Cooking Update

My cooking efforts started with last night’s dinner and I wish to report a complete success!!  I didn’t get home from tutoring at the library until 5:15 and that’s when I got to start opening all the boxes with my kitchen stuff.  It was fun if rather overwhelming!  By the time I got ready to fix dinner it was after 7PM, and I almost bailed and decided I’d had enough for one day.  But I kept hearing one of my students saying earlier in the afternoon that sauteing mushrooms was really easy.  So I forged ahead.  I plugged in the little two burner electric stove top which will be what I use until my gas line is run.  I found a suitable pan.  I located the Grape Seed Oil, and then washed off two 8oz boxes of Crimini mushrooms.  I heated up the oil in the pan, put in lots of sliced mushrooms (I really had a hankering for mushrooms), and then stirred them.  They seemed to want a bit more oil, so I did that.  Then I saw my new spice jars sitting on the counter and decided to try out the Italian spice mix.  Finally I thought maybe they’d like to have a cover on them and the heat turned down.  I left them on their own while I went to finish something up on the computer, but I listened carefully and I wasn’t gone long.  When I came back I was amazed!  I had a wonderful pan full of gorgeous looking and smelling mushrooms to go with my steamed edamame and I don’t know when I’ve enjoyed my dinner more!!  I know it was simple, but I did it all and it tasted fantastic!!  And for desert I had my favorite Chocolate Obsession soy ice cream so it was a big success all the way around!

Today I went to my local organic store, Minglement, and got help putting together the ingredients for hummus using a recipe in the cookbook from my new Vitamix, and I’m going to try that out here in a few minutes.  I figured that would be a gentle way to learn about the Vitamix.  While I was teaching my bridge class after going to Minglement, I realized that I didn’t have a can opener so that would mean I couldn’t get into the cans of garbanzo beans for my hummus.  However, one of my students has kindly loaned me one of hers, so I’m set, and the adventure will continue.  I’m also debating trying a stir fry with my beets, carrots, purple cabbage, yams, potatoes, and tofu which I bought on Monday, but I’ll wait until after the hummus experiment to see if I want to do that today or tomorrow.

I am pleased with having my first solo meal turn out so wonderfully well and I look forward to more adventures as I continue.  This was definitely the right decision.  I know I have a learning curve, but I have lots of wonderfully supportive people surrounding me, here on Vashon, and as well as on the internet!  Many thanks to all of you!  I’m also learning more about how my students feel when they are trying to learn math or whatever is causing them difficulties.  I’m reminded again about the panic of not even knowing what question to ask, the total bewilderment when entering a strange turf, etc. and I think this experience with the cooking will help me to work with my students.  It is also fun to share my learning with them (many of whom are already better cooks than I ever was before!), and we can then help each other.

4 responses

  1. I'm so happy for you, Daphne!This experience will definitely help you with your students. It's much easier to help someone (or to be helped) if you know what it's like to be on the opposite side of it.I've never tried Chocolate Obsession soy ice cream. The Cherry Nirvana flavour is _amazing_ though. 🙂

  2. Alright Daphne!Your sauteed mushrooms sound delicious! And along with steamed edamame, such a yummy-sounding dinner!Your plans for hummus and stir fry sound great too…that stir fry your dreaming up sounds super healthy too! Yaay!

  3. Whoo-eee, you're cookin' now, girl! 🙂 Good for you, Daphne! I'm glad your first solo dinner was such a delicious success, and that you enjoyed the experience!I ALWAYS have a hankering for mushrooms, so your dinner was right up my alley. Got any leftovers? 🙂 I'll bet your mushrooms went great with your steamed edamame, I'll have to try that combo some time. I sauté mushrooms a lot and usually have them on pasta. Have you ever tried Tinkyada brown rice pasta? It's gluten-free and we buy their organic spaghetti by the case from Amazon, we love it so much (and we're not wheat or gluten-sensitive!) Their energy-saving cooking technique is great, it turns out perfectly every time.. unless we get distracted and wander off and forget about it and don't hear the timer… :-)So how did your hummus turn out (another dish I just love), and what did you think of your Vitamix? I love your observation about how this experience is strengthening your empathy for your students. Guess that can get added to the "what's the best thing that can happen" list! :-)And I also love "Minglement" – what a great name! Sounds like a fun place!

  4. Lydia: Thanks so much for your encouragement! This is fun! And yes, I've always felt that one reason I am such a successful tutor is that personally I've had to find unconventional routes to learning, and I've obviously succeeded at that, so I am in a much better position to understand my students.Rose: Yes the mushrooms were fantastic! And my hummus came out really well also. I haven't yet gotten to the stir fry as I had lots of hummus and also salad fixings (with my own home-grown lentil sprouts!) to get through the next couple nights and I was tired with all the changes and remodel, etc. but the stir fry is on for tonight! I'm looking forward to it.Laloofah: Yes, I am cookin' and loving it! And I'm afraid I'd never have mushrooms left over–I love them too much! I've never tried that brown rice pasta, but I'll note it now as it sounds delicious and hey, anything I can get from Amazon is a real plus! I thought my hummus was delicious which is all that matters. One friend who was here when I was making it had suggestions about more salt (well I hadn't yet gotten to the "salt to taste" phase of the cooking) and she had other suggestions as well, but then quickly said, "But it is really good," which is what my other friend said from the get-go. I'm sure there are lots of different ways to do hummus and I'm sure I will experiment further, but my first shot at it was fabulous from my perspective and tasted great with apples and carrots! The Vitamix was very easy to use and very powerful! It is big and a bit hard to clean (you put in dish soap and run the mixer!) and I couldn't get quite all the hummus out because of the blades and the bottom doesn't come off, but it did do a great job in a very short period of time. I am getting a smaller single serving smoothie maker to use as well, and I anticipate loving both. And yes, Minglement is the best–I was in there on Thursday and had two friends who work there helping me outfit my "pantry" (yet to be built in this remodel) with basics and telling me how things worked together, etc. It was a wonderful, non-threatening experience! This is such an adventure for me on every level! Everyone: Thank you so very much for all your encouragement! It means a great deal to me! Have a terrific day!

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