Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Chicken Afraid-of

Hubby to assembled family at lunch yesterday: "From now on no more eating at the restaurant. We are only going to eat at home." Stares of surprise greeted this unexpected announcement. You see, we own the restaurant and usually eat there twice a day.

ME: "But, Sweetie, You were the one who insisted that we eat only from the restaurant. You said you didn't want the expense or bother of keeping two kitchens supplied. Besides, we're quality control. We give you important feedback about the quality and taste of the food."

Hubby: We've grown lazy. We need to start doing our own cooking again."
End of discussion, the MAN had spoken.

The girls were supposed to have company later that day, but were napping since they had jet lag/nocturnalitis. So I tried the two things I always do when faced with company. 1) Boil chicken 2) try to bake. The oven wasn't working so I couldn't bake. The chicken was boiled and forgotten since the girls woke from their naps and cancelled the girlie luncheon. Later I realized I was responsible for dinner. I remembered the chicken. I picked it off the bone and asked the family which they wanted chicken sandwich spread or pasta chicken salad. "Neither," was the reply. Pot pie and casserole were mentioned, but ingredients were lacking. "How'bout I cook 'chicken fwrikazee' and we invite Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd?"

Undaunted, I swung into option 3- chicken soup. I didn't have a plan, but thought of something creamy with milk and cheese and pasta. I threw it all into the pot of broth, added some spices and ta-da soup. (or something souplike but very chunky and thick) I went down stairs to announce dinner to the family. While I was trying to explain what I was serving when the phone rang. It was the restaurant manager calling Siraj. He talked a few minutes in Urdu, hung up and announced with a completely straight face, "Liaqat (the manager) has invited us to dinner at the restaurant. Everyone get ready, we leave in 5 minutes."

I sat there with a confused look on my face, "Our own manager is inviting us to dinner at our own restaurant? That's strange!"

Owl, who was thinking quicker, announced, "That's just Dad's way of saying he doesn't want to eat your chicken soupish thing." I was shocked, but realized she was completely right. Here sat the same man who just a few hours ago announced "no more eating at the restaurant" with a sheepish grin on his face.

We went out for dinner. Siraj had overly salted keema, it took all three of us ladies to convince him of that, and the girls had chicken burgers to which the staff had added ginger. So there. And BTW, I renamed the soupish thing Chicken Alfredo and it was delicious!!!


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