Bear in mind, I’m heading in to work once I’ve finished my coffee and scone, so I’m not the best person to talk about this. But The Husband was telling me about a conversation he had with another teacher at school, about cooking and cook books, and it made me realize something about making dinner.
The other teacher’s theory is that yes, you can make those food network 30 minute meals in 30 minutes… if you have someone to chop up your veggies, or cook the pasta, or do all the other miniscule prep work involved. And even the Food Network people don’t pretend that the 30 minutes includes doing the dishes afterwards! So what’s the point in even trying?
Last night I took up this challenge. I got home from work at 6:30, and started to make Chicken in Lemon Cream with Penne, from Giada de Laurentiis’s Everyday Pasta. I’ve made it once before, but it’s not a recipe I could making without constantly consulting the cookbook. It’s not a hard recipe, but you do zest a lemon. The recipe is in the ‘quick and easy weeknight pasta’ chapter, although it doesn’t advertise a specific length of time. My kitchen was not in my prefered state of order either – The Husband had recently been in there unsupervised.
28 minutes and some odd seconds between the time I took the pasta pot out of the cabinet till I told The Husband dinner was ready.
The barrier to cooking isn’t that it’s necessarily hard, or time consuming. It’s all the things that get between us and doing it. Like coming home to a kitchen with a sink full of dirty dishes, even though when you left that morning it was empty and clean. The extra long exhausting days at work with stress levels high enough to give you nightmares. Even having tools inadequate to the job – I refused to cook anything that involved grating cheese until I found some really good graters.
Since last Saturday, we’ve been out to eat once, and that was a prearranged occassion. Every other night we cooked something, even if I worked late. We’re really proud of that.