Headlines for Thursday:


Priorities - A: high, B: medium, C: low; Status - _: unfinished, X: finished, C: cancelled, P: pending, o: in progress, >: delegated. Covey quadrants - Q1 & Q3: urgent, Q1 & Q2: important
AXWrite goal-setting thing for DIYPlanner (diyplanner)
AXEnter my expenses
AXBring my PC over to Oscar (iml)
BXReply to wonderful letter about Filipino lifehackers : E-Mail from Irine Yu (social)
ACFormat tasks page according to DIY standards


1. Progress at cooking!

Categories: CookOrDie:44 -- Permalink
I had microwaved the chicken and slathered on barbecue sauce when I realized something important: I was out of cooked-and-frozen rice. I was out of potatoes, too, and I didn't think the chicken would go well with hurriedly-thrown together spaghetti.

Then I discovered the wonders of couscous. Once you get the water boiling, it takes 5 minutes to get nice, fluffy couscous. Instant carbohydrates! Yes! Another staple for my diet!

Feeling emboldened by my couscous success two days ago, I tried doing something equally fancy for breakfast today. Besides, I had run out of oatmeal, and I needed to work on finishing the tomato sauce I opened for last night's 6-bean mock chili (can of 6 types of beans + tomato sauce = quick meal).

I took two hamburger buns out of the freezer, opened them up, and popped them into the oven. When I eventually remembered them (accompanied by requisite panicking and reflections on whether or not burnt food was really as carcinogenic as my sister said), I was pleasantly surprised to find out that they were... umm... only slightly burned. I spread copious amounts of tomato sauce onto each half-bun, topped it with sliced cheese, put a little more tomato sauce, and added pineapple chunks. Then I spread some foil to catch any spilled cheese, popped the buns back into the oven and set the oven to cook for 2 minutes, watching the buns vigilantly. When the oven beeped, my very own pizza buns were wonderfully warm and yummy. Whee!

The Great Tomato Adventure continued at dinner. My roommate bequeathed to me half a bag of fusilli, and I knew spiral pasta would be just fantastic with tomato sauce. The question was, what should I put on it? Adobo? Err, maybe not. Roast chicken? Maybe if I covered it in cheese, but not really...

AHA! I had bought fresh mushrooms on a whim two weeks ago, and they were starting to make me wonder whether or not mushrooms get moldy (err, well, moldier). I fetched a saucepan, cut off a generous portion of butter, melted the butter, washed and sauteed the mushrooms (by which I mean I hovered about the pan wondering whether or not I was burning the mushrooms already), and had six nice, big mushrooms nicely browned just as the pasta finished cooking. I drained the pasta and added it to a large bowl together with the mushrooms. Because this was an exercise to get rid of the tomato sauce, I poured a lot more sauce than I thought I needed. Turned out to be just perfect: the noodles picked up the taste of the sauce and the mushrooms provided delicious, buttery contrast.

I arranged the other mushrooms on a plate, added more butter to them, and put them in the oven with the timer set to 10 minutes. I still need to figure out how to properly grill vegetables, though, as they came out tasting cooked but a bit bland. Hmmm...

Progress! I feel like a sliiiiightly better cook. Yay!