Our mail person has been making sure we neighbors see each other regularly by putting our mail in each others mailboxes. Along with the minutia of junk mail in the wrong box, we often greet each other with “what’s for dinner?” It’s not unusual to get a call from our next door neighbors with “don’t cook, I’m bringing something over,” and I do the same to them. It just nice to eat someone else’s cooking once in a while and not have to leave the house.
I cooked a hot meal for almost each night of the first forty years of my marriage. My husband doesn’t remember saying this to me, but he once complimented me on it. When he worked in Manhattan, the whole family waited until he walked through the door at almost seven-thirty each night to eat. I think it was my son who said something to me about the family not eating dinner together. I almost fainted. Really? He forgot already?
I had a few standard meals that we loved back then. It’s so strange how your palate changes, and food trends definitely have something to do with it. Shake and Bake chicken, baked potato and peas with Parmesan cheese was a staple. Or broiled steaks with some kind of frozen vegetable in a sauce and baked potato and sour cream. I had to be careful how the meat looked; it there was any gristle or fat hanging off it, or skin on poultry, Jen wouldn’t eat it.
Working in the OR with a bunch of women and Tim, the only guy who cooked, was wonderful; someone was always talking about food and what they were cooking that night. One day in July, we started talking about Thanksgiving dinner. On the way home that night, I stopped at the Acme, got a turkey breast and all the trimmin’s. By the time Jim got home, we had a mini Thanksgiving dinner.
I’m just not motivated anymore. For one thing, the constant battle with my weight and now my diminished appetite, if you can believe it, makes trying to plan a meal difficult. A small piece of meat and a veggie is all I need. Add a pizza, and Jim would be fine. But old habits die hard, and I start the day off with “What’s for dinner?” Thank God for the crock pot and all the new sites that concentrate on crock pot recipes. My favorite is Chef in Training. Just throw into the crock pot any meat with a package of Knorr rice mix and two cups of liquid is a guarantee for success, even if the rice does get a little globby. I would settle for a salad every night, but my S/O would hate it. Fortunately, there are several great, inexpensive restaurants close by. Our favorite is Ida Red’s Cottage. However, they’re only open Thursday through Sunday and only until two. And when the people from Chicago come up, we don’t bother. So that leaves a local joint; Christo’s Roadhouse. We don’t mind Madonna and Cher on the jukebox. The food is simple bar food, with chili and veggie burgers and salads thrown in. We’ve already been there this week, but I think it’s where my dinner is coming from later.
So what’s for dinner at your house tonight?