A, Always; B, Be; D, Delegating.

Did you think a little agonizing flank pain would keep me away from the Smackdown? WRONG. I powered through, in the form of having Brian do everything while I sat on the couch.

Aside from doing all the cooking he also decided he wanted to take all the pictures, which means, um, that there aren’t a ton of usable ones. This is a man who once came back from a two-week trip to Germany, and the most recognizable photo was one he accidentally took of his shoe. But A+ for effort!

veg

Before we get started, can I make a general request to the internet? It is this: Please stop the “This is what my mother thinks I do… This is what I really do” meme. Because here’s the thing; if you work in an office you spend your day sitting in front of a computer trying to figure out how much more time you can spend on Pinterest* before it starts seriously eating into your productivity, so all office-based people can just use the same graphic. And everyone else is doing their assigned task – pumping gas, building skyscrapers, assembling widgets – and bitching about their bosses to their coworkers, so there’s one graphic for them.

As you can plainly see, we therefore only need two graphics. Maybe three; full-time parents should get one. Someone make those, and we can all go about our business. You only need your own graphic if you’re, like, an astronaut or  a wizard or the president. And ten bucks says even the president is dicking around on Pinterest.

Thanks for listening, internet.

*In my convalescent state, I’ve become  a hopeless pinner.

crema

Dinner tonight came from Fiesta at Rick’s, a great book by my secret boyfriend and pot dealer Rick Bayless. (You know he’s growing that shit in his rooftop garden. No chef is that zen.) I would tell you the dish’s Spanish name but the book is in the kitchen and navigating the stairs hurts, so you’re stuck with the less-festive English translation, roasted vegetable enchiladas with creamy tomatillo sauce and cheese.

For the sauce, Brian charred some tomatillos, onion and jalapeño and chucked them into the FoPro. The resulting puree got seared off in hot oil, concentrating the flavors, before being fortified with stock and Mexican crema (see above). While it simmered, he roasted off parsnips, carrots, butternut squash and mushrooms for the filling and grated up some Mexican melting cheese, which I’m pretty sure is just re-packaged Monterey Jack.

Unfortunately, there aren’t really any photos of these parts of the process. Here, have a picture of my dogs instead.

hounds

That’s Chester, behind Felix’s hindquarters. Look at those jowls! Don’t you just want to pinch them? Don’t worry, I did it for you.

enchiladitos

The filling got rolled into some warm, pliable flour tortillas and tucked into a cast iron pan over a bed of the sauce.

Note to my gentle readers: If you decide to re-create this, you want to chop your veg pretty small, like a half-inch dice. That’ll make it a lot easier to stuff the enchiladas.

More sauce, a heap of cheese, and the pan went into the oven for ten minutes or so. Since everything’s already cooked, you’re just heating everything through and melting the cheese.

cheesed off

I’d like to take a moment here to pat myself on the back. The whole time Brian was cooking, I sat on the couch quietly and did not offer any advice unless specifically asked. No, “Why are you doing it that way?” or “What if you tried this?” or, most likely, “Why don’t you let me do this part?”

If you’ve ever seen me in the kitchen with Brian, you know that this is a BIG HONKING DEAL. So, you know, +1 for me.

dinner

Not that this is surprising in any way, because we are talking about Rick Bayless, but we loved these. Pretty simple to assemble, and great on a chilly night. The tomatillo sauce was incredibly well-balanced, with the crema smoothing out the blunt edges of the tomatillo and jalapeño (which wasn’t de-seeded). The root veg were caramelized and gently sweet, and a final topping of raw onion and cilantro kept things fresh and biting.

If handing the Smackdown over the Brian garners these kinds of results, I may have to severely injure myself more often.

5 thoughts on “A, Always; B, Be; D, Delegating.

  1. looks good! yay Brian!
    and yes, lots of pain meds helps blunt the anal perfectionism thing, just “feed me when you’re done thanks…”

  2. I can’t let Chris rampage around the kitchen unencumbered by my helpful/watchful eye and suggestions. Or he does things like put the spatula into the blender while it’s blending, and then try to pass off the plastic bits as “cookie.” Also, I’m so gay for Rick Bayless.

  3. I made these for the Fiesta at Rick’s Twitter food photo contest last year, and they were amazeballs. I think we snuck some black beans into the filling, too. If you haven’t made the chicken–Swiss chard–poblano tacos from that book yet, you’re missing out. I sent Bayless a picture of my 6-yr-old eating them, and he re-tweeted it: Life Goal achieved!

  4. The only valid ones I’ve seen of that graphic are the one for roller derby (parents think you do 70s derby, boyfriends think you do some kind of sexy girl show, etc), and this one, of my friend Chris Coxen as “Danny Morsel” with his marionette friend, the War Doll. That was the day he won some kind of Jockey underwear contest rollerblading around Fenway with the War Doll strapped to his chest – they gave him $25,000!

  5. the best thing about the 472 layovers i had at chicago-o’hare the past couple of years? Tortas Frontera. the torta with braised short ribs…best airport grub anywhere.

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