Sunday, March 15, 2015


Sweet potato tart with goat cheese
 It's when the little things begin to pile up that you see the cracks. At first, perhaps, you have to stay up a little later one night taking care of Things. But then! Then all the cracks become apparent and you yourself begin to crack.
faux paella
The weeds. The pile of essays. The paperwork that I just need to sign to send in to the bank, but I also have to read it over (again!) because, when you set something aside and have to come back to it, you don't just pick up where you left off, do you? Permission slip to sign and check to write. Oven is filthy. Teddy's underwear is too small. The car is cluttered. There are so many things to file that I just want to pitch the whole box-to-file in the recycling ... and would anyone notice? Have I paid the bills this month yet? And then Teddy colors on a chair. And then you run out of milk. And then Rufus leaves a dead rat on the porch.

parsley pesto gnocchi with cauliflower and kidney beans
  Dinner is at once a joy - to plan, to shop for, to execute - and a burden. By about Wednesday, I am seriously flagging. I do know that there are purported 30-minute meals. I can't seem to make them. I make 60-90-minute meals. "Family dinner" means me, Sam and Teddy, anyway. But Sam is still excited and that does buoy me to a certain extent. I have been cooking for the past couple of weeks. There was a pizza night in there and a Chipotle night, as well as a scrounge night that included cereal.  I try not to be hard on myself. I have my list of excuses reasons.

tomato bread
 Josh and I discussed how delightful a simple green salad with vinaigrette is. We were chortling at our high school (and college!) selves who judged the merit of a dining establishment by their salad dressing selection. What do you mean you don't have Ranch? And you call yourself American? Now, of course, we are so urbane that we know dressings are to be made a la minute or not at all! (Insert snobbish snort.) 
roasted chicken with croutons and a green salad
I once watched a Jacques and Julia episode in which Jacques prepared a simple salad like this one. He used a paring knife to trim haggard leaves (use for soup - do not toss!), to separate the leaves from the core, to pare down the core itself, to cut each leave through its spine, and then to trim each worthy leaf into a bite-sized piece. He also waxed rhapsodical about the proper preparation of a Salad and Julia stuck in her own pithy commentary about how only the French know how to make a proper salad and the rest of us have to be taught ... presumably by a Frenchman. (Snobbish snort.)

I neither know what the answer nor the question is to my dinner dilemma. Maybe it's not a dilemma at all. I just have to be realistic. If I am tired by Wednesday, then let's not make empanadas! I can stop by the local upscale market and buy their overpriced spanakopita to go with some rice. It doesn't have to be glamorous, right?

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