Up early again for the Saturday morning, stupid-time-for-basketball-in-Melbourne-winter basketball game. This term, it comes with the added bonus of Grumpy Pants starting his shift at the same time, so leaving well before everyone is up and I get it all to myself.
Thus, Chippie is dragged out of bed ten minutes before we have to leave, Monkey Boy makes some toast for him at my rather loud demands and we head off, out into the cold and struggling to find the $2 I dropped down the side of the car seat so we can get into the game and not have to break a note.
Followed by several hours of killing time before we head off to parkour for Monkey Boy, post lunch.
It kills an afternoon and deters from much repeated requesting pertaining to electronic games and refusal to do guitar practice. Monkey Boy again determined, when we got there, that he didn’t want to do the harder class, insisted I was ‘forcing’ him to do it and sulked a bit.
After realising I wasn’t going to give in, and given we were there and I’d already paid, he joined in, spending a good twenty minutes insisting on being unhappy, then the next hour trying not to show me he was having any fun at all. After which, he started smiling, asked for help, happily, when he needed it and got into the car, saying “that was fun!”
Of course it was!
Arrive home at that time that is far too early to start dinner, but not so late that you don’t think about it. There was some discussion as to what to have, due to an interruption to our normal programming.
You see, we missed Pizza Night last night. I can’t remember why. Must have been a very important reason. Whatever. We had something else.
We missed it again, tonight, too, because I had – just had – to try my new toy. The Kambrook Pressure Cooker I won yesterday.
And damned if I was going to try to think about anything else.
I utilised the recipe suggestions that came with the cooker, and opted for a tomato and meatballs thing.
I do have my own recipe for this, that I make up as I go along, but when I try new things, Grumpy Pants insists that I “just follow the recipe”. Otherwise, he spends a lot of his brain power trying to work out how the hell I managed to stuff things up in the first place, getting exasperated, trying to fix it and then saying “why didn’t you just follow the recipe?”
So, I did. I also planned to time it, as I’m very much an “if it can’t be cooked in 20, 30 minutes max, I’m not doing it!” kind of person.
I checked the clock, I read the recipe, I commenced the process, which includes, but is not limited to:
- asking Monkey Boy if he is going to help me, as he said he would earlier during the say
- rolling my eyes at Monkey Boy’s “Nah, not now, maybe later …” response
- pouring myself a glass of wine
- obtaining the large, blue Tupperware mixing bowl in which I may mix some stuff
- taking a sip of wine …
I am now ready to embark upon this dinner preparation process, and work down the list, adding ingredients as I go.
Until I go to add an ingredient that we don’t have. My “get it done in under 20″ ideal is looking dismal, as Grumpy heads off to purchase eggs and comes back some 47 minutes and a glass of wine later.
Upon his return, he pours me a glass of wine and I am able to complete the preparation part of this evening’s meal, and actually cook it. In the brand spanking new pressure cooker.
I even manage to time it relatively well, to have the pasta ready when the pressure goes off. I also drive Grumpy Pants totally insane with his questions. So insane that he ends up reading the instruction booklet that came with it and answering my myriad questions.
So … some hour and 19 minutes later, the meal is cooked and served, grated cheese adorns the balls topping each mound of spaghetti, the kitchen benchtop and a good section of the floor nearby the site of cheese grating activity. Also, the other side of the room.
Moments later, there is a flurry for seconds. So I’m guessing it wasn’t too bad at all.
I don’t blame Kambrook or the pressure cooker for the duration in which it took to prepare and cook the meal.
And I’ll be utilising it many more times, and shall provide updates on the product. Hard to tell exactly first go. Particularly when essential ingredients are missing. But it was a relatively pleasant experience, which will no doubt improve when I know what I’m actually doing.
I also have great plans for this particular piece of kitchen equipment for those revolting nights that include after school activities at stupid times that otherwise result in eating dinner at 4.23p.m. or 8.35p.m. and no other option in between.
Yes, I do have big plans for it … and I cannot wait!
Now, if only Kambrook could invent a grated cheese vacuum. Or one that sucks up cheese only, and presents it for child consumption? Or perhaps one that just vacuums as it grates and saves me a heap of trouble.
(Please don’t suggest purchasing grated cheese – we do, and it makes zero difference to the amount of cheese gratings that end up on the floor, walls, couch, ceiling fan ….)