There is, in American suburbia (which is I suppose where we live, albeit with occasional gunfire mixed with the firecrackers), a marriage legend that all subscribe to: The little housewife, making the fancy dish for her man. And then, tragedy: the flan flops, the roast wrecks, the fish flounders. There are tearful apologies, but then he chucks the little woman under the chin and tells her he loves her for SO many other things. Years later, in the glow of candlelight and a perfect souffle they laugh about those years and burnt casseroles gone by, while the grandkids chuckle underfoot.
I had high hopes. Spanish Chicken and Rice Casserole (recipe here). I was going to impress Lala when she got home from work (I had also worked a 12 hour shift, but that was behind the point. (That was a typo: I meant beside, but I think I really like behind instead)). I would whip out this little taste treat, and she’d fall at my knees.
‘Course, Lala doesn’t like chicken. So I bought ground turkey, because that’s all my market had. And she doesn’t like peas, so I bought green beans. (She’s really not that picky — those things are all I really have to avoid — pity they were BOTH in my Recipe for Romance.)
Then I couldn’t find quick-cooking brown rice (WTF?), so I bought short brown rice. Short equals quick, right?
And then I FORGOT the big ole 14 ounce can of stewed tomatoes, so I substituted tomato sauce.
Cooked it all up, for about 50 minutes, and know what? The RICE didn’t COOK. So we had a fine meal, nice and tasty, or it would have been, had it not been filled with CRUNCHY RICE.
Thankfully, I made a nice caprese (tomatoes, basil, olives, fresh mozarella, drizzled with olive oil and salt), which Lala LOVED because she’d never actually been exposed to real, fresh mozarella (wait till it’s buffalo!), so that was all right.
There’s ice cream for dessert, so I suppose the little woman made out all right in this chapter, but yes, I know I’ll be laughed at for this for years. It’s a curse to be married to a good cook, I tell ya. Hey, it’s been a month already, can you believe that?
Pick that rice up, baby, you’re gonna need it later….
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