Friday, August 12, 2011

Produce galore!

Eek. I went on an insane produce-buying spree on Tuesday at the farmers market and Wednesday at Sprouts, neglecting to recall that I have multiple social events over meal-times over the next few days.

I have:
Roma tomatoes
Grape tomatoes
4 ears of corn
Many, many bing cherries
2 avocadoes
FIVE mother-effing green peppers. What oh what was I thinking?
1 yellow pepper
A bazillion cucumbers
Green beans
2 white peaches
Two zucchini
Some chilis
Half a bag of baby carrots
Green onions

So much bounty!

I have some plans for the eating. But oh, lord, I must be diligent because there is truly nothing I hate more than food waste. I actually can't think of the last time I threw something out because it had gone bad or spoiled, so diligent am I about using stuff up. But this will be a challenge.

So, today I made a salad with cherries, a peach, a lemon, quinoa, and some arugula. Post to come.

Tonight, Bill and I are going to a friend's for Japanese food and I will make a Japanese cucumber salad (with a mixture of Japanese and Persian cucumbers-- incidentally, that's a baby blend I haven't seen that I think would be gorgeous).

Tomorrow, I will go to a baby shower where I don't know the host and thus won't bring anything. Also the mama doesn't like cherries (wtf?) and that is the food item I most need to foist off on other people. Because I bought four pounds. Whoops.

I also have plans to make some stuffed green peppers, because I also have some ground turkey (which was not in the recall) to use up. I've never made stuffed peppers and Bill doesn't think he likes them, but with five green peppers, it seems like the best option. That will use some carrot and tomatoes, too.

Some of the corn, tomato, green onions, chili peppers, and cilantro, one avocado, and all of the radishes will be turned into a quinoa salad.

And I will make zucchini bread soon.

That leaves: corn, arugula, green onions, chili peppers, cilantro, green beans, bell peppers, onions, and cherries that need to be assembled into meals. The remaining fruit I can snack on, and same goes for the remaining tomatoes. Suggestions?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Boring Orzo Salad

Well, Bill liked it. And I didn't hate it.

But, it wasn't awesome. And the ingredients were awesome-- a bunch of veggies (arugula, tomatoes, bell pepper, herbs), straight from the farmers market or my balcony garden, plus baked chicken and goat cheese. It even looked good.

Chicken-Orzo Salad from Cooking Light. I used whole wheat orzo and baked the chicken.

But it was boring. Sigh. As amazing as goat cheese is, I think there's something about combining it with whole wheat pasta that always disappoints. I wish I could articulate exactly what the problem is, but it's just never as good as I want it to be.  Here, the sum of the ingredients were less than its parts.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Steak and lettuce is still a salad, right?

Totally.  This is a "Thai Beef Salad" and it is pretty good. I followed the Food Network recipe more or less exactly. I will say that lettuce, herbs, and beef does not make for a particularly filling salad; if I make this again, I'll add cucumbers, bell peppers, and some other stuff. As it stands, I'm about two-thirds an episode of the increasingly abysmal Weeds from making a ginormous bowl of popcorn. But let's be real, folks, I'd be making popcorn this evening regardless of what I ate for dinner.

Anyway, check out the perfectly cooked steak, thanks to Bill's new manly grill skills. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

More summer salads!

So I spent the last week hanging out with my mom while she got her knee replaced, and then started recuperating. As a result, I followed the fried and meat diet, based on what was edible in the hospital cafeteria. Don't worry, I would pick up a few leaves of spinach from their paltry salad bar to accompany my chicken fingers and waffle fries...

Anyway, I am back in LA and while Bill and I did some celebrating this afternoon with some truly delicious all-you-can-eat Brazilian pizza at Bella Vista, well, it's time to get back on the vegetable wagon.

So, this afternoon I hit my local farmers market.

And for dinner, I chopped up some fresh-from-the-farmers veggies. Two of which were "bargains"-- the radishes were thrown in for a quarter on top of a 75 cent bunch of cilantro, and two cucumbers were thrown in for a quarter on top of a whole passel of cucumbers I was buying. Is there a quarter shortage in this country?

Anyway, I made this cucumber, tomato, and radish salad from epicurious. It looked like this.