Monday, September 8, 2008

catching up

There are always a few meals that, for whatever reason, don't make it on the blog during the week I make them. They linger in the corners of my memory, haunting my "to blog" list, and are borne ever farther back by the waves of new photos in my Flickr photostream. They are perfectly good meals, decently photographed, so there's no reason not to post about them. So now, when I don't have regular access to a camera, is actually a perfect time to sweep the corners and post the pieces that I've missed.

This was a fantastic and satisfying veggie-only dinner from week 10. I made a simple red sauce from mushrooms, onions, fresh tomatoes, olive oil, and rosemary, and I served it over faux-fried eggplant. Tasty as it is, I don't fry eggplant (or much of anything, really) - most of the time, fried foods just aren't worth the calories to me. I'd rather have ice cream. So my favorite way to prepare eggplant (and zucchini) is to fake-fry it: I dip the sliced veggies in milk or plain yogurt, then in bread crumbs (seasoned with herbs and sometimes parmesan cheese) and bake them in the oven at 375 for 20-30 minutes. The result is unbeatable - all of the crispiness of fried eggplant (or zucchini) with none of the grease. In this case, I also served corn on the cob and sliced cucumbers.

One of my favorite vegetables this summer is yellow squash. It's a new favorite for me; while I liked it alright before, for some reason this summer I just can't get enough of it. I especially love the teeny, tiny baby squashes we've received so often in our CSA box; they are awesome raw - crunchy yet tender. The larger ones usually end up grilled, with peanut sauce and other grilled veggies, or sometimes very lightly steamed. Several weeks back, I decided to experiment with the squash and use up several pantry items at the same time.

I ended up with this tasty, if a little strange, concotion: sliced squash, sauteed and sprinkled with balsamic vinaigrette, tossed with Wacky Mac and feta cheese. I was inspired in part by recipe that I stumbled across for pan-seared balsamic squash; since my squash was only lightly cooked and not seared, I'm not sure it quite stood up to the balsamic. Maybe it's just me, since I'm actually not a big fan of balsamic vinegar in general. But the feta worked nicely with both the squash and the balsamic, and Dan enjoyed the dish. Luckily, he's pretty easy to please.

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