Last week was a weird one for me in the kitchen. It was also one of the very few weeks where I didn’t have a clear idea what I wanted to do or how I was going to plan the meals.
I guess it correlated with the insane workload I had and the very bad weather we were experiencing. Normally, I come home excited to prepare food because it’s my chance to disconnect from all the hospital happenings. This week, the last place I wanted to be in was the kitchen.
So much so that Wednesday was dedicated to leftovers because there was no energy left in me to even make a sandwich. Sometimes sleep triumphs over the strongest willed of cooks.
But that’s not to say that the week was all bad. I managed to pull it all together despite needing to improvise.
The worst was the appropriately named 2 Cheese Alfredo Mess, which basically came to life because we had some leftover mozzarella cheese that really needed to be consumed before the expiry date. The end result, however, was some pasta in a lot of sauce that wasn’t as good tasting as I wanted to be. The stove also had its fair share of sauce, and it was no fun kicking off the weekend by having to scrub every single corner of it.
The funniest bit was how excited I was on Tuesday to try out the chicken in an Asian mix that Ahmad had picked up from our local butcher. I even planned to make it with noodles and a side of Asian veggies. When I tasted it as it was cooking, it was unmistakable that it tasted a lot more like fajita mix and less Asian- and that’s how it got it’s name. Did we mind? Not much, it was enjoyed just as much as it would’ve had it been what we thought it was. Next time though we will be more careful with what the butcher tells us.
My biggest disappointment was making one of my favorite recipes, only to have the chicken turn out to be not enough. I love marinating chicken in yogurt because it gives it this unmatched tenderness. Then when you mix in some saffron, spices, and chilies, it becomes this incredible dish that you will absolutely love from the first bite. If there’s enough of it.
But the highlight of the week had to be Monday’s fish. It only took five ingredients that are a staple in our home: frozen fish fillets, salsa, olive oil, and salt and pepper. It was served straight out of the oven over a bed of flavored, butter rice. I’d say that this was the biggest sign that improvising can be a success sometimes.