Sunday, February 23, 2014

Kitchen Confessions

Beer Bread


Stages of cooking

I am definitely not a Julia Childs (or a Rachael Ray for the youngsters out there), but I have been able to keep our family fueled over the past 20-some years. However, this has not been done without some constraints. The way I see it, I have progressed through several stages of cooking and am quickly approaching Stage 6. The previous stages were:

STAGE ONE - We won't starve - otherwise known as the newlywed stage. Let's just say there was plenty of eating out involved.

STAGE TWO - Keep the kids alive - also known as "what-do-we-have-in-the-cupboards-or-fridge-that-we-can-throw-together-quickly-after-work-as-we-run-out-the-door-on-our-way-to-a-game-while-leaving-something-hearty-for-the-kid-just-getting-done-with-practice. Whew!

STAGE THREE - Honey, how about PB & J tonight? - This is where the kids are off on their own and the two of us have time to cook, but are feeling too lazy to put much effort into it. Stage 3 is quickly followed by Stage 4.

STAGE FOUR - Where did my metabolism go? - All the quick fixes have caught up to us and it is time to start taking healthy cooking a little more seriously. More fresh fish and vegetables are what is called for. After some experimenting I think I have a handle on this.

STAGE FIVE - New plan - we're going cruising - OK, now what do I do. I have mastered weekend provisioning and food prep, but what the heck am I expected to produce from a three square foot leaning kitchen with minimal fuel and an icebox? Crap, back to PB&J. NO...I'm going to put on my "big girl panties" and figure out a way to provide sustenance that is both healthy and tasty. So, my challenge is to experiment as much as possible on land so that I am prepared for what awaits us at sea.

Ok, let's get started...

Galley cookbooks read crust to crust...check

Pressure cooker....check

Big girl panties...check

The past few months have found me experimenting with Pooker, our new to us pressure cooker. The first attempt was approached with more than a little trepidation. After all, I have heard these contraptions can explode! Not to fear, the first venison roast came out tender and tasty. The curried chicken was excellent, and Pooker doesn't scare me any more.


Next up was bread. All the blogs I read include references to the sweet aroma of the bread cooking and the hearty meals that accompany it. I have never attempted the, in my mind, daunting and time consuming task of baking bread. However, once I got my courage up and gathered the necessary ingredients, I found that bread baking was not as difficult as it first appeared. What a feeling of accomplishment as I pulled the first loaf out of the oven.

Hey, these big girl panties fit pretty good! Bring on Stage 6

STAGE SIX - Mike..either reef the sails or it's a can of cold ravioli for dinner! Stop heeling my kitchen!


1 comment:

  1. My Advise: Focus on Pressure cooking whole birds..turkey, chicken, pheasant, duck, quail. Then you have left overs for omelets, salad sandwiches, soups! Master the birds in the cooker and you have got it set!