Posts Tagged hummus

Massive Post of Catch-Upedness

I wanted to get a post up two Fridays ago before I left for Florida, but that did not happen.  Then when I got back it did not happen.  So I feel way behind, and to remedy this situation I’m gonna throw a whole bunch of stuff together right here.  I went to Florida to attend a wedding and visit family and friends.  I was in total vacation mode and didn’t take very many pictures, but those that I did will get their own post soon.

A few weekends ago some vegan friends and I headed up through the Berkeley hills to have a picnic and check out the Lawrence Hall of Science.  Unfortunately, it had rained off and on all weekend and there was nary a dry picnic spot to be found.  So, we did what any sensible people would do and picnicked in my car.

I brought caramelized leek hummus…

…and veggies for dipping.

Becca & Steve brought a sandwich spread, recipe from Eat, Drink & Be Vegan but I don’t know what it’s called.  It had avocado and tomato and tempeh and it was smoky and good.  Becca also made potato salad with Bacos.  Yummy!

I brought gluten-free strawberry shortcake, but was so eager to eat it during the car picnic that I forgot to take a picture.  So here’s a picture of my serving again after dinner that night, and a recipe!  (I sliced the berries here, but am changing the recipe to call for quartering them cause I thought the slices didn’t hold their texture well enough.)  I’m not gonna lie and tell you that you wouldn’t know they’re gluten free, but I think they hold together relatively well and have a nice texture.  I sadly didn’t have any vegan whipped cream to put on top!

Gluten-Free Strawberry Shortcake

To make the recipe non-gluten-free just substitute 1 3/4 all-purpose flour for the g-f baking mix, brown rice flour and xantham gum.  The lemon zest, rosemary and black pepper can be optional if you don’t want those flavors in your dessert, but I think they give it a special something.

1 lb strawberries (2 pints)
1/2 c sugar
1/4 c balsamic vinegar

1 c gluten-free baking mix
3/4 c brown rice flour
3/4 tsp xantham gum
2 Tbs sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c shortening
6 Tbs soy creamer
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
1 Tbs fresh rosemary
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Hull and quarter the strawberries. Place in a bowl and add sugar and balsamic vinegar. Stir gently to combine, cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 400F. Place the g-f baking mix, brown rice flour, xantham gum, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl and mix. Cut the shortening into pieces and add to the flour mixture. Cut the shortening into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the soy creamer, lemon juice, lemon zest, rosemary and black pepper and stir just until combined.

Turn the dough out onto a surface lightly floured with the g-f baking mix. Using floured hands, knead the dough gently about 10 times. Pat the dough out to a 1/2-inch thickness. Use a floured round cookie cutter or drinking glass to cut out rounds. Transfer the rounds to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Pat out any remaining dough and repeat. Bake the shortcakes for 15-18 minutes or until they start to turn golden brown.

To serve, gently split each shortcake with your fingers or a fork. Spoon some strawberries onto the bottom, replace the top, and top with more strawberries. Spoon extra juice over the shortcake. Serve with vegan whipped cream.

Serves 6.

For dinner that night we grilled.

I tried the new tempehtations from Lightlife, classic bbq flavor.  I was a little wary of eating them plain, but I was pleasantly surprised.  Very tasty!  I’m not sure I’ll be buying them very often because they’re a bit pricey, but if you’re into tasty convenience food then I would definitely recommend them.

Alongside the tempeh are your regular ol’ mushrooms and asparagus, and in the back is…

…an avocado-ranch twice baked potato.  The avocado makes the filling super-creamy without adding any other fats or faux dairy.  BF said the filling was too creamy, but to that I say “whatevs”.  This was a recipe for a contest, so if I don’t get a positive response I will definitely pass it on.

We went to a San Francisco Giants baseball game on Sunday and got to tailgate across the bay!  I made a grain and veggie salad that nobody else seemed too excited about, but that just meant more leftovers for me.

This one had whole wheat orzo, TJ’s harvest grain blend, red bell pepper, cucumber, corn, shredded carrot, fresh dill, rosemary and a dressing of vegennaise, lemon juice and sugar.  I think that was it.  I meant to add a shallot and toasted pine nuts and totally forgot, but it turned out nice without.

We went with skewers again for the main event.  Mine had peppers, onions, zucchini, marinated mushrooms and Tofurkey Italian sausage pieces.

This was my dinner last night:  roasted potato and fava bean salad with miso-mustard dressing.  In the front are sauteed Chinese broccoli and carrots.  This was really good, but it could use a few tweaks before I write up the recipe.  I love fresh fava beans!

And now, some laptop lunches.

4-24 roasted sweet potatoes, chana palak masala, whole wheat orzo, kiwi

4-28 waffles, tofu scramble, veggie sausage patty, maple syrup, fruit salad

4-29 carrots, gherkins, cinnamon-raisin toast, tofu scramble, strawberries

4-30 grit cake, succotash, mango-habanero sauce, pickles,
blueberries, sour gummies

5-1 spaghetti casserole, lettuce, corn, radish & carrot, goddess dressing, prunes, dried apricots & dark mint chocolate

5-4 avocado-ranch twice baked potato, grilled mushrooms & asparagus, bbq tempeh, g-f shortcake with strawberry-balsamic juice in the small container

5-7 pizza with red pepper flakes, dill pickle cashews, orange wedges

5-8 roasted zucchini & carrots with dill, soy nuggets with bbq sauce, chex, sauteed chard, sweet potato-pecan-chocolate chip muffin, prunes

That’s it for tonight!  Coming up will be recipes for my salad stirfry and chard risotto, and how-I-gained-5-pounds-during-6-days-in-Florida.

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Superbowl Sunday & Laptop Lunches

I didn’t feel emotionally invested at all in the Superbowl this year, but it IS a once a year event so we still had a few people over to watch.  I’m still trying to eat healthily and drop some pounds, so to keep my hands out of the chip bags I put together a veggie tray with hummus.  I used the hummus recipe in Veganomicon which is a nice, mild hummus.

I knew I wouldn’t get by without something crunchy and munchy, so I made Chex Mix based on the original recipe.  I was all out of vegan worcestershire sauce, so I substituted a mixture of soy sauce, liquid smoke, hot sauce, chili powder and paprika.

Now I have multiple half eaten boxes of Chex in the pantry!

For my entree I kept it simple and just had a veggie burger, but I did come up with a new potato to go on the side.  I was thinking that I hadn’t had enough mustard in my life lately, and the weather was a little yucky, so I went for warm and majorly mustardy.

This recipe makes a boatload – enough for 10 or more, so if it’s just for you or your family I’d suggest halving the recipe.

Warm Mustard & Leek Potato Salad

4 lbs new potatoes, skin on, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 Tbs olive oil
2 leeks, white and light green parts thinly sliced and washed
2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1 Tbs olive oil
4 Tbs stone ground mustard
2 Tbs dijon mustard
3 Tbs white wine vinegar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp white pepper
1 Tbs dried parsley
1 tsp fennel seed
1 Tbs sugar

Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat to medium high, and cook for 6-7 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork. Drain and transfer to a very large bowl.

In the meantime, heat the 2 Tbs olive oil to medium heat in a medium saucepan. Add the leeks and celery and saute 9-10 minutes, until soft.

Add the remaining ingredients (1 Tbs olive oil through sugar) to the saucepan, mix well and cook until heated through. Pour the dressing over the potatoes and carefully stir to combine. Serve immediately.

Serves 10-12.

I was worried that the leftovers would dry out in the fridge overnight, but this salad is equally as good as cold leftovers.

Here be some lunches I’ve taken to work.

1-22 roasted veggie quiche, raw collard & carrot ribbons,
pretzels, gherkins, piece of dark chocolate

1-27 white bean & leek cassoulet, steamed kale
with nutritional yeast, a pear

1-29 fennel-chickpea “tuna” salad sandwich, celery & broccoli, goddess dressing, piece of dark mint chocolate, kiwi & banana

2-2 veggies & hummus, mustard & leek potato salad, chex mix

2-3 cheesy broccoli & rice casserole, raw beet salad over lettuce, vanilla soy yogurt with blueberries, pretzels, piece of dark mint chocolate

2-4 polenta with beet greens, tofurkey italian sausage with caramelized onions & radicchio, baby carrots & hummus, grapes

2-5 cheesy broccoli & rice casserole, raw beet salad over lettuce,
mustard & leek potato salad, baby carrots, grapes

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Weeknight Meals, Laptop Lunches & A Meme

I never thought I’d be the type of person who got home from work in the evening and made whatever would get in my belly the fastest for dinner, but that has been my situation lately.  Right now we leave for work at 7:20AM and usually get home around 6:15-6:30PM.  During the day I get it in my head that I’m going to get home, exercise, make a nice dinner, do some chores or poke around on the internet and still maybe have time to watch tv or read before going to bed at 10.  Right.  What happens lately is that I cook up whatever is quick and satisfying and try to check a thing or two off my to do list, and before I know it the night has gone by.  Hopefully in a few months bf and I will be able to align our work schedules and I’ll gain another thirty minutes to an hour which will ease things a bit, but for now it’s all about fast, effective dinners.

Here’s one from last week:  grilled eggplant and zucchini on whole wheat flatbread with hummus, pickles, lettuce and tomato.  The eggplant and zucchini were from the farmers market, and the tomato from my backyard, where the tomato plant is STILL producing new tomatoes.  In November!  This is before I piled on the lettuce.

Rolled up, with cucumbers and tahini dip.

Tuesday night I was planning on a simple stir-fry with leftover veggies and frozen-then-thawed tofu, then while perusing The PPK I saw this post on dry frying tofu with a link to these instructions and became very intrigued.  I also decided I wanted a “real” sauce with my tofu instead of just a plain stir-fry, so I found this recipeon Vegweb and modified it a bit.  I was going to post the recipe because it turned out really good, but I’m not at home right now so I don’t have it.  Will post it next time!

Here’s the dry-fried tofu.  It took just about forever to do because I was using my wok which doesn’t have much flat space so I had to fry the tofu in three batches.  With a griddle or wider pan it would go much quicker.  I really liked the texture of this tofu and will definitely be preparing it this way again.  I also liked that I didn’t have to use any oil!

This orange tofu & broccoli was incredibly good, even served with overcooked, mushy instant brown rice.  The sauce has a very intense flavor, with lots of acidic quality, but it tastes great if you can get past that.  I was kind of afraid my stomach was going to get upset afterwards, but on the contrary:  I got the happy tummy, bigtime.  You know how sometimes you eat and you’re still hungry or unsatisfied, and sometimes you eat and it was a bit too much and you don’t feel so well, but sometimes you eat and it’s just perfect and your tummy is sooooo happy.  That’s what this dish does.

Wednesday night I got home with no exact dinner plan and went straight for comfort.  Organic veggie soup from a can and a grilled cheese with pickles and tomato on whole wheat.  Hot, crunchy, slurpy and good.  And I tell you, pickles on grilled cheese is the way to go.

And here’s my Thursday dinner made from what I could find in the house.  Whole wheat spaghetti with broccoli, garlic and some tempeh sausage crumbles that were hiding in the freezer.  It would’ve been better with pine nuts and almond parmesan, but I’m still working on fully stocking my kitchen.

It doesn’t look nearly as nice as I had thought it would, but it did the trick.  And, because I couldn’t decide which picture I liked better:

I think tomorrow when I get back home I might come up with a food plan for the week and get my grocery shopping done.  I was reading yesterday that Jessy from happyveganface plans all her meals for the week ahead of time and I think that’s adorable.

I only took three laptop lunches this week.  Thursday I was in a mega hurry and grabbed some instant pad thai and a salad, and Friday my office held a Thanksgiving potluck for our students which was really interesting because most of them are from other countries and didn’t really get the whole pot luck concept.

11-17 beanie weenies, veggies, homemade ranch, dried apricots

11-18 veggie dogs w/ ketchup & mustard, pasta salad, veggies, dried cherries

11-19 orange tofu & broccoli, brown rice w/ extra sauce, cauliflower, kiwi & blueberries

Last week Miss Bianca of Vegan Crunk tagged me for a meme, and now is the time.

  1. Link the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
  2. Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself.
  3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links.
  4. Let each person know that they’ve been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

1.  I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before on this here blog, but I’m a musician.  I started taking piano lessons when I was five, played flute in middle school band, picked up trumpet in ninth grade, and was a total high school band nerd.  During my third semester in college I switched majors from civil engineering to music (smooth move) and hold a BM.  Seriously, it’s a Bachelors of Music.  I have a BM.  I’ve played trumpet, guitar and sang in ska punk bands, fronted a pop-punk band and switched off on bass and drums in an all girl punk band.  I sang harmony and played trumpet and flute on a couple recordings for local bands when I was in Gainesville, including one release that came out on Epitaph.  I’m kind of a big deal.

2.  I’ve been afraid of sharks for almost as long as I can remember.  I know when I was a little kid I liked the beach and swimming in pools, but somewhere along the way I became terrified of sharks and ocean creatures in general.  I think it came about because there was a science museum my summer camp visited, and there was a stuffed hammerhead shark hanging above the staircase that you had to walk up to get to the exhibits.  I didn’t want to walk under it.  I also think this brought about my phobia of taxidermied animals.  I can’t go to natural history museums.  I don’t much like being around mounted deer heads and things of that nature, but I REALLY can’t do whole big animals like bears or panthers.  At one of the Smithsonian museums in Washington D.C. there is a taxidermied elephant in the lobby and it’s kind of my worst nightmare.  Although, in recent years I have been facing my fears and getting better about it.  I’ve gone to a few aquariums and planted myself in front of the shark tanks, and I went to that museum in D.C. and looked at the elephant from the second floor.  I still couldn’t stand right next to it though.

3.  Although it’s not another phobia, I can be very uncomfortable around certain large things.  Like cruise ships for instance.  I don’t mind being on one, but standing next to one in a harbor can get to me.  Airplanes too.  Dinosaur skeletons also freak me way out, but I’m not sure whether they fall under this category or the dead animal fear.

4.  I was kind of obsessed with Alice in Wonderland for a while.  I collected all sorts of memorabilia and books, whatever I could get my hands on.  I had a large collection for a while, and sold it all off a few years ago for the money.  I still have the pictures and the memories though.  If you’ve never actually read Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking Glass”, do so.  They’re fascinating.

5.  I don’t like olives or licorice.  Disgusting.  Or Jagermeister.  Barf.  Those are pretty much the only flavors I can’t stomach.  I’m coming around on olives, but only if they’re mixed in with other complimentary flavors.

6.  There are a few tv shows of which I refuse to miss an episode:  Top Chef, The Office, Project Runway and The Biggest Loser.  We just got DVR so it’s making my life much easier in this respect.  Other current shows I really like are What Not To Wear, Law & Order (SVU or Criminal Intent – love Vincent D’Onofrio), and Top Design.  I like reruns of Gilmore Girls, King of Queens, Frasier, Full House, Golden Girls, Friends, Seinfeld and Family Guy.  These things comprise most of the tv I watch other than sports.  I know way more about Full House than any person should.

7.  I don’t do scary.  Can’t watch scary movies, especially if it’s about supernatural things like ghosts or monsters.  Real life scary I can sometimes do, such as murder mysteries or thrillers.  Thing is, watching these kinds of movies I get too worked up and my heart beats to fast and I end up with a headache and generally I just don’t enjoy the feeling of being scared like most people do.  I kind of like true crime books though.  I’ve read Helter Skelter and Danny Rolling’s biography and while they were intensely interesting, they scared the living crap out of me.  I thought Charles Manson was hiding in my apartment every day I came home from school during the time I read Helter Skelter.

Huh, that was a lot easier than I thought it would be!  Guess I’m a fairly interesting person.  I tag anyone who hasn’t done this yet and wants to, or better yet, tell me something random or weird about yourself in a comment!

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Meal-in-a-Bowl

I’ve been thinking about a full meal in a bowl being a good way to eat a satisfying, healthy and balanced meal.  You’ve got your protein, starch and veggies all playing nicely together.  And, since I’m a guest here and we don’t really use the dishwasher, it’s a good way to cut down on the dishes I have to wash.

I was craving beans in a major way, and had celery and carrot in the fridge, so I made Cajun-style red beans and brown rice which turned out to be more veggie than bean, which is fine with me.  On the side is steamed spinach, and some baby romaine that was on its way out.

I still had most of the gargantuan mango from my last post, and was still in the mood for beans, so I wanted to make some sort of quinoa/black bean/mango dish.  Alas, the grocery stores here are very basic, and there is no quinoa to be found.  I went with potatoes as the starch instead, and relegated the mango to a condiment of sorts.  I consulted my friend Jackie in whether I should call it a relish, pico de gallo or chutney, and we decided it was most like a relish or pico, so Jackie suggested pico de relish.  In the end I decided on relish de gallo, because “relish of the rooster” sounds more fun than “beak of the relish”.  So this is Black Bean and Corn Hash with Mango Avocado Relish de Gallo, topped with hot sauce.

Here we have leftover broccoli in hunan sauce with brown rice with store bought teriyaki tofu.  I may have put it all in a bowl just to go with the bowl theme.  Shhhhh….

Lastly, Hannah’s Sesame Noodles.  I didn’t follow the recipe exactly – I couldn’t find soba noodles and used whole wheat spaghetti instead, didn’t have any ginger (thought I did and was very disappointed), used white sugar instead of brown and doubled the quantity, peeled my carrot and zucchini with a normal peeler since my julienne peeler is packed away, added sauteed cremini mushrooms and shelled edamame for some extra oomph, and garnished with cilantro just cause I had some.  This recipe is good!  Next time I will definitely make sure I have ginger, and cut back a tad on the soy sauce since it was just a bit too salty for me.

And now, since not everything can fit in a bowl, here are some randoms.

I made my first real shopping trip to Trader Joe’s.  I stopped by one a few years ago, and after actually shopping there I have the same opinion I did back then.  They have some really cool products and I’ll definitely go from time to time, but some of the items are a bit expensive, and they don’t have enough “normal” grocery items.  Like, the spices were extremely limited and I couldn’t find sesame seeds.  It seems impractical to not carry stuff like that, people don’t want to have to go to two stores.  TJ’s seems like a great place for people who don’t want to or don’t have time to cook, lots of good ready-made food.  My total purchase came to almost $50, although $8 of it was for soy yogurt, which I can’t find in town.

Some home fries made with potatoes I didn’t use in the hash above.  Part of a big breakfast for bf before his first job interview today.  So good with ketchup.

One of my (and probably your) favorite lunches, plain ol’ hummus with pita and veggies.

Up next:  Hopefully a couple uses for the world’s largest zucchini.

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Orlando Weekend

For my birthday last month I asked bf to take me to Cirque du Soleil’s La Nouba.  Since the date we picked to go coincided with our anniversary, we decided to book an extra night and go for the whole weekend.  In addition to seeing La Nouba and sleeping a lot, we took the opportunity to try some new restaurants and visit an old favorite.

Friday we left work early to get on the road and visit Garden Cafe for dinner.  I had heard only good things about this vegetarian Chinese restaurant and was excited to try it, bf not so much.  But he made do.  I was actually worried about deciding what to order, as I’m not used to having so many options.  From what our waitress said only a few menu items included egg or honey, the majority was vegan.

I started with the wonton soup.  The wonton filling was a little bland, but the stock was very nice.

garden cafe

BF got a spring roll which looked good.

garden cafe

BF loves lo mein so he ordered the Combination Lo Mein, which had a couple kinds of veggie meat.

garden cafe

I chose one of the house specialties, Orange Beef.

garden cafe

I had a choice of brown or white rice which I always appreciate.  Here’s my brown rice posing next to a shrimp I stole from bf’s lo mein.

garden cafe

Overall the food was very good.  If you’re not a fan of fake meats they had veggie and tofu selections as well.  It’s a little pricy compared with standard Chinese fare, but the portions are large enough for leftovers.

We travelled onward to our hotel, Buena Vista Palace.  We were originally thinking of staying at a “moderate” Disney hotel, but this was a much more affordable room that was still really close to all the Disney action.  The decor was modern, the bed was comfy, and the room was cold.  We opted for a “Disney view” room, so Friday night we watched the fireworks over Epcot.  Here’s the view when we arrived, you can see the Epcot sphere at the right on the horizon.

disney view

After the fireworks we headed to one of bf’s favorite places on earth, the ESPN Club at the Boardwalk, to watch the A’s/Giants game.  I was feeling snacky so I ordered fries, which came in this contraption.

espn club

I think it’s supposed to be like a basketball hoop?  I’m still not sure.  I didn’t know it came with the dipping sauces on the bottom, and didn’t eat any of them.  Ketchup is enough for me.

Saturday morning we ate blueberry muffins I had pulled from my freezer, and I had hotel coffee with instant creamer and stevia, which was actually pretty good.  For lunch we headed to Big River Grille, also in the Boardwalk area.  This brewpub is owned by Gordon Biersch, who also owns A1A Aleworks in St. Augustine.  I had previewed the menu online to be sure I’d find something to eat there.

I ordered their beer sampler, 3 ounces of 6 kinds of beer.  It was quite a bit for lunch, but I like to get samplers at brewpubs to get a feel for everything they do.  This was after I kicked the table and spilled some of it.

big river grille

I didn’t care much for the light lager or the pilsner.  The seasonal wheat beer was okay, and the special cherry beer in the middle was interesting.  The flavor was good but it had lost carbonation in the brewing process since it was an experimental beer.  My favorites were the darker beers, the pale ale and the red ale.  I’m not sure why there weren’t any truly dark beers, I guess they brew those seasonally.

For lunch I ordered the hummus appetizer minus the feta it comes with.  I was pretty hungry and forgot to take a picture until I was a couple bites in.

big river grille

The hummus was standard, good but not anything special.  My only wish was that there were more veggies.  I was worried an appetizer portion wouldn’t be enough, but thankfully this was plenty to get me through until dinner.

After lunch we went back to the room and took a TWO AND A HALF HOUR nap.  We didn’t mean to sleep that long.  The room was just so dang comfortable!  It was lucky bf had thought to set an alarm just incase.

Next stop was La Nouba.  We got dressed up all nice, but bf didn’t want to appear in a photograph.

la nouba

The show was amazing.  I knew it would be good, and it delivered.  Even bf, who wasn’t sure he would like it, said “I liked it a lot more than I thought I would”.  If you ever have a chance to see any of the Cirque du Soleil performances, go.  I hope to see more of them.

We had planned to go to dinner that night at an Ethiopian restaurant, but it took a little longer to get out of the theater than anticipated, and bf was hoping to be back at the ESPN Club by 9 for another baseball game.  So we decided to postpone our dinner plans and just eat at the ESPN Club.  I knew thanks to one of Ruby Red Vegan’s Disney food posts that there was a suitable veggie sandwich on the menu.  I double checked with our waitress, who sent the chef out with a list of ingredients to go over with me, and sure enough the Grilled Veggie Sandwich with Cucumber Salad is vegan!  It was pretty good too, the bread was hearty and the vegetables well seasoned.  The only thing that got me was that the grilled veggies had been chilled so the whole meal was cold.

espn club

I wasn’t in a beer mood, so I got this frou frou drink which I think was called the Power Play.  It had blue caracao, melon liqeuer, lemon and pineapple juice, and I think rum.  I’m a sucker for anything with melon liqeuer.

espn club

We slept like babies again Saturday night.  The next morning we packed up, walked around Downtown Disney for a bit, then headed to Nile Ethiopian.  I’d only had Ethiopian food a few times, and was looking forward to trying it again.  I ordered the vegetarian combination plate.

nile ethiopian

From left to right there is a salad with vinegary dressing, spicy lentils, split peas, collard, and cabbage on the bottom.  I don’t know the proper names of the dishes but I know they were all tasty.  BF liked the flavors but wasn’t a big fan of the sour injeera bread you use to scoop.

Overall I had a great time.  We slept a lot, ate a lot, saw an awesome show, and now it’s back to the daily grind.  I hope everyone else had a great weekend.

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Local Food, Simple Dinners

I don’t get to the farmer’s market as often as I could, and should.  I forget!  But I remembered last week.  I bought some broccoli, lettuce, organic beets, a canteloupe, mini seedless cucumbers, and a loaf of multigrain bread, and maybe something else that I’m forgetting, all for $15 (the bread alone was $5.50).  Does anyone else notice how local food tastes like dirt?  Maybe I’m crazy, or maybe elsewhere it doesn’t, but I notice that the food I buy at the farmer’s market tastes a bit like dirt, even after a thorough washing.  And I like it.

I don’t plan meals or what I’m going to buy when I go to the market, because you can’t, really.  I just buy what looks good and is in season, and then tend to treat it really simply to just enjoy it as is.  The mini cucumbers kill me, they’re so good, and they go perfectly with hummus.  I was feeling particularly lazy the next day, so I got some store-bought hummus, roasted the beets, and this was dinner.

hummus platter

I was also trying to use up the rest of the aforementioned Esme’s sauce and the beet greens, so last night I did up some pasta with a side salad.  And a glass of wine.  The larger size of Yellowtail Shiraz was on sale for the price the smaller bottle normally runs!

pasta & salad

I’d never had beet greens before, and I like them a lot.  All the green-ness of kale or chard, without any of the bitter.  I’ll probably be eating beet greens whenever possible from now on.

By the by, if you’ve never had the Sabra brand hummus and you see it, buy it.  That is a command. 

It’s so good.  I’ve had classic, roasted garlic, roasted red pepper, and supremely spicy, and they’re all amazing.  I don’t know how they do it.  I’ve looked at the ingredients list and it’s what you would expect of a normal hummus, but something they do to it makes it so good.  Worth the price.

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