Slow cooking in seven minutes

Once upon a time I was really very interested in the slow movement. Slow food, sustainable practises to look after the earth, smelling the roses, child-led home learning, walking instead of driving, cloth nappies and food cooked from scratch. I stopped short of a few fascinating innovations like hayboxes, but I was all for it. As I dug up lawn to turn it into vege garden, washed cloth nappies and tried out home made cleaners, I assumed that I (and my household) was moving in a forward, progressive, somewhat linear fashion towards a slower and greener life.

But in the midst of these things I enjoyed pursuing, I liked my job. The one I had before Fionn and in between Fionn and Brighid. The one I chose to go back to very part time when Brighid was a year old and the one I am doing more of this year. The one I still like.

Which has something to do with the shift in the way we live. Today's finest achievement:

2.35pm: leave work and head to supermarket. See free range chicken products (whole chickens, breasts, drumsticks) on special and pile a few meals' worth in the trolley. Peruse the packet ready meals and find I still can't bring myself to buy them or at least see one that fits my time frame for today. Grab kumara and other items and collect money via eftpos to pay for the children's school stationery order.

2.45pm: arrive home. Turn oven on 150 celsius, oil a casserole dish and pile two bags of chicken drumsticks in it. Peel and slice a large kumara and a large onion and add to pot. Open cupboard and look around for spices. Any spices, though maybe not the sweetish mixed spice. Find unopened jar of red thai curry paste and add to pot with a can of coconut cream. Put lid on a put in oven.

2.52pm: grab stationery order and money and walk to school. Arrive to collect tired but happy daughter and tired but unhappy son (try eating your sandwiches at lunchtime my darling child) and pay for stationery.

3.14pm: Back home. Feed children and watch them magically perk up. Listen to school stories while I add some cornflour and water mix to the casserole.

3.25pm: Drop children with Robyn our beloved childminder.

3.30pm: At work for meeting.

4.45pm: Collect husband.

4.55pm: Collect children. Delays there for work related discussions.

5.25pm: Home. Dinner on table within five minutes, with chopped cucumber, red pepper and cherry tomatoes replacing earlier plans for cooked greens due to time constraints.

Verdict: It's a winner, a seven minute wonder worth repeating. I might go back and buy the rest of the chicken drumsticks tomorrow. Once upon a time I swore off supermarket chicken, repulsed by its mass produced and unlovely origins in industrial barns. Once upon a time was a long time ago.


Anonymous said…
What strikes me is you can get from work to the supermarket to home in ten minutes! From our lovely spot in suburbia we cannot get TO a supermarket in under ten minutes, make that twenty if you want to get to the cheap Pak-n-Save. Hubby's work is 20 minutes on a bike (40 in the car which is why he rides) in a small time leaves you time for living instead of moving!

And you know what? Your dinner may not have taken many preparing minutes, but it was a slow-cooked meal all the same.

I think you're achieving more of your old ideals than you realise - and still enjoying your job too!

~ Rachael
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