Mush.

I haven’t blogged in a long time, for many different reasons. I had a stretch in early June of all occupied nights: I taught twice a week at night, which involved me stuffing dinner down my throat and my kids’ throats before 5pm and running out the door, leaving a serving for the babysitter and my husband (not together, that would be creepy). That mean a lot of paninis and a lot of salads. The other nights we had baseball, which is pretty much the same thing, minus the babysitter.

But that is all over now, and I am in the easy days of a professorial summer. Summer off is the best perk of my job, which is saying a lot since I get free, convenient Fenway parking, have no dress code, get 10% off all Apple products, and our Dean just installed a fancy new free latte machine. So you would think that I would be cooking glorious dinner with all my free time. Well, I was for a bit, but then came the gum graft.

It is actually my second gum graft. If you haven’t had the joy of having this particular procedure, let me assure you it sucks in every way possible. I have given birth to two large babies, one with no drugs at all, and I would rather do that twice, in a row, standing on my head, than have a gum graft. And no Mom, it is not because of poor dental hygiene. To the contrary, I brushed too much. Seriously.

That was last week. I am still eating mush. This may be the worst of the whole thing, because you know I love food, and being inhibited stinks. I definitely test the limits of my chewing ability, and then pay the price in pain. So we have had a lot of soft foods, or things that are cut into small pieces.

Tonight, we had risotto. I actually love risotto, and I must humbly state that I make it well. It isn’t that complicated, so I don’t know why everyone turns it into mush. Yes, I need mush because of my mouth, but generally risotto should be al dente. Just make sure you saute the rice in olive oil first, then add the liquid a little at a time. Once it is all cooked you can add the cheese. I don’t do the cream, don’t need it.

Here is why I love risotto:
1. I can eat it with 1274 stitches and a plaster cast in my mouth.
2. You make the entire meal in one pot. One pot to wash!
3. You can add whatever you want and it is always good. It works for vegetarians and carnivores alike. Seafood is great as well. Tonight we had leeks, asparagus, and fresh herbs. I have no idea why I chose these things. It tasted really good.
4. Rice is rarely intimidating for children, so they will eat it, even if they pick around the asparagus.
5. It takes about 30 minutes to cook. It could be more if you include roasted vegetables or meats. But if you go low maintenance, like I did tonight, you can have dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes. And no I am not Rachael Ray. She is annoying. I am not. Well, maybe not.

Be nice, I just had gum surgery.

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