Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Welcome to India...

The Denver zoo is expensive. So Liv and I improvise and spend a lot of time going to PetCo.  I mean sure they don't have bengal tigers and exotic animals but they do have a pretty sweet rodent and fish collection.  We have spent hours watching ferrets, mice and hamsters run on their wheels and Liv never gets sick of it.
I realized lately that the hamsters and I have something in common...our daily routines.  Hamsters exert a lot of effort and burn a lot of calories on that silly wheel that never changes.  I feel like I have never worked harder in my life and yet it feels very "wheel like" considering it is the same thing over and over each day. One of the most mundane cycles that is a mothering chief cornerstone is dinner production. Seriously a pointless endeavor.  First you have to plan it, then you have to venture into the public eye and buy the ingredients, then prepare the meal, set out all the necessary tools to consume it, all for a glorious 10 minutes when it is then over and you are left with clean up... only to have to repeat the cycle not even 24 hours later.  Can we say hamster wheel syndrome?
The problem is that I feel like I make the same 10 things over and over and over and over and you get the idea.  There's always the classics (tacos, spaghetti, hamburgers, etc.) followed by a variety of cream of crap casserole like dishes that are basically goulash with cream of something cooked at 350 and are always welcome when the ward brings you dinner. The third category of my gourmet cooking is the unknown variable pinterest dream.  Meaning, I pin a lot of virtual meals that always look far better on the computer screen than they do on the plate and few make it into the regular routine after their creation and fall.  I decided that for conference we needed to venture out of the normal hamster wheel cooking boundaries and try something new and exotic.  Thus, Liv and I (Liv is my newest cooking assistant) decided that Indian food was in order. 

I felt slightly confident since I was using "our best bites" which rarely fails me.  Here we are making naan even though I generally stop reading if any recipe says the word "yeast."  Unfortunately, I did not inherit my mother's pioneer bread making genes and talent.
The results were not impressive but not repulsive.  We had grilled chicken tandoori (I feel fancy just saying that word), curry rice, garlic naan and asparagus (the asparagus was not Indian, it was just about to go bad in our American fridge so it had to be consumed).
When you make exotic new foods, I feel it is necessary to be fully invested in the meal. Luckily, everyone was willing to participate.

Even though some people didn't know they were participating.
I love cooking with Liv.  I enjoyed our cultural hamster wheel variation of Indian food although it will not be a frequent usual dish (mostly because it used more than 5 ingredients).  There are some perks to the motherhood hamster wheel...if you mess up dinner, don't worry because you will get another chance the next day, and the next, and the next....

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