Friday, April 9, 2021

Friday Food: A Big Surprise at the End


Short version: Tuna melt sandwiches, tuna melts minus the bread, green salad with vinaigrette

Long version: I made the sandwiches for the kids, and then dumped the rest of the tuna salad right on the griddle pan with some shredded cheese to get browned and melty for A. and me. I also out some toasted pecans on top of ours, and it was very good.


Short version: Beef goulash with carrots, leftover rice, frozen green beans

Long version: I had stew meat still in the refrigerator because I didn't have the energy to cook it on Thursday. And I had the paprika sludge left on the bottom of the bowl from our egg-dying adventure

So I made goulash. Seems reasonable, right? I mean, spices are expensive, and I had about a tablespoon of wet paprika to salvage.


Short version: Easter leg of lamb, oven fries, frozen peas, chocolate roulade

Long version: Calling it leg of ram doesn't sound nearly as appetizing, but that's what it was: the last boned-out back leg of the ram A. butchered in November. I marinated it in olive oil, vinegar, salt, and lots of garlic (breaking my garlic press while preparing the garlic--HULK SMASH), then just roasted it and served it with yogurt/lemon/garlic sauce.

The roulade is a kind of flourless chocolate cake rolled around whipped cream. The ingredients are extremely simple--the cake part is nothing but cream, sugar, chocolate chips, and whipped egg whites, and the whipped cream is, well, cream, vanilla, and sugar. The execution of it is little more complicated, but it is delicious and not nearly as heavy and sweet as a standard chocolate cake with frosting.

The slices look like this:

Sort of like a Little Debbie Swiss Roll, only not gross.

I find it amusing that the recipe calls this a "big dessert," and yet my family has no trouble finishing it off. I could probably make two, and they'd still all be eaten.

Then again, I guess we do have a rather big family.


Short version: Sick-children soup, chocolate pudding

Long version: Four out of four children had a cold. Thus, soup. I used the remainder of the goulash, to which I added more onion, celery, carrots, green beans, a quart jar o pressure-canned bull meat, and a quart jar of pressure-canned beef broth. It was very good.

When a chocolate roulade is on the menu, it means that a double batch of this chocolate pudding will be on the menu shortly. Because, you see, the roulade requires seven egg whites, which then leaves me with seven egg yolks to use. The pudding is certainly a popular way to do that. 

Plus, kids with sore throats particularly appreciate cold, sweet, smooth pudding. As do we all.

Two of the four sick ones taking a very rare daytime nap together in my bed. Pre-pudding.

The only tricky part of making a double batch of this pudding is the precarious pot situation.

Believe it or not, I didn't spill a drop of this. Small victories.


Short version: Lamb curry, rice, green salad with ranch dressing

Long version: We had quite a bit of lamb leftover from Easter, along with about a tablespoon of curry powder sludge from dying edge. Add onion, tomato, and the remainder of the yogurt-garlic sauce from Easter, and you have a delicious curry.


Short version: Shepherd's pie, green salad with ranch dressing

Long version: I had made the shepherd's pie the day before, along with an extra one for our priest, and some additional meat mixture I froze for later.

Altogether, it was six pounds of ground beef. Combine that with the vegetables and tomatoes and other things that go with the meat, and there's another precarious pot situation.

It was a theme this week.


Short version: I don't know

Long version: Wait, WHAT? I DON'T KNOW?!

No. And the reason I don't know is that I am not there.

Yeah. This just gets weirder and weirder.

See, I left this day for Arizona to see my family. My sister had a trip already planned to visit my parents, and she decided to take it despite her recent bereavement. So I decided to go to Tucson to see her, as well as my parents and my brother, who will be coming down from Phoenix.

I'm only in Arizona for the weekend, and while I'm gone, A. will be getting food on the table for the locusts. I left plenty of leftovers in the refrigerator for him. I'm sure it'll be fine. Even though this is the first time in nine years that I have not been there to feed the crew.

Oh wait, I take that back. I was gone that one night last year when I stayed at a hotel by myself. I seem to be becoming quite the gadabout.

Okay, your turn! What'd you eat this week?

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

T.T.: An Update

I'm sure you've all been consumed with curiosity about the fate of the purple balloon. Has it been replaced by something more permanent, but less amusing? Or is it still fulfilling its admittedly strange life purpose of keeping the toilet working?

Well. Let me show you.

Over seven months later, and still as purple as ever.

I have found the fountain of youth, and it is in a toilet tank. At least for balloons.

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Snapshots: Baby Plants! And Easter Prep

Happy Easter! Let's see what we have this week, shall we?

My hair was getting long, so I made an appointment with my stylist.

Meaning, I presented myself to A. with a comb and a pair of scissors and asked him to cut my hair. And of course, monkey see, monkey do.

Such a cute little monkey, too.

We dyed our eggs on Friday. I don't buy the kits, so I experiment with different ways to dye them with things I have on hand. This year, that was paprika (orange), curry powder (yellow), and beet skins (I expected pink, but got more of a purple).

I actually had the beet skins in the freezer from when I roasted beets in, um, January.

Yes, I thought far enough ahead in January to save the skins from my roasted beets, specifically for dying Easter eggs. I asked A. if that meant I should get a medal or be committed. "Commended or committed? That's the question," he replied.

I just thought that was funny.


I let the kids color on the eggs with crayons to make patterns, and then put them (the eggs, not the kids) in bowls with the spices and beet-y water.

In process. The egg on top of the liquid was a half orange, half yellow one.

The finished product is definitely less technicolor than the results from one of those kits, but I like them better.

The yellow curry (the dying agent in it is actually turmeric) makes the brightest color, although you can't really see it in this photo.

This year's Easter baskets are not as sparse as last year's Pandemic Special.

The chocolate crosses were sent by my mother just after Easter last year, and I stuck them in the big freezer until, uh, now. The random other candies are from Halloween, also stored in the freezer. Each child also gets a balloon, a package of Model Magic, and a book. The only thing I bought was the books.

And now, baby plants! Whee!

Baby beets.

Baby spinach.

Baby carrot.

Baby snow peas.

Slightly bigger baby cabbage. Toddler cabbage?

And a daffodil! Yay!

And there you have it! My life, snapshotted.