One kid's adventures in gastronomy

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¡Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

In honor of this Mexican holiday, Mama cooked up a Mexican-inspired dinner. We had an appetizer of plantain chips and mojitos (Papa made me a special one with orange juice). Then Mama made corn pudding muffins, rice with black-eyed peas, and tacos. I helped put the tortillas in the pan to heat them up, and I grated some of the cheese. Mama said I had to be careful with the box grater, or I could cut myself. “Like a paper cut,” I said. “Exactly,” she said.

Mama wanted me to write about taco seasoning because making it is just about as easy as opening a packetonly not nearly as bad for you. You can control how much salt goes into it, and you know how fresh your spices are, so there are no preservatives cluttering it up. I like to smell the spices when Mama opens them, and I’m getting pretty good at naming a lot of them. Mama notes that you can use just a few spices and adjust them to your preference, but here is what she used:

1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon Mexican oregano
bunch of grinds of black pepper

Mix it all together then stir into ground beef (or soy crumbles, in Mama’s case) as it’s cooking. This amount is suitable for 1 pound of beef and will make it spicy but not overbearing.

The black-eyed peas and rice are hiding under my tortilla!

The black-eyed peas and rice are hiding under my tortilla!

Even though I sort of deconstructed my taco (it had cheese and avocado on it), I did sample pretty much everything on my plate. And Mama said that was bueno.

Love, Jude

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Kiss me, I’m Irish! (Part 2)

Mama and I made Irish soda bread today to go along with the corned beef she was braising. I sifted the flour and cut in the butter and mixed in the buttermilk. (I didn’t knead it, though.) We served it with honey butter.
Even the dinos wanted some:


And here I am enjoying the fruits of our labor:


I hope you have a great St. Patrick’s Day.
Love, Jude

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Sloppy Judes

Mama surprised Papa with a cow share. If, like me, you had an image of a group of cows sharing their toys with one another, allow me to clarify: Mama and a group of other people paid for a pasture-raised, organically fed cow (apparently named Charlie), whose meat they then divided amongst themselves.

I’m still confused, as I thought “hamburger” came from chickens.

At any rate, she made what she called “Sloppy Judes,” loosely based on a Sloppy Joes recipe she found online.  She thought I would enjoy eating these because they have my name in them and because I could get all sloppy without fallout.

Meat mixture simmering in one skillet, buns toasting in another.

Meat mixture simmering in one skillet, buns toasting in another.

Not so. I wanted to eat the bun—and not any part that touched the meat mixture, a little of which I ate with a fork.

I'm debating whether I should try this as a sandwich.

I’m debating whether I should try this as a sandwich. I think not.

Even though I ate some of it, it was begrudgingly, so I’m going to give this dinner a “miss.” I just didn’t like the chopped up pepper and onions mixed in with the soft meat, and I think ketchup should be saved for hot dogs. But I like meat very much, so Papa and I are looking forward to seeing what else Charlie will provide for us.

Love, Jude