Monday, July 9, 2012

$141, belated honeymoon, tomato salad

There were three different trips for food this week.
  1. In the intense heat, I made a trip to a grocery store (yes, a store) to buy grapes, tortillas, and other cool-lunch items for the boys and me ($28).  Do I feel like a cheater for buying non-local foods?  Yes, I do.  There you have it:  cheater food.  
  2. Then my son and I went to Market to buy watermelons, which were really thank-you gifts for their tennis teachers ($22) -- perhaps the good deed sort of cancels out the fact that we've strayed from the True Food Path.  
  3. And my husband bought cereal and soap ($20).  
This brings the 19-week grocery average to $141/week.

The upcoming week is likely to be unusual.  My three sons are spending the week about 5 hours from here, crashing around at my sister's home.  My husband and I are alone for a week.  We'll both do a lot of work (in fact, most days he'll do his 1.5-hour commute to work,while I do my 10-minute walk to my office).  But we'll have several evenings together, and we're celebrating those evenings by splurging on restaurants.  We're going to (as I tell my sons) hold hands and make googly eyes at each other to the point that we embarrass our server.  Last night, I told my husband, "we're on our honeymoon."

We seldom eat out.  I, for one, get twitchy at the idea of going to a restaurant or even ordering take-out just for the sake of "convenience" -- I find that eating out is more expensive both in terms of money and (surprisingly) in terms of time.  But eating at a uber-fancy restaurant as a way of occasional celebration, I will do that.  Only on occasion, though.

This week feels like an occasion.  A second honeymoon, 15 years and 7 kids later.  A week spent mostly together, mostly with no kids, in the middle of a summer in which we're often separate from one another and mostly surrounded by our sons.   Fancy dinners seem to be in order for this week.  We'll return to home-cooking soon enough.

In the meanwhile, tomatoes are starting to arrive.  Here is one of my favorite summer recipes.  I always wing the quantities, so I can't even pretend to name measurements.  But it's always turned out great.

Tomato Salad
  • Tomatoes, diced
  • red wine or balsamic vinegar
  • olive oil
  • basil, but of course
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped walnuts or pecans.
Mix everything but the tomatoes together first, then add the tomatoes.  Serve cold or at room temperature.  

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