Thursday, May 25, 2017

Everyone Benefits When Mom Feels Guilty

I had a tater tot situation today.

I know. The drama of my life is just exhausting, isn't it?

The situation was this: I had only a small portion of a bag left from the desperation dinner I made when I was sick. There weren't enough left for more than maybe two people. The only time I feed two people is when I make lunch for Jack and me on school days. But cooking the tater tots involves firing up the oven, and I dislike doing that for only one purpose. Especially when that purpose is as frivolous as cooking a small batch of tater tots for lunch.

Therefore, I made these cheese crackers again.

I was reminded of them when I got a note from Charlie's teacher requesting some more snack foods for his class at school, with the helpful information that Goldfish are always a hit. I happened to be at the store the next day, and Goldfish happened to be on sale, so I bought some for Charlie's class. But as I was buying them, I of course couldn't resist reading the ingredients, and . . . yeah. That's worthless food right there.

At that point, I remembered that I made knock-off Goldfish for Cubby that one time. I wasn't sufficiently motivated to make them for Charlie's class*, but it was in the back of my mind that I should make them again, because they are really good and I knew all the kids would be happy.

I didn't have the motivation to do it, however, until I wanted to turn the oven on for the tater tots, but felt I needed a sufficiently virtuous reason to do so.

And that's what brought us to the making of the cheese crackers today.

This time, however, I did not cut them out with any ridiculous small cookie cutter. I am now older and wiser, and really not down with wasting time like that. Instead I just rolled the dough out and cut it into strips with a knife, and then into square-ish pieces. Not real squares, because can you roll out dough with straight sides? I can't.

That doesn't matter in the least, however. Because the way I did it this time meant literally five minutes of prep work before they were in the oven, and they were all delicious regardless of their wonky shapes.

BUT WAIT. We're not done with the guilt (or the baking) yet!

As I was baking the crackers, I thought what a shame it was that A.-the-wheat-intolerant couldn't eat them. But (I continued thinking), he could if I replaced the nominal amount of wheat flour with something else. Like buckwheat flour, which, despite the name, is not a grain at all.

The oven was still hot and the food processor and baking pan hadn't yet been washed, so I made a batch with buckwheat flour.

Those taste like . . . well, like cheese crackers made with buckwheat flour. In my experience, nothing really masks the flavor of buckwheat. I'm not too fond of it myself, but A. likes it, so I suspect he'll like the crackers.

As for me, I really liked my tater tots. Especially because I could eat them without guilt.

* Though I may as well have done it to really cement the reputation I have at the school for being a weird militant hippie homemaker. I suspect it's Cubby's and Charlie's lunches that gave me that rep. Reusable bags, reusable containers, homemade pizza, homemade yogurt, homemade bread, sandwich fillings like leftover lamb and fish cakes . . . Yeah, I can see how that would lead to Cubby's teacher saying to me one time, "I'm guessing you're the sort that had all your kids naturally." 


Anonymous said...

More power to you !!!

Anonymous said...

I love the "naturally" comment--hard to know if she meant vaginally or without drugs or both. Mary in MN

Kristin @ Going Country said...

Mary: She meant without drugs. It was part of a larger group conversation (which I was trying not to join, as I'm not a medical sharer kind of person) about childbirth and drugs.

tu mere said...

All that work to be able to enjoy tater tots. You really should sell it to the tater tots advertising people, 'cause it's an amazing testament to the awesomeness of those small, pre-made potato squares. Never would have thought you'd like a packaged product so much. That story would go a long way to lessen your weird hippie homemaker image.

Drew @ How To Cook Like Your Grandmother said...

Two words: Toaster oven.

mil said...

One of the most shocking moments of my life was my first tater tot, which I had previously scorned. They are dangerous little items! But I remember a friend telling me that they had some out for kids when they had guests over, and the guests opted for tots with their cocktails--

Anonymous said...

Now many restaurants in the Twin Cities offer tater tots as an option among other side dishes. Could be the area's obsession with "hot dish." Mary in MN

flask said...

"i'm guessing you're that sort who makes assumptions about other people's personal lives."