Monday, January 08, 2007

One Down for Double! Oh! Seven!

I cooked tonight.

The thing is, it's not that I can't cook it's that it takes a ton of mental effort for me. If I cooked every night I wouldn't do anything else. I can handle like a one cook a week thing where you freeze a lot of things and warm them up all week. That involves being inspired and having ingredients once a week, though. Preparedness is also not a well-honed skill of mine.

Let's not dwell on the negative (let's make today different in some measure from the rest of the year so far)!

I cooked the following:

Pan blackened meatloaf - to be honest I kind of like it that way. I also like it as a dessert item. Lots of ketchup, lots of brown sugar, some bread crumbs, couple eggs, vinegar, mustard powder. It's been about 2 years since I made meatloaf. I'm clearly out of practice. It's a little mushy, too many breadcrumbs, and, you know, the whole pan blackening issue. But it still tastes pretty good.

Brussels Sprouts - If my mother ever reads this she will keel over from shock at this line. I cooked Brussels Sprouts. It's not a typo. Despite Sara's help in giving me thoughts on how to roast the sprouts I chickened out. I cut, I peeled, I blanched (Sara, thank you also for teaching me how to blanch), I tossed in oil and herbs de provence, I cut in half and I saute/fried (not sure what I did, I put them in a pan with that oil and those herbs, what do you call it when you do that?). And, since that was the first thing that was done I ate a bunch of those on an empty stomach. I fear that very soon my entire intestinal system will explode and I will be blamed for the mysterious smell blanketing NY and NJ.

Roasted Carrots - A recent stand by, roasted in olive oil and herbs de provence (can you tell I've found one spice I feel comfortable with and am afraid to branch out?). So intensely awesome that I insisted on eating one straight out of the oven and consequently have millions of tiny little burns all over the inside of my mouth. Totally worth it.

Root Goup - A Pony Express invention that came out of necessity one night when we had three people eating, only enough potatoes for two people...but we had a sweet potato. So it's mashed potatoes but you use both white and sweet potatoes. So good. Especially with meatloaf. Most especially if some ketchup from your meatloaf gets on your root know, by accident. Crash used to do this thing when he shared food with me. He created the "perfect bite" the precise combination of all the elements of the dish to give you the full experience of it in one bite. The perfect bite of root goup actually is a forkful of goup, topped by a small piece of meatloaf and a squirt of ketchup. Divine!

As an aside with the goup thing, over Christmas I found the perfect kitchen tool for making mashed potatoes. Tough to come by but a well-muscled teenager with mild anger management issues makes an excellent potato masher. Especially when the teenager in question is "starving" and dinner is taking "forever" and you tell them that dinner will be ready if s/he will just mash the potatoes. I hear they're expensive but man, it's the least work I've ever had to do to make mashed potatoes.

So I've got no excuse for not eating my 3 veggies daily, right?


  1. I can get you the teenager. I have plenty to spare.

  2. Anonymous8:04 AM

    Really? Brussels sprouts? Why, that's all the nastiness of cabbage concentrated in one compact package! I would NEVER have pegged you for a Brussels sprouts kinda gal. Huh. You learn something new every day.

    Just so you know, whether your sauteing or frying depends on how much oil/fat you're using. Less oil = saute. More oil = fry.

    I would imagine that a teenaged potato masher would be an expensive investment, but worth it if you could get a multi-tasker - you know, one that also shovels driveways or mows lawns or babysits....