Sunday, May 16, 2004

Fuses blowing, cream curdling and salmon in bathtub. Dinner preparation at it's craziest.

So it happened.

Dinner for my hubby's aunt, uncle, father, stepmom, stepsis, cousin and cousin-in-law happened last night. Well, yesterday afternoon.

11:45 1st beer: After I wrote last, I went back to my sabayon. Things in the kitchen didn't get any better. First my sabayon looked darker than I imagined. I
should have known the merlot would darken it.

Then as I was whipping the cream, the heat in the kitchen caused the cream to curdle. Plan B: Empty out freezer and place pan and whisk in the deep freeze.

At this point, I have frozen meats laying on my countertop and salmon in my bathtub, the only cool area I could think of.

12:00 2nd and 3rd beer: Hubby comes in for something and offers his help. I say, "Can you make some room on the countertop so I can put down my kitchenaid?"
He decides making room is brushing everything to the side and spills some tumeric seeds. The stuff on the counter is now a flat pile of mess. I guess he thinks he can put the mixer on top of the flat mess and tries to take the mixer out of my hand and put it on the counter. I'm silent as he leans the heaviest part back down on me but when his fingernail digs into my pinkie finger I tell him to move the pile and let me take care of the mixer. I drop the mixer and go to the bathroom to wash my pinkie. He looks at my finger dripping with blood and starts squelching. He decides he can help me by putting up the ac.

Good call.

As I wait for the mixer bowl to get nice and cold, I prepare the crudités and floral arrangements. [Yes, this is an informal meal, but my OCD gets the better
of me.]

I finish the arrangement and realize hubby hasn't even started mopping. So I start sweeping the foyer. "I can do that. Trust me. We have time." I can't do
anything until it cools considerably so I go to the bathroom and mop. I finished tidying up the bedroom, bathroom and sweep and mop the bathroom and hallways.

Hubby says that he is off to the hardware store. He needs some nuts or he is nuts. I wasn't really paying attention. While he was out, I tidied the living room and moved some of our boxes we haven't unpacked into the bedroom and a few closets.

1pm.: I finish up the sabayon and start the second load of dishes in the dishwasher. I put the meat back in the fridge and make the salad and chop up the broccollini. I boil the water for the pasta and realize I should begin preparing the salmon steaks. I'm no fish monger but I think a non-monger should not take nearly 2 hours to de-bone the bloody steaks. It took me an hour and 30 mins to de-bone. I don't know if it was my fear of leaving pin bones in and choking babysis or what, but by 2:00 I was only on my 5th steak.

Ok, I have a confession. First, since I had that little mishap with the mixer and my hubby's fingernail, I had a band-aid and a latex glove on. Call me crazy, but I figure an open wound should not be in contact with food. So that delayed the de-boning.

Second, an hour and a half passed without me knowing. See, the circuit kept blowing and my hubby had to reset it and move the ac to several outlets before it stopped overloading. Since half my kitchen is on the same line, half of my kitchen was without power intermittently. Unfortunately, that half contained the stove which has my timer and clock. So the time was slightly off. But I wasn't thinking and assumed when it said 1:30, it was 1:30 and not 2pm.

Anyway, By 2:30, I had finished de-boning and tying the ends in to avoid overcooking. My hubby starts panicking. He hasn't mopped yet. I tell him that the 'east wing' is done except for the vacuuming. He hugs me and runs off to take a shower as I wash off the fish guts from my hands.

2:30pm: I measure my spices for a quick toasting and empty the dishwasher and start the third load. Hubby asks if there is anything he could do so I can shower. I guess this was a subtle hint that I was a bit on the fishy side and needed to freshen up. I tell him to set the table. He asks where the napkins and tablecloths are. Ok, he asked, "Do you have a cover for the table?" I show him the cubby and he takes every tablecloth, napkin and runner out to the dining room. I don't question. I just go shower.

That's when I realized it was 2:45. I guess I won't have time to do my hair. A loose bun will have to do. I shower and hubby runs out to pick up the pooches from the groomers. Yes, my dogs got a day at the spa while I got a day in my hot kitchen marinating in salmon parts.

2:50pm: While in the shower, the circuit breaker goes out. Great. I decide showering in the dark will have to do. I decide running to the fuse box, naked and wet is not a good idea. I finish showering and putting on my make up in the dark.

3pm: Hubby returns and I ask him to allow me a few minutes with the hair dryer before the breaker goes out again. He gives me a frustrated "humph" and
walks away. I blow dry my hair and wrap it into a semi-decent bun. I look in the mirror and decide with my yoga pants, tank and short button down shirt; I give the air of relaxed casual not frazzled crazy lady.

3:15pm a glass of red wine: The guests arrive.