I suspect most of you think it has been pretty quiet around here because we’re crazed, sleep-deprived and wholly consumed with nuzzling squishy baby cheeks and, well, you wouldn’t be completely off-mark, minus the crazed part. But mostly it has been quiet around here because we’ve been trying to use any downtime we can spare to take Jacob out as much as possible, as much to maintain our own sanity as his. And let me tell you, this two-week old has been everywhere: Ess-a-Bagel, The Doughnut Plant, The Pickle Guys and today he even made it to the Shake Shack. He’s been to two parks, been carted around with countless cups of coffee, caught a first fall leaf and even hit a farmers market, where he attempted to make off with an eggplant before we intervened. Who knew 11-day olds could already have such wayward ways?
A few months ago, a friend called to say that she was telling her office mates about how I love to grill pizza and they set to searching for my recipe on this site and couldn’t find it. Gulp, I said, I’ve just never written it up! From that day forward, I made it my Summer Priority to walk you through pizza on the grill, but I have failed at each turn. Either we’ve made the pizza too late in the evening and the pictures came out anything but appetizing, or the day I decided to try again, it has rained. Seriously. If you want thunderstorms to suddenly threaten, let me promise to make you grilled pizza for dinner.
Hoo hoo hoo. Hee hee. Remember when I was all “and I’ll tell you what to serve this crisp rosemary flatbread tomorrow!”? Well, the beach got in the way. And after that, some Chinese food. And a movie (do not watch! the first was so much better). Oh, and then a nap that lasted until 10 this morning…
Seeing as I am never short on opinion on anything–most especially when it comes to many Food Network chefs that so often grace my television set, Alex calls the Sunday noontime shows my “stories”–I can’t believe I haven’t previously said a single word about Giada DeLaurentis. Let me redress that right now: I really want to like her–and no, not in the way that my husband does (busted!). I’ll see her cooking something and it always looks pretty good and like it could be tasty, but never, and I mean ever, do I feel any great need to cook the recipe for myself.
When I made my version of baked ratatouille back in July, I had intended to follow up with suggestions of other things you could do with leftovers, or leftover ingredients, as I always have leftover components but have not yet found a store that will sell me two-thirds of one zucchini and a half an eggplant. I really hate having a quarter eggplant leftover, because I’m very unlikely to use it and incapable of throwing it away, so what usually happens is I stash it in the fridge where it gets forgotten about, rots, is found a month later as when I scream in horror and throw it away afterall, having flashbacks to that time I lived with three friends and we were cleaning out the fridge and found something completely awful way in the back and Dave said “sorry, that was my kiwi” and I was like, “uh, that’s a lemon.”
Tell me I’m not alone in this: You saw Ratatouille, fell in love with Remy (though you still jumped a foot in the air when you saw a significantly less-charming rodent scamper across your path on the way home) and found yourself with a pressing craving, not for the heavy and too-often soggy traditional Provençal ratatouille, but that kaleidoscope of spiraled colors they served to the haughty and (spoiler!) soon-humbled restaurant critic.
I don’t know if the name for this affliction is procrastination–hey, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least, she says, eyeing the sinkful of last night’s dishes–but when I need to get things done, I have this bad habit of doing them either right-that-very-moment or pretty much never. When I return from a vacation, I either get every single thing out of that suitcase and into its proper closet or hamper within twenty minutes, or it sits on the floor of the bedroom for weeks, as it has since we’ve returned from Charleston. I return a garment I’ve changed my mind about the very next day, or it sits in a bag, as has a certain Banana Republic blouse, for six (cough, eight) months, my husband looking pointedly at it and then back at me often enough that I just downright ignore that too. Once something leaves my short-term memory, it may as well be lost for good, but in recipes at least, today I am on a rescue mission.