September 28, 2015

One Perfect Day-And Asiago Bisque

Here is the truth of it; there is no such thing as perfection.  Even those magazine worthy homes that you see on the Internet and on blogs and Facebook are probably hiding a take out dinner problem or an over grown yard or a car that has been condemned by the county. And even though we all know that perfection is a myth, we’re all fighting for it.  It’s always  on the tips of our tongue. We want perfect family portraits and a perfectly styled living room and perfectly wrapped presents under perfectly imperfect trees.  We want to turn perfect faces to the world while kicking sand over our little piles of insecurities.

And, even people who eschew the idea of  traditional perfection are still striving for their own version of perfection.  It exists for them, too, just differently.  I’ve spent the vast majority of my married life striving towards some nebulous idea of perfection. Honestly, I’m not sure what that will look like, but I can tell you that I know it’s possible.

DSC_0321And it can happen on any old Saturday. Big Daddy was out of town last week.  It was just for a few days and shouldn’t have been a big deal, but our family has settled into some sort of chaos for the last year and it’s just making it harder to be and do everything.  We’re working on it, of course, because what else can we do? I spent the week frustrated. I spent the week running after the puppy and it seemed like as soon as I managed to get one mess cleaned up, he was making the same mess again.  By the time Friday night rolled around I was pretty sure I would burst into tears as soon as I saw Big Daddy’s face. But, I held it together. Saturday dawned with a laundry list of things to do.  You know the routine; errands to run, a trip to the grocery store, a big household chore (we needed to clean out the garage).  Nothing exceptional or out of the ordinary. After we finished the garage and Big Daddy threw the ball around with the girls, we came in the house.  I turned on A Prairie Home Companion and sent myself to the kitchen to chop veggies for dinner. I had fresh bread baking in the oven and Juno waited at my feet to see if I dropped any tidbits (I did). In the afternoon light, as I dropped the veggies into the pot, I realized I’d just managed to have a perfect day. It was peaceful. Productive. I felt at ease with Big Daddy and the girls and the puppy.   I had that happy, warm feeling in my chest.  We ate dinner in fresh baked bread bowls while Garrison Keillor warbled in the background.  The dogs behaved. We played three games of cards and no one fought or cried.  I got an eighth grade slow dance to Etta James.  Littlebit laid on the couch and read while the “mellow” playlist played on Spotify, her feet dancing in the air in time to the music. DSC_0325

Nothing had changed, of course.  Isn’t that the way it always goes? The garage was dirty and gross and the kids argued, a little, over who was going to unload the grocery cart and I woke up even before my weekday alarm, but something had shifted and all the little imperfections of an ordinary day turned into something perfect.

THe house isn’t magazine worthy.  In fact, as I type there’s a pile of carrot peelings and potato ends that need to find their way into the garbage can. Bread crumbs litter the dining room table.  Someone keep throwing their empty juice boxes onto the floor.  The bedroom is over run with laundry. There’s tape on the dining room walls from Littlebit’s birthday party. The stinkbugs are back.

But it’s perfect anyhow.

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The dinner featured above is Asiago Bisque from Chef in Training.  It was pretty good and ended up being kind of heavenly in bread bowls.  It really soaked into the bread and that wasn’t at all disappointing.   The next time I make it, I’m going to add garlic.  It just felt like it was missing it.

If you want to make fresh baked bread bowls, frozen Rhodes white bread loaves are your friends.  I halve the loaves, let the rise and then back according to package directions.  They’re just the right size to fill up a bowl and your belly.

 

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