My dear Friend JerseyChick is here (Jerseechick? whatever…) with her Three Fine Kids, each one unique and with their own set of…um…yeah well, they’re preteens, but I love them anyway.
I want her to move next door. I want Mr. Wonderful to get a job teaching at the local middle school and for her to live in the house next to mine so we can gabble over coffee and Terry can open the requisite quarterly can of Whup-Ass on Mr. Wonderful and I can spoil her daughters and she can make my boys think beyond their own bellybuttons.
Mah word, people. Genuine real lifelong friendships are nothing to take for granted. Having a friend who will call your kids out on something and you can do the same for theirs, someone who’s tastes are so very different from yours and yet neither one of you goes “ew that’s weird” but instead says “I’ve never tried that” and discovers they love it!
Example: Crock Pot Pizza. 15 minutes to fix, cook all day and wow is it good. Greater than the sum of it’s parts, comfort food, perfect for a potluck lunch or supper, as different from my normal cooking experience as…well…JerseyChick and Rootietoot.
1 pound box of macaroni, cooked (or whatever pasta)
1 pound hamburger, cooked
1 package pepperoni
1 pound shredded mozzerella
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 large can (or jar) of your favorite spaghetti sauce
can or black olives
jar of sliced mushrooms (if you want)
In a crockpot, put a little bit of the sauce, then 1/2 the pasta, then 1/2 the hamburger, then 1/2 the sauce, then 1/2 the cheese, then spread a can of cr of mushroom soup, then pur 1/2 the pepperoni. repeat until the crock pot is full. If it’s morning, put the crock pot on low and forget about it until supper. If it’s, say, 1 pm, put it on high and forget it until supper.
This is unlike the way I typically cook with all my herbs and chopped stuff and sauteed things and mess. And…it’s wonderful. The best part? The crusty stuff on the side of the crockpot. Oh Mah Goodness. It’s why adults should be the ones to handle the crockpot for cleaning, because you really don’t want to have children with access to that crusty stuff on the sides.
My rule is to always fix a new dish the way I’m instructed, then play with it afterward. I can totally see using Italian sausage, sauteed onions and peppers, and fontina cheese. Or throwing in fresh herbs. Y’know, just PLAYING with it.