Since coming to live in Japan I have been plagued by the feeling that I am really not contributing to anything at all. This normally wouldn't bother me. At home I certainly don't have a problem lounging around on the couch while indifferently observing my mom breaking her back over some chore or another. Yet for some reason, it is really troubling when it is a different family I am living with.
Anyway, I decided to remedy this by offering to cook dinner for my family. It was simple yet difficult to decide what to make. My repertoire of dishes which I know how to cook is limited to scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, and anything out of a can that just needs to be reheated. This made choosing simple yet frustrating as I realized my own failure as a girl (no offense if any of you, my readers, are in fact some psycho feminist). I hate making decisions more than I hate failing as a female though so I had no problem with this. I made mashed potatoes, baked chicken (thanks for the recipe mom! It actually turned out fairly edible!), and corn (and yes, it was frozen packaged corn).
My host sister and I went grocery shopping on our way home from our...well...shopping trip to get the ingredients. I had hoped to make home made macaroni and cheese too but I was easily convinced otherwise when I saw that cheddar cheese was approximately $6 for a tiny brick so small I would probably need two or three for the dish.
My American side was shocked when there were no baggers to do all our work for us after our purchase. Merely a little table with the plastic bags on it for the customers to place their groceries in.
Dinner itself turned out okay I guess. I am not a gourmet chef but it was edible. The chicken and the potatoes needed a lot of added salt and pepper but the corn was actually quite tasty. Maybe that is just because of the liberal amount of butter I added to it before sticking it in the weird Japanese microwave-oven thingy.
The potatoes couldn't have been all bad though since my host mom asked for the recipe and hey, I got the opportunity to not feel like a worthless couch potato which would be worth it even if I had made packaged Ramen and burned it. I am such a good person :)