Parents–Do You Wonder What Your Children Get Up To When They’re Home Alone?

Well, I can’t speak for any normal teenager, but my day’s goings-on were pretty hilarious today, and they make for a funny story.  I’m beginning to be reminded of what STRESS feels like–gah!  I was hoping I wouldn’t have to experience that particular emotion until we all file back into ye old schoolhouse…but I guess that’s not too far away either.

Somehow the idea of making a “Middle-Eastern Feast” (although it wouldn’t really be a feast, since my appetite’s been all out-of-whack lately) lodged itself firmly in my mind this morning.   But it wouldn’t be a traditional feast, per se, as I didn’t have chickpeas, which are kind of vital.  But, I did have a potentially unlimited supply of extra-virgin olive oil.  And yeast.  And, guess what?  We had sweet potatoes.  So I would make Sweet Potato FalafelPita Bread, and White Bean Hummus from The Vegetarian Family Cookbook by Nava Atlas.

I started the pitas at 11:50.  Everything was going stooptacularly.  I always get this sense of satisfaction when I come back an hour later and see that my dough has “doubled in bulk”, per the recipe’s instructions.  Bodybuilder dough! 😉  The rest of the ordeal, I feel is best expressed in playscript form:

Me (walking into the kitchen, recipe clutched in hand, humming happily): Aha, now that my dough is sufficiently rested, the recipe says to heat a cast-iron skillet on HIGH and brush it with olive oil.  (Bends down, takes a pan from underneath the sink)  Is this cast iron?  Probably.  I mean, what else could it be?..I bet it will work.

(McAwesome whistles to herself as she plops the pan on the stove and cranks the heat all the way up.)

Now, let’s see, I should brush it with olive oil…how handy is that, my basting brush is right here! (Feeling very smarmy, she drizzles some oil into the pan and starts to rub it around with her silicone basting brush, which promptly begins to melt and ooze green slime over the pan.)

Oh CRAP!!!!!!

(She hurriedly rushes to open every available window in the house, and the back door for good measure, as the fumes of melting man-made material can be very harmful for humans and positively lethal for her avian family members.  Also, she has just ruined her basting brush and possibly her skillet.  It’s got green ooze in it now.)

Ten minutes later (new pan, new olive-oil drizzling technique, slightly less frazzled McAwesome):

Me:  Phew.  Glad that’s taken care of.  This should work much better.  (She plops a pita into the pan and cooks it for the specified thirty seconds, at which point it begins to smoke at the edges.  She inhales through her teeth and flips it.)  Am I burning these?  I think I’m burning these.  They don’t look burnt…maybe I should turn the heat down, though.

But the damage is beyond repair.  Every single pita McAwesome cooks sends up those nasty tendrils of smoke, and, in desperation, she turns on the ceiling fan, the microwave fan, and the oven fan, and waves her arms around like an idiot.  There’s still one pita cooking on the stove, when the phone rings.

Me:  Easton!!  Get the phone!!

Easton:  Where is it?  You’re making so much smoke I can’t see!

Me:  Well, I can’t get it right now!!

It’s Mother.  Of course.  I try not to sound very panicked as I answer it.

Mother:  Rachel just called.  She left a message–apparently she left her pillow at our house.  You’d better call her back and let her know she can pick it up tomorrow.  Her number is seven–

Me: Wait!  Can’t write it down right now!  I’ve got a spatula in one hand…I’m making pita…darnit, you made me lose count!  (She had been counting in her head to thirty seconds, at which point she was supposed to flip the pita.)  Maybe it’s done now…I’ll wait a little bit…no, I’ll flip it…

Mother:  What are you talking about?

Me:  Never mind!  Hold on…one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten…twenty more seconds…what’s the number?

(Mother verbally transmits phone number to my ear while I grab a recipe index card lying nearby and scribble it down.  Except I messed up once, twice, three times.  Finally got it, then, once pitas were done, grabbed the phone and dialed.)

Me: Hello?

Rachel:  Oh, hi!..Did you get my message?

Me:  My mom did.  She can bring the pillow by her office tomorrow and you can pick it up.

Rachel:  Where does she work?

(McAwesome informs her where her mother works.)  Me:  It’s kind of by where we go to sch–OH SHOOT!

Rachel (bewildered): What?

Me: Sorry–my dog just got in, he’s not supposed to, just a sec, let me put him out–OUTSIDE, STITCH!!

(McAwesome apparently forgot that she had left the back door open in an effort to air out the smoky kitchen, to no avail.  At that moment, the smoke alarm chirps and Stitch’s leg lifts in a gesture dangerously similar to one of a dog about to urinate.)

And thus our play endeth.  You can guess what happens next–my head explodes.  But other than that.  I’ll leave the details up to you.

Aside from the, er, mishaps, though, my “feast” turned out pretty decently.  In the hummus I used special poiple garlic from the farmer’s market…

Purple garlic.  Who knew?!  So pretty.

I didn’t think to take pictures of the process of making the pitas until they turned into a funny story, so no pictures of them.  It’s not really your loss, though; they’re not round in the slightest.

Smashing the baked sweet potatoes for the falafel…

Orange goo!  Yay!!

And the finished “feast”.

I ate too much of this.  I joyously consumed accidentally somehow ate half the hummus in one night, and I was beyond full.  Restrain yourself around hummus, my dear friends!  It is a dangerous thing.

The whole thing took about four to five hours.  I love summer days because I can make stuff like this. 😉  It’s actually a pretty productive use of my time.  But during the school year, let’s just say that veggie burgers and big pots of feed-me-for-a-week soups are my best friends.

I also managed to clean up this….

…somehow.  Mostly.  The parental units will be pleased.  (But they need never know, right?)

3 thoughts on “Parents–Do You Wonder What Your Children Get Up To When They’re Home Alone?

  1. Hah, I can just imagine that. I would love to have seen it, though it probably wasn’t very funny at the time. I love your new blog, by the way. You’re right, wordpress is way more professional looking. I’m even tempted to get one, although I’m on tumblr and blogger already. 🙂

    • Thanks for commenting and glad you like the blog! 🙂 Another great thing about wordpress vs. blogger is that it has a “reply to comment” feature!! 🙂 Well, maybe Blogger had that, but if so I didn’t see it.
      What’s tumblr? I know–“get with the program, McAwesome”–but I’m curious.

      • You can actually do what they call “subscribe to a post by email” on Blogger. I just found out about it though. When you click on a blogger post, next to the “Publish” and “Preview” buttons (to the right of them), there’s a button that says “subscribe by email”. But it’s really hard to see. Did you find it? Tumblr is this other blogging program. It’s way less professional, but kind of cool (though also weird.) My tumblr blog is (not that I post on it that much.)

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