Friday, June 17, 2011

Day 200 - Cooking with Julie & Julia (Aspic)

Day 200.

For those of you who remember my misguided attempt at cooking on Day 34 will understand why I haven't tried to cook again since. But there's a second time for everything, right? And what better way to celebrate the 200th day of the Lawrence/Julie & Julia Project than by trying to recreate Julie's disastrous aspic.

No, not ass pic.

Of course, looking up the actual ingredients/recipe would be considered cheating--I swear to only use what I learned from dialogue in the movie to cook up my aspic:
"We are, I am sorry to say, entering aspics. An aspic is sort of a beef-flavored Jell-O mold. Doesn't that sound delicious? I can't imagine why no one makes them anymore. You begin with a calf's foot, which I am in possession of thanks to my sainted husband, and you boil it until your kitchen smells like a tannery. And then it gels in the refrigerator and you flip it onto a plate."
Cool. Here we go, bitches. Oh, and I should mention I'm back in San Francisco for the summer, so it will be my brother/sister-in-law's kitchen I will be ruining today. Thanks, Lance & Maria!


Again, like last time, I had to improvise a lot of the ingredients--"beef-flavored Jell-O mold" isn't much to go off of. Let's start off by whipping out that calf's foot.

Where did you get that thing, NMR?

To be perfectly honest, I looked everywhere (read: two supermarkets) and I couldn't find a fucking calf's foot. Like, seriously, where are you supposed to go to buy a calf's foot? That is a ridiculous food item to purchase. Anyways, I decided that a pig's leg would suffice in place of the calf's foot--and pretty much grocery store I know (in Chinatown) has those.

Pork legs are dirt cheap!
Probably for good reason.
What the fuck is that blue spot?
Look at them piggy toes. Mmmmm... good.
Pig sole.

Pretty gross, right? I can't imagine what that's going to taste like in Jell-O. Well, pretty soon I won't have to. I'll just know.

Boiling water for the Jell-o
This kind of cooking, I can handle.

Oh shit, I just remembered I don't have a nifty Jell-o mold like Julie Powell does! Never fear, I do have this angel food cake container that'll do in a pinch. One problem though--it's filled with angel food! What to do, what to do?!!?

I cleaned the thing out the best I could. Whatever, I'm sure it'll be fine. Up next, the meat. I was looking for some beef, you know, to account for the "beef-flavor" that Julie Powell was talking about, but I'll let you in on a little secret--beef is expensive! I don't have the blog funds for high-grade steak, or even low-grade steak for that matter (I would if you ungrateful readers would DONATE once in awhile). My sister-in-law suggested I just get spam instead, which I did. Spam is much funnier anyways.

Spam: the perennial punchline of the canned meat community.
My sister-in-law also pointed out that the can was molding because it had probably
been sitting on the shelf for years. Don't worry, it should keep till 2014.
There's no way anyone actually eats this stuff.
Maybe ironically.
Even ironically, this is fucking gross.
Meat really shouldn't look like that when you cut into it.
Actually, nothing should look like that when you cut into it.
However, that being said, is that some JELLY I spy!?!?!
I cubed the shit out of that Spam.

So after making the compromise on the spam, I figured the "beef flavor" had to come from somewhere. I take the culinary arts very seriously, after all. Enter, ramen.

6-PACK BEEF FLAVOR (coincidentally, the nickname for my abs)

Well that certainly looks delicious. Off to chop the pig's foot now. Shouldn't be a problem.

What up, foot knuckle hair?
Not working out too well...
At least the beef flavor is setting in nicely.
Time to do what I do best.

Success! Now, to add the Jell-o!

Orange, Strawberry, AND Lime!

Wet + Dry/Spam/Pig Leg = Gross
Why use another clean cup when you have SPAM CAN?
Adding some more Beef Flavor for taste.
 Testing out the Jell-o...
...Just a little dip, is all.

Wouldja look at that.

Couldn't find plastic wrap... I did find a garbage bag though!
Cool for 5+ hours
Aftermath. Don't kick me out, guys.
Had to add the second layer. I think I mighta made too much.

And 5 hours later...

Prepping the aspic for flippage.
The thing was deceptively heavy.
Sister-in-Law, HELP!
The moment of truth.
Audience collectively gasps.
Now, to try a piece...
Not so bad...
Oh wait, all that beef flavor is kicking in...
Fucking gross.

Voila, my aspic masterpiece.
Doesn't that look fucking delicious?
I am the greatest chef in the world.
Jello Spam, anyone?
At least mine didn't totally collapse like...
Julie... Powell's...

Well, that sure was fun. At least now I remember why I don't cook--I'm just too good at it. Happy 200th, everyone!


Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "How many more aspics are there?"

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