new toy

Not a new toy for Daniel!

No, this one's for us grown-ups, Stuart in particular. After reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Stuart decided to take a more active role in meal preparation here. Good news all around! (Yes, I do almost all the cooking for our household because I'm the one who is home most of the time, and frankly, I'm better at it. In fact, I really enjoy cooking; since we have to eat every day, and since I'm one of those wholesome make-it-all-from-scratch types, making all our meals does not feel like a chore to me. It's satisfying, it helps me unwind at the end of the day, and as hobbies go, it's pretty useful. That said, if I need Stuart to help, or if I'm too busy or tired and want to get take-out instead, he always steps up and never complains about know, just in case you think he takes me for granted. He really, really doesn't. Plus, he scrubs the bathroom every week and takes care of bike maintenance and that counts for a lot in my book.)

So anyway, in AVM, the author Barbara Kingsolver talks about how the whole family participates in dinner preparation and their food life in general. Thusly inspired, Stuart has recently taken charge of Saturday night dinner, and that doesn't mean he dials the pizza delivery place. A few weeks ago, he made curried chicken in yogurt sauce (it was quite delicious), and lately, he's been trying his hand at homemade pasta noodles. You can see he's committed; no cans of Spaghetti-Os for this guy.

Noodles are pretty easy, as it turns out, especially if you know anything about mixing dough for tortillas or bread, both of which we eat a lot of around here. You just throw together some eggs, flour, and a little salt. The part of noodle-making that is a royal pain in the ass is rolling it out and letting it dry for a couple hours before slicing it into strips to cook in boiling water. Keeping curious toddlers with grubby fingers away from dough drying on the counter is a particular challenge. Just sayin'.

Last weekend, when it became clear that homemade noodles made by my husband's capable hands will be a regular part of our weekly menu, we had a little outing to check out pasta makers. We found one for the right price, and tonight Stuart gave it a try:

How cool is that? Stick a hunk of dough in the machine, turn the crank, and out comes a sheet of pasta! Actually, you have to put it through several times to get the dough thin enough, and then once more through the cutter to get the fettucine or what-have-you, but that's the fun part anyway.

Daniel was pretty interested in what was going on:

What's Stu going to come up with next? We'll all just have to wait and see...


katie said…
OK, i'm inspired!
Tooz said…
And the really cool thing is, once you are completely burned out on making your own homemade pasta (and I hope that never happens)is that you can use the pasta machine for clay crafts!
Andre said…
LOVE. . . IT. . Go Stu with the family meal preparation! It's nice reading something about him.
Steph said…
We have one just like that, a hand-me-down from my grandma (who got rid of it after Grandpa died because she said "it's a two-person job."). We don't use it that often, but when we do, those noodles are the tastiest starchfest ever.
Mrs. Ann said…
I like that Daniel was restrained while daddy tried out the new machine.

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