So Sandy came along and smashed the East Coast with a devastating wallop of rain and wind on Monday night. As I sit safe and dry in California, I feel terrible for everyone rocked by the hurricane. Please consider donating to the American Red Cross to help with disaster relief by clicking here.

I feel like a shallow heel for posting about something as mundane as yesterday’s eats, but I suppose that’s why you’re here, right?

Before I headed to the women’s class at CrossFit Palo Alto, I made myself a bowl of fluffy scrambled eggs topped with oven-roasted tomatoes.

As usual, I had a fun time with the gals in my class as we grunted through front squats and gritted our teeth through a burpee and running-intensive WOD. The workout kicked my butt, but as Coach Trish never fails to reminds me, I never regret coming in to the gym.

Afterwards, I zoomed to the cancer center to meet my mother-in-law for a follow-up appointment with her oncologist. She’s been doing great since finishing her chemo and radiation treatments a year ago, but it’s always reassuring to get a clean bill of health from her docs. Every time we visit the clinic, I can’t help but feel heartache for the other patients in the waiting room; I know that all of them have either gone through what my mother-in-law has, or are still in the crippling throes of treatment. It puts all my petty grievances into perspective. 

When I returned home in the afternoon, I grabbed a pound of chicken gizzards that I’d salted overnight…

…and a container of duck fat from the fridge.

I combined the two, along with some herbs and garlic, in a small Dutch oven

…and popped it in the toaster oven to braise for a few hours. 

While I waited for the gizzards to tenderize, I ate a bowl of leftover homemade koobideh, oven-roasted tomatoes, and sautéed beet greens for lunch.

Man – I can’t wait until my wall oven gets fixed. The repair is scheduled for this Friday, and my fingers are crossed that it’ll actually get done this time. Bill and Hayley are visiting next week to whip up a feast and shoot pics for their upcoming cookbook, Gather, and I’m guessing my toaster oven isn’t going to cut it. We can’t wait to see what Miss Hayley’s going to cook up for us!

Before I left to pick up the Double-Os from school, I took the gizzards out and stole a peek – and a bite. The verdict: Tender and flavorful.

See? Offal ain’t awful!

I didn’t spend all day cooking. After all, it’s Halloween week, and I’m in full-time mommy mode, so I’m up to my eyeballs hosting playdates with super heroes and ghouls.

In case you were wondering: When Lil-O’s not in full Bat-regalia, he demands that we address him by his proper name, “Bruce Wayne.”  Otherwise, he flails his arms at you and growls: “LOOKS LIKE YOUR LUCK’S RUN OUT, JOKER!”

After a busy day fending off masked vigilantes, it was time to make dinner. I plopped a couple of pre-cooked pork chops in the SousVide Supreme and chopped up some baby bok choy…

…and shiitake mushrooms.

I sautéed the veggies in the pressure cooker and splashed in some bone broth, fish sauce, and coconut aminos before cooking it under high pressure for three minutes.

When the veggies were finished cooking, I torched the pork chops…

…and we squeezed around our kids’ tiny IKEA play table and chatted as we ate dinner. Our boys are going to outgrow this little piece of furniture soon, but I’m hopeful that our family will always make time to hunker together for dinner – regardless of the size of the table.

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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