Friday, September 10, 2010

Italian Feast Friday

A lot of times, I like to mix things up - I dig the fusion cuisine.  I'm not terribly skilled at concocting fusion recipes just yet, but I love piecing together a side dish from here with an entree from there, so to speak.

Nevertheless, sometimes a completely unified dinner is fulfilling in a way I can only describe as peaceful.  It's as though all the components that make food into a meal come together and harmonize in such a way that you would have to be oblivious to the world around you not to pause mid-chew and appreciate how good your meal is.  I would say it's a zen-like experience, but that would introduce fusion language into a very coherent dinner.

Tonight, I welcomed a hard-earned weekend by making Clara's Pasta e Fagioli from The Urban Vegan.  From Dynise's description, I expected the results to be a lot soupier, but it was undeniably a pasta dish.  I suppose I could have added the cup of broth for flavor without interfering with the "pasta dish" aspect too much - I cannot fathom how one little cup of broth would have turned the monstrous portion (48oz of leftovers crammed into GladWare after we each had two helpings) into soup.  Don't get me wrong - the weather is becoming perfect for soup, but Mister has already made it clear that he is not ready for that yet.

Following Dynise's own method of eating this delightful bowl of pasta and beans, I ran out for fresh bread to turn into garlic bread and I was really quite thrilled with the results - I dare a restaurant to make a more attractive plate:

Well...okay, it would probably be a little prettier without that burnt edge there, but I'm not perfect for heaven's sake.

To round out the perfect Italian-ness of our dinner, I served up the last of the olives and poured myself a healthy, celebratory glass of Francis Coppola Diamond Malbec (AKA: Velvet).  Okay...the wine is Argentine, but that's really just a short swim from Italy anyway.  Regardless of geography, it could not have completed the flavors of our dinner tonight better if it was grown in the foothills of Tuscany.

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