Tuesday, July 20, 2010

grilled gifts

So cute: I was at the farmer’s market and I sampled some unfrigginbelievable nectarines. So I bought a ton. Obviously. They were cheap, too.

And then I just started chatting with the very nice farmer (I asked if I should look for anything in particular when picking out nectarines, he said looks didn’t matter :D) and then he was talking about bruised ones and I was like “Oh, I don’t mind bruises, I just grill them!” So he gave me three bruised ones for free! People never give me things for free (my sister, the hottie in the short skirts, it’s a different story).

I set them aside on our counter, like so.

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Annnnnnnnd then I got home from 10 1/2 hours of work on Saturday and my mama had STEAK marinating! Honestly, it’s of unknown provenance, but she got it at Lebanese Butcher which is a small-scale place and she said they were like, cutting steaks off a cow in front of her. So I’m hoping it’s not feedlot meat. Anyway, I’m not turning down my mama’s generosity in the interest of eating politically correctly!

So my grill station:

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Nectarines (bit of a hot mess but they grilled up beautifully) steak (marinaded in some kind of yummy soy-lemon-olive oil thing that my mama found online) and corn, which I used to grill in the husk but I had it straight up at my aunt’s and it was SO good so I did it like that and it at no point appeared even remotely at risk of burning.

I was really nervous about grilling the steak, actually- I haaaaaaate overcooked steak, and had never actually grilled it all by myself before! (There’s always been a man standing by, hah!) But I tried to go by the feel of the meat and it ended up gorgey and rare, just how I like it :D

My plate, in indoor light, since in the course of just grilling outside, despite wearing bug spray, I got six mosquito bites.

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Had to laugh- that steak you see soaking in the marinade was supposed to serve ONE. My mom and I together ate half of it. As you can see above, I was perfectly satisfied with a 3-4 ounce portion.

The corn was scrumpsh. I just sprayed it before putting it on the grill and it got all sugar and awesome and didn’t even need butter. And the nectarine, ohhhhhhhh the nectarine. As you can see, even when I eat a steak dinner, I rhapsodize about the plants!

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That up top was also vair yummy- exciting cucumber salad! Really!

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It’s rare for me to get excited about a cucumber. It’s not that exciting, let’s be honest. I usually buy it when I want coolness/crunch, and don’t really think of it in terms of flavor. However, this was a genuinely delicious cucumber. Local produce has not failed me!

I tossed it with red onion (for flavor and prettiness!) and a dressing of honey, little bit of oil, and lotsa rice vinegar.

Quite honestly, I like a grilled steak from time to time but honestly even as I eat it am usually thinking about COLD LEFTOVER STEAK, also a wonderful thing to have in one’s home (I know some people get similarly rhapsodic about leftover cold meatloaf).

So following crazy Monday, grateful for the leftovers, I made salad!

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Avec arugula, the last of the cuc-red onion salad, avocado, and lime-parsley dressing. Mmm mm it was good.

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Like any meal, I went, “Let’s get some carbs in there!” So I got out three of the eggplants on our counter (leaving… another 3. Mama loves her some eggplant) and roasted them at 475, per the methodology in Oriental Basics, until dark and soft (to give you an idea, that one in the middle used to be white- these guys were small, a pound total, and it took about 22 minutes)

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Then, to make baba ghanoush, I pulled the flesh out of the skin and whirred it up in my food processor with:

2 T olive oil
2 T lemon juice
3 T tahini
2 cloves minced garlic
salt and pepper

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Subbbbblime. You were supposed to top with fresh parley (which I had) and olives (which I didn’t), so I subbed harissa, which was delicious and made for a beautiful color scheme.

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Oh baba ghanoush. I love.

For dippage, I made an assortment. On the left, the last whole wheat faux-flatout wrap, ripped up. On the right, homemade bagel chips!  My sister makes us buy food no one else in the house would eat (large non whole wheat bagels) and then ignores it and leaves it to rot. Well, I will not allow that in my house. So I thirded each bagel half, sprayed with cooking spray and sprinkled with salt, and toasted in my toaster oven til golden (I caught these IN THE NICK OF TIME. I am such a neglectful toaster!)

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Must call your attention to the beauteous plate:

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My mom’s goddaughter MADE that! She is ten and is the most beautiful, imaginative, sweet, funny child on earth (I am in no way biased). And now we have her awesome plate.

9 comments:

Maya said...

What a cute plate! I definitely did not have that artistic capacity at 10 years old, or now, for that matter.

Me want baba ghanouj. Must get on that!

Megan D said...

Ooh grilled fruit! Yummy. I pretty much want to eat whatever you eat, all the time. =P
And I am loving that plate! So beautiful, and even better that it's handmade!

Kelsey said...

awee grill me <3 hehe

I LOVE THAT PLATE! any little gifts hand made with lots of love is so amazing to recieve. the creative abilities young ones have is inspiring! wow! enjoy it :)

xoxo

Tamara Marnell said...

I don't know why they sell steaks so big either. I usually buy the thin-cut ones so I can pan-fry them quickly, so it's not as much of a problem, but I don't see how Sweetie and I could use up one of those thick ones in time. When we go out to Outback or something I always remind him to get the smallest (though still not small) 6oz, because every time he tries to be manly and order a bigger one he has difficulty finishing...and he's a 21-year-old male! Wacky American standards.

Anne @ Food Loving Polar Bear said...

I love the leftover steak salad, yum!

MelindaRD said...

Now I want some baba ganoush. Oh how I love baba. That is very cool that he gave you free peaches. Happy grilling.

Monique@She's Going The Distance said...

what a cute plate :) Grilling fruits is one of the most amazing things, ever :)

kaztronomic said...

Sweet! Congrats on scoring those nectarines! :D

Oooh, that baba ghanoush looks amazing! I've never made it before, but I really must.

Your mom's goddaughter looks very talented. That plate is beaituful! =)

kaztronomic said...

Sweet! Congrats on scoring those nectarines! :D

Oooh, that baba ghanoush looks amazing! I've never made it before, but I really must.

Your mom's goddaughter looks very talented. That plate is beatiuful! =)