Sunday: A Day of Rest — or is it?

June 6, 2010|Posted in: Uncategorized

When you’re hungry and struggling with finances or single-parenting or illness or trying to get/keep a job, the thing you need most, perhaps, is a day of real rest. I’m going to try to make today restful — but the reality is that there is food prep for the week, if I’m going to stay on budget and keep the wheels turning.

Sunday Stuff

  • I’m already thinking about my menu of meals for the coming week.
  • I have half a bag of dry garbanzo beans ($1 for a pound, bought last week) soaking on the stove*.  Beans go on salads, into soups or omelets, and I’m going to try to make hummus this week. Never made that before, but I have a recipe.
  • Boil a potful of eggs for Mr. Husband’s daily breakfast on the go.
  • Bake cookies?**
  • Dinner for tonight? What’s left from the week’s shopping? Prep, cook, etc.
  • Bake? Since I won’t go shopping or to the bread site til Tuesday, I’m thinking about baking a loaf of bread today. I might also bake some muffins for kids’ breakfast.
  • Prep a salad for Mr. Husband’s lunch tomorrow. Do this tonight so the salad stays fresh.
*Beans
I do the quick soak — boil for 2 minutes, then leave covered off the heat for an hour; change the water and proceed with cooking for 1-2 hrs until tender. DO NOT ADD SALT TO COOKING BEANS. You’ll be sorry — they turn hard and don’t cook properly. Ask me how I know. Also, do not forget that you are boiling beans so that all the water runs out and the uncooked beans have to be scraped from the bottom of the pan and fed to the chickens and you end up scrubbing your fingernails and knuckles to the bone at all that black gunk left behind and your house smells like it caught on fire. Ask me how I know this, too.

**Cookies

Our homemade cookies are stale, crumbling and not particularly appetizing right now. What to do with stale cookies? I could feed them to the chickens. Just about everything that goes past its prime ends up with the chickens. But I prefer to crumble them up and put them in the freezer. Leftover cookie crumbs are yummy over ice cream and they can also be used in a parfait or trifle. Think of them as sweet bread crumbs — on top of a baked dessert like apple cobbler, for example. They can even be added to a plain cookie dough like sugar cookies, for a swirled effect. Don’t throw them away just yet.
As for baking, not everyone bakes, but cookies are not hard to make and not too expensive. The butter, chocolate chips and nuts are the most expensive items. Homemade are better for you than store-made dough — less sugar, fewer preservatives. I usually have a can of vegetable shortening in the refrigerator and use that if butter is scarce. I think it makes a better pie crust, anyway, but that’s another discussion.
And who doesn’t like the smell of a freshly baked cookie in the house? Milk, coffee, ice cream — all better with a cookie on the side. And if you’re on a budget, even the FS budget, you can always make cookies to give as a holiday/birthday gift, to take to a potluck or a new neighbor, and to make the kids happy. Homemade cookies are warm, gooey love.

* * *
I’m going to enjoy my day of rest, such as it is, and thus post this a little early. I’ll write tomorrow about the weekly menu and shopping list, and how today’s menu came into focus.

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Julia Park Tracey is an award-winning journalist, author, and blogger. She is the author of six books: three novels, one poetry collection, and two women's history. She was the Poet Laureate of Alameda, California, in 2014-17. She's also the conservatrix of The Doris Diaries, the diaries of her great-aunt Doris Bailey Murphy. She has a BA in journalism from San Francisco State University, and MA in Early 20th C. British Literature from Cal State Hayward. Julia's articles have appeared on Salon, Thrillist, Paste, Scary Mommy, Narratively, Yahoo News, Your Tango, and Sweatpants & Coffee. Her articles have also run in Redbook, Woman's Day, Country Living, House Beautiful, Town & Country, the San Francisco Chronicle, Oakland Magazine, Quill, and MadeLocal. She was the founding editor of weekly Alameda Sun and literary zine Red Hills Review. Her poetry has been in The East Bay Literary review, Postcard Poems, Americus Review, Cicada, Tiferet Review, and many others. Julia has been recognized several times by the San Francisco, East Bay and Peninsula Press Clubs as well as the California Newspaper Association for her blogging since 2003.

1 Comment

  1. noreply@blogger.com'

    My Roman Apartment
    June 15, 2010

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    Wait. What? Cookies go stale? Oh, the things you learn from Julia. Next thing you know, she’ll tell you that you don’t have to eat all the cookies while they’re still warm from the oven.

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