How's about we look what I made for dinner the other night:
I had an eggplant that I wanted to use, and I had bought a lovely piece of Alaskan cod earlier in the day, so what to do?
My approach to daily cooking is a simple one- look at what is in the fridge and make something with whatever is on hand. This approach can have wonderful results- "Behold! Harissa-simmered lamb on goat cheese mashed potatoes with wine-braised greens!"
But, it can also be hit or miss- "Behold! microwaved veggie burgers on a bed of toasted toast with sweet tomato puree and a side of leDoritos!" Bon appetit!
Rarely do I follow recipes (the book in the picture below is my favorite vegetarian cookbook that I reference for ideas/combinations of ingredients/reminders of what goes into certain things that I may have forgotten, and its delicious pancake recipes). I am more of an abstract artist when it comes to cooking. Think more Jackson Pollack, less Rembrandt.
I wanted to go more Mediterranean with this meal as we had just eaten spicy Thai take-out the previous night. I love the super-spicy Thai, but my "delicate constitution" needs a day off from the heat to avoid the condition that goes by the unfortunate name of "spicy butthole".
I decided on Steamed cod on tomato quinoa with caponata and pesto drizzle.
The beginnings of caponata:
You want to put something pickley/briney in caponata, to give it a little "bite". I didn't have capers on hand, but I did have my all-time favorite olives in the whole universe- sundried tomato-stuffed olives in garlic oil- so I just chopped a few up and threw them in. A few may have accidentally fallen into my mouth as well.
Once the onions, garlic & eggplant have cooked for a bit, I added some chopped tomatoes (canned) red pepper flakes, chopped sundried tomatoes, some dried herbs, salt & pepper and a healthy splash of white wine (again, some may or may not have accidentally fallen into my mouth.)
At this point I covered it and let it simmer for about 20 minutes. It will be thick, but still chunky when done. Check the seasoning & set it aside, covered, to stay warm.
Where the magic happens. When we bought our house, there were no appliances whatsoever in the kitchen. The kitchen has a 40's/50's vibe to it, so we got this 1950 range from an ad in the paper for $25. The family we bought it from had it at their lake home, which they rarely used. So basically, we got a super-cool, essentially brand-new vintage range for almost nothing. I would prefer a gas range, but we only have an electric hookup for the time being. I've gotten used to electric cooking, and I have to say that the burners on this range get hotter than any of the non-professional ranges on the market today. And the oven is awesome- even heat, quick warmup, no "hot spots". Plus it has a big storage drawer on the bottom and another on the left side. All of my pans fit in there, which is saying a lot.
I love my range. She sure is cute.
I sometimes like to have a balsamic vinegar/extra virgin olive oil mix to dip bread in.
I love how it looks- all swirly and psychedelic.
The finished product:
It was delicious.
How about you? Eat anything worth noting this weekend? Eat anything you should be embarrassed by? Do. Share.