Posts Tagged ‘supper’

corn fritters

February 11, 2019

More notes from the funeral a week ago. We took a substantial amount of food from the in-laws, mostly sides that we later discovered only I would eat (my wife hates onions, The Boy hates everything outside of four staples – pizza, tuna melts, pizza, and Arby’s, and The Girl is four. She eats like four year olds which is just mercurial and odd).

This included a massive foil tub of corn, I assumed canned, that looked to be dumped into the tin, heated up, and plopped on the table. Yeah, it was pretty plain. I’m not a huge fan of plain corn, though The Girl, embracing her fourness, pouted to school on morning because she really liked corn and really wanted corn. She got corn later.

A four year old only eats so much corn, though. I had to find something for it. I hit upon a recipe for corn fritters, which I altered a bit, but not really enough to share either fully as my own or as someone else’s. The basics of the batter was 3-1-1 with three parts corn kernals to one part milk and one part flour. The consistency turned out well, and if I make more fritters, I’d probably start with a similar ratio to go along with whatever I’m chucking in with it.

They turned out a bit bland. We didn’t think of this going in, but we did think that the fritters wouldn’t be enough of a meal for the wife and I so we also microwaved a packet of this dal bhakara (black lentil curry). I don’t get anything for clicking on the amazon link, btw, it’s just the first thing I found with what we used. It provided the right amount of spice to make the fritters really palatable.

It ended up being a decent little meal, and it used up the majority of the leftover corn. Which was oddly important to me. For whatever reason, being given this food that was leftover from the funeral felt like something that needed to be used and not just thrown away. That there was something a bit extra to this that needed to not be wasted. It was nice finding a way of using up the majority of the corn before it just aged itself out and had to be tossed.

Advertisements

Fa-Fa-Falafel

August 13, 2018

The wife and I love a good falafel, but we’ve never been able to get it right at home. We depended on the box mixes, which are really just glorified pancake mixes. They didn’t always taste bad, and we sort of handicapped ourselves a bit by sticking to mixes that didn’t have to be fried. It’s just a mess neither of us wanted to deal with.

I’d came across this recipe from America’s Test Kitchen (ATK), though. I love ATK. And their recipes consistently work out well for us. They have a recipe for bibimbop in their recent vegetarian cookbook that just nails it

We didn’t have The Boy for the weekend, so I decided to finally try it. The Boy hates falafel for reasons we don’t really understand. I think it’s just one of those stupid, unreasoned bits of defiance and bitchiness that defined all of us as teenagers. Not wanting the expected negativity, I had avoided fixing it.

The falafel turned out well, though. I didn’t have the fresh herbs, so I subbed in what I had in the spice cabinet which was just Italian seasoning and parsley. The Wife doesn’t care for onion, but she’s fine with onion powder, so that got thrown in. I used 1.5 teaspoons of each.

The flavor turned out well, easily better than the boxed stuff we usually got, and it wasn’t super messy. I don’t have a fryer, and I didn’t want to use nearly that much oil. I used  a smallish sauce pan, maybe a cup and a half of oil. Enough to (mostly) cover each piece. It took about three minutes before I turned them over and made sure I got the other half of each piece. There was some splatter, but it wasn’t more than expected.

A positive to the frying that I hadn’t thought of was that they reheated really well by just popping them into the microwave. They just sucked up that oil from the frying and it helped keep them from being hard little rocks when nuked.

We also didn’t make the tahini sauce because I didn’t want to make an extra trip to the store for the greek yogurt. Instead, we used ranch salad dressing. We liked it. Knowing how well the recipe turned out, we’ll probably be more likely to go the extra mile and getting all of the ingredients and doing it right. Though, it’s always good to know you can do the recipe quick and dirty, with ingredients you can keep in the cupboard and not have to go out of your way to get.

small things help

January 4, 2017

My wife has been telling me that we need to start making menus for our dinners, so that we could focus our grocery buying and have some idea what we’re doing when we go grocery shopping.

And she was right. I’ve started making a menu for the first two weeks of the new year. I’ve had to go grocery shopping once and it was instantly easier. I didn’t need much, but I knew what I needed. It was great. The trip was shorter than normal, it was more direct, it was less of a hassle. It was nice.

But that hasn’t been the biggest positive of the menu here in the first week of having some clue what I’m cooking for dinner every night. Not even close. What has been the biggest positive?

No stress.

It’s funny how stressful it can be just trying to figure out what I’m cooking for supper.The time spent looking through the kitchen cabinets, looking through the refrigerator, getting the ingredients together, etc. On the best days it was a minor stress. On the worst days it was a torture that dragged me down into a pit that sucked away my time and motivations. I hated and loathed it, which made me want to do it even less.

Which, of course, didn’t help. It just meant that I started looking later, trying to throw something together in short order to make sure there was something on the table that night. What should have been a simple act was coming to blow up my days.

Tonight, I am making butternut squash ravioli from butternut squash leftover from the butternut squash and black bean tacos that we had for dinner last night. A premade ball of pasta is sitting in the fridge waiting to be rolled out and put through the pasta maker. Dinner is not going to be overly easy or lacking in stress, but it’s a manageable stress, a planned stress. I know what’s happening and I’m ready for it. It’s an entirely different beast.

It’s a small thing, but it adds up. It removes a little bit of stress, frees up a little bit of time, offers a little bit of structure to the world. It helps. Small things can add up. Small things can lead to bigger things.