Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Dinner and a Book


My mind is a world that few would ever dare trespass. In a matter of seconds, it can shift from pondering the plights of humanity or the important questions of faith to "What the heck is for dinner?"
 
So tonight, I welcome you into the Gravitron that is my brain. There's often no up or down. It spins fast and furious and you may feel like you're being pinned to the wall against your will or better judgment. Also, there might be the lingering scent of fair food or other fried delicacies. There are no carnies there, at least none that I'm aware of.

(Scratch that last part. I just remembered I've got Kenny and Becky in there somewhere...)


 Earlier today I realized that Calvin's perfect attendance Fazoli's coupon expires tomorrow, so I chucked my previously planned dinner for the dream of 3 greasy breadsticks and the promise of spaghetti with tomato sauce.

I'm a girl who loves food in almost all forms, and that includes the fast ones. I like to think that it grounds me, somehow. True, I might live in a 1950's housewife's dream home and yes, I might have invented the world's most fantastic hairdo, but at the end of the day, I'll take a burrito supreme, a hard shell taco supreme and a fountain Pepsi. Extra mild sauce.

The only problem with my spaghetti fantasy is that I forgot that Calvin is the Homebody of the Century. I was so excited to tell him the plan. I was all, "Psst! I have a secret! We're going to Fazoli's tonight so you can get your free kids meal!"

Calvin: Uh, can we go tomorrow?
Me: Nope.
Calvin: I know! What about this weekend?!
Me: It expires tomorrow. It's gotta be today. Help a sister out here. I need butter on my fingers in a bad, bad way.
Calvin: I want to just stay home.
Me: Why?
Calvin: Because we haven't been home in a lot of days.
(Editor's Note: We had our book club dinner last night, so by "a lot of days", he means exactly one day.)

So here's what we ate, our previously scheduled, briefly canceled, ultimately delicous meal. And it was a newbie.

Exhibit A) My new favorite salad.

Thinly slice chicory lettuce and a granny smith apple. Add toasted walnuts and canellini beans. Whisk together 3 T olive oil, 1 T cider vinegar, 1 tsp. dijon mustard, one minced clove of garlic, 1/2 tsp. dried tarragon, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Toss it all up. Throw some gorgonzola on the side, because it's impossible to photograph if you dump it on top.

I found the recipe in this months BH&G and modified it a little. I will eat it for the next two days, or until I'm all outta beans, whichever comes first.

Exhibit B) Butternut Squash Risotto also from the Jan. BH&G.

My first attempt at risotto last year was a miserable, dismal failure. Despite Martha's claims, you really can't make risotto with long grain rice. Unless you are her. I think I got Punk'ed.

The arborio rice made all the difference and if there were left-overs, I promise you I would put this computer down and go serve myself up another bowl at 10:39 in the pea-em. It was that good. I called it "cheesy rice" and the kids couldn't shove it in their mouths fast enough. God bless you, Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, for teaching the youth of America that neon yellow-orange food is a good thing.

Overall, 2 thumbs way up, all around.

Now, the book. My appetite for reading is trumped only by my appetite for acidic foods and my appetite for wearing yoga pants in public. In all of my writing over the past year, my reading has taken a back-back seat. But times are a'changing. I've started a few new books and I'm making a list of books to come, but there are a few that just stay with me, like a secret wish or a trusty sidekick. My Gravitron comes back to them again and again. Radical is one of them.

Our possessions can be deadly. They can be subtly deadly...That's why Jesus said it's hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God...The reality is, most of us in our culture and in the American church simply don't believe Jesus or Paul on this one. We just don't believe that our wealth can be a barrier to entering the kingdom of God. We are fine with thinking of affluence, comfort, and material possessions as blessings. But they cannot be barriers. We think the way the world thinks - that wealth is always to our advantage. But Jesus is saying the exact opposite. Radical - David Platt

Chew on that.

Thoughts? Reactions? Hit me.

We've got sauerkraut, sausage and pickled beets on the menu tomorrow. Who's coming over?

Peace Out, Party People,
FPFG