I feel tempted to turn this blog into a food blog and I wouldn’t even have to change the name if I did.
But I’m not going to do that. I hate being encumbered.
However, since this blog is about my life, I think the latest in my series of “Adventures in Not Burning the Kitchen Down” (though I did get awfully close) is certainly worthy of a post.
My husband and I went grocery shopping last week. Aww, we’re so cute, aren’t we? And as we were getting ready to unload the cart to pay, I noticed a bag of frozen brussel sprouts. Not having placed them there myself, I had to ask and make sure that my husband knew for a fact that it was brussel sprouts he picked out and not broccoli.
“I’ve never had them before. Let’s give them a try,” he told me.
See, that’s where my husband and I usually diverge on matters. He’s the type of person who wants to try new things. The more disgusting it sounds to me, the more willing he is! I, on the other hand, a creature of habit and routine, like to stick with what I know. When I’m faced with having to make a decision, I think of all the times I went for a non-chocolate dessert and then later regretting it. This makes no logical sense, as dessert cannot be equated to all decisions one must make in life. But then again this is me we are talking about…
Now that I am married and my routine of the past few years has been reprogrammed, if you will, and because it’s natural to absorb some of the qualities of your spouse (he now watches cow videos and episodes of Arthur on YouTube!) I guess you could say I’m more open to trying new things. I agreed to Mexican food for the time ever this past weekend.
Anyways, back to brussel sprouts. Given that I consider myself an enterprising new cook (I don’t know where that came from, but it sure does sound nice), instead of telling him that I have no inclination to cook brussel sprouts, I decided in that moment to accept the challenge. Rafia will cook brussel sprouts!
I was a little too ambitious though.
“The recipe calls for salt and pepper only? Screw that!” I say out loud to myself. “Let’s add some coriander powder. Some turmeric. Gotta lot of Madras curry powder, let’s add that too.” All the while, picture me looking like the the Indian equivalent of the Swedish Chef from The Muppets. I even tasted the batter before popping the sprouts in the oven, but foolishly hoped that the mystical Oven Fairy would perform her magic and turn the bitterness into dah-lish-iousness.
I still believe in the Oven Fairy though!
Then to make matters worse, trying in vain to disguise the disaster, I mixed the sprouts in with the quinoa I had made to accompany the sprouts. And that move completely ruined the hitherto edible quinoa.
Since my husband douses Sriracha on everything he eats (even PB&J is not safe from him!), it was really more of an upset to me. I finally understand the dilemma of all moms everywhere when it comes to leftovers no body wants to eat. My husband told me not to the throw the sprouts out. I’m usually not one to waste food, but really, these were NASTY. He said he’d eat them. But I knew from the tone of his voice this was just his customary way of telling me to shut up and stop freaking out.
See, the thing with men is (or perhaps normal people), if food is in the fridge, it’s out of sight and out of mind. Not so for me! If it’s leftovers I know people will be happy to eat the next day (and it’s not a sweet dish), I can rest easy. But if it’s leftovers I know no one will eat again, that’s all I’ll think about. A part of me thinks, “Maybe if I just force myself to eat them all now, I won’t ever have to deal with them again.” But I was staring at a pound of some NASTY sprouts, not cake!
So the next day, having picked out all the sprouts from the quinoa dish by hand, I rinsed and drained off all the spices and concocted another marinade. This time, something more tried and true. A couple of eggs, some bread crumbs and a generous sprinkling of cheese.
When in doubt (and you’re not making Indian food): Cheese is your friend.
At this point, it’s no longer a lesson. Thank you, cows, for all that you do!