On Tap This Weekend

Allow me to preface this by saying that I now plan meals two weeks in advance. I’m not quite the Grover Norquist of home cooking (I don’t have ten year plans for home cooking world domination), but I do know someone who plans her meals on a monthly basis. I started doing this during the recent part time paternity leave for two reasons. First, I was trying to make grocery shopping as easy as possible each week. Second, I have a finite amount of mental capacity and caring for two people under the age of five, one of whom can’t change his own clothes and is still learning to sleep, is quite sufficient. During leave, I was solely responsible for cooking at home. It only seems fair if one person is working full time, that the other should be responsible for seeing that everyone is well fed. Two weeks meant that I could only have to actively fret over one week of meals. We’re eating the first week on the list, which means I’ve done all the shopping, and I can play around with the second week while we’re eating the first. For instance, next Monday’s supper has changed three times: Paella, Soup, Leftovers. At this point, it’s a soup. So what follows has been largely decided well in advance of today’s post because the less I have to think about, the less I stress.

Pizza/Movie night tonight: flatbread pizzas (again! I’m thinking three), might cook up some bacon to toss on mine. I also like barbecue sauce more than plain tomato sauce, although Kroger’s Six Cheese Pasta Sauce has crack or something in it, because that shit just be callin’ me man. In the best of all possible worlds, I would be served a barbecue chicken and bacon pizza with extra onions on Friday nights. I acquired this taste in college, courtesy of good old Pizza and Taco Express of Annapolis, which ran the on-campus coffee shop, and employed me for four years. I’ve made a variation using duck, and with my own homemade crust, but, really, Papa John’s has this particular pizza on lock. Before children, Thursday night was my designated pizza night. It was just close enough to the weekend that I felt celebratory, but just far enough that I was too tired to cook. As an aside, I really miss living near a Trader Joe’s because they sell doughballs which are easily rolled out and sliced into breadsticks. And, I love breadsticks with my pizza, just like I love chips with my sandwich and nabs with my Coke. The only drawback of the flatbread pizza plan is that if I want breadsticks, I need to make yeasted dough, or I need to pay Papa John’s $4 for what costs them about a nickel to make.

Tonight’s movie: by a 2 to 1 vote, Star Wars: Episode 1. You can guess who the 2 yea votes were. The Lion King is first alternate, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the esteemed representative from Pre-School decided that he’d changed his mind today. This sets me up nicely for a weekend of persistent questions about pod racing, Jedi swordplay and the eventual fate of Anakin Skywalker. I really need baseball season to hurry up and get here so we can both obsess over something else.

Tomorrow: I’m going to try to make this Applesauce Bread so that the boys and I have something to snack on.

Tomorrow night: Brinner. Probably cornmeal waffles, scrambled eggs, grits and fruit salad. One often wonders why there’s never a vegetable appropriate for Brinner. It’s unfortunate, because I sometimes get tired of fruit salad.

Sunday night: We’re having guests, so I’m ramping things up a little bit: A Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie and green salad. Possible pumpkin pie dessert, because we’re sitting on two cans of pumpkin leftover from the holiday season.

The problem then becomes, is it acceptable to eat pumpkin pie for breakfast Monday morning? Since it’s a holiday, I’m voting yes.




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