I was in the mood for a little experimenting in the kitchen, it was just the kids and me last night so it had to be something feral friendly. I decided not to go out at all, it was a rainy day and good for just staying in and pottering. Also as the morning got later I realised I wouldn't have been home in time for my date with a cowboy in the afternoon. So dinner needed to be made from what I had in the house. I had some chicken thigh fillets in the fridge waiting to be frozen so I cut some of those up and put them in a bowl with some Greek yoghurt, two chipotle peppers chopped up, seeds and all, some lime juice, grated garlic and some finely chopped coriander. Left it to marinate for an hour or so.
I cut up one of the eschallots from the garden and grated some garlic then sauteed them in butter. I rinsed about a cup and a half, maybe a bit more, of basmati rice and drained it well then left to dry a bit before adding to the onion and garlic and stir fried it till it was darkening in colour, probably about ten minutes. While it was cooking I sprinkled over about two teaspoons of cumin, and 1/2 a teaspoon of chilli powder. I chopped up a green chilli, one of the last ones in the freezer from last Summer, and cut the kernels off a corn cob (also from the garden), chopped up some capsicum (yep grew that too) then added a tin of crushed tomatoes and 500ml of home made chicken stock, also my last out of the freezer from last Winter's soup extravaganza. I let it simmer uncovered for a while, then covered the pot and turned the heat down low while the liquid was absorbed into the rice.
For the chicken, I heated up my grill pan till it was quite hot then whacked the fillets on it and charred them on either side, turning a couple of times. They weren't quite cooked though so next time I will finish them off in the oven. The flavour was good, but when I do them again I will add more chipotle and more lime and garlic.
I can't wait till my spices get here so I can do some more experimenting with flavours and ingredients.
It's another rainy day here, so I will have to dry the washing inside, but I really have to go out today. Tonight it's just the kids and I again and I have a big packet of beef mince so I'm going to cook and puree some broccoli and cauliflower to mix into the beef along with grated carrot and zucchini (we have a LOT of zucchini), some lemon myrtle, ketchup, a beaten egg, garlic and lots of black pepper and make a batch of burgers to have tonight and to freeze for easy quick dinners. I have a nifty little Tupperware hamburger press which makes them all uniform and neat. I will make hamburger buns using the bread maker. It's also how I make my pizza dough, it does all the work and I just have to remove the dough and for pizza just roll it and toss it, and with the buns, form into rolls, put on a baking paper lined tray let them rise before brushing with milk and sprinkling with sesame seeds and baking. I will post the pizza dough recipe, it's very easy and very simple.
The mental health people came knocking yesterday checking up on Emily, but she was asleep (of course) and I told them she is greatly improved since beginning the medication. One of them, a very experienced nurse asked if her thyroid had ever been checked and I said I was pretty sure it hadn't and asked them if that could cause behaviour problems and they both said "Yes!" in unison. The nurse said her eyes looked a bit bulgy and her skin dry the day they spoke to her after the incident. Nobody has ever suggested this before and it had never occurred to me either. So it's off to the GP next week for more blood tests. We have had behaviour problems with Em since she was little, which got worse as she headed into her teens. But she is truly a wonderful girl when she is well, she is smart, kind, loving and screamingly funny. She is my biggest supporter and I don't know what I would do without her. It's just so sad that she has these other issues that are hindering her.
The medication she is on, and that I am also taking now, has made a huge difference to us both. I am going to do a post on mental health and the stigma and difficulties that come with having a mental illness. But that is for another day.