Yesterday I spent a good 10 hour in the kitchen, preparing a dish and a dessert for about 60 people. I have never cooked for that many people before and it was very unnerving.
My original intention was to cook rendang, but finding a halal beef here is more difficult than I thought. Not only you have to order days (or a week) in advance, you gotta buy by the bulk. Suffice to say, we decided to change the beef into chicken gizzard & liver, rendang style. 3 kg each. As a start, I didn't have big pots or pans to fit in all 6 kg. I had to split into 3 different pots, each brimming with a mixture of liver, gizzard, spices and coconut milk. And my stove's fire was still too big that the coconut milk broke almost immediately and the liver kept on oozing blood. And nothing is worse than coagulated blood, they turn into gunk. The pots didn't look like rendang at all, in fact they looked fugly. Worse, they tasted only liver. Yucks!
By the afternoon, I was so desperate and called H crying because the liver was so overwhelming that I can barely taste anything else. No amount of beef stock, salt, instant spices, additional onions and chilli, or even coconut milk can help.
"So you think it's very bad? You don't want to bring it for tomorrow?"
"Well, I can bring. But I will not eat it myself."
Another call to a friend who convinced me to still bring it. Afterall it is a liver and gizzard rendang!!
Looking back, I should have reduced the gizzard : liver ratio, to 2: 1. Probably it'd better to half-boil the liver first so that the blood & juices will ooze out before I mix with everything and not spoiling the taste. Sigh. And I also learn that unlike beef, who will eventually ooze out some fats, gizzard and liver do not have any fats. This rendang did not self fry like how beef rendang does. So when you boil it until very dry, it looks fuglier than fugly. Imagine that!
Anyway, for dessert I made bola ubi (sweet potato balls). Recipe is from here and here. I modify by adding brown sugar (instead of white sugar) & cinnamon. Generally, it tastes good, but I'm disappointed that they are only crispy while hot. Aiyah!!
Ah well, you can't have glory everyday. Disappointments like these teach me that I still have a lot to learn.