I like to cook. No, I love to cook.
I buy food magazines, I pour over recipes, my favourite website is taste.com.au, and I'm a proud member of a Food Club. Hey, I even make things that usually look and taste good.
But when I cook, there are guidelines:
- I like knowing what I'm going to cook in advance,
- I like to know I have all the ingredients on hand,
- I need time so I can enjoy the process,
- I like to cook earlier in the day when I'm still relatively alert and have energy,
- I need a thoroughly spotless kitchen.
In fact, if all of these requirements aren't met, I absolutely hate it.
And last night was no exception. While hurrying around the kitchen, not knowing what to make for dinner at 5:45pm, I worked in a messy kitchen while the boys screamed in the bath. Yep, it was a cooking disaster just waiting to happen.
The reason for my last minuteness was actually well-intentioned. I had gone through my entire pantry and culled anything that was out of date, had MSG in it, was too salty, or was an item I just don't think we'll eat. I wrote down a couple of menu ideas to use up my stash of Things I Used Rarely, just so I could get the cupboard back into working order (read: less packed so when the doors open, the items don't burst out).
Most of the dinner ideas weren't valid for this evening's meal as I didn't have all the ingredients. And so I was left back at square one: what to have for dinner? And now it was literally time to eat, and nothing was even prepared. Hubby would be in the door in a moment, and the kids would need to be out of the bath shortly with nothing cooking while they were being dressed in their jammies (the screaming also wasn't subsiding).
Stressed? Who me?
So I did what anyone in my situation would do. I made dessert first. As part of next week's dinner plan, a self-sauced pudding was essential. After all with only five days of winter to go, I hadn't made even one this season.
And the above picture was the finished product.
It wasn't so much of a butterscotch self-saucing pudding, as a gluggy bland custard with gooey yellow skin. Heck, the kids didn't even eat it.
And let's not even start with main course...