Posts Tagged ‘cooking’

Calling Out For Kale Recipes

oct 10 kitchen 2008 001

I’m looking for ways to cook kale.

I got a bunch of flowering kale in my veggie bin this week, and it’s absolutely beautiful, but outside of my culinary expertise. Who knew ornamental cabbages were edible? In a quick google search I found lots of kale recipes, and they all boil down to (haha) steaming it or adding it to soups.

I think this bunch looks a little bit like a bridal bouquet. I wanted someone to hold it up so that I could take it’s photo, and Jay said she would, but then said she needed to eat her soup, so we compromised.

oct 10 kitchen 2008 008

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Making ravioli was trickier than I thought it would be. It took us hours. Mostly because of ineptitude with the dough squeezer flattener. The dough kept ripping and getting all bunched up in the machine, and we had to throw out a batch or two until we sorted out the correct ratio of flour/water/oil for maximum flexibility and strength minus the stickiness. We had Tee turning the handle while I fed in the dough, and R cradled it as it came out. Jay and her friend M kept up constant critical commentary from the sides. After we mastered the dough rolling, the actual ravioli stuffing was even trickier, and we ended up with many under-filled pockets. Still, we ended up with actual homemade ravioli, so it was a resounding success.

The trifle was a huge hit too. Looks like New Years Family Feast is a tradition in the making…


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Thanks, Tom

I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.

~Thomas Edison


Case in point. Sweet potato fries do not work when baked at 400°F for an hour in my oven. They burn. And waste 15 minutes of peeling/chopping time. And make the house really smoky.


But, Mr. Edison, you would be happy to know that this failure hasn’t dissuaded me. The three fries that didn’t burn tasted mahvelous. I will try again.


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What’s For Dinner?


I know about the fires in California, and the plight of the Burmese monks, but even so, my mind is on this particular issue. Probably because I can be a little “me-centric”, and it affects me directly.

When I’m deciding what to make for dinner, I’m like the rest of the world (oops, that just demonstrated my insensitivity. The rest of the world that is lucky enough to have food options) in that I make the same 10 or 20 things in rotation. Sometimes I change the order, sometimes even I get tired of the usuals, tired of cooking them, never mind eating them, but what I’m saying is that even though I have a binder chock full of enticing recipes, and even though I routinely borrow cookbooks from the library, going so far as to photocopy whole pages from them, I quite rarely actually experiment with anything new.

It’s because it’s a gamble. It even feels like a huge gamble in my tiny little world. What if I make some new thing and they don’t like it. Then I’ve spent up to an hour of my precious time, plus I have to make some other thing as well. It’s happened a few times in the past, and, combined with the disdain on their faces, it’s all I can do not to take it personally.

I’ve read that it can take up to 13 encounters with a new food before a kid will accept it. How they came up with that exact number is a mystery, and more to the point, who has that kind of patience?

I still make new recipes, but only on days when I’ve had enough sleep.

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Apprentice Chefs


Operation Ogre Mother is underway.

 L prepared a lovely sheperd’s pie today, and R made his first lasagna a few days ago. All well and good.

The only hitch is that it doesn’t actually save me time in the kitchen. I have to be there for every step, and each step takes a lot longer than when I just do it myself. For the lasagna, there were even tears shed. (All those darn noodles were so hot and slippery!) It’s part of the bigger plan, though. A medium investment of my time pays huge dividends down the road. Independent, capable kids, and a houseful of people that can contribute. It was the same story for tying shoes, wrapping presents, making phone calls, folding laundry, and scrubbing toilets.

Heavily front loaded investments.

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