Last night we made some interesting dinner choices: braised goat stew with goat meat from a local slaughterhouse (Yes! We have one.) and, as a rite of passage for my 17 year-old who is now visiting colleges for the fall, Twinkies.
C’mon! Neither she nor her younger sister had ever eaten a Twinkie! These repugnant paragons of putrescent junk food must be experienced to be believed.Besides which, what college freshman hasn’t eaten a Twinkie? That’s like having never eaten Cheese Doodles or Doritos! It’s just not natural, I tell ya.
Certain junk food is part of pop culture and so, I felt it was my duty to expose them to the Twinkie in a safe environment. After all, one won’t kill them. Unless, of course, eating it gives them an insatiable desire for more and more cakey junk foods: Ring Dings, Ding Dongs, Devil Dogs, Funny Bones, and my personal favorites, Suzy-Qs (even thinking about those puts me into a kind-of-dreamlike, plummeting-blood-sugar lethargy)!The list is almost endless.
With only one and a half of the plastic-y, chemical-filled spongy golden cakes eaten by the three others at my table (Twinkies, as you might imagine, are not on the Whole 30), I can happily state that they are unlikely to become a gateway snack cake for my children. I should note, however, that Stephen gleefully scarfed the remaining three quarters of my older daughter’s Twinkie remnants and that we weren’t sure in which recycle bin* to put the remaining half-a-Twinkie.
But this planned experimental foray into junk food came only after the well-balanced, paleo-friendly braised goat stew. You may recall that Stephen and I had the best braised goat at the Liberty Hotel in Boston a few months ago.Well, this wasn’t it, but it was, nonetheless, incredibly rich and yummy as the fat from the goat seamlessly emulsified into the tasty broth rather than float in an unpalatable layer. The heartiness and warmth of the stew were perfect foils to the cold rainy night and appreciated by all diners.Most importantly, Stephen and I made it together.And by together I mean he designed, washed, chopped, poured, seasoned, orchestrated, and timed the stew—and he let me stir.Oh, not the whole time. He let me stir only when he was busy doing one of those other things.
On the few rare occasions when he actually stopped by my station to watch me stir, my keen eye could not help but detect his stirring hand moving in sympathy, or more likely, frustration that I wasn’t doing it exactly his way.I didn’t really need to stir the stew, I just wanted to be with him and he doesn’t trust me around his knives. Okay. Truth be told, I like to stir just to watch him sweat the small stuff a little bit. Is that so wrong?
Knowing full well that I am not drinking wine for at least another five (!) days, he got me back for my delight in his frustration by opening a bottle of fabulous-smellingChilean wine to have with the stew. Too bad that the deep, dark wine with its very strong cassis and chocolate notes didn’t pair quite right with the bright, savory stew.Yeah. I was all broken up about that.
With some good fun in the kitchen and at the table, our rather unorthodox recipe for family dinner continues to delight.
*More on our new gaming system, 7 Bins of Expire, to come at some later date, but by no means before the time I have stopped spitting.