Last week I did my best to prepare for the storm of work ahead by cooking up a couple pots of sustenance and a little treat. First, a roasted tomato soup from this blog , an apple cake from that same blog, and finally, my mom’s beef stew.
The soup was dead simple to make–and cheap! All of our green grocers had four quart baskets of perfectly ripened Roma tomatoes marked down to $3.
I modified the recipe, that called for bread topped with cheese, ala onion soup, to be broiled on top of the soup, in order not to have to wash caked-on cheese off of our bowls and made separate little mozzarella cheese toasties for dunking instead.
And plain baguette with butter was served with the stew, which isn’t a red wine-version: it’s more of a Campbell’s beef stock-Worchestire sauce-and a little tomato paste for zip version. And the more hunks of celery, carrots and potatoes I can squeeze in the pot, the better. Oh gosh, I just remembered something: my mother used to have to boil a separate pot of potatoes on account of her family’s ferocious appetite for that starch–the best starch, if you ask me.
It was a doozy of a week so my organizational skills really paid off. This week, however, I crumbled. There have been many Dr. Oetker pizzas, plus roti from Mother India. Last night, I brought home our standing order from said Queen St. joint: one saag paneer roti with medium spice for me and a muter paneer roti with mild spice for the Beast.
Foodie: I’m home! But before we eat, I need to take a shower. It’ll be the fastest shower ever but I can not relax until I wash the filth from my body.
Beast: That’s fine but you have to come see my vintage purchases that I picked up from the dry cleaners.
By now, you know that the Beast has peculiar style but lately his fashion fixation has become a bit shocking. It hasn’t helped matters that his friend David recently handed down at least a thousand dollars worth of dress shirts, pants and jackets to him. His closet literally overflows, everywhere.
Beast: What do you think? This one is Dior!
Foodie: Which one? The plaid one?
Beast: (Trying it on) Isn’t it just fabulous?
Foodie: Yes, it’s nice but promise not to wear it with sneakers or you’ll look like a clown. Can I show you the email I got today from an editor at work?
Beast: (Trying it on) Do you like my new winter coat? Isn’t it fabulous?
Foodie: Yeah. Um, let me just find this email. When I read it, it was like feeling the sun shining on my face after being locked in a dark basement for days on end. Oh here it is. Look.
Beast: That’s great. What do you think of the grey blazer?
Foodie: I think that you have about 15 blazers now and I don’t know where you plan on putting them all. You need to get rid of some. Look at this part where she says, “it’s just delightful.” Did you read that part?
Beast: Yeah. But look at how well it fits! And I just love how this striped Ralph Lauren looks underneath it.
Foodie: Whoa. Hold up. What’s that ring?
Beast: Oh, this ring?
Beast: I bought it to wear while I play the clarinet.
Foodie: You’re telling me that ring is not for me?
Beast: You can wear it too, I guess.
After my shower, we curled up in front of the television with our roti, some white wine and two episodes of The Wire, season three, to finish. It was heavenly.
Beast: Did I tell you that Stringer F–king Bell is British?
Foodie: Twice yesterday and again just now.
Beast: Isn’t it amazing? His accent? And McNulty is British, too. Apparently it’s a perfectly studied Baltimore accent.
Foodie: Yes, I know. Wow. Look at your hair right now.
Beast: What, you want me to cut it, don’t you.
Foodie: I’m just saying that if your hair is like that–
Foodie: If your hair is receding, and you leave it long it just sort of draws attention to the fact, you know?
Beast: I love my hair. And remember when you compared it to Jack Nicholson’s in The Shining the other day? Well, I take that as a compliment. That’s a great fucking look.
Foodie: I’m just saying, you don’t like showering too often so if you had short hair you could shower less. Long hair needs a lot of maintenance. Plus, I was looking at pictures the other day of you with short hair and you just looked so handsome.
Beast: You know what? I don’t criticize you when you’re body changes! I always think you’re beautiful.
Foodie: Well, I don’t go around wearing cut off t-shirts exposing my fat belly! If I did, I would hope you’d say something to me.
Beast: That you’re fat?
Foodie: No, that maybe I shouldn’t draw attention to the fat by not covering it up with clothing.
Beast: You’re full of hate.
Foodie: I know. I know.
I never thought I’d be that girl–the girl who nags her boy to cut his hair or begs him to trim his bushy beard or yells at him all the time to clean up his mess. But that’s who I am these days. And do you know what happened today? The Beast emailed me a photo of himself that he’d taken just moments before. He’d cut his hair.
I’ve never felt worse about myself. (It looks really good though.)
Roasted Tomato Soup with Mozzarella Cheesy Bread: Foodie **1/2 Beast **
Beef Stew: Foodie ** Beast ***
Mother India: Foodie *** Beast ***