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Cookin’ It Up

July 29, 2011

It all started when my husband, TKP, after another sumptuous dinner, casually asked what would be for lunch the next day. You see, I have been helping his mom prepare meals in the kitchen. It is apparently the most prudent to do when you are the only two women in the house. So when the clock strikes an hour before lunchtime, I am off to the kitchen where the elaborate preparations are done. I am fortunate to have inserted a Good Housekeeping recipe book in one of my boxes before sending them to Fed Ex when I relocated. I gamely flashed the same book to my husband.


Mom-in-law (let’s call her J)  digged in. That started our quest for what was lunch the next day.

The ladies (I and J) picked “Pork Roulade” when we noticed that it needs pesto sauce for its preparation. We had pesto sauce for the pasta dinner, and we had some leftover.


At 10:30 in the morning of the next day, we started our cooking adventure together. Again, I am referring to myself and  J because TKP works and barely has time for this chore on a regular working day.


          First, J cut the pork.

         Then I “punched” each slice to create shallow slits  on the meat to ensure          absorption of the marinade.


Then, I applied the marinade of herbs, pepper and lemon juice. The two bowls of pork cutlets were then put in the fridge.


After 40 minutes, more or less, we took the bowls out and brushed a teaspoon of pesto sauce on one side of each piece. The pesto sauce is made up of blended fresh basil leaves, garlic bulb (both from J’s garden), Parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt and pepper.


Next, we put 2 strips of bacon, rolled the cutlet and secured the edge with a toothpick.


Before searing it on high heat in a saute pan, J rolled each piece on white flour.


For the pork sauce, we followed the instructions in the recipe book. We heated 30 grams of butter and 1 tablespoon flour over low heat. After that, we added 1/2 cup of red wine and a cup of beef stock, and let the sauce simmer until J was satisfied of its consistency.



While J let me do the pork roulade, she boiled medium-sized potatoes.  When they were cooked, we peeled them and cut them in half. J then arranged them in a heated dish tray from the oven with butter underneath and over the top.


Then it was time to prepare the lettuce salad.  Since my arrival here, J has let me do the salads. It is no sweat really as I only have to pick one head lettuce from her garden (sometimes, she pre-picks them), separate each leaf and wash them carefully with running water, drain and put them in a bowl (cut them by hand and eliminate the not-so-good portions, if necessary). J has pre-prepared salad dressing in a bottle, so I just pour it over the lettuce salad bowl. This was what I did, and eureka, we had our lettuce salad for lunch.


J makes tea every day from mint or linden leaves in the garden. We had 2 pitchers on that day. TKP and I like to mix blue Rivella (it’s a popular soft drink brand in Switzerland produced from milk whey) with J’s tea.

And for dessert (well, one thing I learned in my more than a month stay here: you have to leave some space in your stomach for dessert :-)), we had grapes from the grocery store.


That was our lunch one summer day here. It seems like this Good Housekeeping cookbook and I will be good companions. Along with J, of course.

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