Friday, November 20, 2015

A big step forward

Tonight for the first time since my back, leg and balance began bothering me so badly I cooked a family dinner, even tried a new recipe. Granted, I had a lot of help from Jordan, but I got the greens washed for salad, broccoli washed and in the steamer, and made the entrée—chicken breasts in an herbed cheese sauce.

We had a long happy hour before supper—Subie, Phil, Jay, and Jordan’s two friends from Lily B. Elementary, mothers of Jacob’s “besties.” Amy, one of the mothers, brought me a gift of three packages of Boursin, which was just what I needed for the sauce. I had been going to use herbed goat cheese, but this Boursin with garlic and herbs was perfect. Lemon juice, chicken broth, oregano, basil, tarragon and a bit of flour also went into the sauce. My sous chef (Jordan) misunderstood and dumped the flour into the skillet before I was ready but I just hurried and put the broth in—worked fine. Sauce was divine. I really don’t like chicken much unless it has some kind of sauce because it tends to be so dry. Jacob, predictably, didn’t like it at all.

I had to stop and sit for a while several times, but it felt good to cook a meal, instead of the thrown-together things I’ve been fixing myself. And I did some housework today—principally laundry, which taught me I cannot fold towels as neatly as Jordan does. A lot of things that we do without thinking to keep house become complicated when you have a cane in one hand—it takes me two trips to get my breakfast banana and tea from the kitchen to my office.

Next on my list: a big pot of chili. The chili book is doing well, getting lots of attention, and it inspires me to fix some of my own “Mild and Tentative Chili.” Of course, it has beans in it, and chili-heads will tell you real chili does not have beans. At the sanctioned cook-offs, no beans or any kind of filler is allowed. There goes chili mac and a Shanghai Jimmy’s chili on rice.

But first I have to make a cheeseball and cranberry relish for Thanksgiving dinner at my brother’s. Project for my lazy Saturday tomorrow.

Sophie apparently enjoyed happy hour too much. Jordan urged us all outside because it’s going to get very cold tonight and was still pleasant at five. We should enjoy the pleasant evening while we could. She made a couple of trips to put food on the deck table and found Sophie, totally on the table, eating cheddar/jalapeño popcorn. She thinks she got to her before she ate much, but quietly, after others had left, she warned me to be alert to digestive problems on Sophie’s part. Oh good, something to look forward to. So far, however, she is exhausted from playing with three other dogs and is sleeping peacefully at my feet.

Sweet dreams, y’all. Don’t even think about cheddar/jalapeño popcorn!

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