Dinner Time

Real conversation that happened in my house yesterday:

Brad: So, what are you cooking for dinner?
Me: Is that a joke?
Brad: Um, no? Didn’t you say that you were going to do something with that chicken?
Me: Oh crap. Yeah. What do you want me to do with it?
Brad: I don’t know. I thought you were cooking dinner.
Me: Well…{quick glance through fridge/freezer/cupboards} I guess I could throw it in some mac n cheese and toss in some green beans. Or do you want corn? Does that sound ok?
Brad: uhhhhhh…..sure?

See, here’s the deal. I don’t cook. I used to cook but then I married a restaurant manager and I haven’t cooked since. Brad does the grocery shopping, has a planned menu for the week by Sunday, and kicks me out of the kitchen at approximately 5:15ish every night. Then roughly 1 hour later I am served a delicious, carefully prepared, beautifully presented, balanced meal, drink and all. Some nights it’s chicken alfredo garnished with tomatoes, some nights it’s London broil with baked potatoes and green beans {that was a few days ago}, occasionally it’s fresh fish with rice and a vegetable. Brad cooks. I concoct.

I cook like my father, who, by the way, is a wonderful cook. But there are two very key elements to our cooking 1) there is never, ever a plan, and 2) you use what you have on hand. The end is always a surprise. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn’t. I guess, thinking about it now, I cook the way I live.

Let’s go back to dinner last night for a second. A few grocery trips ago I had this genius idea that if I buy a whole chicken I can cook it and then use the meat for several different dishes. It’s like $4 for a whole chicken…so that’s like 3 meals for $4…pretty genius, if I do say so myself. Except, Brad doesn’t cook casseroles and I never cook. Which means that it sat in our freezer for like 3 weeks, and then in our fridge til it thawed. Then I cooked it. The next day I made casserole #1, and then it sat in our fridge. A few days later Brad used some of it for some chicken “spaghetti”, but with Penne noodles {with Italian dishes we typically use whatever noodles we have on hand}. Then it sat in our fridge. We were getting to the end of it being usable…so I had to cook it. Pronto.

After my assessment of our cupboards I quickly realized that I could either 1) cook the same meal Brad did just a few days ago, or 2) make a concoction….what do you think I did?

I’m not going to show you pictures of the meat b/c that’s gross. But I took the meat, tossed in some green beans, and mixed it all into Stouffer’s Macaroni and Cheese

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Then, a second glance into the cupboards reveled Ritz crackers. Only one problem, they were “Honey Butter” flavored. Last time I checked that didn’t go too well with chicken/mac n cheese/green beans. But I’m pretty quick on my toes…so I crumbled them up, added some garlic salt and pepper and a little bit of melted butter.

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And then I sprinkled that concoction on top of my other concoction. Threw it in the oven for, I think, 30 minutes….and then…tada! Dinner, is served.

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You’re welcome, America.

Sorry…you have to know that I’ve been internally laughing the entire time that I have been writing this post. Brad is laughing at me too. But he’s laughing because he thinks it’s completely ridiculous that I took pictures of last nights dinner. Which, of course, he is correct in thinking. Anyways. While I was slaving away in the kitchen…here’s what my little girl was doing.

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So…what did you cook for dinner last night? Did you cook? Or do you have somebody who cooks for you? Or, did you just say “screw it” and have peanut butter and jelly? OR…are you a really good cook and you want to give me your favorite recipes???? Cause I’ll take ’em…I will!

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13 responses to “Dinner Time

  1. Oh I laughed as I read this. I laughed because it sounds like me and my husband. Although he’s not much of a cook. But we do like to experiment with different ingredients. As a matter of fact, I think that some of my favorite dishes were though of on a whim! πŸ™‚ Keep it up!

    • Good! I’m glad I could make you laugh!!!! =) Some (all) of my favorite dishes were just thrown together…my problem is that once I “find” a dish I like..that’s the only thing I cook for like 3 months. Works GREAT as a single lady…not so much if somebody else has to eat too!

  2. We had frozen pizza. Tonight it’s chicken cordon bleu with mac & cheese.

  3. We had chicken, spinach, & mushroom quesadillas. Basically you throw some mushrooms in a skillet with some oil (I got chopped mushrooms to make it easier), and once those are cooked (3-5 minutes) you throw in some cooked chicken (mine was from the night before, but we’ve used store-bought rotisserie chicken, too) and spinach, just until the spinach wilts (2 minutes). Then you take that out of the pan and fill tortillas with it and some shredded Jack cheese. Delicious, and I think the spinach and mushrooms negates the need for a side salad. The recipe is from this cookbook: http://www.williams-sonoma.com/products/food-made-fast-weeknight-cookbook/?pkey=e|fast%2Bweeknight|2|best|0|1|24||1&cm_src=PRODUCTSEARCH||NoFacet-_-NoFacet-_-NoMerchRules-_-, which I intend to dig into more deeply in the near future!

  4. So obviously I just started reading your blog, as you can tell from my comments, but I have to say I am so jealous of your daughter! Lucas still doesn’t pull up! πŸ™‚

    • Well..I promise you this, he will! Some day in the near future he’ll be pulling up on everything! That’s what I tell myself with so many “milestones”..whether Zoe’s early or late…(like growing hair!!!) She might not do it now, but she will eventually. Besides, Zoe has two different sides to what she’s willing to do…if she’s on my lap she is as daring as Amelia Earhart…on the floor, she’s incredibly helpless. It’s kinda weird.

  5. I must admit, at first glance/read this meal seems kinda strange. I’m sure it was really tasty if you’re blogging about it! πŸ˜‰

    Matt and I trade off cooking. I need the practice and he’s been working late, so it’s been me a lot recently. He’s a way better shopper, so he usually takes charge in the grocery store (fine with me!). Tonight I made spaghetti (translation: any type of pasta with ground meat and sauce). Pasta was Rotini (my fav), mainly so we could finish off the box. I cooked up the ground turkey with lots of garlic and onion power, “Italian seasoning” from my spice rack, and a little salt and pepper. Just before the turkey was done, I added two cloves of pressed garlic. Then I poured half a jar of marinara sauce and some left over alfredo sauce over the turkey and simmered for a while. As a “side” I made pan-fried garlic toast. Just buttered one side of a piece of bread and spread half a clove of pressed garlic. Place it in a warm pan to toast it, then flip it over with a little butter in the pan to get the other side. It…was…amazing!

  6. Single gal that works full time

    My dinners this week:

    Monday- hummus, dipped with alternating ritz crackers and carrots
    Tuesday- cereal (cocoa pebbles & skim milk)
    Wednesday- trail mix
    tomorrow I’m meeting up for dinner at a restaurant so that will be a real/full meal.

    This is actually a fairly typical week for me too. I’m still trying to figure out if single people eat dinner.

    • Oh my goodness! Can I tell you that you just described practically ALL of my meals when I was single? Except I didn’t know I liked hummus until I was pregnant. If I didn’t have a husband who would get mad at me for eating like that…I would totally still be eating 2 bowls of cereal a day, and pb&j!

  7. rachael sonnborn

    cooking? I live with my in-laws in my mother-in-laws kitchen! Plus, I am in German school until 12:15pm and the main meal in Germany is at lunch – NOT DINNER. Yesterday, Sascha threw frozen french fries in the oven, frozen gyros in the pan, I washed lettuce and cut up a cucumber, made a salad dressing and some “Zaziki” sauce for the gyros. That was lunch. Dinner is ALWAYS 1 – 2 slices bread buttered with either 1 slice of meat, 1 slice of cheese or spreadable cheese, maybe jelly – eaten separately not together like a sandwich. (that would be wasteful : ) ) This is also what is eaten from breakfast by the way. I was satisfied and that is all that mattered! : )

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