Anthony thought a salad would be good to have for dinner since he had eaten some of his own leftover graduation cake throughout the day, since he had eaten some of our friend's graduation cake in the afternoon, and since we had eaten some of the gingerbread and icing for the gingerbread house later in the evening.
Anthony began to chop up the salad ingredients: iceberg lettuce, ham, cheddar cheese, and mini peppers. I began gleefully laughing . . . . Then I retrieved the molasses and ginger I had just shelved after completing our gingerbread house. I also giggled as I went to the fridge for the chopped garlic. This was going to be an epic salad dressing for sure! Epic because of the festive ingredients, and epic because I knew Anthony would think these particular festive ingredients to be preposterous in a salad! I whipped them together, then added oil and apple cider. Interesting.
Anthony and I both agreed that my new festive salad dressing was not that far out. It reminded us of sweet salad dressings we had eaten before. Neither of us is that wild about sweet salad dressings. But alas, we were out of ranch and had to have some kind of salad dressing.
Anthony and I had a Christmas date night last night. We had picked up molasses and powdered sugar while we were at the store earlier in the day. Anthony found a gingerbread recipe online and printed it off. He drew up a paper of requirements and then we got started. We made a general conceptual design and did a few calculations to figure out about how big it should be. Then we cut our recipe in half to accommodate our plan. He did the wet ingredients and I did the dry ingredients. Anthony then combined the wet and dry ingredients gradually, kneaded the resulting gingerbread dough, and then rolled it out with a rolling pin. We then roughly measured out pieces for our gingerbread house, cut them out, and then popped them in the oven. Smoke started circulating around the apartment from the stove top. We opened the oven to see what was going on. Apparently there were some hard clumps of brown sugar that had melted out of the gingerbread shapes and were burning on the wax paper. We opened the front door and the back door to air out the kitchen. I then began making the icing while Anthony pulled toppings from the cupboards. One of our requirements was to make the gingerbread house as healthy as possible. Anthony picked out pretzels, nuts, dried fruit, blue corn chips, and granola. But what made me laugh was when he got out the adult gummy vitamins to use as gumdrops! We had fun. When we put the house together we put the four walls up and then let them harden for an hour while we watched an epic episode of Food Network's Chopped. Then we returned to put the roof on our gingerbread house. Finally, we decorated the structure and the surrounding cookie sheet. After such an awesome experience, this might become a Garland tradition!