If the road to hell is paved with good intentions, I’m on the board of directors of Hell Road Paving, Inc., when it comes to dinner. Each day as I leave the office I start my drive home with ideas of the nice (sometimes even healthy) meal I’ll prepare but 40 or so miles later my intentions slowly fade into oblivion. Honestly, the drive home takes my drive to cook out of me.
Last night is a perfect example. My husband had a meeting and wouldn’t be home for dinner so I thought I would make a light soup with some of the veggies that were in the refrigerator, yearning to be cooked. His meeting also meant I had to pick up the dog from day care (don’t ask; it’s another story for another day). I arrived home two hours after I had left the office, spending most of the two hours on highways. Still, I pulled out the items for dinner. A few vegetables, some chicken broth and noodles were placed in my usual ‘prep’ area on the counter as I went about feeding the dog. And poured a glass of wine. And remembered I hadn’t eaten much that day so I should nosh on something with the wine or I would get light-headed. And decided it might be nice to watch a movie while I cooked, drank wine, and ate some cheese. In the meantime the ingredients were waiting patiently to be washed, sliced and diced.
Given that hubby wasn’t home I decided to look for an old movie to watch and there on TCM was Joan Fontaine in Suspicion. I could watch the movie and then cook! Wine, cheese, and remote in hand I sat on the couch. I would make my dinner after the movie. I finished my glass of wine as the movie ended, put away the cheese and approached the ingredients on the counter just as I heard that Rebecca was about to start (it must have been Joan Fontaine/Alfred Hitchcock night). I had never caught the beginning of that movie so I would just watch the beginning in the den and then watch the rest while cooking. It was a good plan. I thought the mushrooms in particular were looking a bit impatient but I shrugged it off. Back onto the couch, with the dog and remote, I went and faithful to my plan I returned to the kitchen after the first fifteen minutes of the movie. The ingredients were now looking rather intimidating, and I am certain that the chicken broth box was taunting me as Mrs. Danvers taunted the new Mrs. de Winter. By this time it was well after 8:00pm. My meal wouldn’t be ready before 9:00 or possibly even later I reasoned; I could just have some crackers and call it dinner. The ingredients were whisked back into the refrigerator and I returned to the couch.
Today I can hear them taunting me from the refrigerator as they slowly go from picture perfect to not so pretty but edible. What are they? A carrot, some baby bell peppers, some crimini mushrooms, a few shitaki mushrooms, cilantro that is beginning to wilt, some fat-free reduced sodium free-range organic chicken broth and some limes. I’ll figure something out and report on the results, good or bad. The one thing I know is that my grandfather must be spinning in his grave. Did I mention he was a chef?