Mexican, um, Spaghetti?
Yesterday was a day I’d rather not repeat. It began with me knocking into a blown glass ornament on the tree, which dropped to the ground and exploded spraying shards of red, shiny, yuletide, shrapnel on the carpet and between the bevelled cracks of the wooden floor. (Merry Christmas!) Then my son was deferred from his hoity toity college of choice (stick it, Harvard!) And finally, I bashed into a display full of bloody Rudolf videos with the nose of my shopping cart, sending reindeer flying hither, thither, and yon.
There was one bright note to the day, however. Not wanting to cause further harm to anything or anyone, I decided to stay put and to play “Chopped” in the comfort of my own home when it came time to make dinner: “Chopped” as in the HGTV show where they give contestants a basket of four disgusting ingredients like dragon fruit, bull testicles, 1,ooo-year-old eggs, and Hostess Ho Hos and tell them to make a scrumptious meal out of the lot.
I have to admit, I went a little easier on myself. Well, quite a lot easier, actually. Basically I had meatballs and pasta to play with, but I felt like something Mexican. So, gathering odds and ends “from the pantry and fridge”, I made “Mexican Spaghetti.” Yeah, I know, I didn’t think it was “a thing” either. Perhaps it wasn’t, but it certainly became one last night. I sautéed onions and garlic, mixed in some chili powder, cumin, and a dry packet of Spicy Ranch dressing mix and built on those flavors with tomato sauce, whole tomatoes, canned diced green chilies, frozen corn, white chili beans, a little salsa, and a can of Ro-Tel tomatoes with hot chilies. When the sauce was ready, I plopped in the meatballs to warm up and soak up some of the sauce, and then tossed in the cooked pasta. Instead of parmesan, we sprinkled the whole mixture with shredded cheddar.
You know what? It was muy bueno. Ted Allen would have been mighty proud.
Now let’s see, what will I do with my imaginary $10,000 cash payout? . . .