Sunday, October 29, 2006

what the Eldest is thinking about

I do ask your indulgence as I take some time to gather corn allergy materials together - I'm working on a post that has my various resources and responses from companies. In the meantime, a warning: Pampers apparently has a new formulation for one kind of diaper wipe, and this includes DAIRY. Caveat emptor, folks.

Now, then, the Eldest. I spend much time rhapsodizing about the wee toddles, that the Eldest tends to get short shrift in this blog. And a bit in real life, which is one of my chief regrets right now. He's a fascinating, loving little fellow, and I wish I were better able to celebrate that in him these days. Thus, we've been reading together. Thus also my attempt at reviving the 5 minute dinner (see below for a recipe), so that I can spend some time focusing on him after school. My thanks to Auntie A, whose birthday gift gave us some good cafe-mommying time, otherwise known as Love in the Time of the Scarlet Fever. (Hey, it's a good book, thus I can plunder the title for my entertainment. Move on.)

We're reading Mr. Popper's Penguins together, and I'm sad to say that the book is interchangeable in his heart with any number of Mr. Men books. Alas, Roger Hargreaves, you have done us wrong. Sort of. I did have a brief affection for Mr. Bump and Little Miss Busy, but I think I'm over it now. Still, the Eldest persists in his affection for the little books, and Mr. Popper and I will simply wait it out.

But as for visual media, well, our free cable disappeared some months ago. Since, we've consulted our budget, which politely declined to support proper cable, and furthermore suggested that we might want to cancel TiVO, as well. We did so, and the pain has since lessened.

Recently, someone sent this link to a Boston working mothers group that I belong to. The Eldest saw me watching it and was fascinated. This is Dove's latest PSA, folks, and it's wonderful. Coincidentally, it comes just as the Eldest is in love with Five Guys Named Moe's song, I Like 'Em Fat Like That (listen to it here). Courtesy of the SIL-ly, you know. The idea of real beauty, in all of its shapes and sizes being played out before the kiddo is immensely pleasing to me.

Especially, of course, as I'm a fan of this blog, a community written affair celebrating the wrinkles and sags of the mama body. Wouldn't show it to the boy, but happy to lay a bit of groundwork....

So, does the one-on-one thing work? I think it does. So does the more relaxed one-on-two thing, where I'm just occasionally doing dinner things, rather than spending an hour grumping about people needing me for silly things while dinner burns. Relaxed me is good. Relaxed me with just him is also good. But he's still a bit fragile around me, so while I treasure the successes, I know that they don't magically undo a year's worth of snappishness on my part. Still, on Saturday, when I blew a nice vein in his hand, he took it in stride as he used to, working with me, rather than dissolving into tears. The old relationship is there, lurking, evolving.

*****************************recipe time!
Fish Curry (serves 4-6)
adapted from Almost Vegetarian Entertaining, by Diana Shaw
I prepped for this the night before, pre-cutting the potatoes, measuring the spices and it was very fast and very very delicious. The Eldest had seconds, and I had lunch. And I'm making it again tomorrow!

2-3 Tb veg oil
2 large onions, chopped
1 leek (if you have it), chopped and rinsed well
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tb peeled sliced fresh ginger (will mellow in the curry)
2 hot peppers, seeded and sliced (I skipped this)
1 Tb ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
2 whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (whole)
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 large potato, cubed
1 large/2 small sweet potatoes, cubed
1 can diced/crushed tomatoes or 2 fresh, chopped
1.5 cups/1 can light coconut milk
2 Tb fresh lime juice
salt, pepper

1 lb white, firm fleshed fish (I used cheap frozen tilapia, which is mild tasting - worked beautifully)

Heat oil and add onions, leek (if using), garlic, ginger and hot peppers (if using). Saute until onion starts to brown (5 min?), then add spices, excepting salt and pepper. Saute some more, perhaps 8 minutes total. Add potatoes, stirring to coat with spices. Add tomatoes and cook, stirring until they start to turn into sauce - maybe 3 minutes).
(Note: if you use crushed canned tomatoes, this is roughly the same amount of time as if you use diced - the consistency is different in the end result, is all.)
Add coconut milk, lime juice, salt and pepper. Stir. Then add fish. Simmer over med-low heat, perhaps 8 minutes until fish is flaky.

Serve over cooked rice. Note: fish can be replaced with chicken, preferably cut up. Try it and let me know if it works!


magid said...

Even when I moved on to reading 'older' books on my own, I would go back and read 'younger' favorites. Having the Popper as well as the Little Mr/Miss books, I wouldn't worry about his reading. D'you have anything lined up for after the penguination?

And the fish sounds very yummy.

mama o' the matrices said...

Yup. Next up: Stuart Little.

magid said...

I don't know why, but Stuart Little wasn't one I liked much. Everyone else seems to love it, though; I don't know what I don't get about it.

Auntie A said...

Happy to help!

Think I'll try that curry recipe with chicken and see how it goes...