churrosWhat's the worst that could happen if you try a new recipe? Maybe you'll burn the cake. Maybe that slow cooker stew tastes like swamp water. So you cooked and ate something repulsive and wasted some food. No use crying over curdled milk, right?

Okay, but what if your food EXPLODES? That's what happened to at least 13 people who tried out a churros recipe from a Chilean newspaper. Churros are sticks of sweet dough fried in oil -- and usually they're a danger only to your waistline. But with this recipe, the dough had a frightening tendency to shoot out of the pot of boiling oil, burning the cook! 

Need I tell you some of these injured readers sued the newspaper? The Chilean Supreme Court ruled in their favor, saying the newspaper should have tested the recipe before printing it. YA THINK? The victims were awarded about $125,000 -- mostly to cover expenses. I shudder to think what that number would be if this happened in the U.S.

Most of us don't usually think about recipe testing, but newspapers and magazines here take it seriously. A blogged recipe might get tested once or twice. But if you see something in a cook book or a national publication you can be pretty sure the staff tried it out several times, and maybe a few different ways. 

Meanwhile, poor churros. Will they ever recover from this PR disaster? Will Chileans ever feel safe trying to make their own again? Maybe churros are more hazardous that they look. Maybe they should be left to the professionals. Look at that long, torpedo-like shape! Who wants to see that blasting out at them from a pot of boiling oil? Caramba! I'll never see churros the same way again.

Did you have any idea deep-frying churros could be so dangerous?

 

Image via sirsnapsalot/Flickr