pyjamasandtea

May 4, 2011

On Tofu and Chocolate

Filed under: Dessert,Main Dishes,Recipes,Uncategorized — pyjamasandtea @ 3:08 pm
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Not necessarily combined, mind you.

Sorry for my delinquent posting of late. I’ll get on that, promise!  In the meantime though, I offer what I made for dinner last night.  YUM.

Cynthia’s Tofu


This is called “Cynthia’s Tofu” because it is a recipe carefully preserved during his separation by my love and mastered by his ex-sis-in-law.  It is one of those very imprecise recipes with words like “lots of” or “bunches of” or cook for “a while”.  I tried to pay attention last night and offer you a somewhat more precise version that keeps all the charm of its original.  This is delicious!

2 cakes of extra firm tofu

one bunch of cilantro

5 tbsp of oyster sauce

vegetable oil (lots!) for frying

Place tofu in a saucepan and cover with water.  Bring to a boil and then reduce to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Gently remove from water and refrigerate til chilled (at least two hours or overnight). Slice into 1-1 1/2 inch cubes and brown in lots of hot vegetable oil. This takes about 10-15 minutes and requires lots of careful flipping of the pieces so they brown on all sides. Be vigilant. It is worth the effort! Pour off excess oil, then add oyster sauce and LOTS of cilantro (it may seem excessive to include a whole bunch, but it is worth it). I served this with an Asian-inspired salad and simple coconut rice. It served 2 healthy portions for dinner with one leftover lunch. Excellent!

And then, after already feeling stuffed, I brewed up some mint tea and ate a large “Knock You Naked Brownie” from Ree Drummond at “The Pioneer Woman” website.

TO DIE FOR. Two notes about this recipe. First, I could not find a German Chocolate cake mix– two different grocery stores had no record of such a mix. I substituted a Swiss Chocolate cake mix on the theory that the Swiss and the Germans are geographically close. It worked just fine. Second, I could not get my top brownie layer to cooperate in being moved from counter to cake, so I simply laid out the pieces on top in a puzzle-like fashion. There were some gaps, but they all filled in perfectly during the baking process. Next time I wouldn’t be so fussy about the top layer.

You must go make these!  My love pronounced them possibly the best dessert he has ever had.

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April 7, 2011

Home

Filed under: Daily life — pyjamasandtea @ 12:36 pm
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I’m back!  Back to my computer, back to drinking tea in my pyjamas, but not back to my right mind.  Oh no not yet.

Moving is brutal!  I have never been so exhausted, and not only because this new house is five floors and I have yet to take a step without complicated advance calculations about what needs to go up or come down, lest I make a fruitless trip.   It was tough taking seemingly random pieces from three different houses (his old, my old, our temporary one) and combining them into a whole that could be called “home”.

I have thought a lot about what it means to have a home these past few months.  I can feel the beginnings of one pushing its way into my heart.  One unexpected downside to feeling home is that I miss my kids more than ever when they aren’t with me.  They occupy an entire floor of the new abode and when they aren’t here, I pass by that floor without stopping and it gives me a pang.  Home means they should be here with me.

Some random observations about my new home:

-I stood in front of my new shower on day two with abject terror in my soul.  What if it dribbled?  Or couldn’t get lobster-boiling hot?  What if it felt like a a spring shower instead of the brute force thunderstorm I need every morning?  I entered with such hope, such fear… HEAVEN!  The water sang as it poured out and I could live in that shower if only I could also bake in it.

-The counters in my kitchen are just a tinch higher than any others I have had, necessitating a whole new dough-rolling technique.

-My new soft pillow-top mattress forces me into a roll into the middle during the night, enabling unsolicited cuddling with my love.  Endearing?  Apparently not always.

-Negotiating closet space proved more difficult and delicate than signing our names on the mortgage papers.

-Seeing a set of cheques with the new address AND both our names on them caused me heart palpitations.

-Two= the number of times I drove to the old house on auto-pilot.

-The fishbowl effect of living in a house of windows makes me feel like I “perform” my nightly ritual of making tea.  I can feel the neighbours watching me choose from my impressive (some might say excessive) tea varietals and struggle with the new mugs that have weird handles that don’t enable me to carry two without burning my knuckles.  Do they mark the time I turn off all the house lights? Do they admire my fetching red robe?  Of course they don’t, but I might wish they might.

-I have two unpacking chores left to accomplish.  I was however, right to predict that as soon as I gave myself a day off, I would never feel motivated to return to the unpacking-frenzy.  Those boxes may well hide their contents for years to come.

Home is a place and a feeling and a future.  I am working its way there.

March 3, 2011

On Snoring.

Filed under: Daily life — pyjamasandtea @ 10:22 pm
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As I lay downstairs on the couch, listening to my love honk away upstairs in our nice comfy bed, I wonder what it is about snorers?  What is wrong with you?  It is a phenomenon, surely, much like hoarding (I just watched a horrific CSI episode about a hoarder.  Shudder.).

Okay.  Maybe snoring isn’t “quite” like hoarding.  But how is it that a snorer can so blithely sleep in the midst of all that noise?  I am one floor down and I fear I might have to descend yet further into the depths of this house to escape it.  How is it that you don’t wake yourselves up?  How can you dream in the cacophony?  How can you breathe with such obstruction?  How can you sleep so peacefully knowing that your partner will have to escape the onslaught?

HOW CAN YOU STAND YOUR SOUND?

I’m just wondering, ’tis all.  Yawn.

Snore.

Huffle.

Wuffle.

Snort.

BLOODY TRAIN ROLLING THROUGH MY BED EVERY 5 SECONDS.

February 23, 2011

Difficult Things

Filed under: Lists — pyjamasandtea @ 11:50 am
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A list of some weirdly difficult decisions after a separation:

1.   Does the ex get a colourful birthday sticker on the family calendar, the way the other family members do?

2.  If we aren’t friends in real-space, are we facebook friends?  Twitter followers?  Skype buddies?

3.  Where do I put the wedding ring once it is off my finger?  What will I do with it?

4.  Do I change the cute, historic nickname on my cell to a more impersonal one?

5.  In scanning the family photo albums, so that we each have copies, do I scan the photos of the ex?  The ones of us together?  The ones of us as a family?

6.  Am I allowed to ask the ex for help with my computer?  My car?  The taxes?

7.  Do I continue to use the cheques with both our names on them?  Is it cheap to wait til they run out before ordering new ones?

8.  Do I have to tell our dentist or can I just say the ex is fine?

9.  When I make his favourite recipe– the one he can’t make himself, should I drop off leftovers?  Is it fair that he never gets to eat that dish again?

10.  How do I answer the question, “When did I stop loving you”?  Did I ever love you?  What did that feel like?  Did I ever stop?  How do I know?

 

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