Kitchen concoction

What do you do when you get home from a long day at work and you have six eyeballs staring at you? What’s for dinner, Mom?

Sundays are usually my days for planning the weekly meals, grocery shopping, and prepping. But this past Sunday I didn’t get around to it, because we took the kids to see Cirque due Soleil Amaluna. Fantastic show. Fabulous. Amazing. The things us humans can do. Incredible.

Somehow the weekend came and went and my to-do list was still full. Ruh-roh. This is how I get myself into trouble.

I stood in the front doorway, with my massive laptop bag– heavy with books about Active Directory and Windows PowerShell— slung over my shoulder. Keys in hand, fresh from my daily commute home and somewhat exhausted. But there was no time for that. There were dishes to be done, a meal to prepare, hugs to be given, questions about school to be asked…essentially, it was time to be a mom.

I could have made a quick trip to the local grocery store. It was an option. But I don’t like to take such trips without a list, because then I come back with all sorts of things. Usually bad things. Things like double-stuffed mint Oreos.

Photo of Oreos from JIm's Chocolate Mission

But fear not. I didn’t go to the grocery store, so I did not buy the Oreos. I know, I have the strength and resolve of an ox. (Please disregard the presence of such Oreos on my kitchen counter Saturday night. I’m just a patsy.)

Okay, back to the dinner menu. What the heck was I going to make these guys?

I opened up the fridge. It was looking somewhat dire in there, but not too bad. I had half a head of cauliflower and broccoli. Some leftover ham. A hunk of cheddar cheese. But most blessed of all these things, I had extra eggs this week. I hadn’t used last week’s delivery. And that’s what flipped the lightbulb on for me.

Smith Brother's Farms eggs

I should stop here and inform you of one truth about me. I was a latchkey kid growing up. Since about the age of six, I’ve been able to step into a kitchen and whip up something to eat. I call these things Jenn’s kitchen concoctions. I know it’s not fair to my husband or children that I inflict such whims on them. After all, there are only a bazillion food recipes floating out there on the Internet.

I’ve never been good at following recipes. I quickly glance through them, get the gist of it, and start cooking. Things are sort of different every time. Hence, why I use the term concoction. But if the troops (my husband and kids) eat it and like it, then they just endorse my bad habit of concocting. I blame it all on them. <wink>

Geesh, I’m being very random this morning. Let’s focus here, Jenn.

With ingredients selected, I whipped up a frittata. A simple dish. It didn’t take too long to make. And it had ingredients that my kids like– ham and cheese. Admittedly my youngest sort of picked at it. Targeting the bits of ham and broccoli.

(Let me apologize in advance regarding the photos. It was late at night and I had no natural light. Natural light is a food’s friend, so I’m told by famous food photographers. But this will at least give you an idea of what this dish looked like. So I’ll share my heinous photos with you. Don’t let them spoil your appetite.)

201302-001

First, I preheated the oven to 425 degrees and then grabbed my camping cookware. An iron skillet. Bless The Pioneer Woman for bringing attention to these pans. Using it in my kitchen throughout the year helps keep it seasoned and ready for camping trips.

201302-001-3

Apologies,again. I didn’t take pictures of the actual cooking process. But let me summarize my steps.

  • Saute the ham.
  • Throw in some broccoli and cauliflower florets.
  • Grab two handfuls of baby spinach leaves and plop them on top.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Beat six eggs with some milk and chicken broth. (I think it was around a quarter cup of each. Give or take.)
  • Saute the veggies for a bit before pouring the egg mixture into the pan.
  • Sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese.
  • Turn off the stovetop and put the pan in the hot oven. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, until golden brown on top.

Easy, right?

201302-001-4

And that’s how this working mom fed her children last night. My oldest even asked for seconds. That made me pretty happy. I’ll put this down as a win. And maybe I’ll concoct something similar in a month or two.

Has this ever happened to you?

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6 thoughts on “Kitchen concoction

  1. That looks really good! And I’m impressed that your kids will eat broccoli AND cauliflower! Thanks for sharing your recipe too. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Amy. I was pleasantly surprised by the result, myself. Cooked cauliflower just jumped higher on my radar. It’s so sweet.
      As for the kids eating their veggies…well, that’s hit or miss. I have one rule at the table. You have to try at least one bite of whatever I put in front of you. If they eat more than that, then I know that recipe is a keeper.

  2. You know that I had never heard of the Pioneer Woman before you told me about her last week…well, I was watching the Food Network with Mom yesterday and this nice lady was making some kind of dipped chocolate dessert. She was so sweet, and then they showed her husband, the cowboy! It was the Pioneer Woman! I felt so “in the know.” At any rate, I’m so with you and her on the value of a cast iron skillet, a true essential for any kitchen. Oh, and for what it’s worth…I like your frittata photos. xoxox

    1. That’s what I like most about The Pioneer Woman…I think she’s genuinely a nice person. I enjoy reading her blog, because she’s sassy (in a self-deprecating way) and her love for her family really bleeds into her topics and photos. I love people that love. ‘Cause I’m a sappy dork like that.

  3. Sappy dork…now there’s a great blog title! And it’s one of the many reasons I think you’re so awesome! xoxox

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