Even though the date on this post will say Monday, August 30, it is merely after midnight and I haven't slept, so according to Mister (and me), it is still today. Today was a wonderful (if not a bit hot) day. I woke to find a hungry kitty waiting for me to get up and feed him - days like today are one reason we sleep with the bedroom door closed. He barely allowed me to start my tea and was following me around, singing the "feed me" song. Once he had his breakfast, he retired to his newly found Favorite Spot - the window.
I left him on the window and Mister in bed and joined my parents and sister for a lovely Sunday brunch at Supper. I chose this restaurant for a couple of reasons, the most outstanding being the ironic humor of eating brunch at a place called Supper. Also, it provided a venue where my father's and my differing culinary desires could meet in relative harmony, ensuring a peaceful family gathering. My dear dad, of course, ordered the eggs 'n' meat fritatta, while I opted for cornmeal johnnycakes and a bowl of fruit to share with my sister. After a perfectly portioned brunch, we wandered down the Italian Market to see the sights and digest a little. I snuck in a short trip to the Spice Corner, which smelled wonderful and seemed to amuse my parents.
I spent the hotter part of the afternoon doing laundry and once the sun started to dip below the highest parts of the skyline, I headed over to Whole Foods to shop for this week's menu:
1. Mediterranean Chopped Salad from Vegetarian Times Complete Cookbook, which reminds me, I also gave my sister a little present this afternoon: the Farmer's Market cookbook issue of Vegetarian Times magazine, chock full of blended and chilled soups (her new thing). This led to a very entertaining discussion of immersion blenders as we walked to Supper for Brunch.
2. TLC Sandwiches, clipped from the coupon magazine they have at Whole Foods. They sound simple and fun. I will serve them alongside Mediterranean Mashed Potatoes.
3. Snobby Joes from Veganomicon. For reasons I may never know, I was craving this specific recipe out of all the Joes recipes I have.
4. Curried Tofu with Mixed Baby Greens from my own twisted imagination. I was inspired to make this again when I saw all the perfect rows of baby bok choy waiting to be taken home on last week's market day. That might be foreshadowing...just sayin'.
5. Moroccan Mishmash, because mishmash is a great way to describe the state of my brain by the time I get home from work most days recently. And because it tastes good.
6. Thai Pineapple Stir-Fried Rice from Vegan Express. I can't remember if I've made this before. If I have, it's high time I repeat it. If I haven't, I'm sure I'm about to kick myself.
Last night, however, I made the Herbed Ragu Bolognese from the Sept/Oct 2010 issue of VegNews.
I did deviate slightly from the recipe. The recipe called for tempeh, so I substituted tofu to prevent a war in Mister's belly. Although I like tempeh, I think I was happier with the tofu than I would have imagine its texture with tempeh. Also, I didn't simmer it for a full hour - I simply ran out of patience, to be honest. It was very good - the sauce was delightfully thick and meaty, as a bolognese sauce should be. There was only one thing I can honestly say did not go well: the Brazil Nut Cream. It never turned into a cream, despite following all the directions. I wonder if I need a high-speed blender to make it thick and creamy, but the nuts remained in chunks. Fortunately, its vague grittiness added to the illusion of "meatiness."
Tonight's dinner was Curried Tofu with Mixed Baby Greens, although it ended up a little differently than planned.
I've made this previously with silken tofu and found that I didn't like the way the curry spices sat on top of it, rather than melding into the nooks and crannies of water-packed tofu. I used that this time and found it absorbed the spices far better, resulting in a much better tofu experience. In an ironic twist of fate, all those perfect little baby bok choy that caused me to choose this recipe? Gone. There was not a single baby bok choy in all of Whole Foods. I elected to replace them with what remained of the chard from Friday's dinner. It came out well and somehow seemed faster than other times I've made it. I'm hoping I can say the same about this week upon arriving at Friday again!