Friday, March 28, 2008

What's For Dinner? The Never Ending Struggle

I am always curious as to what others have for dinner. Are you? Do my friends and neighbors cook actual meals every night? Take out? Restaurants? Frozen meals? Cereal? I figure in the thirteen years I have spent married I have spent 1,423 hours cooking dinner. That’s just 30 minutes a night—a fair calculation I figure given the fact that many nights dinner actually takes about an hour to cook. Also, the fact that we eat out 1-3 nights a month. I’m not sure what to think about those 1,423 hours cooking. I mean, I do love to cook, but wow, that’s a lot of time spent on something that I can literally see no results from. Once eaten I’m just left with dirty dishes. (However, I will not calculate how many hours a day I spend doing dishes. That could make me cry.)

I keep a list in my giant cooking notebook of dinners we have. That way, when I just can’t seem to figure out what to have, I open my notebook and look at what we’ve had in the past. That usually jogs the creative juices and then I can figure something out. So here goes—all the dinners we’ve had in the last 30 days. (I'm sure you'll be able to figure out a lot by our eating habits. i.e., we love spicy food--I've been on a Thai kick, eating lots of Mexican as always, don't eat much red meat, etc.)

*Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup and Roast Beef Hoagies
*Thai Coconut Chicken Soup with Red Hot Curry
*Asian Broiled Salmon with Stir-Fried Snow Peas
*Chicken Piccata with Rice Pilaf and Fruit Salad (See previous post)
*Roasted Rosemary Chicken and Green Beans (Easter)
*Thai Ruby Restaurant
*Black Bean Chicken Stir Fry
*Chicken Tacos with Pickled Onions, Guacamole, and Queso Fresco
*Taquitos (frozen), Guacamole, Refried Beans
*Red Enchiladas with Sauteed Asparagus (Don’t tell my mom I used canned enchilada sauce)
*Grilled Tilapia
*Oatmeal and Eggs
*Pastrami Hoagies
*Turkey Burgers and Oven Fries
*Pasta with Red Peppers and Asparagus
*Curried Lentils and Rice
*Cub Scout Blue and Gold Dinner (Don’t ask)
*Grilled Hogi Sandwiches
*Roasted Lemon chicken
*Chicken Noodle Soup
*Pizza Margharita (Paul’s pizza skills come in handy)
*Thai Green Chicken Curry
*Cream of Broccoli Soup with fresh bread
*Grilled Hot dogs and asparagus (I think the veggie cancels out the evil hot dog, no?)
*Pepper Seak with Egg Noodles and Green Salad
*Sloppy Joes and Carrot Sticks
*Pad Thai
*Carl’s Jr (I had the Santa Fe Chicken Sandwich..mmm Anaheim Chiles) *Cornmeal Crusted Taco Pie
*Chicken with Pasta, Normandy Vegetables, and Alfredo Sauce


Paul said...

Hey don't forget that I help take care of the dishes!

We had pizza tonight after you posted this - another delicious meal. And you forgot about chili I was eating those leftovers this past week.

And you need to include blueberry pie along with the chicken on Easter. It may have been dessert but it is worth mentioning.

You don't see any results? How about extremely happy tastebuds? How about a full stomach (probably too full actually)? Kids that expect to be served a vegetable at meals even when visiting others' homes?

Keep racking up the kitchen hours Cyn.

Win said...

Cynthia...your cooking is amazing! I often wonder if I will ever be able to eat as well as I did when living under your roof! I was so spoiled! Thanks you, thank you!

Unfortunately, now all I eat for dinner (pretty much) is wheat toast....pathetic I know, but I can't get myself to cook a decent meal for just one....and fast food is just out of the question! Too bad the wheat bread seems to like to stick to my thighs!!!

Michael said...

As your papa, I am dang proud of the way you carry on the family tradition of being and excellent scratch cook, and loving it.

When we make our now in-frequent treks to Utah, I know I can always look forward to good home cooking from you and your sister, the bakery queen.

Nothing impresses a man (like me) more than good food and good conversation!

Oh, by the way...did you deduct from your cooking hours the times you have been camping with us? (LOL)

Ilene said...

I'm too embarrased to write what we ate this week. I'm not good at cooking when Dan is not in town. Jackson thinks getting cereal for dinner as a culinary delight and Thomas is oblivious to it all.

Some of the items on your list are making my mouth water... I may be calling you for recipes soon.

aric & jess said...

Ilene is my friend and she has told me alot about you. I've been reading you for awhile and decided to finally comment...

Thanks for the meal inspiration. I don't enjoy cooking but I will definitely be making your Chicken Piccata this week for sure!

Jessica A.

cyn the win said...

You can come to dinner any night still. Always an open invitation. Always be prepared though for some negative feed back from the people in this house under 4 1/2 feet tall.

Dad, I'm a good cook cuz of mom. What an example!

Welcome aboard!

I am grateful you have stuck to our pre-marriage agreement of me doing the cooking and you doing the nightly dishes. Score!

Patty said...

Cyn, your menu looks divine. Oh, how I miss the days of not working a full-time job. I do cook from scratch 90% of the time, but it is usually simpler fare because of my work schedule.

aric & jess said...

Thank you for comment on my blog. It helps so much to know someone has been through this and knows the roller coaster ride that is infertlity /adoption. I appreciate your words of support and encouragement:)

Thanks Again!

Anonymous said...

I share the cooking with Steph about 40 to 50% of the time. I like to cook. Its the only way I can get good mexican food here in Florida.

We usually have chinese take out once a week, tacos once a, grilled chicken breast once or twice a week. Once a week we are both usually too tired and its a fend for yourself night. And that leaves date night resturant.

We do eat lots of chicken and from time to time we have ground beef. And once a month we splurge and buy some steaks.

Crazy Lees said...

Hey winwards. I saw your blog on glendas and have visited you...cut stuff on etsy by the way...but then I was vivisting my good friens Jen and there you were as well..small small do you all know one another...remmebring the card playin times before the world of children!

Johnna said...

Your menus look great! Consider me impressed.

I love the notebook idea..I've been blogging our meals for the same purpose. I got the idea from seeing a five-year gardening journal.

My problem is that all my meals are cleverly disguised taco bars--trying to serve vegetarian teens, carb-avoiding husband, and unadventurous small children.


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