Friday, 20 July 2012

Spinach & Bourbon

“I’m of the opinion that when it comes to Spinach, more is more.” –my husband, formerly anti-vegetable
This comes almost a year after, “I can’t believe I’m looking forward to a vegan meal.”

It’s amazing how marriage changes you.  

These last few weeks I have been thinking and writing about changing paths, or growing up, or just getting on with it.  All these posts are written by my 33 year old self thinking back to my ‘younger self’ (my entire 20s) and contemplating the difference.  Here’s what I realised recently.  

I’m married.

Right!?  It’s not like I woke up and suddenly figured it out.  I know I’m married.  
But what I’m forgetting in this reminiscing is that being married means I have someone else to consider in my plans and that I am a consideration in someone else’s plans.  
It’s simplistic, sure.  But it makes a hell of a difference.  The entire context is changed.  And not in a co-dependent way (although we are pretty inseparable) but in a completely supported way.  Like doing yoga poses at the wall or the mechanic on the trapeze.  You don’t need it, but the support is there, just in case.  

And that leads me to dinner the other night*…

My husband put ‘mac n cheese’ on this week’s meal plan.  I recently decided to quit giving my talents away for free to my ‘employer’ which means I am throwing myself back into house-wifery and giving my talents away to my faceless readers.  In my renewed zeal, I decided plain mac n cheese wouldn’t do. 

I attempted to find a recipe I vaguely remembered tearing out of a magazine, but then I found this recipe: Gnocchi with a spinach-broccoli-cheese sauce and pancetta.  Actually, the pancetta wasn’t part of the original recipe, but if it won’t completely ruin the taste of the dish, or if it doesn’t already contain a pork product, I can be counted upon to throw in pancetta.  Not really the same as mac n cheese, but I figure it’s carbs and cheese, so the basics are there.  

The first thing that happened?  I spilled my expensive bourbon.  Not a good start.  Everything halted until I rectified that situation.
Second thing that happened? I tied one on.  

An apron that is.  A locally produced apron, no less.  If the food isn’t local, at least the cooking apparel will be.  

When cooking while drinking, I recommend gathering all your supplies first.  Measure out each and every ingredient in its own individual bowl/measuring cup/glass.  This gives you the ability to just throw ingredients in, just like a TV chef.  This also gets all the prep time out of the way so that you have time to sip your drink while you wait for milk, butter and flour to boil.  This also clutters up your counterspace so that when you refill your drink, there is a very good possibility you will splash a bit of bourbon into the waiting milk.  

Other tips: 
Nutmeg. Nutmeg in a cheese sauce? Yes. Who knew nutmeg was the secret ingredient to cheese sauce?
Fried pancetta and bourbon is my new favourite cocktail.  This cocktail brought to you through extensive, measured, not-at-all-accidental, science. 

And then, 40 minutes later and an entire kitchen full of dirty dishes, I had gnocchi with spinach and broccoli cream sauce. Pancetta scattered across its top like beautiful bacon-coloured gemstones.

The verdict?  
More bourbon when cooking (that’s how marriage has changed me: cooking and bourbon.  It’s a good thing.)
More pancetta, less cheese sauce.  So he can taste the spinach.  

He pours me bourbon, I make him cheesy spinach.  It's a good thing, this marriage thing. 

*just go with it.

1 comment:

  1. "I always cook with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food" ;-D loving your blog, lady x