Day 6 (March 2nd) – For lunch I steamed broccoli and carrots, scrambled one egg, added in pre-cooked small pieces of chicken, added soy sauce and rice and had a wonderful meal. For dinner I made small shells pasta and added (canned) pasta and added cheese from a shaker. OK, for most of you this doesn’t sound like cooking – but it is rare I actually cook anything more than rice.
Day 7 (March 3rd) – For lunch I had a salad with a simple vinaigrette I made and a bowl of (canned) soup. For dinner I had one of the two tv-type dinners that was still in my fridge. For what it is worth – I didn’t know how to make even the basic vinaigrette salad dressing – so I called a good friend, and this is what he sent me:
The basic vinaigrette recipe is a combination of one part acid to two parts fat. Which means you can mix and match. Acids not only include vinegar but also things like lemon juice which is actually the original. Fresh lemons are often cheap. You could use lime juice or orange or grapefruit. If you use a low acid fruit like raspberries then a little lemon juice added would make up the difference. Another idea is the apple cider vinegar which comes in gallon jugs for just about nothing. Fats are usually oils like olive or salad but any old one will do. A little salt and pepper and herb of your choice from dill to basil. Here’s another trick a tablespoon of hot water in the mix helps the emulsion. And a tablespoon of sugar or honey really kicks it up a bit.
Day 8 (March 4th) thru Day 12 (March 8th) – Well, I don’t have much good to say about my cooking, although I was talking with a group from my church over a catered meal from Kabob International in St. Louis on Friday and mentioned that one of my goals was to learn to cook – and one of the retired men told me he would be happy to have me come over to his home sometime and teach me. He made the most wonderful lentels, rice and curds. On Saturday, two core people in my life invited another core person and I over for a family dinner – complete with meatloaf, homemade cheddar garlic potatoes, homemade bread, and a wonderful salad with homemade dressing. I was sent home with the rest of the bread and some homemade red wine vinegar to help with the vinaigrette recipe he provided, and some “extra” seasonings he had in his spice drawer to help with my cooking project.
Also, on Sunday I was sent home from church with a bread machine. A friend had been using it, and not having a good deal of luck with much more than french bread recipes (the wheat bread came out really heavy). I’ll give it a try.
I am incredibly lucky to have such amazing people in my life! Now, if I can just get into this cooking thing! I hesitate to say that I am failing, because I am doing more than I have in the past, but I’m not doing as much as I probably should or could.