I have been lacking in culinary inspiration lately and I’ve been dreading the afternoons because it is the same question, what do I make for dinner? At 3:00 it’s dinner time for Rex and Jack, Jack tears into his bowl whereas Rex likes it when I hold the bowl for him and hold off the little brat from trying to sneak in and steal some morsels from Rex. My husband who never minds cooking, will often cook some pasta, steak or a hamburger. I always make sure that we have vegetables prepared, either sautéed with onions and garlic or gratineed with cheese. The challenge is often with my daughter, she is not exactly the fan of the left-over. I, on the other hand, love having left overs because that means one less meal to worry about. The issue isn’t the cooking, I enjoy cooking, the issue is the daily chore of thinking of something new to cook and feed the child who has eaten everything in your culinary repertoire and wants new choices. I do have to be honest, there are the days when I wish that they would simply open the refrigerator and make a sandwich or a salad. I know that it is my job as Maman to cook and feed the family, but there are days when I just don’t feel like it.
Tonight however, the hubby asked for a meatloaf, we went food shopping, picked up the onions, garlic, parsley, zucchini, sweet sausage and ground beef and I was set for dinner. Came home, unloaded the car and started the prep work for the meatloaf. I got two heads of cauliflower for the ever present side dish. The plan for the cauliflower is simple, trim the heads into tiny florets and trim the stems as well so that everything is small and uniform, dice two onions, mince five cloves of garlic and sauté everything together. Once everything is tender and slightly caramelized, I add salt, pepper and turmeric and it is done. Back to the meatloaf, mince several cloves of garlic, chop a whole bunch of parsley and dice three onions, sauté the onions and garlic until soft and translucent and add it to the bowl with the parsley when the onions and garlic have cooled. At this point, I add the ground beef, the sausage, an egg and salt and pepper and I get all messy and mix it all together. I put it all in a pan and form it into an oval, I put several slices of bacon on top of the formed loaf and put bread crumbs on it. I add tomato sauce all around the loaf and sliced zucchini in the tomato sauce. Bake it for an hour and dinner is done for tonight and a few more nights thereafter. The daughter pronounced the meatloaf a success, hooray for Maman!