Mommy Wants Vodka

…Or A Mail-Order Bride

The Pampered Chef


Before I get into the meat of this post, I need to stop and thank everyone who has started doing kind things for one and other. The Daver has been strong-armed into doing it himself and leaving a comment (but I think he’s disqualified from winning anything but a swift kick in the ass from yours truly) OR posting on his own blog about it. You can do the same thing, comment OR write a blog post (and please link to this in your comment).

It’s easy, see!

So I’m encouraging each and every one of you to DO SOMETHING KIND in honor of all my nieces and nephews waiting to kick me in the shins in Heaven. Shit, if you ALL do something nice maybe I will send EACH of you a little something (somewhere, Dave is now wrestling my Amex from my wallet, but he doesn’t know that I HID IT! HAHAHA!). You have until March 31st to do it, and I *know* that some of you reading right now are coming to Alex’s party where I will annoy you to death about it.


By nature, I am a lazy person. Not quite as lazy as some (i.e. Cash, who is fine and dandy, so don’t worry) but absolutely lazier than others. Nowhere else does this ring more true than in the kitchen.

I hate cooking almost as much as I hate colonoscopies (which you can imagine, is very, very much), and I avoid it at all costs. Every couple of months, The Daver and I discuss how we really need to start cooking more at home, and then we order a pizza. So it goes.

But, with the knowledge that Something has to be done to lower Dave’s insanely high cholesterol levels, I have begun (begrudgingly) to cook at home. In my very own kitchen.

As a child, my favorite thing that my mother would cook was ordering Chinese food, and it still rings true today. I’d much rather pay someone else to cook for me than cook for myself (even if it could save a few bucks here and there), partially because I gain no enjoyment whatsoever about cooking and partially because I can’t seem to bring myself to actually EAT anything I cook. Especially if it involves meat. Sicks me right the fuck out.

This may be a Very Good Thing, since my thyroid is still not 100% wonderful (I HAVE A GLANDULAR PROBLEM, PEOPLE!) and I’m still struggling to lose 17 pounds of Alex weight. It won’t hurt me to skip a meal or 300.

Honestly, my biggest hurdle when it comes to cooking, is the members of my family. The Daver, who claims that he is “not picky” is awfully picky, but not nearly as picky as my Ben (who still suffers from many Spectrum-y phobias about food), and this is just plain old discouraging when I have one of them on my right gagging down his dinner, and one on my left sadly pushing green beans around his plate (EVEN THOUGH I PUT A BIT OF BUTTER ON THEM. BUTTER!). I’ll let you decide who does what.

Alex is the least picky and most apt to enjoy meals, but despite claiming that he was teething for the past, oh I don’t know, 9! months!, has yet to cut a single tooth. I suppose what I thought was “teething” was just him being an asshole. So it goes.

I’ll probably never derive my ego from cooking, and I’ll probably always do it begrudgingly, but the point is, that I will do it.

So what do YOU consider staples in your kitchen? What are some easy meals that I can cook? Oh, let me give you a list of things that cannot be used (maybe then you will have some sympathy. Or not):



*Red Meat (not often, at least)

*Anything “spicy” (this is a Ben thing, not my own. I fucking love spicy shit)

*Anything too mushy (eggs, etc)

*Anything too crunchy (Alex has no teeth)

*Anything that vegetables cannot be removed easily from (like, no onions in tacos, etc)

I could go on and on here, but it’s too depressing even for me.

Any suggestions?

25 Comments to

“The Pampered Chef”

  1. On March 27th, 2008 at 12:19 pm becky Says:

    “As a child, my favorite thing that my mother would cook was ordering Chinese food”


    One of my favorite easy things to make is breakfast for dinner. I love waffles, but I never have time to make them in the morning… and sometimes they’re just perfect for a late dinner. Also, I think it’s really fun to experiment with different kinds of pizza. Maybe you could have a night where everyone gets to make their own (with some discretion, obviously). I made a pesto pizza once, with chicken and asparagus… and even though it sounds kinda gross and probably would not be a hit with Ben, it was freaking awesome. And you can use a wheat crust for an extra kick of health 🙂

    Remember that I don’t have kids nor have I ever fed a child anything but a bottle when he was too old to get on my nerves…… but I’ve heard that sometimes kids like to eat pizza, and it might be easy to “disguise” some healthy food on a pizza.

  2. On March 27th, 2008 at 12:54 pm Andria Says:

    I have a recipe blog where I post things I’ve found that my kids will eat. You can pick and choose.

  3. On March 27th, 2008 at 12:55 pm kbreints Says:

    Chicken Marinted in Italian Dressing grilled. Yum! Does not get easier than this. Put some fries in the oven– and call it a meal.

  4. On March 27th, 2008 at 1:13 pm Sarah Ross Says:

    I attempted to use the Deceptively Delicious cookbook by Jessica Seinfeld that everyone is so hopped up about. Yeah, not so much. There’s no way in hell my 3 year old will eat green meatballs, and the smell of the steamed & pureed broccoli actually made me barf in my kitchen sink (I was 7 weeks pregnant at the time which didn’t help).

    I do have one book that I like – the Dinner Doctor. She uses frozen, canned or other prepare foods as a base. Recipes for lazy people – totally my style.

  5. On March 27th, 2008 at 1:28 pm tombo Says:

    Sounds like basic pasta is a good place to start. Boil water, add noodles, heat up the sauce, and combine.

    If you have a blender or food processor making your own soups is pretty easy (though it sounds scary) and is a great way to add in some veggies for those who don’t like them.

  6. On March 27th, 2008 at 1:31 pm Kyddryn Says:

    Hmm…turkey meatloaf? You can grate carrots and zucchini into the meat and they might not notice – or if they notice, you could tell ’em it’s confetti ’cause you’re celebrating…something. It works for the picky-ass grown-ups ’round here (one of whom isn’t me!!).

    Squunch (skwunch?) up about 2 pounds of ground whatever (I mix beef and venison, usually) in a bowl with about 1/4 cup milk or water (milk is better, but water’ll do)and a handful or two of crushed crackers, potato chips, or bread crumbs. Add an egg and some onion powder or a half a finely diced onion. Add a half-cup grated parmesan cheese. Grate a carrot and a small zucchini and squeeze the liquid out of them. A kid might have fun with that. You could use grated, raw sweet potato if you’d rather. Shake a little garlic powder, dried sage, dried thyme and some salt and pepper in there. Add them to the mix and get your hands all nasty by squashing it all together – or let a kid do it(they love getting all squishy and messy), or use a spoon if you can’t stand the texture fiesta. When it’s well mixed, slap it into a loaf pan, cover it with a few bacon slices if you want (I never have, so I don’t know how it turns out) and bake it at 350 until it begs for mercy – about 45 – 60 minutes with red meat, I don’t know how long with poultry. Serve with mashed potatoes (box ones are just fine) and some form of vegetation – even if they won’t eat the veggies, there’s healthy stuff lurking in the loaf.

    That was long. Sorry. Seriously, would you like some e-mailed recipes for pickier eaters?

    Shade and Sweetwater,

  7. On March 27th, 2008 at 1:34 pm magpie Says:

    Um, pasta?

  8. On March 27th, 2008 at 1:46 pm Pauline Says:

    pasta, grilled chicken, veggies. I have *tons* of easy recipes at home. One of my favorites is chicken with lemon and oregano and garlic.

  9. On March 27th, 2008 at 2:53 pm Joann Says:

    There are a lot of quick & easy things that you could
    make You could do a lot with pasta & chicken also
    you can make taco’s with turkey meat instead of chop meat. The list goes on & on. Also look up on the internet there are SOOO Many recepes you would’t beleive.
    The one my BOYS LOVED where Octapus Hot dog & MAc & Cheese real easy to make & now you can even use Chicken dogs. But we stick with the real deal, here.
    Any way good luck

  10. On March 27th, 2008 at 3:12 pm Chicory Says:

    eh, I say, make something you like and the rest of the family can scrounge.

    ok, so I don’t really say that. But since I am the picky eater I’ve had that said to me plenty of times.

    You know, Indian food can be pretty easy to make, soft, various levels of veggies in it, and you can adjust the spiciness per plate. Just scoop some out for Ben and then stir more garam masala into your dinner.

    You can also get chicken that’s already chunked and cooked and frozen if handling raw meat squicks you out. Or you can use the already cooked rotisserie chickens in the stores, pull them apart and add them to recipes…

  11. On March 27th, 2008 at 3:13 pm Heather Says:

    What about sandwich-y type things? Like fajita pitas (I use greek flat bread) or chicken caesar pitas? Or quesadillas? Then you can sort of leave out the individual things that certain people can’t/won’t eat.

    Anything pasta, too, is usually a go here (and chicken, of course). I also make lots of soups.

    Email me if you want anything more specific, k?

    And teeth. God help us. Beans had her one year checkup yesterday — EIGHT teeth. The doc was like, “umm. Think she has some teeth?!” Good thing, cause otherwise she’d just be choking down all her food as she wouldn’t allow something is trivial as teeth get in her way.

  12. On March 27th, 2008 at 3:58 pm theramblinghousewife Says:

    Boneless, skinless chick breasts!!!

    We live off of them!!

    You can’t mess them up, really . ..

    Believe me, I’ve tried!! 🙂

  13. On March 27th, 2008 at 4:14 pm Gail Says:

    Take boneless, skinless chicken breasts and cut into chunks. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Heat a little olive oil in a pan, and saute a little garlic for a minute or so before adding the chicken. Saute until the chicken is almost cooked through. Add a decent amount of white wine (or chicken broth if you prefer) and some frozen peas. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover, and cook until peas and chicken are done. Add some fresh basil if your crew will tolerate it. Add a smidge of reduced fat cream cheese, and stir just until it melts. Toss with cooked Barilla plus pasta (preferably penne). Sprinkle with parmesan as individual cholesterol levels permit.

    I make a version of this at least once a week. I have used zucchini, spinach, carrots, green beans, and/or summer squash as the veggie. You could use anything your people will eat.

    Also, another good one is basic baked chicken breasts. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, poultry seasoning, and squeeze a lemon over it. Bake at 350 until done (cover the dish if using skinless/boneless).

    Or, my garlic parmesan chicken is always popular. If you’re nice, I’ll give you that one tomorrow. 🙂

  14. On March 27th, 2008 at 4:49 pm Jerseygirl89 Says:

    My children are very picky and I’m not exactly open-minded myself (payback is a bitch). We eat a lot of chicken and wild rice and use ground turkey to make tacos (we divide everything into bowls and let the kids pick what they want, so usually all they eat is meat and cheese, but it could be worse) and chili (they like using saltines to dip and we make the chili super mild). Hubby is really the cook in our house and when he’s not home we do a lot of grilled cheese, or hummus and whole grain chips (again with the dipping) and fruit. Basically, my children don’t really eat vegetables without a chocolate dessert bribe.

  15. On March 27th, 2008 at 6:10 pm Ames Says:

    I wish I had some good advice for you…unfortunately Gracie is also super picky (gotta love sensory issues) and our selections are very limited because of this. Let me know if you get any good ideas…I could really use some!

  16. On March 27th, 2008 at 6:13 pm baseballmom Says:

    Gawd, I love the frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts from Costco, because they don’t gross me out, ’cause you cook them from the frozen state! They’re super good barbecued, with a bun, avocado, etc. and you can just give the kids plain ones! I’ll try to think of some more~

  17. On March 27th, 2008 at 6:15 pm baseballmom Says:

    OH, I thought of another one. This is super easy. My Husband is Filipino, and they make Chicken Adobo. We just cook the chicken (we sometimes use pork, but you don’t have to) and add cut up potatoes, onions (you can cut them big to pick them out)and garlic. Add 1c soy sauce, 1c vinegar, and 2c or a little more water (to taste) then simmer it until the potatoes are done. You can use the boneless breasts for that too. Serve it over rice. YUM!

  18. On March 27th, 2008 at 7:43 pm Eville Sweeny Says:

    Perdue Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts. They come frozen in 10lb and 22lb bags at Costco (fairly cheaply for how far they will go) and you can toss them straight into a frying pan from the freezer. Better yet – they are pre-trimmed, so no fat, no weird little wiggly white things to contend with.

    Here’s one that can be done in 15 mintues:

    Chicken Breasts, thawed, then pounded with the bottom of a sturdy glass (this makes it tender and cook faster)

    Drag chicken through flour (wheat or white)

    On the stove, heat a frying pan with olive oil and a little bit of garlic

    Fry the chicken until done (about 3-5 minutes per side on medium high heat); stick the chicken on a plate

    Add a little more olive oil, half a can of chicken broth, some more garlic, the juice from a lemon (3-4 Tablespoons from a plastic lemon works fine), and scrap the pan to get up the “bits” stuck to the bottom. Add capers (by the pickles in the mayo/catsup aisle) as can be tolerated. When the mixture bubbles, stick the chicken back in to coat, and then serve with pasta (my three toddlers will eat whole wheat egg noodles) or even just on a plate next to vegetables.

    Looks fancy – totally easy.

  19. On March 27th, 2008 at 8:52 pm Karen Says:

    I am so lazy also. You know those people who get off on cleaning their house? I hate those people. I get pissed when I have to straighten up for the cleaning lady. lol

  20. On March 27th, 2008 at 10:47 pm kalakly Says:

    I used to live on recipes that only needed a few ingredients and found out, what do ya know, someone actually had the bright idea to write them down and put em in a book!!!! The sheer genius of it is mind boggling!

    Here’s a link for one, I always figure, less ingredients, less shopping!

    Hope it helps…if not I’ll send you my hubby(he’s a chef:)) cuz you deserve it and I heart you that much!

  21. On March 28th, 2008 at 1:24 am Girl With Curious Hair Says:

    I would soooo cook for you. I love cooking. I can accommodate almost any diet for at least a few meals: vegans, white food eaters, meat eaters, vegetarians. Mind you, I’m not a good cook, but I cook often.

    Pasta may be a great place for you to start: quick, easy with a million possibilities.

    Now, the real reason I am commenting: I would like you to join my story telling blog project at You have been repeatedly recommended.

  22. On March 28th, 2008 at 9:50 am Manny Says:

    Well, there’s always Tofu. ‘Cuz everyone, um, loves tofu, right?

    Hey Becks, can you email me when you get a moment? I have a question to ask of you. My email

  23. On March 28th, 2008 at 11:37 am KC Says:

    I make killer chicken (or plain cheese) Echiladas. You can use any ingredients you want, really. I use peppers, mild green chiles, onions, and corn. (Not spicy and the corn adds a little crunch of sweetness) It’s super easy and you can even make one pan with spicy peppers and a spicy sauce – just for you! It re-heats awesome and takes very little prep. You can even make it in advance and just throw it in the oven when you are ready to eat.

    Get yourself some authentic mexican cheese & you have a little taste of heaven.

  24. On March 28th, 2008 at 2:00 pm lindz Says:

    this is one of my easiest and simplest meals to make son,
    it only involves Pasta(I use elbow mac) and cream of chicken soup.
    boil the mac according to directions.

    drain mac (duh)
    and add can(s) of cream of chicken. continue to heat until warm..
    can add salt to taste.

    son will scarf it down! hopefully it works for you too.

  25. On March 29th, 2008 at 2:47 pm Melissa Says:

    Sorry if so long, but it is easy to make and is a big hit in our house! Enjoy!

    Chicken Diane

    4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    1/2 t. salt
    1/2 t. pepper
    2 T. olive oil
    3 T. butter
    juice of 1/2 a lime or lemon
    3 T. chopped fresh chives
    3 T. chopped fresh parsley
    2 t. mustard
    1/4 c. chicken broth

    Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Heat 1 T. of oil and 1 T. butter in skillet. Cook chicken on high 4 minutes on each side. Transfer to warm serving platter. Add chives (green onion), juice from lime or lemon and mustard into pan used to cook chicken. Cook briefly, whisking constantly. Whisk in broth and stir until smooth. Whisk in remaining oil and butter. Pour over chicken and serve immediately. 4 servings. Pairs great with white or brown rice.

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