Sunday, July 22, 2012

...and i didn't burn anything, either.

Today was my first day in the new kitchen actually cooking something.

I kid you not, I started by boiling water.  It may sound stupid, but if there is one thing I have learned from all of my years of catering in kitchen after kitchen, it would be that not all stoves are created equal. Witnessing how quickly water can come to a boil before anything else can be darn useful information.  We used to do it on-site sometimes to have water available ready to roll for pasta, or to blanch this or that, or sometimes we were bringing stock up to a simmer for adding to other dishes (like risotto) or heating up a soup.  It's just a handy frame of reference.

Anyhow. I boiled water. Then I brewed up some iced tea.

Next I boiled up some quinoa, which isn't much more difficult than boiling water, but it helped me figure out what the new stove's simmer level was all about (and it was hotter than I had guessed, so more good info). While that was working I chopped up a bunch of veggies and herbs to add to the quinoa after it cooled to make a salad out of it.  It was during the making of this dish that I got lost in the kitchen about half a dozen times, getting confused about where things were and which direction to pivot the wheelchair to work to my advantage.  I think I am gettin' the hang of it, though.  We laid it out pretty nicely!

I had intended on roasting all sorts of vegetables today to see how the oven performed, but it was really super hot up here today, and we don't have air conditioning in that house. It just seemed like a really bad idea to be cranking up an oven.  Instead I ended up making a really nice salad of romaine lettuce, kidney beans, cubed fontina cheese, cherry tomatoes, and some warm vegetarian sausage I had sauteed until nicely crisp.  I made a vinaigrette, and among other missing items, I discovered that I am whisk-less at this house...but hey that's what shaking things up in a cruet is for ;-)

The last thing I made today was a Lemon Thyme syrup for adding to fizzy water.  I can tell you right here and now that I am going to be on a roll for awhile with the making of these flavored syrups. I love the idea of flavoring water, but also controlling how much sugar goes into my beverages.  Next up on my syrup list is Plum Rosemary, and after that something with oranges.

A couple of friends and family stopped by today to visit and check out the new kitchen, and that was a very happy thing....but it's not the the thing that moved me most today.  My most emotional moment was when I went to wash off a large cutting board  and the whole thing fit in the sink.  Dudes, I have been living with a split sink forever, and I can't stand it. I just lovez me a big ol' sink that entire big ol' items can actually fit inside of.  You'll often hear my cursing when I am trying to wash a full sized pan in a small sink and I can only wash 1/4 of the pan at a time.  Today, when I brought the cutting board to the new big sink for washing, and it all fit into the sink, I giggled with glee so hard my eyes watered with tears of joy.  I must have washed of a larger item at least 4 times today, and every time I did, it was just like that. Tears of joy.

I am so happy with what we have put together with this kitchen that the labor pains of the construction phase are slowly slipping away.


Anonymous said...

But what about my toast? Just kidding. Congratulations!

Love, Karen TDL

Linda said...

Hear ye, hear ye, an ode to the joys of a farmer's style sink, than which there are few greater dishwasher's joys!