My first stir-fry experience came with my first job: I was a stir-fry cook for my university’s dining hall.
It was no glamorous gig; in fact, since I received nothing but a wok and a perforated plastic cooking spoon when I started and barely knew how to cook anything then, it was tough.
My first few stir-frys were guesses: I remember balancing soupy creations on students’ trays or giving them back a bowl of still-raw veggies with just a tad of teriyaki sauce. Though the students’ faces varied in degrees of revolt at the sight, each time one thing was certain: The pan scrubbers in the back were constantly mad at me for blackening their pans to the point of no return.
Whether you are a single mom by choice or other circumstances, being a single mom with a baby has specific challenges quite different from that of single moms with children that have matured past diapers. I know the difference very well as I have experienced both situations.
I was divorced almost 5 years ago when my children were 10, 7, and 4; they are currently 15, 12, and 9 but now I also have a 16-month-old. The baby was the result of an unexpected pregnancy (we used birth control) which I discovered shortly after the year-long relationship I had with her father ended. He did not want a child or to be involved in any way so the relationship remained over and I had my fourth child as a single mom. Having the baby was my choice, but as a single mom was not what I had hoped for. Regardless, I know the reality of being a single mom from the very beginning of my child’s existence, an experience not all single moms have.
Going through a pregnancy, birth, and the first 16 months of my daughter’s life without her father’s involvement is very different from my experience with my other three children. I know all too well what it was like to be able to share those experiences with the person I loved and created a child with, and what it’s like not to. I think most women would agree with me when I say the former is the ideal and also our preference, but we don’t always have that choice.
Wine is a social drink which should be enjoyed in the company of friends and .. food.
The right combination between food and wine is a source of ultimate bliss for every connoisseur. Both wine and food can benefit from the right pairing. The right wine can accentuate unexpected gastronomical aspects of food and vice versa, wine can shine in a new light when accompanied by the right dish. In order to savor the splendor of such combinations, one does not need to frequent expensive restaurants and buy overpriced wines. Rather, when combining food and wine it is one’s intuition and curiosity that are of paramount importance.
Most rules for agreeable food – wine combinations date back to the 19th century and are made by French cooks who travel around Europe showing other nations the French savoir-vivre. It is since then that we know that champagne goes well with oysters, white wine – with seafood, and red wine – with game and red meats. Those rules, however, have been broken many times throughout the years because the nature of certain dishes and the rich wine variety available allow for a much freer interpretation. For example, some red meats could be made more enjoyable by stronger white wines.
The two main advantages of crockpot cooking are that they:
- Save Time
- Save Money
Crockpot cooking for me is synonymous with time-saver. We each have different phases of life and this season is definitely my crockpot phase — maybe out of desperation. No matter what stage we’re in though, crockpot cooking can always be a benefit.
Here’s a scenario: It’s five o’clock and you’ve finally finished helping with the homework with two of your children, and then your third child returns from piano — ready to start homework — and has a question about algebra. Soccer practice starts in exactly one hour. And not to mention that you’ve got three loads of laundry spewed across your bed and ready to be folded. The phone rings — a reminder to bring snacks to soccer practice, it’s your turn. The kids are hungry, hubby will be home in thirty minutes. Do you make that call? “Honey, could you bring home In & Out again, the usual?” Or do you simply whip up a salad to go with your chicken cacciatore that’s been cooking slowly and succulently in your crockpot all day. This truly is my life and I’m working towards the latter scenario becoming a more prevalent one.