WND – Rambling & Housewifery

August 28, 2008

Unless I’m planning on doing something really interesting on Sunday, Saturday is my day off.  I don’t cook (usually).  I don’t run errands.  I don’t think about menu plans, or go to the grocery store.  I might go shopping, but not that kind of shopping.

Sunday, on the other hand, is my day for being a good little housewife.  I make a menu plan.  I go to the grocery store, and clear out the fridge of old leftovers and milk that’s gone bad.  I take the trash out and try to figure out if this is a recycling week or not (usually solved by looking up the street to check whether my neighbors have put theirs out, since they apparently actually kept the schedule that the town sends out every year).  I do laundry and change my sheets.  I’m so very very boring.

If I lived in Europe this wouldn’t work, since they’re sane and shops are closed on Sundays.  I’ve lived in the US for long enough now that I don’t expect things to be closed on Sundays, although when I first came back for college I was constantly surprised that you could get things done on a Sunday.  Except for go to the post office which inconveniently is not only closed on Sunday, but closes at 2pm on Saturday.  I have a deep seated irrational hatred of going to the post office, and the fact that if I want to mail something I need to either drag it into town and go on my lunch hour, or get myself up, out and organized enough to run boring errands on a Saturday before 2pm doesn’t do much to change my opinion.

This insistence that Saturday is for playing and Sunday is for doing what needs to be done is occasionally inconvenient, and never more so than when it comes to running by Penzeys for some extra thyme, or a bottle of paprika.  Imagine my delight when they started being open on Sundays.  Never mind that I love going to Penzeys, that I think it’s like porn for cooks*, and that I don’t think going is a chore, I still resent having to take time on a Saturday to stop by.  Right about now Jes is foaming at the mouth about how if she lived 5 minutes down the street from a Penzeys she’d go whether it was a Saturday or a Sunday.  To which I say she can get ripe avocados year round and really great citrus, so we all have our crosses to bear.

I was there this Sunday picking up three different kinds of paprika (smoked, spicy, and sweet).  I have no idea what I’m going to do with all of it, but I was feeling indecisive and I keep running out of paprika recently so it’s not like it’ll go to waste.  I also mused over which of the five kinds of cinnamon they stock was the one I usually buy (and okay, now I’m just being mean and taunting Jes and my mother) and tried to remember whether I was running out of vanilla.  I chatted with the guy behind the counter about what I was going to do with all my paprika (see dinner plans below for the answer to at least 1 Tbsp of it), and tried very hard not to feel old in the face of his teenage earnestness.  Usually it’s just the bagboys at my local supermarket who make me want to check their IDs to make sure they’re old enough to work legally.

Then I went home and figured out what in my fridge was well past its sell-by date, arranged some flowers, called it a day and went out to dinner.

* Which is actually not a great analogy since it’s more like the flavored massage oil of the sex toy world for cooks, but porn is catchier.

Spicy Oven Fried Chicken
Corn on the Cob
Tomato/Cucumber Salad
Watermelon Pickles

Spicy Oven Fried Chicken
My roommate wasn’t home the last time we had this and having heard about it, and read about it she was feeling left out of the experience and requested it for Dinner.  And since I love not having to come up with a main dish, I jumped on the opportunity to make it again.

Recipe previously given:  You Want Me To Do What?

Corn on the Cob

I was feeling like I hadn’t really had much corn this summer, but according to the people who run my favorite farm stand the height of corn season is late August, and given the weather this year that’s probably going to extend into early September.  So really, I’m right on schedule for my corn consumption for the year.

Tomato/Cucumber Salad
Just tomatoes and cucumbers with the tiniest drizzle of lemon olive oil (which I’m hording like the liquid gold it is) for that extra splash of flavor.

I haven’t served melon at Dinner in weeks.  Please admire my restraint.

Watermelon Pickles
There was a side bar in a recent Gourmet, or possibly Bon Appetit – I’ve somehow managed to subscribe to both of them at the same time this year and I can’t really tell them apart – that waxed rhapsodic about this new and exotic thing that chefs were making called watermelon pickles.

I’m here to tell you that watermelon pickles are not a new invention by the hot young It chefs of New York.  It may be a new idea to them, but I’ve been smuggling watermelon pickles across the international date line so that we can have them at Christmas dinner since I was a child (we also used to sneak Peppermint Patties and keep them in the freezer for special treats).

They are, I will grant you, ridiculously hard to find up North but I ran across a bottle in the back of my pantry the other day when I was looking for chocolate chips and I was reminded of rolling my eyes at the Gourmet/Bon Appetit article.


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