Worldrunner3's Blog

June 18, 2010

This would happen. Really.

Filed under: Uncategorized — by worldrunner3 @ 7:57 am

My last post was horrifically ambitious. The (unspoken, but still there) idea in my mind was that not only was I going to avoid processed foods and make all kinds of yummy goodness, but I was going to try all kinds of new recipes.

Well, when you’re not a terribly accomplished cook, this can be dicey. Add in the fact that my darling husband gets home late and wants a “real meal,” (i.e. not sandwiches to make up for the fact that dinner is fairly inedible), and you have a recipe (haha, NOT FUNNY AT ALL) for some serious conflict. 🙂

Yesterday, I decided that I would not let cooking beat me. I went to my Betty Crocker cookbook (fairly reliable and useful, honestly), and pulled out the Italian Tomato Sauce recipe. I might have almost doubled the garlic asked for, but that’s because I’m a garlicaholic. A recipe calls for 2 cloves, I use 3…or 4. Especially in Italian food, because if other people can smell your breath and not pass out, you were gypped.

I really enjoyed cooking it. I cooked a chopped onion and several minced garlic cloves in olive oil for several minutes, then added a large can of petite diced tomatoes that had gotten put in a moving box, 2 small cans of tomato sauce, and a WHOLE lot of dried basil, oregano, a little salt, a little fennel seed, and some black pepper. I don’t usually use fennel, but I knew it would really finish out the flavors. I brought the sauce to a boil and let it simmer uncovered for about 45 minutes while I did laundry.

Omgoodness. That stuff smelled amazing. I was drooling. Drooling like a teething baby who sees chocolate. After the sauce finished, I grabbed the pound of ground chicken I had in the fridge and cooked it with another chopped onion and a couple of minced garlic cloves. drained the fat, and added it to the sauce. This all cooked for a few minutes, and I tasted it to make sure it was good.

It was.

I put it in the fridge for later, and baked a half-batch of lemon shortbread cookies. (That is another post. Nom nom nom!)  Closer to 7:30, I put water on the stove for our whole-wheat pasta, and I waited.

And waited.

Kevin calls when he’s on his way home, and it only takes 10 minutes. I wanted to cook the pasta after he called, so he could have nice hot pasta. But after 8:00, I was so hungry. I cooked a large amount of whole wheat pasta, heated the sauce, and put it on a plate with some awesome shaved Parmesan cheese. I had a Romaine salad with some olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.

I was in heaven. Dinner was amazing, and I knew Kevin would love it. He deserved it, after putting up with my kitchen disasters.

After 9:30 (!!) I finally called him to see what was up. He told me he would call me back, and after 10:00 he did call and broke the news that he wasn’t coming home, but would instead stay in his BOQ. By that point, it was very late, and his on-deck time was 5:30 AM. Staying there would allow him to get more sleep than coming home.

At least I have really nice leftovers waiting for him. And the good news is that I have reboosted my confidence in the kitchen. I think part of it is finding reliable recipes. Some of the cookbooks I was using were good and other people like them, but they don’t really work for us. I have used them before, and sometimes gotten good results, and other times not. For now, I might stick with my Betty Crocker and Also…measuring. I want to be one of those cooks who can just eyeball stuff, and make up stuff, and blah blah blah. At least right now, I can’t. Girl’s gotta measure. And that is ok. If the food is good and gets on the table when it needs to, that is fine.


  1. Good for you Kari! Keep fighting the good fight of making healthy meals! If you really like a particular dish you made, double or triple it next time; put it in rubbbermaid, and store in the freezer for those “disaster cooking” nights. They can be a real life saver! I try to at least double 2 recipes per week, so my freezer is always stocked. (Small freezer? Put in in ziplock freezer bags, use a straw to draw out all the air & freeze flat).

    Also, have a couple of “emergency” recipes on hand for when you are just too tired to cook. I like Angel Hair pasta with a little peanut butter and a touch of Sambal Olek (plus whatever leftovers I have in the fridge)

    Comment by Cuz Christine — June 18, 2010 @ 1:47 pm |Reply

  2. Measuring ingredients means that when a recipe turns out, it will actually be possible to reproduce it. On the rare occasion that I’ve thrown something together and the comments are: “This is really good!” – I have no clue how to do it again. When I do vary a recipe in a cookbook (AND its successful!) I write my modifications in the margins -like how much garlic works. I also include the date.

    Comment by Leslie — June 19, 2010 @ 3:11 am |Reply

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