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quiet weekend & cooking

this weekend concluded the cousin exchange. we sent josie to my sister's for three nights, and marc went to some festival in missouri, so it was just 8yo Olive and me.

I made a new years resolution once to cook decent food when marc left town. he's the one who cooks and grocery shops for our family, and over the years he's developed a nice set of lovely things he can make. I have none of these things. He also has his own taste... if it was up to him we'd have steak and potatoes every night, if it was up to me we'd be practically vegan by now. I have to make LOTS of requests for a vegetarian night. He loves to buy the mega-costco ground beef pack, split it up, and feed us for days. You'd think there's only so many things you can make with ground beef and you'd be right, but he makes them all.

oh, but the other issue is that when he left, all I knew how to make was macaroni and cheese out of the box. that's not great either. That is why I challenged myself to make real dinners when he leaves.

Thursday night: cheese ravioli (frozen) with tomato sauce made from the America's Test Kitchen quick sauce recipe. Canned dice tomatoes in the food processor (ATK endorsed method!) garlic, oil, fresh basil from the garden.

Friday night: roasted sweet potato tacos, corn, black beans, avocado

Saturday night: salad with baked breaded cauliflower nuggets according to jocooks. I think just plain roasted cauliflower would have been fine, so I probably won't bread it again but I was trying to be fancy.

We also made muffins. Olive went back and forth between wanting to be left totally alone, and wanting to be right next to me telling me about everything in her games. On Saturday I DRAGGED her to the Kansas Aviation Museum just so we'd get out of the house. I'd worked from home Thursday and Friday so she was really just left to her electronics, which is living her best life if you ask Olive. Saturday she slept in and didn't want to eat lunch and really didn't want to leave the house, but I made her. She admitted it was fun. We spent a ton of time playing with their magna-tiles. The aviation museum is in our old airport, and you can go up to the top of the control tower and see out for miles. She declared the whole experience to be pretty boring but also asked me a lot of questions about boeing 737 and fuselage production at the spirit plant next door.

so after that torture you'd think she'd want to game all night, right? but no! she wanted to talk about school, play Just Dance with me, play dominos, make muffins, help with dinner, then we watched The Greatest Showman together and stayed up all kinds of late.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 19th, 2021 03:06 pm (UTC)
Good on you for cooking fresh! I'm proud of you.

I agree that breading doesn't make cauliflower a whole lot snazzier, but if you slice it into slabs rather than wedges---yes, right through the top as if it were an artisanal loaf of bread---evenly thick (about an inch), brush those with oil and if you choose to, sprinkle them with salt, pepper and your favorite Italian herb blend, they make great "steaks." Bake them on a shallow, rimmed baking sheet, in the oven.

We're only two people, and we can chow down one ginormous cauliflower in one sitting, just we two---and himself isn't a big vegetable eater.
Jul. 19th, 2021 05:49 pm (UTC)

That sounds delicious, I will definitely try it next!

Jul. 19th, 2021 05:32 pm (UTC)
It sounds like a great time together. Your recipes are interesting to this carnivore.

Could it be Olive is developing interests other than gaming?
Jul. 19th, 2021 05:51 pm (UTC)

Oh no, gaming is still definitely #1. But I latch onto and appreciate any time she spends NOT gaming, praise the heck out of it, and I have caught her playing with toys again sometimes which is a win! She’s still addicted we’re just trying to take tiny steps in.

Jul. 19th, 2021 05:35 pm (UTC)
I think it's great that you're trying new things in cooking!
I used to watch America's Test Kitchen all the time but after Chris Kimball left the chemistry was way off for me.
Jul. 19th, 2021 10:38 pm (UTC)
That all sounds lovely -- the food AND the time spent together.
Jul. 20th, 2021 03:23 am (UTC)
Do you have access to good quality meat? That makes the difference in what we eat. We used to only eat kosher meat, now we eat non kosher meat as long as it is humanely raised and slaughtered. We live right in the middle of agricultural county so we just go in on half a cow once a year.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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