Tuesday, February 24, 2009

An Evening of Kitchen Improv

Urban Cowboy and I are great team in the kitchen. We cook at home a lot. Last night, we wanted to make a Rachael Ray recipe we haven't had in a while - 30 min. Swedish Meatballs (from her Comfort Foods cookbook) and after we got started we realized we didn't have all the "right" ingredients. Well, that doesn't stop us - thanks to years of living with L who inspired me and gave me courage to deviate recipe specifications - because we know we can make it work with what we have. One major component of last night's dinner, however, was cooking sherry which we have none of right now. In fact, we haven't had it in our pantry for quite some time and have been substituting cheap red wine in recipes calling for sherry. Well, as you can imagine we don't have an abundant supply of cheap red wine lying about the house lately because I have only been partaking in the occasional 1/2 a glass of wine here and there. So, we brainstormed and I knew we had some marsala in the pantry so I grabbed that only to discover we had just an 1/8th of a cup - we need a 1/2 cup. We brainstormed and I came up with nothing but Urban Cowboy, practically a genius some days, suggested Vermouth (not being a liquor drinker, that didn't occur to me at all) and we decided to give it a go. I'm happy to report complete success! Certainly, the dish didn't taste exactly the same as it has in the past with all the "right" ingredients but the marsala/vermouth combo definitely put a fun spin on the flavor of the sauce and both of us were very pleased with the results. So pleased, in fact, that there were no leftovers for lunches today. (Don't worry, it's a small recipe in the first place - RR states it only serves 2, maybe 3) Ah, the joys of life's little adventures, right?

Speaking of wine and adventures ... be prepared to be dazzled by Urban Cowboy's skills soon! I plan to post (with pictures) about Urban Cowboy's latest home improvement project! It's awesome!

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