Even if you're no Julia Child, you're probably at least endowed with this home-ec essential: Try to keep from burning the food.
But the Arlington-based Burnt Food Museum smites this fundamental culinary canon: Its extensive, prestigious, decades-old collection honors cooking's most spectacular catastrophes.
In its gallery, singed, scalded and seared food is an art of accident, a curious memento to look at and tell stories about.
Curator Deborah Henson-Conant, a Grammy-nominated harpist, said: "People think burnt food is a negative thing. But it's really important, before you claim failure, to stop and take a look at what you've done and find the beauty in it."
You can see more from the museum at www.burntfoodmuseum.com