It's not about the house.

Friday, April 10, 2009

How To Make a Really Yummy Veggie Stew

Jenni noticed -- which I didn't -- that I've been on a bit of a Sesame Street bender lately. In honor of that, I briefly considered titling this post "How Could I Be So Dumb? Plants Need Water, Man!" But in the end I decided not to, so as not to confuse anybody.  

So herewith I am happy to present -- absolutely straightforward and not confusing at all...

How to Make a Really Yummy Veggie Stew



Step One:
Wonder who put a pair of medicine balls down on the futon cushion, and then realize that those giant prints are from your ass. Resolve to lose weight and eat healthier. Really, this time.

Step Two:
Go to the cheap produce store and load your cart with every kind of vegetable you can find. Which isn't many, because it's the cheap vegetable store, after all, and not Whole Wallet -- I mean Foods. But there is a good selection of zucchini and summer squash. So take home six. Of each.

Step Three:
Accidentally spend the next five days drinking beer and eating instant noodle mix for every evening meal.

Step Four:
Okay, this is ridiculous. Lose weight! Eat healthy! Remember! Besides, those dozen squash are starting to turn bad. So on Thursday night you absolutely must prepare that casserole. The one your mother used to make. With eggs and milk and onions in it, and saltine crumbs on top.

Step Five:
I'm sorry, did you think there would be saltines in the cupboard? No. No no. Saltines can't seem to help but get themselves eaten by the box in this house, and we're being healthy around here this week, remember? Let's see... you can put Stove Top Stuffing mix on top instead.

Step Six:
Accidentally spend the next six hours drinking beer, and leave the casserole for too long in the oven. Discover, when you finally take it out, that despite the caramelized (for which read: blackened) edges, the squash slices are still not completely cooked.

Step Seven:

Step Eight:
No matter how many beers you've had, that shit just ain't edible. Leave it on the countertop and go to bed.

Step Nine:
The next morning, fuck it in the faux-Le-Crueset dutch oven you bought your sister for her birthday last year, but she already had one, so she left it in the package and gave it back to Johnnykins for his, because he was really jealous of it all along. Slash through it with a knife a couple times (the squash, not the faux-Creuset) so that the pieces are smaller, add a half a can (the big can, or I suppose you could add a whole small can if you have one, which you don't) of crushed tomatoes and... um... a can of kidney beans? Sure. Why not. And there's no sense wasting all that kidney-beany can-juice. It adds potency!

Step Ten:
Simmer it till you remember that it's Friday, fo crying out loud, and that Dr. One Friend's on her way. You and she and Johnny have been planning for, like, years now to have fish cakes, salad and asparagus for dinner tonight. Balls.

Step Eleven:
Stick the faux-le-creuset in the fridge. The beer fridge. That way, if the steamy-hotness of the stew raises the temperature a little, it won't cause whatever awful food-borne thing that's supposed to cause. Botulism, I think.

Step Twelve:
Eat your fish cakes. Slipping on salad and breaking ribs is, at this point, gravy.

Step Thirteen:
Have nineteen people over for corned beef the next day. Forget all about your veggie stew for a while.

Step Fourteen:
Monday? Yeah, I think on Monday... Take all the crudite your guests ignored (which in this case means just carrot and pepper, because it was St. Patrick's, after all), and chop it into little bitty pieces. Because you've already cooked the squash in the oven for three hours and simmered it on the stovetop for another two. If the pieces are too big, the squash will turn to complete mush before they're cooked. Which would be gross.

Step Fifteen:
Throw all the itty bitty pieces right on in. Add a little extra onion while you're at it. And -- shit -- garlic. Do you remember if you added garlic when you simmered it the other day? Well, if you can't remember, taste it! Bleah, it's fridge-cold. That's disgusting. Eh, a little extra garlic never hurt anybody who wasn't undead to begin with, right? Right!

Step Sixteen:
God, even itty-bitty pieces take forever to cook! Did we move to a higher altitude and no one told me?

Step Seventeen:
If it's too watery at the end (which it is), take your whizzer thing and whiz it up a little. Add salt and pepper to taste, and voila!

Step Eighteen:
Shit! Wait! Parsley! Somewhere in there you also add some parsley! The end of the bunch you bought for, I don't know, something, that was starting to rot in the crisper drawer! Throw that in, too! Before now, though! Way before now! Like yesterday! Or two days before that! I don't remember!

Step Nineteen:
And Voila! 

It might look like throw-up, but it tasted good!

And now, just because I love you, I'm going to post a real recipe for a real veggie stew in the comment section. One that does not involve drinking beer or letting it fester for the best part of a week. I've made it lots of times, and it's yummy

No joke.



ege said...

Okay kids, here it is! A Real recipe! Try it! You'll like it!

3 T olive oil
2 C chopped onion
2 T minced garlic
1/4 t saffron
2 red bell peppers, diced
1 1/2 lbs butternut squash cut into 1" pieces (I usually just use whatever whole butternut squash I have on hand)
1 28oz can whole tomatoes, crushed, in juice
2 15oz cans chick peas, drained
3 C vegetable broth
1 T honey
1 t curry powder
1 t cumin
Pinch red pepper flakes
S&P to taste
1/3 C chopped fresh parsley

Oil in heavy pot. Add onions & wilt, stirring over low heat 8 min. Add garlic, stir, 2 min. Add saffron, stir, 1 min.
Stir in peppers and squash, cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, 15 min.
Add tomatoes, chick, broth, honey, and spices. Boil, reduce heat to med-low & cook, covered, till squash is tender -- 15 min.
Uncover, add S&P, cook 10 min on medium. Fold in parsley. Serve.

ege said...

Ha! Me again...

I just got this email from BlogHer (the folks who run those ads on the right side of my blog):

The BlogHer 09 conference sold out very early this year - but never fear - We've got a two great contests on BlogHer where you can win some amazing prizes, including a trip to BlogHer!

[I'm not interested in going to the conference, but whatever. Read on...]

From now through May 1, 2009, submit your favorite cost-saving, one-dish STOVE TOP dinner recipe that costs under $10 to make and feeds four people. Submit it along with a short essay (up to 100 words) that explains why you and your family enjoy the recipe etc.

Should I enter? I'm really not interested in going to the conference. But if I were...

Which hundred words do you think I should choose?

LadyCiani said...

heh, bonus points for using crudite in context ...

Charlie said...

If you enter the contest you definitely have to use "fuck it in the faux-Le-Crueset dutch oven" for part of the 100 words. Nothing like nice wholesome words (not to mention imagery) to ensure contest success.

Jenni said...

" Um waiter.....there is a fly in my soup."

Hey I remember that one from Sesame Street.

Why not enter your recipe by using stove top instead of crackers because you had it on hand, and the progression from cassareole to stew is so much more interesting than all the la te da recipes all the blogger moms will use. ( Not that I am against blogger moms or anything, I just cannot relate) Now for the 100 words......rules are made to be broken.

I giggled the loudest @ kidney bean canny juice.
Ok so I am still giggling @ that. I mean weapons of mass destruction could be made from that juice.

su said...

Where did I go wrong?

Anonymous said...

Dude, reading that made me feel ill.