Monday, June 21, 2010

Buuuuuuurrnt, With Seven U's.

Dinner in our house is kind of an afterthought. I tend not to plan ahead. [**snort** Understatement of the year! **cough**] Who asked you, Universe? Jeez. Anyway. Like I was saying.

Usually, I wait until I feel hungry for dinner and then go and stand in the kitchen, lamenting that I have not planned ahead. Nothing is defrosted. Cook times are too long. Ugh. Let's just go to McDonald's.

Yesterday, though? I planned ahead like a motherfucking adult. I put a roast in the oven around four o'clock, so it would be ready around seven o'clock, which is usually when I just start thinking about dinner, not having it all ready. So I am all pleased with myself.

Around six o'clock, Scarlett finally wakes up from her nap. I start making Father's Day calls. I am all distracted with the Father's Day calls, off in our bedroom coaching Scarlett through going potty, and generally not paying attention.

Near the wrapping-up of my phone call? Michael comes to me and hisses, "I think it is burnt." Are you kidding me? The roast is not burnt. The roast cooks for 3 hours, and the timer has not gone off yet. The roast is always delicious. The roast is not burnt.

I march out to the kitchen. The timer goes off just as I get to the oven. Perfect! I open the oven door. Oh, dear God! The roast is not burnt. It is buuuuuuurrrnt, with seven u's. Blackened roast. The lovely juices the meat and potatoes and carrots are supposed to cook in have hardened into black tar that will probably never completely wash off. Sigh.

I didn't wrap the roast in foil. Always, I put foil under the roast to keep the dish clean. And I put foil over the top, to keep the meat from drying out. But this time? We didn't have enough foil to do either one. I thought it would be okay. The directions helpfully say that covering the roast is optional. Y'all? It is not optional.

I am all dismayed. Yet again, I am standing there in the kitchen, lamenting that nothing is defrosted.

Michael is worried that I will have a meltdown. He comes to save the day. He is all, "What do we have, what do we have?" looking through the fridge and the pantry. He determines we have chicken and bacon. "Those two things go together," he says. He goes to Google recipes that include chicken breasts and bacon.

He finds some. Success! He tells me we will make bacon-wrapped chicken. He is all, we have to pound out the chicken to a half-inch thickness. I say, "How are we going to do that? I don't have one of those mallet thingies." Michael is disbelieving at first, but he concludes after a quick search that I am right. (Duh.) We do not have a mallet thingie.

We open up the package of chicken. Michael is all, "Hey. These are chicken thighs. Not breasts."

Now I want to be the helpful one. "But they're boneless and skinless like chicken breasts," I say. "And look! They're already cut thin. We don't need to pound them!"

Michael is all skeptical. He goes back to consult Google. He decides that we are going to make bacon-wrapped chicken thighs, with cheese stuffed in the middle. He starts seasoning the chicken. He grabs two shakers from the cabinet and shakes them over the chicken. Then he lets out a dismayed gasp. He has grabbed two salt shakers and shaken gobs of salt on the chicken. "I thought one of them was pepper!" he moans.

Dismay can be so funny. I laugh like Muttley.

The recipe (which he has cleverly mashed together from several recipes) says that we need to dredge the chicken roll-ups in flour, egg, and bread crumbs. This will be my job. I set about making it happen.

"What does it say about the egg?" I ask. "Just egg?" I am wondering if there is supposed to be a little milk mixed in, but Michael says it says just egg. So I crack two eggs.

Michael is all, "Is that the best you can beat those eggs? And maybe we should put a little milk in it." Sigh. Then he says to me, "The recipe says you definitely shouldn't use brown eggs."

WTF? He knows we have brown eggs. "What? Why not?"

He grins. "I'm joking, babe." Oh. Duh.

I get two plates and pour out some bread crumbs on one. Then I pour some flour on the other. I start to roll the flour bag closed. Poof! There is a cloud-bomb of flour in the air, and it rains all over me, the floor, the diaper bag on the floor, and Scarlett's art desk. I forgot to let the flour settle back into the bottom before I tried to close the bag. There is more Muttley laughing. Way more.

Scarlett: "Why did you make that mess, Mom? Why did you make that mess?"

Me, still giggling: "Because Mommy is clumsy." [**snort** Understatement of the- Shut up, Universe!]

Eventually, we accomplish the bacon-wrapped, rolled-up, cheese-stuffed, bread-crumbed chicken thighs. We bake them, and, they turn out pretty yummy. Except Michael is all paranoid about the bacon. Not all of it has crisped.

"It said to broil at the end, to crisp up the bacon," I remind him. "We didn't broil." We never broil. We are not really sure how. Is the bottom drawer supposed to be for broiling? We don't know. "We'll probably live," I say.

And if we keep having this much fun just cooking dinner? Our lives will be so awesome.


  1. This is my favorite one so far. I love it. This one captures all that I love most about you and your family! Your family has so much love and joy and laughter in it, and it is always wonderful to be around you. Seriously, you may want to just go straight to writing sitcoms, I would watch every single episode. With your wit and Micheal's um Michealness and Scarlett's adorable way of asking just the right thing, you would be the number one tv family in America!

  2. anything cooked with bacon is awesome. and now that I finally figured out how to comment on a blog, I will make comments! *ske*

  3. What is broiling? And I have never put alfoil over or under a roast...hmm.. you Americans are funny people LOL Love ya!

  4. @Heather - Us? On TV? At least our house would be clean, and probably have nice things in it. Can I go live in my sitcom?

    @Anon-ske- Yes. Bacon is the shiznit.

    @Bindy - I don't know what you call broiling over there. It's that other thing the oven does, besides bake. Alfoil? I like it! Maybe you should have cooked my roast then, and it would have been magically un-burned.