Monday, June 29, 2009

Meatless Monday: first report

This isn't actually the first time I've done a meatless Monday, but I think if I report back about it every week, it will encourage me to be better with it. So how did I do today?

Let's work backwards. Just before I left work, I was taken with a craving for Chinese-style scallion pancakes. But I knew I didn't have any scallions in the house, so I started to reconsider. Then I saw the comment from yesterday's food post which had a link to this zucchini pancake recipe. Not exactly Chinese-style, but I thought I might be able to adapt it.

When I got home, I immediately set about grating the zucchini, summer squash, and onion. I ended up making the pancakes almost exactly as the recipe said, except that I used cheddar instead of Parmesan, and I was very generous with the basil. Instead of topping the fritters with diced tomatoes, however, I decided to give it an Asian twist by using one of my favorite made-up sauces, which is almost equal parts sriracha, rice vinegar, and light soy sauce, with a sprinkle of sugar and a bit of water. I had to go light on the sauce, though, because it almost overpowered the flavors of the veggies in the fritters. I had enough fritters leftover for breakfast or lunch tomorrow, too!

For breakfast today I had Kashi puffed grain cereal with dried currants and soy milk. Pretty boring, but definitely meatless. My midmorning snack was an oatmeal cookie. Lunch was a homemade potato salad, which is really the only kind I will eat. Not to be a snob about one of the Great American Summer Side Dishes, but I find typical supermarket potato salad to be too dry, too starchy, and waaaay too sweet. Here's how my mom taught me to make potato salad (with some adaptations from me):
1. Boil up some new potatoes* (cut into at least halves, or smaller if they're on the big side), but don't overdo it with the boiling. Cook them just until you can easily skewer them with a fork or paring knife.
2. Immediately after draining them, put the potatoes in a bowl and get them soaking in several tablespoons of cider vinegar.
3. While the taters are soaking up the yummy vinegar, chop up some fresh dill, a bit of onion, and some celery. If you have some parsley lying around, chop that up too.
4. If the potatoes seem to have way too much vinegar still pooled around them, you can drain some off, but otherwise, just dump your chopped herbs and veggies in with the taters.
5. Add a few tablespoons of mayo, and stir.
6. Salt and pepper to taste, and voila!

I wish I had taken a picture of the potato salad too, but I had already eaten it all by the time I thought of it. So, all that yummy food, and I still have two tomatoes and several potatoes left over from my Sunday at the farmers' market.

*My mom says russets are better because they absorb more flavor, but I really enjoy the smooth texture of new potatoes, and I like the color added by leaving the skin on, which you can't really do with russets.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Finally, some knitting

This is the reason I haven't posted anything about knitting (or anything else, for that matter) in the past couple weeks. I had been feverishly knitting on this Big Bad Baby Blanket (in Berroco Comfort) for Mazhalai. I don't know why I thought I could finish it in a week and a half, with after work commitments most nights, and cooking to do for the Saturday evening baby shower as well.

But right up until Saturday morning, I was convinced I'd find a way to do it. I was even knitting the borders and the knit stitch sections in continental style to make it go faster (I would have done it all in continental, but I realized early on in the project that my gauge is really really inconsistent when I purl in continental). Anyway, at some point as I was knitting furiously while getting my 9am pedicure, I saw the light. After my pedicure I went to the mall and bought some onesies and other baby clothes, and when I came home all I did was cook the unda curry I had committed to bring (recipe from this Madhur Jaffrey book).

But at the shower, I showed Mazhalai my progress, so the cat is out of the bag now, and all I have to do is actually finish the blanket sometime before, or at least very soon after, the baby comes. And best of all, I cam finally stop hiding from my own blog.

In preparation for Meatless Monday

Ok, so Sangeeta and I have a deal with each other to try and be healthful while also reducing our negative impact on the environment by reducing the amount of meat in our diets and dedicating at least one day a week to not eating any meat.

Lucky for me, the West End Farmers' Market is on Sundays. My haul this week, from top to bottom: summer squash, zuchinni, heirloom tomatoes, basil, and new potatoes. I have to use all this in 2 days, since I leave for Spain on Wednesday, so I won't have much space for meat in my
diet even if I wanted to!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The newest fashion

I had to share this wonderful photo with you. As much as I love yarn cakes, I have to agree, as a hairpiece, it's fugly.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Type A

Well, it took me long enough, but I finally have my whole stash catalogued on Ravelry. It feels great, even though it took me forever to do! Take a look if you want, but hands off--almost everything is destined for one project or another. Except maybe the Red Heart (please don't laugh). If you pay me enough to cover the rent for the rest of the year you're really nice to me, though, there are a few things I might consider swapping or gifting.