firstly, sorry for the lack of posts. i've been getting comments from concerned readers whether i've been eating or not for the last few days! don't worry, i am. a lot.
to catch you up ("ketchup," get it, haha!) on things...
i made a pizza the other night with the roomies that contained almost everything that we had in the fridge and it turned out great. there's nothing to it. we bought some dough from hot lips pizza and here's a list of what we put on it:
zuccini, mushrooms, sauteed onions, spicy jalapeno sausage, andouille sausage, gorgonzolla cheese, mozzarella cheese, fresh chopped tomatoes, sliced red onions, bell pepper...and i think that's it. oh yeah, and a thin layer of tomato sauce.
here's what it looked like:
the night after that i cheated and made a fancy mac-and-cheese made from annie's white cheddar mac-n-cheese mix. it's krista's fault...she mentioned it over the phone and got a craving for it.
i followed the box directions but added crimini mushrooms that i sauteed with butter and fresh thyme. then threw in some freshly chopped tomato.
i ate the whole thing.
sorry, no picture of this one. it was good though!
the night after that, i actually went out for once and ate dinner at this fancy restaurant down the street called castagna (http://www.castagnarestaurant.com/). i told my roommate that i needed to start watching my weight from all the food i've been eating so i was planning on eating light.
i ordered a roasted half chicken with a panzanella salad. i ate the whole thing. THE WHOLE HALF CHICKEN. dang.
afterwards, while we were walking home, we spotted down the alley way, right behind our house, a chef from another fantastic restaurant on our street, sel gris (http://www.selgrisrestaurant.com/), on his break. my roommate said he'd introduce me because he sees the chefs back there all the time when he takes the trash out. long story short, acquaintances were made, tuna was exchanged, wine was had and i went home with a cute porcini mushroom. literally. the head and sous chef were extremely kind and even mentioned that a couple of OCI grads worked there. huzzah! there is hope!
ok, now for the food.
after our party last weekend, we noticed a bag full of goodies that someone had brought from their garden. we finally figured out that ben's friend, beverly, had kindly brought over some beautiful veggies, fresh from her garden. included in the bag was a plethora of japanese eggplant, a giant zuccini, and tomatoes, among other vegetables like pumpkins and peppers. the decision to make ratatouile came from the fact that we had a giant zuccini and a ton of eggplant that needed to be eaten. also, i saw a kick ass article in the new york times a couple days ago that featured a ratatouille pot pie. decision made. (i'm sure i'm offending the french with this one but whateves...i made coq au vin, old school style, last week. i can't wait, i'm hungry!)
meaty ratatouille (it rhymes!):
adapted from melissa clark's recipe from nytimes (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/30/dining/302arex.html?ref=dining). it's basically the same thing, minus the biscuit.
1 lb spicy italian pork sausage, casings removed
1 onion, chopped into chunks
1 bell pepper, chopped into chunks (same size as onion)
1-2 pounds of japanese eggplant, chopped into chunks or thick slices cut on the diagonal (i did it that way)
1 lb zuccini, chopped the same way as eggplant
2 giant beefsteak or slicing tomatoes (sweet!!!), chopped into chunks
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
4-6 sprigs of fresh thyme
handful or parsley and basil, chopped
salt and pepper
preheat oven to 450 degrees. toss chopped zuccini with olive oil and salt and pepper to coat in a bowl and then place on a baking/roasting sheet pan flat and put in oven for around 20 minutes or until it's all roasty and toasty. make sure to toss or flip the veggies once in a while so it gets roasted all around. meanwhile, if you have it, use a oven safe heavy pot/pan and cook the italian sausage, breaking it up into smaller chunks, until it's browned. remove the sausage into another plate and leave the oil in there. throw in the garlic, onion, and bell peppers and saute until softened (about 5 minutes or so). throw in the tomatoes and all the herbs and saute/mix together until the tomato consistency gets stewy (about 10 mins). don't forget about the roasted veggies!!! throw those into the pot with the sausage. season with salt and pepper to taste. if you are using an oven safe pot, you can throw it into the oven (turn down the heat to 350) and let it stew together for about 20 min. if you don't have an oven safe pot, just transfer it to one that is and throw it in.
when it's done, you can top it with some freshly chopped parsley and serve with bread. oh yeah, don't forget to tell your guests about the thyme sprigs!