In my 6+ years of learning how to cook, I’ve made my share of mistakes. I’ve caught napkins on fire, tried and failed to make homemade pancakes, burned chicken in hopes of avoiding salmonella, and misread the directions on pie crust and made pie goop instead. But these lessons have made me a better cook and most of my mishaps these days involve me trying to do too many things at once rather than sheer ignorance. 

However, this particular throwback post from 5 years ago is not one of those moments. A simple Google search would have saved me much pain and suffering. I hope you enjoy and if you are new to making meals at home, take to heart this lesson: 

Wax paper is not the same as parchment paper. 

(I’ve edited this blog post to make sense today, but understand that I wrote this in October 2013. Thanks!) 

I decided to make my favorite stromboli recipe  for lunch that day. I’ve not exactly been Mrs. Homemaker lately, as we’ve invested plenty of money in frozen pizzas and sandwiches due to our completely opposite work schedules. So, I was determined to get some housework done and make lunch like a good little wifey. Everything seemed to be going just fine; the sauce smelled delicious and I even had some wax paper (instead of aluminum like I usually use) to cook the stromboli. The recipe called for parchment paper, and I figured that wax paper was just another name for it, much like Midwesterners have this crazy idea that soda is called pop. The crust seemed to adhere itself way too much to the wax paper, but this didn’t alert me to future problems.

It wasn’t until the fire alarm started chanting “Fire! Fire!” that I realized something might be amiss. Some of the wax paper had charred, but as occasional fires in my kitchen no longer alarm me, I checked on my stromboli and saw that it seemed to be cooking just fine. 18 minutes passed, and I pulled out the stromboli and began to try to extract it from the wax paper.

The wax paper would have none of that. Scissors and oven-mitt covered hands ripped off the excess, but a great deal of the wax paper had completely melted into the stromboli, giving the crust an unnatural sheen that I knew couldn’t be healthy. But, I had spent the last 25+ minutes preparing this gourmet dish, and wax or not, we were going to eat it. We pulled out our knives and forks, and by scraping, cutting, and calling the dish unmentionable names, we were able to eat with minimal wax paper ingestion.

Ryan, my ever supportive husband, was laughing at me the entire time as he picked pieces of wax off his half. As if you would have known this without searching the all-knowing Google. Hopefully, you all will only guffaw quietly from behind your computers and share your own cooking mishaps so I feel less cooking inept.

Please. I need to feel better about myself.