The Uninspired Plate


That’s not a very inspiring post title, is it? That’s how I’ve been feeling about dinners around here lately. It’s mostly just me and Morgan, and Morgan’s tastes run to the very particular. Read = boring. I make a lot of homemade pizzas, burritos, and paninis. She’s perfectly happy with this state of affairs and I’m bored. I entertain myself with pies, cakes, breads, and lately, a lot of ice creams. With fresh cream in the house, I’ve made some delicious ice creams–butter pecan, banana, Heath Bar crunch–and as long as there’s some chocolate in the freezer, Morgan is satisfied. It’s a little more difficult to make separate dinners, thus a lot of boring dinners. Other than the fact that she likes a lot of jalapenos, cooking for Morgan is like cooking for a picky five-year-old. I’d kinda lost my dinner mojo until I had some good food recently that reminded me what good food is–interesting.

I enter into evidence the following two dishes.

Crab-stuffed venison backstrap wrapped in bacon.
Fried whole trout.
I didn’t prepare either one of those dishes, which is almost the best part. Okay, it is the best part. Though they were also pretty delicious. After having written a thorough diatribe about not dating a couple of months ago, and in the interest of not hiding behind the barn, I’ll confess that I’ve been dating recently. Don’t you like a man who can cook? Please don’t anticipate any further details. I really do have a private personal life, even if it doesn’t seem like it!

After a few interesting meals, it seems more difficult to make yet another boring pepperoni and jalapeno pizza for Morgan, even if homemade pizza is awfully good. While inspired food is partly about more interesting ingredients, it’s also about more interesting preparation. I think I will look back on 2012 as the Year of Boring Food. Even when cooking for a picky five-year-old, meals don’t have to be ho hum. I promised myself I’d make a little more effort in 2013. Last night’s results:
Morgan likes quesadillas, and usually I let her make them. When I make them, it involves a little more trouble. Homemade thick and chewy tortillas (recipe here).
Homemade cheese, with some chopped romaine, some tomato sauce (in this case, Emeril’s, have none of my own in the pantry), jalapenos to keep Morgan happy, and some sausage.
Top it with another tortilla, wrap individually in foil, heat till the cheese is hot and melty, slice.

That looks good, doesn’t it? It was still on the boring side in some ways, but kicked up a notch by just going to a little extra trouble. Life is too short to eat macaroni and cheese. Unless it’s homemade (recipe here).

Like how I threw something juicy in the middle of this post? YOU NEVER KNOW WHAT’S GONNA HAPPEN AROUND HERE. Don’t be skippin’ any posts….

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Posted by Suzanne McMinn on January 15, 2013  

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42 Responses | RSS feed for comments on this post

  1. 1-15

    Well good for you! May he court you in the way you deserve! That venison looks amazing!

  2. 1-15

    I’m in the same rut with my kids and dinners..thanks for reminding me to spice things up in the kitchen..and out of the kitchen! Good for you, have fun!

  3. 1-15

    Well haha to me–I seldom read the cooking section……cause in a list of 100 things to do- I’d rather clean the chicken barn or muck stalls then cook!! But I caught that little nibble of a tasty treat you dropped!! I too agree a woman does not need a man in her life….. but someone too laugh with is my best reason for having one around……. chore help is the big second!!!
    Continue to enjoy your life Suzanne!!
    Fondly, Rain :)
    :woof: :heart:

  4. 1-15

    P.S. I meant the :heart: from us to you!!

  5. 1-15

    Never. I read them all – sometimes twice! Glad for you that you’re having fun, but don’t be afraid to share.. we all know who it is anyway;)

  6. 1-15

    Jane, it’s not a neighbor friend, hired man friend, farmer friend, or male friend I’ve ever posted about, so everybody please leave them alone, LOL.

  7. 1-15

    :) Your post inspired me and made me smile.

  8. 1-15

    Good on ya!! :D

  9. 1-15

    Dang,,,,that fish,,,looked so good! I wish I could get my men to eat fish,,,(fish makes their toes curl up) lol,,,,me however,,,well I did not get as big as I am being a picky eater! hee hee,,,,and you go girl,,,glad for you! your life is just that,,,your life! enjoy yourself!have fun, run naked thru the trees,,,(wait till it warms up for that run though)BRRRRR,,,everyone deserves to be content and happy! and from all I have read,,,girl you sure do!!!!MUAHHHHH

  10. 1-15

    I wouldn’t dream of skipping any posts. Your blog is part of my morning routine. When I get up, I saunter into the kitchen, make my coffee in the French press. I sit down in my armchair with my coffee and iPad , and click on your blog. And I often revisit previous posts.
    I’m so grateful that you share as much of yourself as you do.with the rest of us. You are certainly entitled to keep very personal things private. I wish you the very best in your personal life!

  11. 1-15

    This is a silly question I know. But WHY do people leave the head on a fish when they cook it?
    Aside from ‘halibut cheeks’, I know of any good use for it unless making a fish broth. Really, I am serious. Maybe this aversion goes back to when I was in Libya maybe 30-35 years ago and found a sheep’s eyeball in my Couscous.

  12. 1-15

    Oh you little sneak!!! There is nothing wrong with having someone to share life’s little pleasures.You deserve it. You are to young to spend your life alone. You go girl~~~Just don’t ask me who I am dating~NOT. That is OK I have my memories.I NEVER MISS A POST..

  13. 1-15

    By the way~shoud’nt you get a smack on the palm of your hands with a ruler? Did you or did you not start a new subject without starting a new paragraph?

  14. 1-15

    Words of wisdom about dating: Don’t let a man have a key to your door or let him leave his boots under your bed.

    That is all.

  15. 1-15


  16. 1-15

    I just can’t control my fingers this morning.That should be “Shouldn’t”

  17. 1-15

    Fish head – blech. Sheep eyeball – double blech.
    Okay on that last one I now need to scrub the vision from my head. That’s just totally gross.

  18. 1-15

    Your quesadilla look good. I know people that talk about how good they are and so one day I made some. I put some meat, cheese, and refried beans and cooked them on the griddle. Dry and Boring. Never tried them again, after seeing your I am going to give it another shot. Adding lettuce, jalapino, and hot sauce should do the trick. Never thought of wrapping it in foil and heating it.

    Glad to hear your dating, and yes I think it should stay personal, if that is what you want. Sometimes I think the internet can get too personal.

  19. 1-15

    Not only did someone else cook for you. . . that someone allowed you to take pix of the food.
    We appreciate any of your life you wish to share with us. . . and (I hope) we all respect the parts that you do not wish to share.

  20. 1-15

    I am not surprised at all about the dating!!!

    You should be. Enough said. Enjoy.

  21. 1-15

    Suzanne, you make me laugh. I loved the surprise in the middle, but I’m happy you are making those small steps into the dating world again. You deserve someone you can have fun with, as well as making you tasty meals. Hopefully he will make you as happy as you make others.

  22. 1-15

    Hi, Suzanne…1st timer. I was so excited when I ran across your blog a year ago, and I went nuts going through your archives catching up on your farm life, great ideas and recipes. I enjoy canning, gardening…well, that whole “homemade life” kind of thing, so your blog really resonated with me. I love your recipes and those shared by others. Great stuff! :-) I’m going to be trying your Quesadilla, but I’d like to know if your friend would mind sharing that recipe for the stuffed venison backstrap? I have some in my freezer, and I’d love to try something new. One last thing. So much of “you” comes through in your blog…you deserve a very rich, happy, fun-filled private life. Blessings & Enjoy. :-)

  23. 1-15

    Ahhhhhheeee Suzanne,we told you that man on the elevator at the library was not who you thought he was…..
    run. run away very fast. He plans on stealing all your recipes and passing them off as his own….

  24. 1-15

    Re the recipe for the venison backstrap–it was simple, but delicious! Chopped peppers (various) with some crab. Slice open the backstrap, stuff with the peppers and crab. Wrap with bacon using toothpicks to hold in place while cooking. I didn’t notice what temperature or how long it was roasted, but you can figure that part out! Was roasted in an iron skillet.

  25. 1-15

    Both of my sons cook for their ladies…and the ladies think its HOT. You go girl!

  26. 1-15

    Glad you found someone to date and get to know. Yes, I almost missed a Georgia post by deciding not to read a cooking post until about a wk later! lol :wave:

  27. 1-15

    Thanks, Suzanne! Guess what’s for dinner tomorrow night. :)

  28. 1-15

    Ha! Like a moth to the flame….

  29. 1-15

    I never miss a post! What a little surprise tucked in this one – I’m happy for you! Have fun!!! :snoopy:

  30. 1-15

    Oh, I know EXACTLY what you’re talking about when you say boring cooking!!! Its just the two of us as well, and I am so tired of cooking!! DH will eat just about anything I cook, so that’s not the problem, just the figuring out what to cook and doing it EVERY.DAY.

    Now, as for that personal life. I’m happy you have one, and the details are none of my business.

  31. 1-15

    Me again. I once sent a fish back to the kitchen in a posh restaurant in Los Angeles to have the head removed from it!! Could NOT face those eyeballs on the plate in front of me.

  32. 1-15

    Sometimes I’ll read a blog post where the writer talks about how they can eat the same three things for weeks if not months on end. That they get into a food rut and kind of like it that way. Kind of like people who can watch the same DVD over and over again. I am SO not one of those people. And how is it with all the baking and ice cream and cheese that you don’t weigh 250 lbs? LOL. You must have a great metabolism. I don’t make a lot of your recipes simply because I can’t eat that way without gaining weight, almost instantly. So it’s more salad and vegetable soup for me. Oh, and by the way, here’s to having a personal life!

  33. 1-15

    Good for you for having part of your life that you do not write about.

    Ah, that I had a friend who brought over venison. No sons to hunt, no papa anymore to provide, no man in my life at all. 8)

  34. 1-15

    Ha! I figured it was only a matter of time! You go girl! Whatever makes you happy. :happyflower:

  35. 1-15

    Ha! I never miss a post. It’s my morning cup of coffee since I don’t drink coffee. :) Best of luck to you and the new man in your life. You deserve to be happy and you deserve the privacy too!

  36. 1-15

    Suzanne, you share so much! Please do keep some of your life private. I’m so amazed that you shared the kids with us. I think of you as my farmer-mom blogger and you’re my fav. Looking forward to sharing 2013 with you. PS. Post some more Georgia posts. I miss hearing about her much since you moved out of the crooked little house. Loved reading your Chevy articles. One of the Christmas lights locations is just a few miles from me… Frisco, TX. I’ll definitely check it out next year.

  37. 1-15

    Based on his menu choices I am going to assume he is a hunter and fisherman in addition to being a cook. In that case, I say marry the guy.

  38. 1-15

    I am so glad you have the opportunity to be happy and I hope he makes you happy. Please enjoy and the recipes look delicious.

  39. 1-15

    Well Jane… I’m flattered anyway. ;)

  40. 1-16

    Men who can cook… Alas, I missed that boat.

    I did force my son to make brownies this week, however.

  41. 1-16

    I love venison backstraps! I bet the bacon-wrapped, crabmeat-stuffed ones were yummy :hungry:

  42. 1-17

    I only have one question about your new “gentleman friend”….does he ride horses? If he does ride a horse I think that would make him durn near perfect! With Morgan looking towards university in a year-and-a-half you need to have a friend to share your time with. Also, if he rides, you will be much safer riding with a “buddy” than alone.

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