Tuesday, May 22, 2012

She Works Hard For The Money

it is 5:30 p.m. in the holy city of zefat. i just had a visit from my son and grandson. my son is temporarily on sick leave, due to a bad back. he picked up my gandson from daycare and brought him here to see me. it was about an hour visit and it was just enough time for me.

things have really turned around for me. i have a very nice dutch lady, renting the upstairs for a few weeks. i then have a dutch couple staying downstairs for the next two weeks. i started my job cooking for a small yeshiva on sunday. i am basically, preparing vegetarian dishes for the boys. they are very into health food.

i have been slicing, dicing, chopping, peeling and grating by hand for days. i managed to make them an eggless carob cake yesterday. while i was cleaning out the pantry shelves, i found some whole wheat flour. i even found a couple of packets of baking powder. i made an eggless carrot cake for them this morning for breakfast. the 'boys' are so cute and appreciative.

so far, they love my food. i gave them boiled eggs and oatmeal on the first morning. i also put out humus and salad. they don't seem to eat bread. they only like the seven grain type and the budget apparently, doesn't allow for it. they also aren't given dairy. this limits my menu considerably. i am not afforded any perks like canned tomato paste or beans, so i have been making every morsel of food from scratch.

yesterday was very frustrating. the gas stove top was malfunctioning and i had to get all 3 meals made on one burner. i was getting really weary. i stayed there way, too long. i made a huge pot of lentil soup for supper. it took all day long to cook. i resorted to making couscous from a package, which doesn't require cooking, for lunch. i simply, poured boiling water from the electric kettle. i did cook up some carrots, zucchini, pumpkin, potatoes, tomatoes, onions and green peppers for the sauce. they loved it. it would make a great breakfast cereal, if the director allowed me to buy some cranberries and nuts.

i grated a bunch of carrots, onions, squash, and potatoes to make a kugel for their dinner. my fingers are all cut up. i left work at 4:00 p.m. and couldn't stand being there for another minute. i wanted to stay to boil up the eggs for this morning's breakfast, but i was literally, falling off my feet.

i got up really early today and left the house at 8:00 a.m. i thought if i got an early start, perhaps i could leave at an earlier hour. i caught a lift on the next street, from a driver who takes a neighbor to the seniors' center, where i volunteer. i can get to town each morning with him, now. it's a time and money saver. they also offered to pay for my carefare down at the center. they need me there on thursdays. i will go to the yeshiva and set out the breakfast, make their lunch and go back to the center until 2:00 p.m. i will then return to the yeshiva to make the supper. i can always stay later on wednesday and get a jump on the thursday meals, too.

i made oatmeal for the boys on monday. i put a pinch of cloves and a bit of sugar in it. i didn't have butter or cinnamon or even milk to play with. nevertheless, they loved it. i made sesame spaghetti for my first supper because i had limited time. i served it cold. it was basically, diced red pepper, oil, garlic and tamari sauce. it was a huge hit. i also made a rustic vegetable and barley soup. i very quickly, cut up some carrots, onions, leeks, squash, potatoes, pumpkin, tomatoes, and a lot of garlic into chunks. it was a big hit with the guys.

i'm supposed to be cooking for ten or more. i can't say for sure, if i have had the entire ten bucharim yet, in the dining area. for sure, i haven't seen any leftover food. there have been some late comers and occasional stragglers to my kitchen. i always worry about them not getting fed. today, i increased the amount of food that i prepared. i made a pot of lovely kidney bean stew. after it was cooked, i managed to knock over the pot and lost half of the stew. the boys ended up having saucy beans and rice for lunch.

it looked like i made, way too much today. i also made a vat of macaroni with eggplant and squash for dinner. i made a huge tomato and spanish onion salad, too. hopefully, the boys put away any, or all, the leftovers. they will just have to eat them again tomorow, if there is a lot left over. anyway, i am pretty good at doctoring food to create a new dish. i am trying to spoil them but i won't waste food. i pretty much, used up all of the produce already, in just 3 days. that's what you get when you don't buy tomato paste, baby!

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