parens binubus

more than you want to know about a law school graduate/bar examinee who is also raising two children and doing her best at being a partner to her love.

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  • Tuesday, November 14, 2006
    twice-failed experiment
    i didn't post on this last week, b/c i was feeling so defeated. as i posted some time ago, beloved's return to the work force made it so that every now and then, i have to cook. I knew that it was a good thing for me, and for the family in general, and i went on and on about how much i don't LIKE to cook, how I'm not GOOD at cooking, and so forth.

    My first few endeavors, however, turned out quite well. But then, starting last week ... not so much.

    I don't think I'm just making excuses to blame my failures on circumstances. The stew recipe that I made was the result of much perusing of recipes and magazines. The latkes (even though they weren't the best I've made) came from years of experience and trial and error.

    Then, the end of my quarter neared. It was time for me to come up with a recipe or two, b/c beloved was on the way out the door to shop. he gave me plenty of notice and reminders - he is not to be blamed. our shopping routines are as firm as the earth's core, at this point. i know when he goes. but i still found myself immersed in law review article about afghanistan or about evidence rules re: submission of affidavits for summary judgment in negligence cases instead of immersed in magazines and recipes.

    And so I grabbed the quickest things I could find that I felt I could throw together into an edible meal.

    and twice now, i was wrong.

    last week, it was chicken with garlic and soy sauce. There was a LOT of garlic, so I thought, "mmmm, garlic" - my favorite flavor. But it didn't cook that way - the chicken was bland, and dry. It went with these crostinis with beets and goat cheese ... but they actually didn't go together so well, even though the crostinis were yummy.

    tonight was my turn again, and i had this pesky thing called a tax exam until 4 p.m. or so, and i just could not focus on thinking about food. not that i was 100% focused on the tax exam, but anytime i had to think of cooking or food, the tax exam blocked all those thoughts, and made me think, "ah! i have too much to do! i can't think about food!"

    so i picked a crock pot recipe.

    i found it on some random website with a list of other crock pot recipes. apricot lemon chicken.

    i was a little worried that there wasn't enough liquid (1/4 cup orange juice and the juice of 1 lemon), but beloved assured me that it would be fine. it called for dried apricots chopped up, which we had, b/c they're a favorite snack of mine. but beloved got this kind that were ... uh, no sulfur? no SOMETHING, and instead of being apricot colored, they're dark brown/blackish. of course it doesn't affect the taste, so it's usually fine.

    however. in a crockpot, all day long (admittedly longer than the recipe actually called for, since i left the house at 8 and was not home until 5ish, but couldn't serve until beloved and e. got home, both some time after 6), the sulfur-free apricots turned everything, well, black. including the lemons.

    and it did cook too long. there was a slight singed smell when j. and i got home.

    i thought it was fine, though, and when the girls whined about being starved before Beloved got home, i served them some chicken and some green beans, and told them to eat. i was waiting for him, but they couldn't - or else they would have just perished from starvation.

    it took them a long time to eat. e. looked sort of pukey. and tearful. so i told her if she didn't knock it off, she had to eat triple the amount.

    when it came time for beloved and i to eat, we approached the girls' plates, and saw the overcooked leathery outsides of the chicken breasts pushed to one side, and looks of dread on their faces at the thought of us making them eat it. they begged for more green beans.

    then WE looked pukey. i told them that as a reward for their longsuffering, they could have some halloween candy, which is otherwise disallowed on weeknights b/c it makes them grouchy in the morning, and sort of not able to wake up. but tonight, they ate poops. so they were able to indulge.

    and beloved made us pasta and meat sauce. we ate REAL food.

    but it is upsetting. i suck!!

    i told beloved that i will not yet accept defeat. now that i have no more pressing exams looming --- I will put time into the planning and the search for GOOD recipes again. I do believe that my recipes (yes, two weeks in a row) were defective.

    yes, i'll keep telling myself that.

    grumble grumble moan groan.

    Labels: , ,

    posted by Zuska @ 8:28 PM  
    • At Tuesday, November 14, 2006 10:37:00 PM, Blogger She says said…

      Try this. Every time I make it, people snarf it down, and it's one of SM's favorites. Pretty much no-fail.

      And BTW, I tried your squash stew recipe, and it was yum!

      Good luck!

    • At Tuesday, November 14, 2006 10:53:00 PM, Blogger Zuska said…

      as great as that looks, the dynamics of this household make it so that pasta sauces are off-limits to me. beloved makes them weekly. saturday night is pasta-sauce night ... if i were to try, the girls (and beloved) would laugh until they PUKE (unrelated to my cooking?).

      see? grumble, grumble, moan, groan

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