My husband and I bought our house last May when I was very pregnant. I spent the summer helping (supervising, really) updates to the inside. Meanwhile, many of our landscaping projects stood still. Now that spring is here, we have decided to make a significant effort on our front yard. Besides, I have grand plans to maintain a small vegetable garden from which our little girl will experience her many culinary firsts.
I must admit, while I love a beautiful yard and enjoy plucking a fresh tomato from a vegetable garden, I am not much of a gardener. I don’t enjoy playing with dirt and do not possess a green thumb. So if you cannot or do not want to take care of something, bring in someone who can and is willing.
We asked my parents for help and used our little five and a half month old daughter as ploy. The mission was “simple”: turn two ponds into flower beds and fence in a vegetable garden. While the dad and hubby were out excavating ponds and buying tons of soil and such at the local hardware store, I cooked away. The weekend menu took us to India and Asia. We started off with Chicken Tikka Masala for dinner on Friday.
The smell of sake and ginger permeated the kitchen on Friday night as the pork belly simmered.
The meal was satiating and satisfying — a welcome respite from a long day of work for everyone. Our feasting continued into lunch today when I sauteed some shiitake mushrooms with onions until golden, brown, delicious and oh so aromatic. I sandwiched the mushroom and onion mixture between two slices of rustic Italian bread and a healthy layer of shredded Gruyere. The sandwiches were grilled in a pan, weighted down with a spatula until golden, brown, and oozing with cheese.
A crisp and tangy arugula salad with sherry vinaigrette was a perfect compliment cutting through the richness of the grilled cheese. Last, but not least and in my opinion never to be omitted, is desert! My mom was a champ and helped make peanut butter sandwich cookies with honey-cinnamon frosting.
I find it very difficult to resist a quick trip to the kitchen for a cookie. Mom always taught me not to spoil my apetite for dinner which is Shrimp in Thai Curry. I suppose I could have taken a picture of today’s dinner and posted everything tomorrow, but patience is a virtue I work towards. Besides, who knows, maybe one of my readers will be so impressed with the food that they too will volunteer to work for food.