We just celebrated our 9th anniversary!.....in self isolation....in the middle of a kitchen remodel (in other words - without a kitchen). That is really how our entire marriage has been - a big project, a big illness, or a big quandary that has made it just a bit harder to manage an easy celebration. That is okay, though, because we are tough and we love each other enough that these obstacles just make everything even more special.
So this year, Pinterest was my best friend. Everything needed to be cooked in a small kitchen appliance so I referred to all of the amazing posters for help with this task. My final menu was:
Next is my husbands all time favorite - baked potatoes. Actually, he LOVES any kind of potato far about noodles or rice, so we usually find some kind of potato on our dinner table. I chose an air fryer for the first time to bake the potatoes. I was a little scared that they wouldn't cook all the way, because the potatoes were huge! So - I started early, in case I had to do something different in time for dinner. My air fryer is small, so I could only cook two giant potatoes, and the timer only goes to 30 minutes, so I had to turn it on again when the timer rang.
The potatoes came out nice and crispy on the outside. I learned to throw the potato on the counter to get it all fluffy in the inside from Martha Stewart on tv last week. Must say, that worked great!
Because I had cooked the potatoes so early on the day, I need to keep them warm until dinner, so I wrapped them in foil and put them on warm in the crock pot. This word really well, except that the outer skin was no longer crispy at dinner time. I used this recipe: https://www.simplymaderecipes.com/air-fryer-baked-potatoes/
The final dinner dish is one of my favorites (I don't think so much one of Craig's but hey, this dinner is for my anniversary, too! I fried up 5 pieces of hickory smoked bacon and set aside to cool. Then steamed on 16 oz package frozen broccoli, also setting aside to cool. I chopped 5 green onions with the tops, and shredded one carrot. I put everything so far into one bowl, then added 1 snack box of raisins and 2 tablespoons of sunflower seeds. In a small bowl, I whipped together one cup mayo and 2 TBSP of apple cider vinegar and mixed into the broccoli mixture. I wrapped with saran wrap and put in the refrigerator until dinner to cool.
For dessert, I made a kitchen-less version of my husbands favorite pie - Apple, which was Apple Crisp in a Cup with this recipe here: https://www.aheadofthyme.com/individual-apple-crisp/
It tasted wonderful, if I do say so myself, although next time, I will not put in a mug, but use a ramekin so it doesn't look smaller that it is!
I'm not going to lie - the gifts are my favorite part! Craig got me some new photo equipment that I've been wanting and then out did himself with flowers and lotion and even Chokecherry Syrup!! I got him pottery for our 9th Anniversary gift. I got these mugs for $14 each at the best little store in Three Forks - https://www.threeforksfloral.com/ I had been looking for a long time and couldn't believe the bargain!
I really appreciate businesses doing what they can to make this time easier for us. When I found out that I could rent The Invisible Man on the night it was supposed to open in theaters, I was beyond grateful for having something besides dinner to make the evening special for our anniversary. I will say that I enjoyed seeing the movie the first day it was available, but (laughing), it wasn't very romantic lol!
I am a recently retired small town librarian living the dream in Montana in my boujee yet redneck kind of way. Married to a mining engineer and mother to two wonderful young men.