September 17, 2008

The post that will show how indoctrinated I've become

So . . . the fruit of all that Animal, Vegetable, Miracle reading. Our book club decided to do a practical application of the book. Saturday morning, Graceful met me at my place and we drove up to the Redwood City Farmer's market. We bought 10 pounds of tomatoes (recipe called for 30!), 5 bunches of basil and sundry other items.

Animator and Big Smile met us at the apartment when we returned. A vat of pasta sauce, tomatillo salsa and 3 ice cube trays of pesto later, we were ready to make cheese. Yup. We made our own mozzarella. 30 minutes start to finish. (You can find kits/directions at While doing all that fun and games, we roasted a chicken that Big Smile had pre-assembled. Graceful assembled a mozzarella and tomato salad with fresh basil and balsamic vinaigrette.

As the chicken finished, while we were debating whether to make an apple cobbler, Quirky Asian Woman showed up with a lemon tart. Dinner turned into a progressive affair. The chicken and salad were done at 5:30 and the five of us were starving. We started eating. Jrex came home at 6 and we grabbed him a plate. At 7 pm, Hamilton showed up with marinated steak which Jrex cooked (slow oven roast on low heat for 15 minutes then seared on high in an iron skillet). When we finally got up from the table it was 9 pm. We don't have enough chairs for that many people, so two of us were perched on one chair together. It felt really cozy and familial. Old fashioned in all the right senses of the word.

The foods were all locally grown (except the steak. Yes, it was grass raised and free range, but from Uruguay). Jrex bought us wine, but failed the mission. With all the local wine sources, he bought a box wine from Italy. Hey, it's 3 liters of wine that stay good for up to 3 weeks, and its a great drinking wine.

At the end of the night, every one left with pesto, a Ziploc bag of pasta sauce, salsa and cheese.

One funny realization for me was how weird it felt that Animator, a white guy, was helping in the kitchen. I'm used to Jrex helping out, but Graceful and Big Smile are both Asian women and somehow, in a kitchen of Asian women, it felt 'wrong' to have a guy in there. When Mom K is here, Jrex hangs out with his Dad and it's a women-only kitchen. I adjusted quickly, but was surprised to have even had that moment.


Mama Nabi said...

I think I want to visit you some day JUST so I can get one of those lovely lovely monikers you give to your people.

Mmm, that sounds like a wonderful evening. Speaking of wine, I picked up a bottle of Spanish wine that the wine shoppe guy swore by. I should pass on the name of it after I taste some and if it's as glorious as he said it would be.

Mama Nabi said...

(OH, and you're becoming more Korean than I! My mom also thinks it's weird to have a man in the kitchen with a whole bunch of women...)

Beloved said...

Funny about the man in the kitchen. My guy does a lot of dishes and occassionally cooks, but when my mother-in-law was here, I wouldn't let him anywhere near the kitchen. It just felt culturally inappropriate somehow with her there.

Anonymous said...

What a great day and evening, glad it was fun, sounds very yummy, and am going to try and make CHEESE:)

I love the man in the kitchen thoughts, my man is in the kitchen a lot since he's a SAHD and gets the bulk of that work more days than me due to logistics, when company comes it's usually him doing the bulk as well b/c he's much better at it, but I like my alone time in there too.

Inkling said...

That sounds awesome and very yummy. Now you're making me hungry....guess I better go finish unpacking the kitchen.