May 14, 2009

Where's the Beef?

Yesterday, I threw out an entire pound of organically fed ground beef.

I was saving it for a lovely picadillo (and someday I'll share the recipe) - full of pineapple and raisins and tomatoes and rich, yummy Cuban spices that make my tummy and my tastebuds sing. It's one of my favorite dishes. Ever.

Not gonna get cooked this week.

I love planning meals. It's a luxury these days - life is still crazy, and the little bits of down time I have don't leave much room for it. But I love it. I love sitting down with my cookbooks and my recipe cards and my little food brain and figuring out how and when I'm going to play in my kitchen.

Planning doesn't make as much sense these days. I use a rotating menu for the kids - chicken tenders with rotini and broccoli, mac & dogs & peas, spaghetti with meat sauce, fish and rice and corn, ham with home fries and apples, chicken quesadillas with veggie sticks.

But for me - well, I don't have time to cook for grown-ups anymore, not when it's just me eating.

I still get inspired, though. I still buy fresh herbs and pretty produce, and the occasional cut of meat. And half the time I wind up tossing it all. Because, as inspired as I may be, at the end of a day of working and playing and mowing the lawn, chauffering kids and kissing owies, picking up dog doo, folding the laundry, tickling tummies and wearing stickers on my forehead, and cuddling up at bedtime - well, cooking isn't high on my list.

I miss it.

Tomorrow, I will have to toss the tilapia.

Of course, this could all be resolved if I would just clean out my freezer.

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