Trials and tribulations of the meal challenge

On Tuesday night, forget about the meal challenge. The real challenge ended up being eating at all. I had to get three fillings put in just before dinner. After six injections, I was frozen from eyeballs to the bottom of my throat. It was awful. All I was able to do was make myself some soup. And by “make” I mean “heat up some packaged Lipton’s Chicken Noodle.” I awkwardly spooned it up, while watching myself in the mirror to make sure it was actually getting in, that’s how bad it was. Z wisely decided he needed to do work at the house and he’d grab something while he was out. Wise man.

TuesIck. As gross as it is, there is something comforting about Lipton’s Chicken Noodle. It reminds me of childhood, I guess.

Wednesday night I was able to eat again (sort of, since I felt like I’d been punched in the face). This is what I had to work with:

8 red-skinned potatoes

Half a package of button mushrooms

4 eggs

1 onion*


The answer is obvious: breakfast for dinner! I found a recipe for a potato and mushroom frittata, but didn’t actually have enough eggs to make it work so it turned out to be more of a potato-heavy skillet. I’ll put down what I actually made, as opposed to the recipe that I’m assuming is much better.

Boil the potatoes for 20 minutes, then slice them into 1/2 in pieces when they are cool enough to handle. Heat up oil in a skillet and add potatoes, cooking until they are golden.


Remove potatoes from the skillet, add more oil then cook up the mushrooms, garlic and onion, chopped. Add in some bacon, because it’s breakfast for dinner, obviously. Once the bacon looks crisp enough, put the potatoes back in.


Take the eggs and beat them in a bowl with the rest of the dried basil you want out of your spice rack. It turns out to be way more than you expected, so this is now a basil-centric dish. Pour egg/basil mixture over the veggies and stir. Put the cover on and let cook for 3 minutes. Once you’re sure the eggs are cooked enough, you’re ready to go. Serve with beer so your husband doesn’t notice how half-assed this attempt was.

This actually wasn’t that bad. I mean, it’s potatoes, right? The bacon saved it, though, because bacon saves everything.

* Okay, I cheated again and went to buy an onion. I think it’s hilarious because I used to HATE onions, and now I’m like: well, obviously I can’t get through this week without an onion, right?

Also, just to show off, I wanted to make some cookies to use up baking supplies in the pantry. I wanted to finish up my molasses, steel-cut oats and dried cranberries. Here’s the result:

Wed3These truly are delicious, and something I’ll be making again. Because you asked, here’s the recipe, which I found on Yummly.

Molasses Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies


  • 16 tbsps unsalted butter (cool, cut into chunks plus additional)
  • 1 sheet unsalted butter (greasing the baking)
  • 2 14 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 12 tsps baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 12 tsp salt
  • 1 12 cups sugar
  • 6 tbsps unsulphured molasses
  • eggs (room temperature)
  • 2 tsps vanilla extract
  • 3 cups rolled oats (quick cooking) (I substituted this for steel-cut oats – it totally still works)
  • 2 cups dried cranberries

Position oven rack in center of oven; preheat oven to 375°; lightly butter a large baking sheet; set aside.
In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; set aside.
Use an electric mixer on medium speed to beat the butter until slightly softened, about 2 minutes.
Add in the sugar; beat until light, creamy, and pale yellow, about 3 minutes.
Add in molasses and beat until well combined, then beat in eggs one at a time; finally beat in the vanilla until smooth.
Turn off the beaters, add the prepared flour mixture, and beat at low speed just until a soft dough starts to form; there will be some dry patches of flour left.
Scrape down the beaters, remove them, and stir in the oats and dried cranberries with a wooden spoon, just until evenly distributed and the flour is fully moistened.
Mound by rounded tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet, spacing about 3 inches apart.
Gently flatten the mounds a little with your hand or a rubber spatula.
Bake 12-14 minutes, until brown but still pliable and soft.
Leave cookies on baking sheet for a couple of minutes, and then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Cool baking sheet for at least 5 minutes and butter it again before baking another batch.
**May substitute raisins, dried blueberries, dried cherries, dried currants, or chopped dried pitted dates for the dried cranberries.

Word of the day:

Canon: the body of rules, principles, or standards accepted as axiomatic and universally binding in a field of study or art: the neoclassical canon; a fundamental principle or general rule: the canons of good behavior.


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