Tips on Being a Domestic Goddess

Tuesdays are the day I embrace my inner domestic goddess. Embrace might be too generous a word. So too would be domestic goddess.

Tuesdays are really a drudgery day. The day when I vacuum. Mop the floors. Dust. Etc. Once a month, I try to iron. Sometimes I throw some real domestic goddess activities into the mix, such as stitching up a new chair cushion, complete with cording. Or play around with vegetarian recipe that doesn’t rely on fat and sugar for flavor.

Heavens, I’d make a great wife.

Right … Did that once. Wasn’t all that great at it. The whole women can have it all – work, mother, take care of the house, wife – just didn’t pan out. For me, too many balls kept getting dropped. Panic attacks popped up unexpectedly. I pretty much felt like a failure at everything.

Start your day with a walk to appreciate all of nature’s beauty. It somehow makes cleaning up the mud tracked in by the dog a little better.

That’s in the past. I made a few changes along the way. Still a mother. My work is a, well, work in progress. No longer a wife.

Alas, the take care of the house piece remains. It’s a much smaller house, a condo with half the square footage of my prior residence. The wonderful Dawn, friend and house cleaner extraordinaire, retired. Because I am developing a business instead of working full time, I clean now.

One adult, one teen girl, and one large dog all contribute to the clutter, mud, spills, and dust that manage to settle into the space each week.

Why Tuesday? Because I’ve tried Saturdays – and that just ruined the weekend. Over the past year, I’ve settled into Tuesdays, in part because if I don’t get it done, there’s always Wednesday or Thursday, or next week.

So today, a Tuesday, I am sharing 5 goddess tips:

  1. Don’t drink too much coffee before you clean the toilets. Nothing worse than getting a toilet all nice and clean, complete with blue bowl, and then you have to pee in it.
  2. If you are looking to entertain yourself and have pets, try some lemon Pledge on the dust mop on the wood floors. Then I let in the dog, an 85-pound mixed breed, who slides from front door straight to the back, complete with mud path, which is so much easier to wipe up courtesy of that Pledge shine.
  3. Keep a microfiber cloth and bathroom cleaner in the shower. Kills two birds with one stone if you can wipe down the bath after you shower.
  4. Magic Erasers are a gift to the domestic goddess. They clean white sinks like nobody’s business, not to mention finger marks on doors and walls.
  5. I’m all for the environment, but a glug or two of bleach in the toilet about an hour before you clean it makes all the difference in the world.
    Bonus tip: Send your kid over to the neighbor’s house after school so you can bask in the cleanliness for an hour or so.

Oh, and don’t expect dinner tonight. I just cleaned the kitchen.

However, there is some leftover Cowboy Caviar (bean salad) in the fridge from yesterday. The goddess is going to surrender her toilet wand and kick back with some well-deserved Netflix.

Ta-ta

Marnie

Marnie@meadballs.com

Print Recipe
Day of the Domestic Goddess
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, stevia, lemon and lime juices, cider vinegar, chili powder, and salt. Add tomatoes, black-eyed peas, beans, corn, red onion, and bell peppers. Stir to combine. Stir in cilantro. Cover and chill at least 1 hour or overnight to blend flavors. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
  2. Let sit at least an hour before serving.
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Mom, I’m STARVING

I’ve been a little late to the bowl bandwagon. This is, in part, due to my reluctance to pay $8.50 for a bowl of rice, beans, lettuce, salsa, and guacamole with some chicken on top. Plus you have to drive there and go inside. And stand in line.

I can’t replicate the pleasure of driving to upper Peach Street to pick up a fast meal for dinner. If that’s your gig, then I get it. I’ve stopped at Chick-Fil-A on more than one occasion on the drive back and forth to my daughter’s evening tennis lesson. I’ve spent the same amount on a salad with grilled chicken on top. I rationalize it because I didn’t have to go inside. Nor did I have to listen to a teen tell me how she was STARVING during the 20 minute drive home. Home, where there was nothing but a chicken that needed roasted, but would take about 40 minutes.

And she was STARVING. Which meant she would head straight to the snack cabinet faster than the dog can get to his food bowl when I put leftovers in it.

Since I don’t want to engage in mortal combat using a sleeve a crackers against a STARVING teen, I’ve discovered the burrito bowl can be made at home. This is a genius staple because you can hide leftovers in it. No meat? No problem. The rice and beans can provide the protein.

Rice bowl for dinner. I didn’t have any black beans, so I substituted Italian white beans.

The rest of the ingredients are pantry staples – rice, canned corn, salsa, black beans, and a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. From the fridge you need lettuce – I like romaine hearts – sour cream or plain yogurt, a lime, cheese, and cilantro (both optional). If you have barbecue sauce, that’s great too. Just toss the leftover chicken, beef, or pork in some barbecue sauce, and you have a whole new layer of flavor. You’ll also need an avocado, or guacamole.

Then, in the time it takes to cook rice (or buy the 90 second microwave kind) and open a couple of cans – you can have dinner. And the STARVING teen can make it herself. And go back for seconds.

Happy meals,

Marnie

Marnie@marniemeadmedia.com

Print Recipe
Basic Burrito Bowl
This burrito bowl will come together in less than 15 minutes if you use microwave rice.
Course Main Dish, Salad
Prep Time 20 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Course Main Dish, Salad
Prep Time 20 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cook rice according to package directions. Remove from heat and stir in your favorite salsa. Taste and add 1 teaspoon of lime juice, if desired.
  2. In a food processor or blender, pulse the sour cream or yogurt together with the chipotle pepper with some adobo sauce and ground cumin. Taste and add about 1 teaspoon lime juice. Stir.
  3. To assemble, place a layer of rice in the bottom of each bowl (this serves 4). Top with lettuce. Sprinkle with corn, beans, protein (chicken, beef or pork), and avocado pieces or guacamole. Add more salsa if desired or chopped tomatoes. Drizzle chipotle sauce on top. Sprinkle with cilantro, if desired.
Recipe Notes

Instead of salsa, you can substitute Ro-Tel tomatoes with lime juice.

The amount of lime juice you use will depend on your taste. Chipotle adds lime juice and cilantro to its rice base. If you want to be true to its taste, add lime juice to the cooking water for the rice or squeeze fresh lime juice over microwaved rice. Stir in cilantro, if desired.

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Add Heat to Cool Days with Soup

Cold and rainy days call for soup. As a kid that meant the kind with the red and white label, preferably served with a grilled cheese sandwich.

My brother Kevin liked tomato. I was a chicken noodle or chicken and stars girl. My father, as we got older, made soup for Sunday night dinners. He would slave over a perfect French onion or a Manhattan (tomato-based) clam chowder. It was an all-day affair that typically involved making the stock and then the soup. Which is great if you have the time because the taste can’t be topped. French onion soup out of a can or an envelope just isn’t real – even if you do try to put the lovely cheesy crouton on top, which is doing nothing more than hiding a bowl of sodium pretending to be flavor.

I will get off my stockpot now. Sometimes you have neither the time nor inclination to spend all day making soup. In that case, this Thai Coconut Squash/Sweet Potato Soup is for you. I made it with a roasted sweet potato and acorn squash. You can do canned pumpkin (not pie mix), roasted butternut squash, or all roasted sweet potato.

I started by cutting an acorn squash in half, removing the seeds, and placing it in a nonstick roasting pan along with a large sweet potato, pierced, and placing it in a 350-degree oven for 45 minutes. If you are making sweet potatoes or squash for another dish, just throw a couple of extras in so you have leftovers to make this soup.

The soup requires no broth, just water. You will need a can of coconut milk – I prefer the full fat kind. The Thai red curry paste is essential. You can find the paste in the Asian food aisle at most supermarkets. I started with just 1 1/2 tablespoons, but eventually added another tablespoon. Err on the side of less because you can always add more.

Print Recipe
Thai Coconut Squash/Sweet Potato Soup
Course soup
Cuisine American, Asian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings
Ingredients
Course soup
Cuisine American, Asian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a nonstick roasting pan, place large sweet potato and halved acorn squash, cut side down. Roast for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  2. In the same baking pan, deglaze any drippings from the squash with about 1/2 cup of water over medium heat until almost evaporated. If the drippings are too burned to be tasty, skip this and just rinse the pan out and go to the next step.
  3. Add coconut oil to the pan or a large saucepan over medium heat. When melted, add the onions and cook until soft and tender, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add Thai curry paste and stir in until totally incorporated (about 30 seconds).
  4. Scoop out sweet potato and squash into the onion mixture and mash together (use a potato masher if you need to). This will be thick. Add 1 quart of water and stir to combine. If really thick (like mashed potatoes thick), then add remaining water. If the mixture is still very thick (this will depend on the size of your potato and squash), then add more water about 1/2 cup at a time. Bring the mixture to a simmer.
  5. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut milk and lime juice. Use an immersion blender, or, work in batches in a blender, to puree the soup until smooth. Garnish with coconut flakes.
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