However, a month before I had offered to make dinner for the three missionaries currently living in our area. They don't have much money, so the members of our congregation take care of their meals. As bad as I felt, I knew I would feel even worse if I called up last minute and cancelled on them.
About 40 minutes before they were supposed to arrive the ear doctor and I realized that we had bought bone-in chicken breasts and our planned meal was an artichoke stuffed, pounded thin, BONELESS, chick breast. Bad idea.
I quickly flipped through my absolute FAVORITE cookbook du jour, The Best 30-minute recipe: A Best Recipe Classic, which my sister's in-laws gave us as a wedding gift (thanks Whitings!....this book is AWESOME) and found a delicious sounding panko breaded, almond crusted chicken breast topped with cranberry and orange relish.
(BTW, this book is seriously awesome. I cook from it about three times a week)
By this time we only had about 30 minutes to make our entire meal. Yikes. I love cooking, but generally have a hard time doing it very quickly. Just as I was pouring the relish over the chicken, the ear doctor was fishing the steamed zucchini out of the pot, the missionaries arrived. I was shocked that we got it all pulled together.
However, since we were cooking with the speed and intensity of Hung on Top Chef, I wasn't doing dishes as I went, like usual. And, after dinner we had delicious pumpkin spice cake (from this month's Bon Appetit...pretty good. Mine turned out a bit dry....that's Colorado for you. It was better the second day after the frosting has time to soak in).
The result? A TON of dishes. And I mean you probably could have dumped all the dirty dishes into a bad, brought it to our scale and weighed in at around 1,997 lbs....a TON. Every horizontal surface was stacked in a Sword-in-the-stone-esque fashion nearly to the ceiling.
After entertaining our guests to the best of my ability, I turned to the sink, pushed up the sleeves of the shirt I'd been lounging around in all day and set my mind to the task of rocking that stack out.
The ear doctor gently pulled me from the sink, set me down on the couch, covered me with a blanket, got me a glass of nice cold lemonade and spent the next HOUR AND A HALF doing the dishes.
Ahhhhhh, what a guy! Love really is everything it's cracked up to be.