Dinner at the Cave: A Recipe For Disaster

1) Put 1 cup pre-soaked mung beans on to boil. Scrub a carrot.

2) Mop up toddler pee on kitchen floor.

3) Peel carrot.

4) Embark on lengthy exegesis of why it is not morally acceptable to eat woodlice. Realise futility of the exercise. Peel half an onion.

5) Wash hands. Hang out three items of laundry.

6) Peel other half of onion.

7) Change baby’s nappy.

8 ) Chop onion.

9) Turn off everything and sit on sofa to breastfeed crying baby. Recite story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar from memory to distract toddler.

10) Hang out three more items of laundry.

11) Make crackers and cheese to tide oneself and toddler over. Put mung beans back on the boil.

12) Measure out 1 cup basmati rice. Rinse thoroughly, and put on to boil with salt and a bay leaf. Meanwhile, sing The Wheels on the Bus until toddler gets bored or you forget what verse comes next.

13) Start frying onion in a little olive oil and 1 tbsp. each of ground cumin and ground turmeric. Simultaneously keep toddler away from hot pan with one foot.

14) Explain basic principles of thermodynamics, why hot oil causes ‘ow’ and therefore the benefits of staying out of the kitchen.

15) Change baby’s nappy again. Wash hands again.

16) Get fed up and put Bob the Builder on. Realise DVD is scratched. Get out basket of building blocks. Build half a tower.

17) Chop carrot and add to onion. Boil kettle and pour over bowl of tomatoes.

18) Hang out six items of laundry. Sweep up expensive spelt flour from floor which toddler has spilt. Build rest of tower.

19) Turn boiling rice down. Realise mung beans will take another twenty minutes to boil. Take rice and onions off heat.

20) Write half a paragraph of novel while toddler looks at Google images of concrete mixers on other side of screen.

21) When mung beans are done, add them to the onions and carrots. Add coconut cream and water, or can of coconut milk. Skin tomatoes and chop, adding to the mung beans.

22) Regret not having made fish fingers instead.

23) When mung beans are at an ideal level of mushiness, take off the heat and serve with rice.

Calories: not enough if you’re breastfeeding. Serves: you right for trying to feed your kids curry.

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