Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Musings of a mutt.

I've said before how much I wish I had some sort of cultural heritage-food wise-to fall back on. Italian, Spanish...Moroccan would be super. But instead, I'm just your everyday white girl mutt. Scottish, English, a little German and Welsh, I think. With two parents who grew up with mid-western mothers. If you aren't familiar with this breed, they cook things like potato salad, meatloaf, and casseroles. Seasoning generally consists of salt and pepper. Sometimes paprika...usually on a deviled egg.

The hubby, on the other hand, grew up with Italian and German in his blood, and a step dad who is half Texan, half Indian/Burmese (right? I get so confused), and therefore scoffs at the mere use of salt and pepper. Sigh.

By the time I met him, I had already realized I liked being in the kitchen more than my mom ever did, and had begun experimenting. One of my first Pammy 'fixes' was making Chicken Parm with marinara...my mama uses tomato soup. (Baby Sis likes mom's better. I may not agree, but I get it.)

And by the time I met the now in-laws, I had just finally gotten used to hot sauce. More specifically, I'd gotten used to my boyfriend putting hot sauce on everything I made. Usually without tasting it first. (I will never forget him putting Tapatio on Chicken Marsala. So. Mad.) But as time passed, my taste buds evolved. And now, as you know, I need the spice.

So I feel fortunate that I married into a more...interesting...food family. The husband grew up with sauces and lasagnas and curries and pilau...wonderful things that give me something to aspire to. My mother-in-law put in the work and learned to make everything her husband's mom used to make, so now I feel like it's my turn. She's had way more practice and is a fabulous cook, so I hope I can compete even a little...but I think I do ok. The pilau I made the other night turned out better than usual (Pilau is basically Indian Pilaf...basmati rice sauteed with onion, garlic, fresh ginger, cumin, curry, cloves, cardamom, bay leaves, salt...delicious, but my combination of spices is never quite right, and it's either too strong or too bland. I thought it was too strong. I'll trust him on this one) and it went well with an Indian-inspired mint-cilantro halibut. Looked good, tasted good, and was really pretty easy. I so love my food processor.

I'm know I'm still learning. And I know I'll get better. But lucky for him (and our stomachs), I'm a good student. And an overambitious one at that...

1 comment:

  1. I'm trying to tell you how I leeeeeeeaaaaaarrrrnn!!!!

    btw - I heart your Mom, but tomato soup chicken parm makes me die a little on the inside...