Tuesday, December 14, 2010

An accidental stew

If I ever doubted that simple marketing techniques work, I believe it now. I walked into the grocery this morning to be confronted by a bargain--a large pack of freshly prepared stew vegetables for $3.39. My mind immediately went--Jacob for dinner, hot dogs, something better, stew. Of course the pkg. would have made stew for an army, so I sidetracked. But the items I ended up buying that were not on my list: stew meat (I worked my way down from a pot roast that cost over $13 to stew meat for $3 someting--after all my dinner guest is a four-year-old!), cream of mushroom soup, Lipton's Onon soup, frozen carrots, raw red potatoes. Came home and put the stew together according to a pot roast recipe I've had for years: flour and brown the meat, add carrots and potatoes chunks, mushroom soup and a small bottle of red wine--the kind of bottle they serve on airplanes. Then sprinkle with 1 envleope onion soup mix, stir and let it cook all day.
I went out to lunch--ah, indulgence, I had a bacon cheeseburger that had a bacon/1000 Island sauce. For old-time Fort Worthians, it was like eating the bacon cheeseburger at Carlson's all over again. I never ever eat hamburgers (except at home), let alone cheeseburgers. Maybe it was the holiday spirit. Anyway, still feeling guilty from that though very full and satisfied, I opened the door to a house that smelled heavenly. The onion soup really makes a difference. I just stirred it a bit and kicked the heat back up to 275. I hope Jacob will like it--he should since he eats meat and gravy, potatoes and cooked carrots. I may throw some corn or peas in at the last minute, but then, why fiddle with a good thing.
Papa Cardinal was back at the feeder today, and he's a bully--chased all the smaller birds away. Fie on him!
Later: Jacob took one look at the stew and said "I don't like it." I told him if he didn't taste it, the TV was going off. I did not fall for: 1) I want Mommy, 2) tears, 3) I want to lie down. I won the skirmish but not the battle--he tasted twice, didn't like it and announced he believed he'd have a hot dog (he thinks it's a short-order restaurant). I don't believe in food battles with children, so he had a hot dog, some sweet peas, part of a banana, and a small bit of ice cream. Then we watched a video card someone had sent me three times--great chance to repeat the Christmas story. Next Jacob requested a video we'd seen before of a dog swept off a boat and saved from a shark by a dolphin--by luck I found it again. Now he's tucked into bed watching TV and I'm going back to my book. That's the sum total of my accomplishments for the day.

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