My mom let me do something out of the ordinary last night. She let me cook dinner while she stayed at the table to visit with Matt and our friends, George and Amy. She occasionally got up to ride herd on Sam & Ella who were tearing up the place gleefully, but otherwise she managed to let herself relax. For years my folks have come to visit with bags of food from Haagen. While it's hard to argue with bags of free, yummy groceries, letting my mom cook all the meals when visiting me brought into question my ability to cook. Since, let's face it, I didn't have the best track record prior to the early 2ooo's.
Anyway, to cut out the stress of cooking a big meal on the day of the visit–because I had doors to clean and Cheerios to vacuum–I made a batch of chilighetti and froze it last week. I highly recommend having a couple of these tucked in your freezer.
Dinner was a hit. Dessert not so much. Utter disaster. Here is the picture of everyone giving me back their (full) dessert cups. It really was that bad. Sam and Ella, not knowing what real pudding tastes like, were pretty good sports about it and took a few bites. Next time I'll skip the "from scratch" part and just add 2 cups of milk to the powder in a box.
Three bottles of wine into the evening it was decided we needed real dessert so George drove to my remote freezer to pick up some Ben & Jerry's. Somewhere between the end of the fourth bottle and the beginning of the fifth bottle it was decided we needed some smoked bacon so my mom did have a chance to do her Slovak culinary magic after all.
P.S. fellow food-journalers, I didn't have any of the garlic bread, or the ice cream. Or that much wine. Probably more to do with the fact that I'm sick and can't taste or smell much than my willpower.
1 lb. hamburger
1 tsp. salt
3/4 cup onion, chopped
2 1/2 cups stewed tomatoes (I use diced because I don't like the big tomato chunks)
1 cup sour cream
4 cups chili
8 oz. spaghetti (cooked)
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. garlic powder
Brown meat, onions, salt and garlic powder; drain. Add tomatoes and chili. Simmer 45 minutesand remove from heat. Fold in cheese and sour cream. Combine with spaghetti in casserole dish, top with Parmesan, and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until bubbly.