It’s finally happened. A day I thought would never arrive, even though Rachael Ray, Giada DeLaurentiis, and countless other TV chefs promised it would: the day I decided I like my own cooking better than eating out.
But first, a caveat. (For my husband or anyone else reading this who might want to wine and dine me at a five-star restaurant.) Not ALL my cooking, and not ALL the time. The day-in, day-out planning, shopping, chopping, and feeding less-than-appreciative pint-size people gets old fast. I love me a good ethnic restaurant, and it’s not like I will never again order takeout or dine at an establishment where the ketchup comes in packets.
But after a few too many bland tuna sandwiches from the deli and soggy paninis from the food court, I decided that most of the time I could do better at home.
Take the other night. My husband is back on his caveman kick. That is, following the Paleo Diet, which as far as I can tell consists mainly of meat. And, to be fair, vegetables. I do not eat red meat or poultry, however. And the list of things our children do not eat is longer than the guest list at the royal wedding. They could probably subsist for a year on yogurt and Cheerios. So, basically, that leaves us with about 2 meals we will all eat, and one of those is scrambled eggs.
So my husband was grilling his slab o’ meat, and the kids were eating plain pasta and carrots. I gave up long ago trying to force them to eat what we’re eating. I figured I was either looking at cereal for dinner, or I could see what I could whip up.
Believe it or not, it IS easier to make your own takeout sometimes, just like Rachael Ray always says. Within 20 min. I was enjoying her piping-hot puttanesca sauce on the kids’ pasta. (Trust her on the anchovies. I use the paste.) It smelled so good that C. swiped some sauce for his rack of stegosaurus ribs or whatever he was eating. The kids even picked out a few olives and ate them.
Other things I’ve decided taste better homemade: egg and cheese sandwiches, tuna salad, falafel, and these chipotle shrimp tacos. But not pizza. Every culinary diva has her limits – especially one who’s got writing deadlines and carpool duties.
RECC O’ THE DAY: Baltimore peeps, have you been to Joe Squared? Best pizza in town, IMO. Kid-friendly, too.
RECIPE O’ THE DAY: The Barefoot Contessa’s Roasted Shrimp and Orzo is a crowd-pleaser, even for people who claim they don’t like dill. We cook the shrimp on skewers on the grill in the summertime. Check out my other favorite recipes on Pinterest.