In the past few weeks I have become acutely aware of the awesomeness of my SIL's cooking skills. She roasts chickens, makes stock, rolls her own meatballs, stews beats, and has recently perfected her iced coffee recipe. She lovingly and conscientiously prepares meals for the baby, who is starting to eat solids. She'll even make another serving of yogurt (with flax see oil and fresh organic fruits) for me -- so lucky!
So I am a bit intimidated with my cooking duties for this evening. First of all, this is the first family dinner I've been able to attend for a month or so, and my cooking skills feel rusty and inadequate. Plus, I won't be able to go to market until after work, which means this will have to be a quick meal.
I ended up making Mabo Ramen.
I substituted ground chicken for pork, and added kinoko mushrooms and minced shiitake, potatoes, and water chestnuts, along with the tofu. Oh, and I used two packets of Mabo sauce (it was a meal for eight). Heated up some chicken broth, and added just one ladle to each bowl to keep the mabo sauce from getting too soupy. Then fried up some on choy with garlic and salt. Added sesame oil and it was delicious! My family enjoyed it, too, to the tune of no leftovers!
For drinks we had mojitos made with cocunut rum because we couldn't find any of the regular stuff. Mint + coconut didn't sound like a good combination, but tasted good! My brothers are good improvisors when it comes to the bar.
[cocunut rum mojito]
The next time I make this dish I'll have to document it, it's definitely one to add to my repertoire!