Tuesday 22nd May 2012
In complete contrast to my last post here is a meat-free, dairy-free, vegan meal packed full of veggies with a creamy ginger & coconut milk sauce. Yum!
Last Monday morning.
“Dad, can we have noodles for dinner?” My son, Zephy, asked.
He had decided, on this Monday morning, at 8.30am, during the walk to school, that he wanted to eat noodles for dinner later that night.
“Not today, because I’ve already got dinner sorted for tonight but I’ll try & sort something out for in the week.” I told him.
For the last four weeks (& the foreseeable future!) I’ve been going through physiotherapy for a persistent adhesive capsulitis. The therapy session starts at exactly the same time that we would all be sitting down for dinner so I’ve been trying to prepare our evening meals at various times during the day so that when we arrive home from football practice or whatever it is we are doing that day, all I have to do is warm it through & serve up before dashing off to rehab. This takes some organisation on my behalf. So as all the prep needs to done beforehand, the one pot meal has become the order of the day. Unfortunately the meal Zephy was requesting needed to be cooked fresh, to order.
Tuesday evening walking back from football practice.
“Hurry up!” I said. “Put your foot down! I’ve got to get back to put dinner on.”
His eyes light up.
“Oh yeah, we’ve got noodles tonight, haven’t we?” He asked slowly losing his smile as he noticed I was grimacing.
“Eh no, not tonight big guy.” I guiltily replied.
“Oh Dad! You said!”
“I don’t have time on Tuesdays sorry. I’ll sort it out for Thursday, ok?” I said trying to placate his disappointment.
“Thursday!” He exclaimed. “That’s ages away. Why can’t you do it tomorrow?”
“Mummy cooks on Wednesdays, doesn’t she? Because I get back late. I’ve got more time on Thursday, I’ll do it then.” I promised him.
The heat was on. I had to come up with the goods or be labelled a nominal father for the rest of my life.
Thursday morning, I spent the hour I have free sourcing the various ingredients I needed. Water chestnuts, tofu, coconut milk, noodles, veg & coriander. I then spent the other hour I have in the afternoon, before ferrying him to various clubs, chopping it all up, making the garlic & ginger paste & portioning the raw ingredients into 3 separate bowls ready to throw together when we arrived home.
After school on Thursday.
“Come on dude! We’ve got to get our freak on tonight ‘cos I’ve gotta cook dinner before I go out.” I informed him striding ahead.
“Have we got noodles?” He asked eagerly doing a half run half walk thing behind me.
“Yup!” I replied grinning.
I threw together two steaming bowls of noodles at lightening speed, announced I was leaving & ran out the door leaving my wife & Zeph in the middle of the bath routine.
When I returned an hour later, I spied two very empty bowls just where I had left them.
“How did the noodles go down big guy?” I asked poking my head around the bedroom door amidst story time.
“Yeah good…thanks.” Came the reply.
Evidently, a way to a boy’s heart is through his stomach.
*Footnote: Just before going to press I asked Zephy what made him want noodles that day.
“I don’t know. It’s just that my brain & my taste buds were telling me that that was what I fancied.” He explained earnestly.