Another Night of Vegging Out on the Mediterranean

2010.Apr.27 Tuesday · 3 comments

in Casa SaltShaker, Food & Recipes

Our occasional vegetarian nights are becoming more popular, and they make a fun break for me in the kitchen to do something different – taking ideas that I might normally use in a meat-based meal and giving them some interesting twists. By the way, if you haven’t noticed, we’ve begun to focus on the cuisines that ring the Mediterranean, with some outside influences, but have moved away from pure menus from the Far East, Africa, etc. After more than four years of tracking feedback, it’s become clear what the most popular meals are, particularly after the fact. Hey, it’s the arena of cuisine in which I trained and have worked the most, so there’s no real surprise there.

Stuffed Grape Leaves with Taratur

Stuffed grape leaves, veggie style, in and of themselves, not a new version but my tried and true one. The change, a Taratur Sauce – tahini (sesame paste), lemon, salt, and enough water to thin it out.

Minted Green Bean Soup

Bringing back one of our favorite soups from Portugal, green bean and mint, just putting in a corn and carrot stock in place of the chicken stock.

Papardelle with Lemon-Grappa Cream

One of my favorite simple pastas – papardelle with lemon-grappa cream – freshly made pasta, the rest of the ingredients the same other than that I mixed all the sauce ingredients together in advance to let the cream infuse – it definitely comes out better this way. No pinenuts to be found, used toasted sunflower seeds.

Crispy Seitan with Eggplant Puree and Chickpeas

Regular readers have seen various versions of this dish recently, with lamb and duck, the base – a charred eggplant puree with garlic, olive oil and some chilies; a good scoop of chickpeas sauteed in olive oil, sweet, hot and smoked paprikas; added in some quickly sauteed frying peppers; and then some homemade seitan cutlets, nicely seasoned and then lightly coated with olive oil and broiled to give them a crisp crust on both sides.

Cappuccino Cream Puffs

As you saw a couple of posts ago, I’ve been practicing my cream puffs and eclairs – so, where better to try them out than one of our dinners – a dessert plate of a couple of cream puffs filled with cappuccino pastry cream and tn coated in a dark chocolate glaze and a dusting of cinnamon and sugar.

And that’s what you missed at our vegetarian evening!

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Allan April 27, 2010 at 14:39

De-Lish! Really enjoyed this meal, Dan. All those lovely flavors came through brilliantly and never once seemed muddled.

Candice April 27, 2010 at 19:03

It all looks very tasty , but I must admit, the cream puffs win the prize if I were handing them out 🙂
Now back to my own veggie dinner .. ( Pasta with diced tomatoes, fresh broccoli and garlic and red onion .. tossed with a bit of good olive oil and feta. )

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