Last night I made a creamy chicken and wild rice soup for dinner. I used a rotisserie chicken for the meat because it’s easy. I’m a huge fan of storebought rotisserie chickens. I used one for the chicken pot pie I made last week.
As I deconstructed the chicken last night, I had an unsettling realization.
I had no idea what happened to the wishbone from the previous chicken.
I texted Ian.
I put the wishbone somewhere from the last rotisserie chicken I took apart and IDK WHERE
I FORGOT UNTIL I PULLED THIS WISHBONE
No joke, people. I put that wishbone somewhere. I remember doing that, because Ian was at work and I wanted to have it so we could pull it when he got home. I had to have put it somewhere safe, because we have cats.
My heart sank and my gorge rose as I realized that one day soon, we may find that wishbone by smell.
I texted Ian some more.
Did I put it in the microwave and someone threw it away? Idk, maybe
Did I change my mind and throw it away? Idk, maybe
Did I hide it somewhere and it’s now rotting there? Idk, maybe
DID WE BREAK IT? IDK MAYBE
That wishbone is a void in my memory.
In case you didn’t notice, I am highly entertaining via text message. Borderline hysterical. At least, I think so.
And do you know what else? I still have not a clue where that wishbone is.
Last night’s wishbone, however, I do know about. I put it on a bowl in the sink while we went outside, and when I came in, Rillo had stolen it and was trying to eat it. Don’t worry, I got it away from her and put it deep in the trashcan.
BUT WHAT OF THE OTHER?
The world may never know.
Today’s Daily Prompt:
What’s the one item in your kitchen you can’t possibly cook without? A spice, your grandma’s measuring cup, instant ramen — what’s your magic ingredient, and why?
The stove? Is that an okay answer? I know, I know, all that it’s your blog it’s your space you do you nonsense.
But–no. The issue I have with this prompt is that I cook so many, many different things. Not everything needs a spoon, or butter, or lemon juice, or chocolate chips, or even salt.
Some weeks a bowl is essential.
Some days I need foil.
At all times I need comestibles, but that’s a given.
Maybe I should just pick salad fork. I don’t reach for whisks, normally. I don’t mix with a dinner fork. Just now, when I needed a tablespoon of butter, I retrieved a salad fork from the silverware drawer.
Yes. A salad fork. I’ve always been partial to them. They’re so diminutive and cute. And useful, to boot.
I used to eat everything with a salad fork. Except cheese. That’s knife and fingers.
Do any of you ever try my recipes? I was wondering about that this morning, as I mixed up some apple cinnamon raisin mini muffins.
I also thought about what a good investment that mini muffin tin has proven to be recently. That’s probably because I only have six regular size muffin papers left, and a zippy bag full of tiny ones. Dozens of muffins have been consumed in the past week.
Mini muffins do have an added bonus of less waste when you have a child who insists you DON’T CUT IT MOM!! This demand must always be delivered at full volume, accompanied by splayed fingers and shaking arms, in preparation for a screaming fit if the damage has already been done.
What I really found amusing, though, was considering how young me would have been horrified at my cooking methods now. I used to be practically paralyzed with fear that something I made wouldn’t come out right. I measured and scooped and sifted and stirred until I was blue in the face.
I made muffins this morning with a bowl and a coffee spoon. I didn’t measure one single ingredient. And I spent not one second worrying about impending disaster, because I knew it would be okay, there’d be tasty muffins when I was finished.
I think I was that way because of my early kitchen training. My mom was pretty particular about measuring. Don’t scoop the flour with the measuring cup, use the back of a knife to level the top, measure liquids at eye level.
Now I can scoop, shake, and guess all I want, because it’s my kitchen, and my food, and my family.
I’m sure she was simply trying to make sure I had good fundamentals before I began experimenting, but I don’t think she ever realized how impressionable I was, and still am. Some things just stick with me.
For example, I vaguely remember some comment from my mom explaining the importance of hand washing. What I got out of it is that dirt is worm eggs. Dirt is made of worm eggs, and if it gets in your mouth you will grow worms in your tummy, and that will lead to all kinds of horrible things. Ian loves this one.
Hm, I started with muffins, but finished with worm eggs. Forgive me?
My favorite thing about most holidays is the meal. I love cooking, and while I don’t necessarily need an excuse to make a big fancy meal, I feel a little less silly when there’s any reason besides simply dinnertime. So, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, birthdays, Labor Day, Presidents Day, whatever, I’m excited because I get to make something special. Okay, maybe not Presidents Day, but I’ll start a tradition for it next year!
We’d originally planned to have a big fancy meal, but when I was feeling down the other day I suggested that I just cook the ham and some rolls and we eat it in bed watching movies all day.
Yeah, I couldn’t really do that.
So there’s a pie crust cooling on the stove to be filled with chocolatey goodness.
As I finished up throwing some leftovers into another crust for a pot pie dinner, I realized I hadn’t looked at a cookbook in a while. So I got down my favorite from when I was a little girl, the Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook. This was one of the two standby books I turned to for entertainment, mainly because of the 94 glossy pages of almost every kind of dish you’d want (the other standby was actually a dictionary, but that’s another story).
I took my book to the living room, and paged through the yumminess until I got to The Fish. And I just had to tell you about it.
My mother made The Fish when I was nine years old, and scarred me for life.
Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating just a wee bit.
But the horror!
My dad has been an amateur fisherman for as long as I can remember, so it’s not like I never saw a whole fish before. Heck, we lived on a sailboat until I was three years old! I don’t know why none of that prepared me for the ghastliness of this poor red snapper, lying in his Pyrex coffin, staring me down.
I’d seen plenty of fish before, dead fish, live fish, cleaned fish, filleted fish, but I’d never seen a whole cooked fish. It was the eye that got to me. Cloudy but still shiny, sinister in the way it wanted to follow me around the room, like a creepy painting.
I did not eat The Fish. I bore the derision of my mother as best I could and went to bed hungry.
For a long time after that I was unable to partake in any meal that could look at me. I’m a south Louisiana girl to the core, and I couldn’t even peel my own crawfish for years, because of course, they still had eyes. And they looked at me.
I grew out of that eventually, though I’m sure I will never bake a whole fish.
I leave you with my first chocolate pie:
I have plenty of half- or nearly-finished drafts staring at me right now, but for the past two days I’ve been spending time with my husband when possible, or baking espresso biscotti (I found the recipe here, they came out pretty tasty), and today I made taco potato soup pancakes for breakfast.
Our daughter had a vaccination Monday (more on that adventure later), and she’s not quite back to her normal chipper self yet, but at least she’s been taking longer naps again. Silver lining!
Yesterday seven o’clock could not come fast enough, and when it was finally seven, election results couldn’t come in fast enough for me. I’m right next door to Mississippi in Louisiana, and I can imagine how quickly we’d follow suit if 26 had passed. But yay! I haven’t cared so much about results since 2004.
So today, grocery shopping, and maybe something nice for dinner. We’ll see. Maybe at naptime I’ll finish one of those drafts.
Also, best search term? ‘I’m a lunatic.’