In Shape

Has anyone seen my diet?  It should look a lot like me, lumpy, round and swollen, lying someplace, moaning softly, and trying unsuccessfully to drag its ass off a couch or chair.  Poor thing never had a chance.  The, I’ll have some of this, and try some of that; at last Saturday’s Multicult festival was just the beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning.

The wife bought some deformed asparagus at the market last week.  Not straight and neat, it was bent and almost twisted, but twice the amount for the same price.  The wife has developed a recipe for broccoli soup.  Chop it up, boil it, drain it, buzz it in a food processor, and add it to chicken broth.  She’s allergic to milk products, so we added some shredded Kashkaval cheese.  The name Kashkaval translates to cheese made from mare’s milk, but the stuff we get is from goat’s milk.  It has a crisp biting flavor much like cheddar.

She thought she might make up an asparagus soup, much the same way.  We didn’t put the special cheese in; rather she added a cup of Coffee Rich, liquid, non-dairy creamer.  Milk allergies, remember?  Not exactly a cream soup, but nice and rich, served with pumpernickel rolls and butter.  The son and I were supposed to sprinkle shredded cheddar on ours, but I forgot to shred.  That was supper, Tuesday night.

People who grow zucchini are always looking for ways to get rid of it.  We have found that slicing it ¾ of an inch thick, and frying it in a butter/olive oil mixture, sprinkling it with garlic salt and topping with shredded Kashkaval cheese is one good way.  Another way is buying larger zucchini and splitting them lengthwise.  Gouge out the center, retain the pulp, buzz it in a food processor, and add it to fried hot Italian sausage meat.  Steam some of the excess moisture off and add bread crumbs.  We buzz down a couple of Portuguese buns.  Seal the cut edges with Saran Wrap, and microwave the little green submarines for a minute.  Place the halves, cut side up, fill with the meat/bread mixture, and bake for 45 minutes.  Top with shredded cheese, we use the Kashkaval, but mozzarella, cheddar or Monterey Jack are good.  Place back in oven for five to ten minutes to melt cheese.  Serve to overweight blogger.  That was supper Thursday night.

At market, we were offered a deal on avocados, a whole flat for $5.  What in Hell are we going to do with sixteen avocados?  The daughter says she just read that you can freeze guacamole, and it comes back well.  Next thing I know, the son and I are making four big batches of guacamole.  I froze three, and left the fourth in the fridge, because we’re always having some kind of TexMex.  Friday, for lunch I had a platter (that’s platter, not plate) of nachos with the home-made guacamole, and some previously home-made salsa, as well as sour cream.

Saturday we had homemade pizzas, two 14 inch large.  I fried up some more of the hot Italian sausage, as well as some mushrooms, added sliced pepperoni, bacon, mozzarella and a dusting of parmesan.  We always make the two large, to put some aside for lunch for the wife and/or I, as well as a mid-night meal for the son at work.  It was a real struggle to actually have some left over.

I took the daughter to a thing called Barterworks, held at the back of a downtown vegetarian cafe, where a number of folks, as well as anyone who wanders in to the cafe, can buy, sell or trade whatever is displayed.  The son asked me as I left, to stop at a little bakery on the way home, and pick up a loaf of thick-cut French bread, so that we can have a feed of French toast and bacon (Mmmh, bacon!)  for Monday brunch.

On the Canada Day holiday Monday, the daughter and grandson are coming over early to help make supper.  We’ve decided to make up a couple of batches of perogies.  The daughter is allergic to potatoes, so we’ll use sweet potatoes as a base for hers.  Serve these little calorie grenades with some nice beef gravy and some 99% lactose-free sour cream and it will soon be hibernation time.

The doctor told me to watch my weight, so I put it out in front of me, where I can keep an eye on it.  We put aside some of our cooking in Tupperware or Ziploc containers, for the son to eat in the middle of his work-day.  Some jealous co-workers complain that he eats better on leftovers than they do with the stuff they bring.

My doctor told me I need more exercise.  I asked what I should do.  She said, “When you’re sitting at the table,”  “Yeah, yeah??”  “put your arms down by your side.”  “Yeah, yeah??”  “Bend both arms at ninety degrees, and then firmly grasp the edge of the table, with both hands.”  “What then??”  “Push away from the table before you take a second helping.”  I’m doomed, I tell you, doomed.  Maybe I could get a job as a stunt double for the Michelin Man, or Poppin’ Fresh, if I can haul my ass off this computer chair to apply.

I didn’t intend that this be a cooking column.  Did anybody get some ideas for a meal?  Damn, now I feel hungry again.  Is there a bit of cheese left in the fridge?

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