Monday, June 05, 2006

Avoiding the 5 PM brain drain

Last week was a particularly bad week when it came to dinner time. Every evening around 5 PM I'd realize that I had no idea what to make for dinner. By 5 PM my brain is fried--numerous keepers of little people refer to the hours from 4:30-6:30 as "the witching hours" for good reason. When trying to ascertain what is in the refrigerator, I usually have to pry my 3 year old off of where she has wrapped herself around my leg and wack the 5 year old's hands away from the chocolate milk syrup for which he is lunging. And then frustration and low blood sugar levels lead to meals that are a hodgepodge of whatever I see first and can assemble or reheat with very little thought (at best).

So this week I am taking inventory--figuring out what is in that big white appliance, digging through the freezer to find out what I've stashed away in one of my hoarding phases and coming up with a list of dinners I could make. Then I can add any esoteric ingredients to the shopping list for the week and not be left swearing up a storm when one key element to a recipe is missing.

Being a person who sometimes gives herself a break, I do not see the following list as a "commitment" to make that dinner; instead the list acts as a defibrillator for my brain when it is flat lining.

This week's possibilities include:

Red Seasonal Salad
Pork loin cooked in milk, kale, sweet potatoes
Red lentil soup, salad, beef kofte with yogurt garlic sauce, pita
Chicken curry with potatoes, raita, rice, mango lassi

and should this week turn out to be more hellacious than I anticipate there's always the back up (a.k.a. Mama's Best Friend):
$5 pizza

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