Digging for Dough Scraps

4 Mar

I was so over this day by 9:45am.

William had an appointment at 8:00am, and I had to get both of the boys up, dressed, fed, and out the door by 7:40am.  Once we arrived at the appointment, I had to stand outside on the nearby playground in near-freezing temperatures with Cormac for the half hour while we were waiting for William.

Crack-of-dawn playground antics

Afterwards, despite my best efforts, there was a potty “incident” that forced me to drag both reluctant children back to the car and then drive all the way home to freshen up prior to getting back into the car so we could traipse to William’s new preschool and take care of some paperwork.  As you can imagine, this was like trying to conduct a business transaction while holding two excitable monkeys by the ears.

I then strong-armed both uncooperative boys back into the car and got them home just in time to mediate the usual battle over who would close the garage door (both of them got to do it – I just reopened the door after the first child).

On days like this, my paltry reserve of patience is exhausted by mid-morning.

I had absolutely zero desire to make a trip to the grocery store.  So how to make Friday festive?  It was Dan’s last day at his current client which meant that, after five years, he would be reducing his commute by about an hour each way.  This was certainly cause for celebration.  With the pantry looking bare, how could I put together some kind of a meal that was fit for Friday?

Once again, odds and ends come to the rescue.  But I warn you…we are eating pasta again. Here’s what I dug up.

Two frozen chicken breasts

A can of ground tomatoes

Half a bag of mozzarella

Dried breadcrumbs

Two eggs

A ball of frozen pasta dough

I won’t bore you with yet another pasta recipe, but I was able to piece together the ingredients for Dan to make his wonderful chicken parmigiana.  First, though, I had to turn that frozen dough into fettuccine.  And, no, I didn’t have any dried stuff on hand.

Once defrosted (this is best done in the fridge overnight – I was fortunate enough to have thought I might need it and had done this yesterday), frozen pasta dough is super easy to work with.  It’s actually easier when it’s a little cold.  But I was so not in the mood to deal with two battling small boys trying to get up in my business at the pasta machine today, so I waited until they were playing downstairs.

I worked as fast and as quietly as I could, but it was to no avail.  Right after a scream and some mysterious thumping noises, William came upstairs and ambled into the kitchen.  I was only halfway done rolling out the dough.  “Ohhh!  Can I help you make dough, Mama?” Groan.  There was no escaping it.  Nor was there any escaping the next child, who was hot on his heels.  As they were excitedly pushing chairs up, I rolled like my life depended on it. Please just let me finish most of it before they got their hands up there.

To make a long story short, I lost a minimum of dough and ended up with some pretty decent fettuccine.

Not perfect, but good enough

While I was detangling and hanging pasta, I let the boys destroy a few sacrificial pieces of dough in the dough cutter.

Scraps take a hit for the "team"

I breathed a sigh of relief.  Dad can do the chicken parmigiana!

And to properly celebrate his newly shortened commute, I’m doing my dirty cheater Breakfast for Lazy Misers for tomorrow morning.  This one is compliments of a frozen bag of precooked hot Italian turkey sausage, a half package of mushrooms, an onion, a bar of cheddar, 1/3 loaf of white bread, some milk, and the last four eggs in the fridge.  Oh…and a bottle of champagne we have in the fridge for emergencies.  What’s brunch without mimosas?

We’ll go to the grocery store tomorrow.  After all, we need to eat something other than pasta this weekend!

In the meantime, foraging and some scraps of dough save the day.  Happy Friday to all!

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One Response to “Digging for Dough Scraps”

  1. Allison at Motherhood, WTF? April 7, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

    You are more patient than I am. Cooking with the kids is something I do as an activity. It is a totally separate type of event than cooking a weeknight dinner. Never the two shall mix.

    That said, I have warm fuzzy memories of making homemade pasta with my mom. My kids will have no such memories.

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