Hot plate hot problems

I don’t really know what the title of this post means. I only have a hot plate in my kitchen here, so I am going to be experimenting with Hot Plate Cooking. I haven’t even made the dish in question yet, so maybe it will be fantastic. Haaahahaha it will not.

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This picture has nothing to do with the post, I just like it. It’s from the Osh Bazaar.

Today I discovered a horrible truth: there are apartment-hunting websites far, far, far, far, far worse than Craigslist out there. Like, I am sitting here actively thinking I WISH THERE WERE CRAIGSLIST IN BISHKEK. This seems like a very bad sign just about life in general. (The ads here either don’t tell you where the apartment is or who the roommates are, or they want a girl who will pay no rent in exchange for making borsht.)

Anyway. I am very stressed because of apartment-hunting (I’m sure that wasn’t at all obvious), and so I decided that if I didn’t get murdered during the viewing today (at the last minute it was changed from a girl showing me the flat to her brother, and I was all oh no this sounds like the beginning of a murder movie but it wasn’t, no one murdered me whatsoever, although I can’t decide if I want the apartment; also, I conducted everything in Russian, which (1) was cool (2) I’m not sure if the place has Internet) I would go buy red pepper flakes and conduct my first Hot Plate Experiment. Instead of buying red pepper flakes I bought ground red pepper, because that was all there was, and I also went to a shoe store first, which isn’t really relevant to this story, and all the shoes were mad expensive.

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This black pepper was more expensive than all the other black peppers.
However, it has an elephant on it.

Anyway, as you probably know, you cannot cook on a hot plate. You can make pasta, and you can make eggs. You can also make a very disgusting cheese-tomato-pasta concoction, which I will not show you a picture of, and you can make a vastly more disgusting egg-pasta concoction. I’m going to be trying one-pot pasta, which I have done before in my life and it did not come out well. I don’t have most of the ingredients—I haven’t found canned tomatoes here, which is unfortunate because I am really not sure that I have ever made a dish without canned tomatoes here—and there is no parmesan whatsoever. (I did find mozzarella but I just… didn’t buy it. I couldn’t take any more emotional experiences in one day.)

I have chopped tomatoes, onions, and garlic on a plate on a very low table with a steak knife of some sort. This is the worst onion dice I have ever done, but under the circumstances I suppose it is impressive.

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Kinda looks like the universe in here

Update: Now it is some unknown number of minutes later and it is “done.” It sort of tastes like food, ish. Not really. Mostly it just tastes like red pepper and some mush. UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Whatever.

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I took this picture in the dark to emphasize its sadness

PS. Life in Bishkek is going fine!

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