failure! Even with 40+ years of cooking experience (and, apparently, much more to learn), interpreting a recipe and failing miserably is most often the result of my inability to “problem solve,” rather than the recipe itself. I know this has never happened to you, right?
Don’t you just love Pinterest? The beautifully photographed pictures of amazing things including mouth-watering pictures of food that motivate and inspire each of us to attain a higher level of perfection? The unbelievably, easy-to-make things, either crafts or recipes, that will make everyone believe that you are a craft goddess or the next Food Network Star? The gorgeous travel photos that make you want to leave on the next plane, train or ship to places far and wide (and never come back!)?
I’ve curated many recipes on my Pinterest boards that I want to make, when I find the time in my toot sweet life. And, I’ve tried a few so far – none with any level of success (the problem-solving hole in my brain!). I’ve made a Garlic Parmesan Monkey Bread in my missing Bundt pan (see The Leprechaun Cake Wreck Caper for the tale of the missing Bundt pan) – here’s a picture of that hot mess:
This fantastic recipe for Garlic Parmesan Monkey Bread (not!) didn’t taste as I expected. The parmesan did not incorporate with the melted butter and left the little pull-apart clumps tasting grainy instead of mouth-wateringly yummy. Maybe it’s not the fault of the recipe – maybe is was the quality of cheese or biscuits that I used? I’m willing to chalk this one up to “user error” and give the creator of the recipe the benefit of the doubt.
And, I made a Cheesy Mexican Rice dish, too. Here’s a picture:
This picture (and all the others in this post) was taken with my iPhone, so I apologize for the picture quality! But, served up on a plate with a little piece of cilantro as garnish, it looks promising. However, it too was a mess – a gloppy mess of sticky, cheesy rice and some of the rice was crunchy! The bad news about this recipe is that I made a 9″ x 13″ pan full of it and it was basically inedible! Here’s a picture of the pan of Cheesy Mexican Rice before I dished it up to serve to Charlie! The rest of this luscious dish went in the trash.
And, then there’s the Stuffed Pasta Shells – also a hot mess. Here’s a picture:
Even if I’d taken a fantastic, in-focus picture, this recipe was not worth sharing, either! The sauce was too sweet, the shells overcooked and almost falling apart when served. It needed something – I just couldn’t figure out what. It was just lacking…and not good enough to satisfy a craving for pasta.
And, then there was the Bacon, Egg & Potato Casserole. I thought that it would make a great breakfast casserole and in our house, it would last for days. A great way to have a hot breakfast and not have to make a new one everyday. But, alas, I was disappointed. Here’s a picture:
It was just too much potato! And, I love potatoes and never thought I could possible think a recipe had too much! But, too much potato encased in egg is not a good taste (or mouth-feel) even if bacon IS included!
I’m not ready to give up on Pinterest just yet.
I had a ham. A beautiful 8-pound, bone-in, spiral-cut ham. I’ve always made ham in the oven according to the recipe included with the ham. I’ve used the packet mixture also included and my ham has always been a success. But, I thought I should stretch outside-the-box and try something different, so went to Pinterest to see what other options were out there in the Pinterest world.
I found a video from the widely popular site (over 600,000+ Facebook Likes; 20,000+ visitors a day!!!), The Crockin’ Girls, about making a ham in a slow cooker. The video was 8-minutes long, so quite an investment in time. But, those 8 minutes included other recipes for a holiday meal. I watched the entire video and set about to make this no-brainer of a ham.
Just like The Crockin’ Girls, my ham was too tall for the slow cooker. Here’s a picture:
No problem – they said to just slice off additional ham until it was the desired size. Minutes later, this is what I had:
Mutilated ham sticking out of the slow cooker! Not having the strength, skill or the equipment to cut through the very large bone in the bone-in ham, I ended up with a mutilated ham and STILL the lid to the slow cooker wouldn’t fit. Not to worry; I’ll just cover it with foil and cook it anyway!
7 hours later, below are the results. A slow cooker full of sticky, sweet liquid and surprisingly dried-out ham!
In all fairness to The Crockin’ Girls, if I’d used common sense, I would have realized this would fail. Slow cookers were meant to use their lids, not foil. And, I should have tried to make the ham smaller by slicing from the bottom. Chances are probably fair to middlin’ that slicing off the offending parts from the bottom would have made the job easier. Then, the slow cooker lid would have fit.
I’ve found a few Pinterest catastrophe sites that I thought would be fun to share. Apparently, failure at Pinterest-inspired recipes and crafts projects is quite common and “we.are.not.alone!” Good to know for my next Pinterest recipe attempt.
Here are links to these hysterically funny Pinterest failure sites:
So, in closing, a couple of things to share:
- Tiffany and I make lots and lots of food that we don’t share on our blog, because we don’t deem it “blog-worthy.” Occasionally I’ll share “an experiment gone awry” such as this, but for the most part, we try to share only recipes that we have made over-and-over-and-over again with the hope that our readers will have similar results.
- The Crockin’ Girls rock! While my ham was a disaster, I take full responsibility on this one. The Crockin’ Girls have a robust site, full of amazing recipes ready to make your family meal-time easier.
- And, here’s a link to the ham recipe and the ham video: Crockin’ Girls Ham, Sweet Potatoes, Brownies.
And, follow us on Pinterest! Tiffany and I have 3 Pinterest sites (one for each of us personally and one for Toot Sweet 4 Two). So, check us out!
(other Experiments Gone Array)