So on Saturday I was at the bookstore, and I picked up the new VK and a Rachael Ray 30-minute meals cookbook, "Express Lane Meals" or some such thing. I'm not accustomed to the staff at the bookstore commenting on what I buy -- even though I buy knitting magazines all the time, they never say "Do you knit?" or "Did you knit that sweater you're wearing right now?"
But the cashier said to me, "Do you like Rachael Ray?"
To which I responded "I've never seen her show, but I keep reading these reviews that say her recipes really work, and I really need some help..." Not that my cooking is bad or anything, I think others in my family might say it's just too infrequent.
Big long pause. "I've seen her show," the cashier said finally.
"I hear she's sort of annoying on TV, " I said.
And the cashier blurted out, "She comes across sort of as if she doesn't know what she's talking about." All righty, then.
I bought the book anyway, and yesterday I hit the grocery store and bought the ingredients for three of the recipes. Sure, that indicates that I missed the point of the book already, but then last night I went home and made "Black Bean and Rice Stoup" (That's too long of a name, and sort of dorky, so in my own mind I refer to it as "Page 64", which might make me as annoying as Rachael Ray, just in a different way.)
It was really good. It took me 42 minutes to make, but maybe I just don't have my Rachael Ray system down yet. And I figure the book paid for itself already. It was $24.95. I would have gone to a restaurant if I didn't want to try something new, and that would have cost me and the boy about $38. Instead I had two beers ($4), and the meal took two cans of black beans, one can of tomatoes, and a cup of corn (the things I didn't already have on hand), which adds up to less than $5. So last night's meal came in at $33. 95. I'm already ahead.
Oh, and the boy ate it (unenthusiastically, but he ate it) and I have four bins of it left in my fridge for lunches this week. Yay, Rachael Ray.