Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Easy.

This is not a food blog. 

It just so happens I have little other to talk about right now. I mean, I could tell you about the so-much-fun-I-wanted-to-cry-when-it-ended girls weekend I just had up at my lake house. Or about the fun gifts my dad brought me back from Colorado and Santa Fe. I could probably go on and on about my excitement over my brother moving back from LA and his super cute house (that I'm not jealous of at all) that his cute girlfriend is going to make look so awesome. There's plenty to say about how busy my summer has been; how many great books I've read lately; how awesome it is to be dating someone "in the industry" so I now get to see raw edits of unreleased movies. But for now, it's going to be food I talk about.

The other day I was trolling the internet for inspiration for dinner. I had no clue what I wanted, but I knew I wanted something easy. Like super easy. It was Monday after all. The Monday after the above mentioned girls weekend that left me so drained I literally did cry before bed on Sunday (no joke). So anything requiring effort sounded like way too much. Then I found this recipe and that was all I needed.  I did change it though, adding asparagus and mushrooms that needed to be used up. It was so easy and delicious, I can't wait to make it again. 


Simple Lemon Pasta
What I used:
1/2 lb pasta. I used pasta "flowers". They were very pretty.
olive oil
1/2 small onion, finely diced, aka. chopped very tiny (Lauren and Morgan)
2 cloves garlic, finely diced
a good shake of red pepper flakes
1/2 lb. white mushrooms, sliced
about 7 stalks asparagus, cut into chunks
3/4 c. frozen peas
1 c. cheese, I used a mixture of romano and parmesan
juice of 1 lemon

What I did:
Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water. While that cooks, heat oil in a small pan. Add onion, garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook just a few minutes, til soft and fragrant. Add mushrooms and cook on med-low heat til soft. When pasta is almost finished, scoop out about a c. of the boiling water (to thicken sauce later, if needed) and add the asparagus and peas to boiling pasta water.  When pasta is done, strain the whole pot. Add pasta, asparagus and peas back into hot pot. Pour in the mushroom/onion mixture. Add the cheese and lemon juice and stir. Add more cheese and a bit of the reserved pasta water if desired to make it a bit more saucy.   Find the biggest bowl you can and eat your delicious dinner out of that. On the couch. While watching Project Runway on your laptop.


...grace...
1. A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
2. Making room for a new roomie. (A boy!)
3. Ed Hardy koozies. Just trust me on this one.
4. Sharkey's bar at Grand Lake.
5. My sweet niece who just turned 10. She got an iPod touch for her birthday. We now text everyday when she is out of school. It makes my day.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

I'm back! And I made you something to eat.

So it's been awhile. I planned on playing catch up on all my life happenings, but it turns out I didn't have much to report, so I decided to share with you the one thing that rarely changes around here; good food. I'm really good at eating, so we'll just talk about that. Most of my meals are what I call "bowl meals" which is a really boring way of saying I eat things out of bowls. Lots of soups, beans and greens, stir fry's, and the like. It's a rare occasion that I make a meal that belongs on a plate and has separate parts. I'm a mixer. Things should be eaten together. Like lentils and rice. Here's my favorite way to eat it. 



 (I lost my camera charger, so I take pictures on my phone. They aren't great.)

What you need:
olive oil
1 onion, sliced or diced, whatever you fancy
1-2 cloves of garlic
2 carrots, diced
Grated ginger. I use fresh, and probably used around 1/2 Tb.
1/2-1tsp. each of tumeric, garam masala, ground red pepper, and cumin
1 bay leaf
1 c. of lentils
1/2 can coconut milk
1/2 c. frozen peas, or more if you accidentally spill a lot in the bowl. 
1 c. uncooked brown rice.

How you make it: (start to finish, this takes about 45 mins)
Start by cooking your rice according to package directions. Honestly, those somehow don't work for me, I always end up adding more water. So don't worry if that's the case for you as well. It'll make me feel better to know I'm not alone in this. 
Next, in a skillet (I use a big deep one), saute your onions in the oil for a few minutes until soft. Add the carrots and garlic, lots of S&P, and cook til the onions are really soft and yellow and the carrots begin to soften. It'll smell good, you'll know. Add all your spices, and stir.  I start with about 1/2 tsp. of each and add more later if needed. Pour in the lentils and add 2c. of water. Put a lid on it and go play Words With Friends while it comes to a boil. Check the liquid levels. The lentils will soak it all up but won't be done, so you can add in another cup or two of water OR vegetable broth (I did) and let it boil, gently, until the lentils are soft, which takes about 15 mins or more. Once the lentils are soft and liquid is absorbed, add the coconut milk and frozen peas. Cook til all is soft and yummy. Add more spices if needed, which they almost always are. By this time, your rice should be done. Serve the lentils over the rice and eat. This is really good with some naan or pita bread to scoop it up with. 


..grace..
1. Book club. Everyone should do it.
2. My brother being home! For good!
3. Having a lake house, especially when the heat is as ridiculous as it's been.
4. Red nail polish.
5. Pinterest.com. I'm obsessed.