This weekend, my kitchen project was to make stock. What sparked the idea was an
Now, stock is actually not very labor intensive... okay, well kind of. But mostly it just takes forever, so there is a lot of time to fill with other stuff. I was able to play (outside even) with the kids, watch My Fair Lady (my whole family was dying and I was in heaven... boys don't really get that movie), wash (not fold or put away) laundry, and make pesto and hummus and pancakes and all sorts of other things that made a mess in my kitchen. I also ran this weekend and watched quite a few episodes of Glee. We watch that after the kids are sleeping...
The labor intensive part of stock is the inital skimming off of the gunk and constant vigil to make sure that it doesn't reach full boil. After that, you throw in the herbs and veggies and the simmer goes on forever. The second labor intensive part of stock is the straining at the end. It's all about getting rid of the gunk and straining through just the good stuff. The flavor stays and the rest goes.
Now, don't be fooled by my fancy cooking words like bouillon and boquet garni. I am actually quite the novice when it comes to having everything one needs to complete such a fancy cooking project. I only have two strainers. An awkward, plastic oval one that I've had forever and a small wire mesh one that I don't even know where it came from. I don't own cheesecloth or the right kind of ladle. I also don't have a lot of room in my fridge for various bowls. I now wish I would have taken pictures. I improvised, and it was kind of funny looking. Paper towels inside wire mesh makes a mean substitute for cheesecloth. And who needs bowls when the stock can cool just as well in a plastic pitcher and a large coffee percolator? Hopefully our next batch of juice or coffee doesn't taste like poultry...
I was very thankful for all of the butter and yogurt and sour cream containers I saved. I am slowly morphing into my mother and grandmother... but you know what? They hold the perfect amount of
Sitting here tonight (finally) blogging again, I am also pretty happy about the flavor we got out of our weekend. Both Jason and I spent a lot of time just goofing off with the kids. They were so excited for snow! And we surprised them and took them all to a movie, complete with popcorn and pop and smuggled candy. I skimmed our closets and drawers of some clothes that don't fit or are never worn and some toys the kids won't miss. We also strained our fridge and pantry. The excess stuff that needed used before it went to waste got made into hummus and pesto and stock. And we had a leftover dinner night, a la Incredibles. Now, because of the random things we strained out of the pantry, I have a messy kitchen project ready for next weekend... homemade granola/protein bars!
This week, I just need to finish cleaning the kitchen to get it ready to make another mess!