the joys of piles of cookbooks, snuggly pets, and open-ended menu planning.
Between doing lots of fun book review posts and a whole month of MoFo, it seems like it's been a really long time since I could just site back and make whatever the heck I wanted to make for dinner. And I do actually have another fun book review coming soon, but for the last couple of weeks, I've had the joy and luxury of just cooking whatever I'm in the mood for. It's so fun!
Grilled Eggplant and Zucchini Lasagna from The Abundance Diet
imaginary Eggplant PJs
plus Yummers snuggles
Farmers Market Panini from Chef Chloe
3 Dishes from Vegan Richa's Kitchen:
Eggplant with Cumin & Nigella, Gobi Mutter Masala, Spinach & Black Eyed Peas
I finally got to bust open my copy of Vegan Richa's Kitchen and made a bunch of Indian food. I made 3 dishes and then we had it for dinner for two nights in a row, plus a few lunches for me. (Mr. VE&T likes to go out for lunch). I think our favorite was the Gobi Mutter Masala - a lightly creamy concoction with cauliflower and peas and a deliciously spiced sauce. So good! I jacked up my Spinach and Black Eyed Peas with some hot sauce and loved it that way! So many more promising recipes in this book to explore. Do you have any favorites to recommend?
Quick & Easy: Gardein Fishless Fillets, Frozen peas, Homemade Tartar Sauce
Ha ha, this isn't a dinner you see often on my blog, is it? Well, I've heard so many good things about Gardein products, but I still hadn't tried them -- until I found them on sale at Grocery Outlet. I got the nuggets, the mandarin orange nuggets and the fishless fillets (pictured here). I actually really liked the nuggets a lot, and was excited and curious to try the fishless fillets -- especially since I've heard so many rave reviews about them. Well, I really didn't like them.
Ever since I can remember, I have never liked fishy things. As a kid, I always hated fish. Even now, I have an unfortunate aversion to seaweed that makes it impossible for me to enjoy sushi*. I don't want it to be this way, but it is this way. So, I thought I'd try these fishless fillets and see what i thought... maybe my tastes have evolved? Nope. Mr VE&T was totally impressed with them ("they taste like fish!" "I can't believe this is vegan!") - but then, he likes fish. I ate one, and just could not bring myself to eat another. Alas, Mr. VE&T ate it happily... and I returned to the kitchen and cooked up some of the regular nuggets and enjoyed those just fine.
*Recently I spent a day in San Francisco with some pals and we had a really great dinner at an all-vegan Japanese place called Shizen. I was excited to try the sushi and see how it went... but I also played it safe and ordered some (delicious!!) non-sushi items as well. The sushi came, and I tried it... and I just wasn't able to enjoy it because of that darned seaweed in there. It ruins everything for me. I am a little sad about this, but also kind of amazed. Isn't it interesting that we don't really get to decide what we like and don't like?
Tofu Omelettes (from Vegan Brunch) with Cherry Tomato Filling (from Fresh Food Fast)
In addition to copious amounts of eggplant consumption, we have also been diligently eating our tomatoes. This is one of my favorite combos, and I've made it several times before. Everything comes together very quickly, it's fresh and filling and healthy, and fun to eat. A perfect early fall dinner.
Our tomato plants have been working hard and producing so many tomatoes -- especially cherry tomatoes. My frugal nature dictates that nothing must go to waste, so I am always on the lookout for recipes wherein I can include loads of homegrown tomatoes. Happily, just last week, I bought tomatoes at the farmers market for the first time all summer, because our plants are finally getting used up. Phew.
Now, the apple tree is just coming on, so next I will be eating my body weight in apples. If it's not one crop, it's another. :)