Monday, August 2, 2010

project oregano

Made a pretty dinner the other night.

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Someone mentioned caramelized shallots on one of my blog posts and I was like YES! THAT!

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I knew I wanted those beautiful fresh peas in on the action. And then I was like, hey, well, let’s get some squash in too. So I sauteed it in olive oil because in the summer basically at any given moment there is a 50/50 chance I will be sauteeing summer squash in olive oil (p.s. are other people as IRRITATED with all the people preaching about how “unnutritious” summer squash is?! Okay, so it’s not friggin’ fortified. It’s a VEGETABLE. It’s FRESH. It’s in SEASON. And it’s not like it’s freaking BAD for you! Jeez!).

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And threw it all together and the fresh peas made me think grits, so I made those, too.

It was okay, if lacking a bit in cohesiveness. My plate had an extra special, completely nonsequitur side dish, of half a fried plantain, leftover from my mama’s lunch! Mmmm mmm mm.

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Today I made more efforts in ongoing Project Oregano. This is our “garden”:

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This is the oregano explosion overtaking most of it:

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Fortunately, I like oregano. In favor of population control, I’m delighted to use massive quantities of it in my cooking.

So I took a cue from the latest post in Food for Laughter and oomphed up my faaaaaavorite recipe for whole wheat beer foccacia with scads of fresh oregano.

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And then decided I needed to make more muhammara because we had fresh red peppers and… it had been literally 7 days since I last made it and I already missed it…

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And I had on my hands a nibbley dinner! I love the nibbley dinner.

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Rounding out the plate was a lovely salad of the last of a Cosi catering salad leftover from my mom’s work meeting that we’ve been going through for the week: greens, pistachios, dried cranberries, bleu cheese, yummy dressing. To it I added kidney beans and fresh cherry tomatoes.

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It was almost not quite my Signature Salad that I’d make nearly every day for lunch in the dining hall (college kids, take note!). I would combine spinach, cherry tomatoes (when available, all too rarely), kidney beans, red onion, raw broccoli, crumbled feta, and oil and vinegar. Textural and nutritional magic! Had I not all-too-often eaten it with fries, I probably would’ve done better.

5 comments:

Astra Libris said...

Awww, Lele, I'm SO happy that you're enjoying the beer bread, and I LOVE your addition of all the glorious fresh oregano! Mmmmm, very few things are better than fresh herbs! :-)

Maya said...

Who says that about summer squash! I wanna give him a piece of my mind!

Not really. But it is silly. I feel the same way about eggplant. So what if it's not the most nutritious veggie, it's delicious and comes from the ground and is still a vegetable. So I shall eat it with gusto.

Jess said...

I love all the fresh herbs and such that you use to cook with! Sounds like it would taste so GOOD!
<3 jess
xoxo

Kelsey said...

mmmm signature salads <3

and arent caramelized shallots fantastic!?! theyre way cooler than caramelized onions i must say :P

xoxo

Kaz said...

Seriously? Who's saying summer squash is rubbish? Pooh on them. You said it best: it's a *vegetable* not some fortified white bread or some garbage like that.

Your nibbley dinner looks delicious. That focaccia looks fantastic!