56 CH56: Last minute meeting

    "Pasta doesn't make you fat.

    How much pasta you eat makes you fat."

    - Giada De Laurentiis


    That night, Delilah was in her room, lying down on her stomach while scrolling down on her phone. She was looking at the videos being shared on the social media; nearly drooling as she watched. It was then she felt an inspiration hit her. She immediately placed her phone down and jumped out of her bed.

    She went out of the room and straight to the kitchen.

    Inside the kitchen, her father was sitting at the dining table, looking at his phone. Apparently, he, too, was watching some videos from his social media. And looking from how his hair was still a bit wet and a towel hung around his shoulders, it seems like he had just gotten out from a shower.

    Walking past the dining table, Delilah went to the pantry storage where they stored their dry and canned food. She then looked at each item one by one as she tried to remember what ingredients that the woman in the cooking video had used to make her dish. At that time, the woman had cooked stuffed cabbages. Seeing that she also needed other ingredients, she went to the fridge and checked whether she was missing one.

    To her delighted surprise, she found out that she has all the ingredients, even cabbages.

    Knowing that she wouldn't have enough time to prepare for tomorrow, she decided to prepare it that very night. And tomorrow morning, she can just shove it in the oven and let it cook while she shower and get ready for work.

    Feeling proud of herself, she began to work.

    Her father had already gone upstairs to his room, leaving Delilah alone in the kitchen. This suited her just fine because she prefers to have the kitchen all to herself when she's cooking.

    She first grabbed a large pot and filled it with water, bringing it into a boil. She then removed the core of the cabbage with a knife and immersed the whole head of the cabbage into the boiling water. While she waited for the cabbage to soften, she decided to work on the sauce.

    Cutting the onions and garlic into smaller pieces, she began to stir-fry them until it turned brownish. Smiling at the delicious aroma, she then grabbed a jar of tomato puree, a cup of water, salt and pepper and some ketchup. However, she did not use up all the tomato puree, leaving some aside for later. She then mixed them all together and started to stir them occasionally. Once done, she poured the sauce into her eight inches baking pan and began to work on the stuffings.

    In a large bowl, she placed her uncooked minced beef in and added eggs, onions, breadcrumbs and rice. Grabbing the jar of tomato puree once more, she poured everything inside and added salt and pepper for extra taste. Once everything was inside, she swiftly mixed them all together nicely.

    Then she went to check the cabbages and when it had softened, she carefully took it out of the pot and placed it on the cutting board. She then gingerly peeled the leaves one by one. The cabbages were still hot when she took it out of the pot.

    Delilah took a small knife and started to cut off the hard rib from the base of the cabbages. Once done, she began to fill the cabbages with the stuffings, shaping them into an oval shape. She then folded them and placed it on the baking pan with the sauces.

    Arranging them nicely in the pan, she then finished it off by covering it with an aluminium foil. She placed the covered pan inside the fridge as she will be cooking it the next morning.

    Once the pan was inside the fridge, she went on to wash the dishes. This was one of her most hated things to do after cooking.

    The preparation nearly took her an hour and it really worn her out. So, she decided to take a quick shower and then go to bed.

    The next morning.

    It was 6 AM in the morning when her inner clock woke her up. She stretched her arms up as she yawned.

    Outside her house, the sky was still a bit dark but the sun was slowly rising up. There was a few sunlight from the dawning sun seeping in through the blinds of her curtains and into her room.

    She got up of bed and instead of going straight to the bathroom, she went down to the kitchen.

    Switching on the kitchen lights, she went to the oven and pre-heat it for ten minutes. She then grabbed her pan from the fridge and placed it inside the oven.

    While the stuffed cabbages were cooking, she returned back to her room where she went to have her shower and get herself ready for work.

    An hour later, the stuffed cabbages were done and packed for her lunch. She brought it to work proudly.

    At the office, she was just about to place her work bag and lunch bag on her table when she received a text message from Aubree.

    Confused as to why she was texting so early in the morning, she fished around in her work bag for her phone. Swiping it on, she reads the text.

    Howard was at the other branch and apparently, he wanted Delilah and Aubree to meet him there to discuss the training that the employees will be doing.

    Frowning, she replied back to Aubree, asking that didn't she just send him a copy of the report, together with the list of the employees who will be doing the training?

    Aubree answered her text with an 'I don't know'.

    Delilah sighed in resignation. She hated how this seems to be last minute. It was more convenient if he had told them earlier, for example, last night.

    She then texted back to Aubree that she will be right over.

    Slipping her phone back in her work bag, she thought that it was a relief that she didn't get the chance to unpack her things. Or she would have packed them all over again.

    She brought everything, including her lunch bag because she knew that when it comes to Howard, it would be a very long meeting.

    Few minutes later, she arrived at the other branch. Greeting hello at Amy, who was manning the reception area, she quickly went up to where Howard's office was located.

    She then knocked on his door and walked in when she heard his voice calling out to come in.

    Inside the small room, Aubree was already inside, with Howard sitting behind his desk. It wasn't that big of a room with a couple of file cabinets, a coat rack and a trash bin. Delilah took one of guest chairs, which was beside Aubree and sat down.

    Apparently, Howard had just received a memo about the training that some of the employees of the Kang Company were about to attend. Due to the political reasons that the other country was facing, all travels going there will be canceled. Hence, some of the employees had complained that they have already spent some of their personal money for the training and were asking for reimbursement.

    Since Delilah was the one who had been distributing training lists, it was no wonder as to why Howard had called her over.

    The three of them began to discuss the solution and whether to give out reimbursement. Because for them, it was better if they did not as the Finance department had suggested that it was a proper business move to compensate with another training workshop, rather than with money.

    They talked about the solution with a bit of jokes and gossips in-between.

    It was nearly lunchtime when they finally finished talking. And Howard told them to get an early lunch while he went off to meet his friends for lunch.

    Since Aubree was dropped at the office, she has no way back to the HQ and could only stay behind. And unfortunately, at the other branch, although they have a large pantry room where the employees can eat their lunch, they do not have a cafeteria. And since Aubree did not bring any food, she has nothing to eat.

    Aubree sighed as she walked down to the reception with Delilah.

    "What's wrong?" Delilah asked in concern.

    "I didn't bring any food to eat for lunch," Aubree answered. "Ugh. I forgot that they don't have a cafeteria here."

    Before Delilah could answer, Amy, who was on her way out for lunch, heard their conversation. She then said, pointing outside at the street, "Aubree, you can just buy your food at the shop there or somewhere nearby."

    Aubree frowned. "Is it nice?" she asked. It would be nice if the food was tasty.

    Amy nodded as she hoisted her handbag up on her shoulder. "Yeah, the restaurants nearby are not bad. It's not that expensive either. You can go buy the food and eat at the pantry, if you want," she suggested helpfully.

    Aubree grinned. "Alright, I'll do that. Thanks Amy."

    Amy nodded again and waved goodbye as she left the office, leaving the two women at the reception area.

    Delilah then told Aubree that she would accompany her to buy some food and they can eat together at the pantry before going to the HQ.

    After Aubree had bought her food, they both went to the pantry. The pantry wasn't as big as their cafeteria at the HQ but it was at least twice bigger than Howard's office. And there were few people inside as most of them probably went out for lunch. Waving hello at some of the familiar faces in the room, the two women found an empty table and sat down.

    Luckily, there was a microwave in the pantry so Delilah was able to reheat her food. Although it wouldn't taste as nice as it should be but at least, it wasn't that bad.

    Opening her container, she could smell the heated stuffed cabbages. She could also see the steam coming out from the food after reheating it. She took her fork and knife and cut the stuffed cabbages in half. More steam came out from the meat mixture inside.

    Scooping more sauce onto the stuffed cabbages, she slowly eats it. The meat mixed with the sauce made it more sour, the same kind of taste from bolognaise and together with the rice, it made one feel fulfilling and satisfied. The cabbage was soft but it still has that crunch which eventually melt in her mouth, flooding her tastebuds with numerous flavours from the sauce and meat. The meat was also tender and juicy, which heightens her pleasure.

    As she ate, Aubree, who was watching her smiled. "Did you make that?" she asked.

    Delilah nodded. She then took a piece and placed it on Aubree's takeaway container. "Here, here. Come and have a taste," she offered.

    Aubree took a bite and her eyes widened. "Oh, it's really good," she exclaimed in surprise.

    Delilah beamed with pleasure, happy from the compliment. "Thanks. I made it last night and baked it this morning," she said.

    Aubree looked at her in amazement. She not only loves to eat but she can cook as well!

    As she chewed on the cabbages, Delilah said, "And it's alright to eat a lot of this, I believe. Since it's healthy and won't get you fat."

    Aubree raised an eyebrow. "Oh really?" she said teasingly.

    "Oh, DEE-finitely!"
Previous Index Next