Archive for the 'Dinner Time' Category
August 12th, 2009 by Jessica
Meal: Shrimp Scampi Fettuccini aka Comfort Food
Drink: Some lovely Shiraz compliments of the Clarks
Long, long long time with no write. I have been asked by my readers, “Why so quiet?” (Liz, Nic and Britt-I’m back!). Pretty simple rationalizations… It’s summer and the Baxter family is happy.
Hugh, Clint and I have been so busy antiquing, Big Splashing, thrifting, sun bathing, home remodeling and of course cooking, that writing has fallen by the wayside. Ours was the Summer of Family Togetherness and thank God that we all remain alive and undivorced. Clint and I both miraculously found new jobs. Clint now works for a local Vo-Tech School as their techie-guy. I, quietly and without the ceremony I envisioned, accepted a position with Tulsa Public Schools. After this afternoon, and the pending results of a
UA (fingers crossed!), I am the new Parent Educator for Parents As Teachers! I once said this was the only job I would return back to work for… I guess someone was listening.
With this sweetness came the bitter. I lost my grandmother this morning. My Dad’s mother and my namesake. So I return to you more thoughtful and less sober than most Tuesday nights.
This would be a great time for me to tell you all about the Fiorucci Shrimp Scampi Recipe. About how it was handed down to me from generations of bitchy wives that were mercifully dubbed “feisty”. The reasons I scrape the ingredients together each time I need comfort for myself or forgiveness from my husband. The perfect moment for the wistful story about my Gramma, teaching me about Italian cooking and life… Eating a brick of cheese, barefoot among pots and pans… She sneaking me wine while my father farmed down the road…
No such story here. Go watch a Giada rerun for that B.S.
My famous Shrimp Scampi comfort food recipe I owe only to Rachel Ray. Look it up: A modified Shrimp Diablo from the “Get Togethers” cookbook. A story sadder than my grandmother dying.
Grandma Barb was no cook. The only things I remember her serving were Shastas and luncheon meats, or the occasional jello salad. Standing up and eating scampi over the stove, we toasted my Grandmother Barb tonight. We toasted to her gentle spirit and stifled inner spark. I drank the red wine and told some true, if unexciting, stories of her life. Like how my last memory of her was a birthday party she threw for my HB, whom she’d not yet met.
Somberly in bed, those toasts hours behind me, I remember that I’ve been called a “great cook” but never “gentle”. I hope it’s not too late to inherit something besides her name.
April 22nd, 2009 by Jessica
Meal: Brolied Salmon, with Carmelized Onion and Carrots, over Shrimp Fried Rice
Drink: Water. Yeah right. Haha.
Dinner was tremendous tonight. It was one of those rare meals that Clint just went bananas over. Like, I’ll make 10 gourmet dinners in a row… Crab, steak, what have you… And expect him to praise my ingenuity and the quality ingredients, but instead I get kind of ho-hum feedback.
I read once that you should never knit your boyfriend a sweater. It is impossible for him to love it to the degree that is needed; he could never wear it often enough to make up for the hours spent hunched over like Quasimodo, needles and tangled yarn, counting stitches on a Friday night. Cooking is something like that.
But leave it to my HB! Just as I decide to clip a coupon for Hamburger Helper, I’ll stumble upon a new combination of his favorite ingredients (salt, seafood And starch) and I get to hear about it for days! He is all praise, commending the sauce and asking pesky questions about the internal temperatures of the meat.
Seems like he has me trained pretty well…. Because even Clint knows that you can’t give a dog a treat every time he sits.
April 10th, 2009 by Jessica
Meal: Sloppy Joe on Spinach Salad
Drink: Seagram’s 7 and DDP
A conversation heard earlier in my home:
Jessica: “Im going.”
Clint: “Where are you going?”
Jessica: “I am going to assimilate.”
Jessica: “I am going to tan.”
I drank the sugar-free Kool-Aid. Tanning Package. Working Out. Low-carb dieting. Soon, Ill being trading in my Volvo for a Suburban and dying my hair blonde.
In am in the prime of the mid-twenties thrust for youth. I will lose the weight and improve myself, in an attempt to thwart the real questions about my future. And, as far as the Low-Carb thing goes. I KNOW. I have a degree in Molecular Biology. I cook. I get it; it’s a watered down excuse for eating that disguises itself as a diet and defeats itself the moment the diet is abandoned. But I cannot help the splurge of mania… I haven’t had a good one in a while.
So, I had a Sloppy Joe salad for dinner. I must be the only person in the world today who ate that… and isn’t THAT special? It was even organic, and made with turkey. I carefully toasted buns for my boys while the spinach wilted below my saucy Joe. Delicious? I am in no way pulling a BJ on you (a Bridget Jones moment, sicko) and I will not rant on and on about my weight, and my carb intake and the draining experience of dieting. I am merely explaining to my readers (listen closely, you Two) why in the near future there are fewer recipes including rice, noodles and the other life-sustaining ingredients.
I’ll end this with a suggestion; Next time you see me, do my heart some good and tell me I look “gaunt” or, at the very least, “sick with the Atkins”. It will make us both feel better. And I’ll make you Eternal in my blog.
April 6th, 2009 by Jessica
Meal: I’m on a diet, betch.
Well, I am back. After long consideration I have decided that I will not jump off of a bridge just yet. The last month was dedicated to self-loathing, depression, sleep, crying, over-eating, binge-drinking, aging, job-searching and regular pity parties.
Things that have happened since I dropped off of the face of the internet:
1. Clint fixed my oven.
2. My Dad came to visit from Michigan.
3. I turned 26.
4. I was deemed unhirable by a school and a church AND a hospital.
5. I re-landscaped my front yard.
6. I was told by a drunk family member that I had “put on a little weight”.
7. Clint became a BMW man after his old car was totaled.
8. I cooked the best fish of my life.
9. I bought and installed a stripper pole in my living room.
Are you hung up on item 6, too? I am. I was already a little self-conscious about my body when this someone dropped this devastation bomb. He, realizing the shock waves that were rippling thru the kitchen, backpeddled by explaining that “its cool” if I have “extra weight because Italians are beautiful even when they are heavy.”
That’s right, folks. Lucky for me I am pretty even when I am fat. And of course this unleashed many Catch-22 questions for my husband… like, “So, do YOU think I have put on weight?” and “What do you MEAN he MIGHT not have meant it because he was drunk?!” and “Don’t you think offering to work out with me is AGREEING with him?!”
And that is the worst part: This drunk asshole said something rude to me but really Clint is the victim. Clint is the one who must weather the storm of dieting and exercise and fishing for compliments. HB has to put up with the aftermath of this careless criticism while the offender lives peacefully on the other side of town. Poor Clint, because every one knows that I. CAN. HOLD. A. GRUDGE.
Oh yeah, about the stripper pole. Clint practically kicked me out of the house last weekend to join my friend Krissi’s bachelorette party that was being held at a studio that specializes in Stripper-Cize (think Jazzercize but with poles and rap and champagne). It was his attempt to remedy the funk brought on by the above mentioned “weight comment”. As the doorknob was hitting me in the ass, he promised that I would have a good time and regret not going.
Even though I was the goofiest girl there, and I was next to Melanie-the-Gorgeous-Sex-Goddess, I’ll give it to the HB… I am so glad I went!!! I danced and flipped and spun and thrusted until I regained some feelings of my old self! I haven’t felt as silly and sexy since the baby was born (um, TWO years ago people!). I felt so good, in fact, that I came straight home and bought a pole for my living room. And set it up. And made a play list. And danced.
And danced some more.
Without really trying, I have brought this story around full circle. The stripper class (well, and the sunshine and my friends and the exercise and the attention of my HB) has snapped me out of my Great Depression. I have brought out the hand weights and the scale, and I fully intend to purchase the Carmen Electra Stripper workout so I can practice on my pole.
And tonight for dinner, no potatoes and sour cream. No pasta in cream sauce. Grilled chicken and asparagus, made in the back yard in the sunshine. The boys can fend for themselves if they need butter or carbs or sides. I’ll be cooking LIGHT. And lit, of course, but only vodka on the rocks.
March 9th, 2009 by Jessica
Meal: BBQ chicken on the grill
Drink: So far, just water
Last night I did something I know better than to do: I knitted lit. The photograph below is a shot of what I woke up to. Even non-knitters can see that it looks far prettier on the starting end, and erred and chaotic towards the end, a reflection of the journey through the evening.
What you knitters might notice is that I have one loop less than I began with, and 2 (TWO!) operating free strands on the end. I have no idea how I ended up with such a tangle, but THANK God I had the sense to abandon it before I started drunkenly crying, throwing yarn and picking fights with HB.
Knitting lit started with my Mom. We both learned to knit on the same winter evening. We snuggled into a couch to teach ourselves, and treated ourselves to a little “Charty-Char”. As the yarn flew, so did the charter and coke… And before we could stop ourselves we were a laughing mess with scarves so ugly even the homeless wouldn’t have worn them. Mom and I agreed then that knitting and drinking do not mix, although they seem to be a natural pair because both activities are relaxing and quiet and done when you are angry with your spouse.
So, why did I let myself break the rule last night? Well, I don’t know because I can’t remember.
Tonight, back to the trusty cooking lit. That I never screw up (well…). HB is grilling chicken and I’ll get up after this entry to make some sides… Baked potatoes? Black eyed peas? Don’t know yet.
Oh, and one more embarassing detail: that UFO (knitting slang for unfinished project) pictured, it was supposed to be a rug. Go figure.