Increasingly my mother has lost the desire to cook, her condition growing progressively worse year after year. Her anxiety increases her inability to make decisions on her own, and the pain in her hands means working with her hands can range anywhere from annoying to uncomfortable to . . . well, painful.
To help out, I decided to cook for her on occasion. I didn't ask for permission --- with the way she belabors the smallest of her own decisions, I didn't want her to endure another such episode. I decided for her. Mother has a number of food restrictions (that's a really long story that I don't want to get into here), so I had to be a little creative. And as it turned out, I needed an extra measure of creativity because some items that I thought would be in my mother's kitchen turned out to be AWOL. So I had to make some last minute course corrections. But everything turned out fine, as you'll see in a moment.
I decided to make personal pizzas for everyone, with each person getting a unique flavor to cater his or her unique preferences. For Mother, that would be chicken mushroom spinach. For Dad, it's BBQ chicken. And for me, I felt like chicken Hawaiian.
Mother's Chicken Mushroom Spinach
Dad's BBQ Chicken ... er, I mean, Chicken Hawaiian
Mother really enjoyed her pizza, which made me happy. She couldn't stop talking about good it tasted to her. Part of that results from me pulling her out of her routine; I made her something different using ingredients that she enjoys eating. Regardless, it's always good to hear praise, especially when it's earned.
My dad enjoyed his pizza also. He's not one to rave, so I never expected that. But it was still good to hear he enjoyed it.
I of course enjoyed mine, made just like my dad's with two exceptions: I had a little extra herb for a little extra flavor and extra sauce. I never liked extra sauce that much as a teenager, but for some reason my palette has shifted in this direction. Not only does extra sauce enhance the flavor of the pie while it's fresh, but it improves leftovers also.
Yes, that's totally true. What do you do with leftovers? You put them in the fridge. which environment actually dehydrates your food. For leftover pizza, that means a reduction in sauce. Removing water from sauce thickens it; remove enough water and you replace the sauce with a rather thin paste of solids, which for most sauces, pizza sauce included, isn't much. Having extra sauce on your pizza means your leftover pizza still has some sauce on it after sitting in the fridge.
All in all, I was happy with what I made and happy that others were happy with it. The only question now is what I will make next.
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