Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Another 'Do Dinner Story

First things first: before I get in to dinner, I want to point out (against my better judgment, in regards to jinxing) that the Redskins and the Hokies have not lost a game since Adelina was born. Quite the opposite, in fact, since both teams have notched upsets (Redskins over Cowboys might be one of the biggest wins the 'Skins have had in a long time, and VT over Nebraska--though it was not a huge upset in terms of rankings--was a huge win in that we are very young, and were one the road in one of the most hostile environments in football. Nebraska has only lost 4 times at home on a Saturday night in the modern era, and we beat them decisively, even if the score doesn't portray that).

But that is neither here nor there. Let's talk culinary arts.

I went to the grocery store with a plan this time. I wanted some fresh vegetables to mix with the chicken I've had from CostCo. I'm down to the last four chicken breasts (2 went down tonight, so two left once I finish these leftovers). So I bought a red, a yellow, and a green bell pepper (stop light peppers, for those less savvy vegetable shoppers), and a red onion. I thawed out two chicken breasts on Sunday and sliced it in to bite size pieces. Then, I threw it in a bag and marinated it with a teriyaki and pineapple marinade. Today, I chopped up the peppers (all of them) and half the red onion.

I started with some white rice (real live rice, not Minute Rice) and threw it in a pot of boiling water, as per the directions, with some ground sea salt. Then, I sprayed a separate frying pan with olive oil and threw in the peppers as I chopped them. The onions went in last. I dusted the ingredients with more sea salt, ground black pepper, and some powdered garlic, then poured on a little of the teriyaki marinade as I sauteed them.

The rice finished a little sooner than expected, so I had to let it sit on minimal heat while the rest cooked. The pan was not big enough for everything, so I had to deposit the peppers and onions in a bowl while I cooked the chicken. Once that was almost finished (and had some time to shrink in the heat), I poured all the peppers and onions back in and let them sautee together. I let it cook a little longer than necessary for fear of salmonella-ridden CostCo chicken. I'm still alive, so I think I'm safe.

The whole time I was cooking, Melissa hung out with me on the phone so it was as if we were making dinner together. Cheesy, I know, but with these long distance things you have to find your pleasures somewhere. Don't judge.

Once it was all finished, I spooned out a large portion of rice (probably enough for two, though technically I made four servings), then scooped what was probably an entire pepper, a third of the onion, and most of a chicken breast (I cooked both). All in all, I think my plate could have comfortably served two, with at least three more reasonable servings leftover. But, me and my tapeworm need satiating, so I went to work on the monstrous plate. Mel stayed on the phone while she ate some leftover Chinese food. It was like eating dinner together, I suppose.

Analyis: Delicious. By far the most extravagant meal I have ever made on my own. I opted out of making a salad because I figured it would just be too much food and too much hassle. I was getting enough veggies with the peppers and onions. Next time, I'm going to throw in some roasted peanuts (cashews could work, but would be second place behind peanuts) with the same recipe. I think it was missing a little crunchy texture. Other than that, it was almost perfect. And I have tons more to enjoy tomorrow.

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