Seconds on Smiles

I’ve gotten a lot of feedback from readers lately saying that I’m too self-deprecating. “You’re so hard on yourself!” these kind folks declare. “It’s painful to read!” Great. Wincing followers. One more reason to self-flagellate.

Just kidding. Sort of.

Look, those people aren’t wrong. I can go a little over the top when it comes to self-criticism. Still, I’m mostly exaggerating; (another one of my flaws). And anyway, as I’ve said many times before, there are enough self-congratulating bloggers out there–particularly of the homemaker variety–without my adding one more voice to them.

Having said all of that–and in spite of my appreciationI’m sick of hearing about it. So tonight I’m going to give you a big dose of Thumbstumbler happy talk. I will devote the entirety of this post to my recent culinary successes. As I write, furthermore, I will reach back and pat myself dotingly on the back. All the while chanting “I love you. I love you. I love you.”

You will have to take my word for this last bit.

Anyway…here goes! Let the unabashed self-glorification begin:

First: the pasta pesto I mentioned earlier in the week: it came out perfectly. I even managed to slip some spinach into it, thereby increasing my parental self-esteem while keeping my daughter in happy oblivion. Don’t I sound like a “normal” aspirational blogger now? I can even give you a picture: 

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But if you want the recipe you’ll have to go elsewhere. That’s not in my mandate.

Second. That same night I made a nice–heck, a beautiful salad. Salads count, right? It had lots of stuff in it; it turned a pretty color because of the beets; it tasted like a supersonic veggie explosion. OK–I’m not a food writer. Sorry. Anyway, here’s a picture of that.

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Finally? Tonight I improvised a pasta. Improvised! And it came out spectacularly! I decided to try to get rid of everything perishable left from last week’s massive shopping binge. You’ll remember there were tomatoes: I chopped them up and sauteed them with garlic and olive oil. Next I sprinkled in some oregano, then a healthy dash of cayenne. Finally, some bok choy. Weird, I know. But what the hell else was I going to do with it?

When this was all cooked I tossed it with some organic spaghetti. (Yes, organic. Got a problem with that?) Finally, I crumbled in some feta cheese. Oh, and some kalamata olives. I know, but it was marvelous! I was so proud of myself that I ate myself sick. But it was really fucking good. And you know what? I was so busy enjoying the fruits of my new-found culinary talents–and watching the season premiere of “Girls”– that I didn’t take pictures. I only thought to photograph the dish afterwards, when it was gone and I was marvelling, for the umpteenth time, at my stomach capacity.

Here, though, is a picture of the empty pan.

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Take my word for it. Je suis une genius!

I made some pecan bars tonight, too, but I’m not going to talk about them yet. I haven’t tasted them, and for all I know they may suck. Stay tuned, though. This may not be the last you’ve heard from the “new me.”

Or– it may. Anyone want to place bets?

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