the ravaged cabbage drifts on dark red skies

I’m sure some of you have seen the Omnivore’s Top 100 List (if not command c command v that into google). It’s basically a list compiled by someone with zero credibility of all the things an omnivore should try in their lifetime.. and it’s been whored out on all the big timey food blogs. Anyway, I came across this and decided to post something short on my hiatus. Take special note of the man of the hour, representin’ down at number one hundred.

The Vegetarian Top 100

1. Real macaroni and cheese, made from scratch and baked
2. Tabouleh
3. Freshly baked bread
4. Fresh figs
5. Fresh pomegranate
6. Indian dal of any sort
7. Imam bayildi
8. Pressed spiced Chinese tofu
9. Freshly made hummus
10. Tahini
11. Kimchi
12. Miso
13. Falafel
14. Potato and pea filled samosas
15. Homemade yogurt
16. Muhammara
17. Brie en croute
18. Spanikopita
19. Fresh, vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes
20. Insalata caprese
21. Stir-fried greens (gai lan, bok choi, pea shoots, kale, chard or collards)
22. Freshly made salsa
23. Freshly made guacamole
24. Creme brulee
25. Fava beans
26. Chinese cold sesame peanut noodles
27. Fattoush
28. New potatoes
29. Coleslaw
30. Ratatouille
31. Baba ganoush
32. Winter squash
33. Roasted beets
34. Baked sweet potatoes
35. Plantains
36. Chocolate truffles
37. Garlic mashed potatoes
38. Fresh water chestnuts
39. Steel cut oats
40. Quinoa
41. Grilled portabello mushrooms
42. Chipotle en adobo
43. Stone ground whole grain cornmeal
44. Freshly made corn or wheat tortillas
45. Frittata
46. Basil pesto
47. Roasted garlic
48. Raita of any type
49. Mango lassi
50. Jasmine rice (white or brown)
51. Thai vegetarian coconut milk curry
52. Pumpkin in any form other than pie
53. Fresh apple pear or plum gallette
54. Quince in any form
55. Escarole, endive or arugula
56. Sprouts other than mung bean
57. Naturally brewed soy sauce
58. Dried shiitake mushrooms
59. Unusually colored vegetables (purple cauliflower, blue potatoes, chocolate bell peppers…)
60. Fresh peach ice cream
61. Chevre
62. Medjool dates
63. Kheer
64. Flourless chocolate cake
65. Grilled corn on the cob
66. Black bean (or any other bean) vegetarian chili
67. Tempeh
68. Seitan or wheat gluten
69. Gorgonzola or any other blue veined cheese
70. Sweet potato fries
71. Homemade au gratin potatoes
72. Cream of asparagus soup
73. Artichoke-Parmesan dip
74. Mushroom risotto
75. Fermented black beans
76. Garlic scapes
77. Fresh new baby peas
78. Kalamata olives
79. Preserved lemons
80. Fried green tomatoes
81. Chinese scallion pancakes
82. Cheese souffle
83. Fried apples
84. Homemade frijoles refritos
85. Pasta fagiole
86. Macadamia nuts in any form
87. Paw paw in any form
88. Grilled cheese sandwich of any kind
89. Paneer cheese
90. Ma Po Tofu (vegetarian style–no pork!)
91. Fresh pasta in any form
92. Grilled leeks, scallions or ramps
93. Green papaya salad
94. Baked grain and vegetable stuffed tomatoes
95. Pickled ginger
96. Methi greens
97. Aloo paratha
98. Kedgeree 
99. Okra
100. Roasted brussels sprouts



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grow up.

This has been a long couple of weeks!  I’ve been so busy with school work and personal projects that I’ve hardly had a moment to actually do my hair in the morning, much less focus on my favorite hobby (eating, duh).  It’s been all rats nests and veggie wraps for me.  Ben Folds has been on my mind a lot, distracting me, but I’m feeling a little bit better.  Scott and I are leaving for Atlanta in a couple days so expect the streak of infrequent posts to forge ahead on it’s path to complete and total apathy, uninhibited, for another week or so.

I would like to talk to you all about brussels sprouts (named after the Belgian capital Brussels, with an s, yo).  Something has been going on with brussels sprouts and I.  I know what you’re thinking, too soon, right?  Well I’m sorry, but I just had to let you know, because it could be getting serious.Anyways, I’ve been eating a serving of brussels sprouts everyday for the past couple of weeks.  I don’t know how this whirlwind affair started, but they have become such a huge staple for me now that I had to write about them.  Unlike Ben Folds, they’re low in calories for a gigantic serving, and have impressive numbers in the vitamin K and vitamin C department (270% and 160%, respectively).  Long story short, you didn’t want to eat them when you were a kid, so they must be good for you.  And they are good.  I wouldn’t lie to you.

I’ve been fine tuning my brussels sprout and onions recipe for weeks.  It started with just some simple steam/saute action, moved to braising.. they’ve been covered in gravy, charred, roasted.. tossed with almonds, tossed with rice, tossed with fake chicken.  But this is it, baby. 

Brussels Sprouts and Pearl Onions with Romano Cheese Sauce

  • 10-12 brussels sprouts, stems cut, halved and outer leaves removed
  • 5-7 pearl onions, halved and peeled (warning: these onions are really bad on the eyes)
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • a few tablespoons of flour
  • 1 tsp cajun seasoning 
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup shaved romano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated parm
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice

Preheat one tablespoon olive oil in a large saute pan over medium high heat.  Add the brussels sprouts and pearl onions, halved side down.  Pour in 3/4 cup of vegetable broth, hit her with a few shots of salt and pepper, cover and forget for 8 minutesish.

In a separate pan heat remaining olive oil over medium heat and add one tablespoon of flour and mix until it forms a paste (obviously this is a tiny batch of rue, but with olive oil instead of butter because I save all my butter eating for desserts.  YOU can use butter if you prefer).  Pour in milk and remaining vegetable broth, mixing well.  Add a little more flour, a tablespoon sprinkled at a time!, as you see fit, until it thickens.  Add cajun seasoning and garlic powder.  Kick the heat back to low and mix in the romano and parm, stirring until smooth.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Check your sprouts and onions.  They should be very soft and browned nicely on the bottoms.  Roasting for impatient people.

Divide rice between two plates and cover each with half of brussels sprouts and onions.  Pour cheese sauce over vegetables and enjoy!

Serves: 2
Ready in: 15 minutes

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give me my money back

Dear Ben,

We have been through a lot together.  I’ve stuck by you through so many ups and downs.  The whatever and ever amens (do you even remember the day we first met anymore?) and the rock this bitch’s (how angry I was at you.. ? sigh.. you weren’t the same after that.)  I’ve given you everything I’ve got!  I stuck up for you when no one else would.  I accepted, admired even, your redneck past.  All the screen names and shower sing-a-longs we shared.  Have you forgotten everything we had?  I made Scott hang up the three posters of you in our bedroom, even though he made fun of me and said that they “are all the same picture”.  Whatever, I thought, that’s love.  There are rooms in this house that I don’t open anymore because I once danced to Underground or sang Kate there.  

When Songs for Silverman came out I was hurt.  I stayed away from you for weeks.  But you kept pushing Bastard on me when I would forget to stop iTunes after Rockin’ the Suburbs was through and eventually I realized where I had been wrong.  And, as always with you, I couldn’t resist and learned to love that part of you too.  You are my lullabye, my most valuable possession and my regrets.  

A month ago you announced your reunion show with Darren and Robert.  You barely gave me three weeks notice to get my act together to be there.  I almost spent $450 on a ticket to come see you, only to find out after the fact that they were being sold half price at the door and there were empty seats in the house.  Now I can’t hardly even listen to the first minute of Narcolepsy without my stomach turning to knots.  I have you to thank for this. 

Today I woke up (way too late, feeling hungover and old) and finally found Way to Normal in its entirety.  No wonder you made such an effort to keep it from leaking.  This is by far the worst album you have ever released, and it’s the last straw for me.  I can’t keep living this lie!  I’m leaving.  It’s over.

You can keep the hundreds of dollars I’ve spent to come see your shows. 
But I’ll be keeping the last name.. Julie FoldsFive has a certain ring to it.


PS.. remember when?


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doing stuff with the food

I obviously haven’t been doing much stuff with the food lately.  Jeff has been staying with us, fixing up the house and making lots of good smelling (meat filled) food.  School’s also back in full swing so I’ve been flying solo for a lot of meals and not feeling overly ambitious.  I did, however, discover my new favorite way of making eggplant. 

This is for Mickey, who is pretending/desperately hoping it’s Halloween season already:

Usually I only like eggplant breaded and fried a la eggplant parmigiana.  Any other way I have ever tried to make eggplant it turns out the texture of wet styrofoam coated in rubber.  The skin is also very thick and difficult to chew, unless you cut it in a striped pattern, which you’ll see in a sec.  Eggplant parm is time consuming and oil filled.  Lose, lose.  I gave up.

Until I discovered THIS.  What a lovely addition to the “Things You Recently Found Out Mayonnaise Can Do” file of my brain.  You can also use any kind of tomato, but I like romas for this as they are so sweet, especially when roasted.  This is an awesome lunch or dinner main dish.

Eggplant Parm Stacks

  • 1 small eggplant, peeled like this and sliced into 1/4 – 1/2 slices, salted, rinsed and patted dry
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons light mayonnaise OR light sour cream (both are good, I prefer the mayo, of course)
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs (or more, if you like)
  • 1/4 cup grated parm
  • 3 cloves of garlic, roasted
  • a few tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 roma tomatoes, sliced thinnish
  • one small piece torn from a ball of fresh mozzarella for each slice eggplant
  • pepper to taste (you do not need more salt here)
  • balsamic vinegar (optional)

Okay, kids, here we go.

Preheat oven to 325.

That eggplant’s salted right?  RIGHT?  If not, you absolutely HAVE to do this step otherwise you’re going to get hockey puck stacks.  Sprinkle salt over your eggplant slices and go re-evaluate your life plan for twenty minutes while the eggplant sweats out all the moisture.  Then make sure you rinse them off well and gently squeeze/pat out any excess.  Toss the eggplant slices with flour to coat.

In a small bowl, beat the egg and mayonnaise/sour cream together.  Mix the breadcrumbs and grated parm in a separate small bowl.  Arrange some sort of plating arrangement so that you can 

               ONE! dip eggplant into egg
               TWO! dredge eggplant through bread crumbs/parm
               THREE! transfer to clean plate
               FOUR! repeat

until you have gone through the whole eggplant.  Now, take your roasted garlic cloves (you can roast them on the grill or in the oven) and mash them into a paste.  Spread a !SMALL! (I love garlic, and I still emphasize this) amount of garlic onto each slice of eggplant.  Top this with one slice of tomato and a light drizzle of olive oil.  Throw the pan in the oven for 25-30 minutes.  People tend to undercook eggplant, I did big time the first time I tried to make these, so just let them go for awhile until they are very soft.  Pull them out when they are mostly done, top with mozzarella cheese and return them to the oven to melt.  Pepper if you like and drizzle each with a few drops of balsamic if you want some Italian flavor overload.. or not, if you don’t.

Ready in: an hour, star to finish
Serves: one 😦 

Also.. this article came out awhile ago in adbusters and I thought it was fantastic.  I didn’t want to post it because it has nothing to do with food, but whatever.   WARNING: if you go to school with me/work with me/are me, this might make you hate yourself for a little while, so get ready to self-deprecate/crawl in you skin/feel stupid.

The Dead End of Western Civilization

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New page posted up along the top bar.  Check it out, or not.

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Here’s something yummy for you to eat.

Carrot and Parsnip Soup

  • 4 carrots, chopped
  • 2 parsnips, chopped
  • 1 cup veggie broth, plus 1/4 to 1/2 cup
  • 1/4 cup sherry
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • pinch of curry powder
  • 1 inch grated ginger root
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • sour cream, to taste

In a large frying pan with a lid saute the parsnips and carrots in olive oil over medium heat for five minutes. Add vegetable broth, sherry, rosemary, thyme and curry powder and deglaze the pan if necessary.  Braise for about twenty minutes over medium-low heat, or until the carrots and parsnips are VERY soft.  Add the grated ginger and transfer the vegetables to a blender.  Add 1/4 cup of remaining vegetable broth and blend until smooth, adding more vegetable broth if needed.  Return to saute pan and stir in milk until creamy.

Serve in bowls with dollop of sour cream and a piece of shaved ginger if you’re feeling artistic.

Serves: 2-3
Ready in: about a half hour 

This is a short post because I’m working on a page to add here with pointers on going veggie.  It was going to be a regular post but it started to get really long and involved.  Check back later tonight for it.

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good is dead

My apologies to my (very) small readership for the lack of updates.  The semester has just started and for the past two weeks so many people have been staying at our house that I haven’t been using the kitchen much.  I’ve also been a bit out of my head lately and haven’t been in any kind of mood for baking [gasp!].. but enough excuses.

One yummy thing I figured out how to make recently was vegetarian sausage and gravy over biscuits.  I had it for breakfast Sunday morning after a seriously detrimental night to my liver, and it was exactly what I needed to snap out of the haze for the day.  I’d been craving it after a spike of braising in my life.. I’ve been all over the place braising carrots and parsnips, broccoli and beans, tomatoes and onions.. you name it, i’ve braised it.  Sometimes after braising the vegetables (which I did in a little olive oil, veggie broth and sherry), I would use the liquid to make a white gravy to pour over them (adding milk and a little flour or corn starch).  

This was working out so well for me.. and the sausage gravy and biscuits had turned out so good.. that I decided to try a little lunchtime variation today.  I nixed the olive oil on this one because I plan on using a lot of it later in my dinner plans and this was still delish.

Vegetables and “Sausage” Gravy over Brown Rice

  • 1/2 cup zucchini, chopped
  • 1/4 cup green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped pretty smallish.. less than 1 inch segments
  • 1 small tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 or 2 vegetarian “sausage” patties (I use Morningstar, of course)
  • 1/2 – 1 cup vegetable broth
  • a few tablespoons flour
  • a few tablespoons milk
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a few tablespoons grated parm
  • 1 cup instant brown rice, cooked

Place vegetables (except tomatoes) in a large saute pan with a lid over medium high heat.  Pour in 1/2 cup vegetable broth and cover until carrots are soft (about 10-15 minutes if you cut them small enough), keep an eye on it as you might need to add more broth.  

While this is cooking, saute the sausage in a small pan until it’s cooked through (you can start them for about 20 seconds in the micro, if you like).  Let it cool and shred it up with a fork (I’m going to take this opportunity to praise Morningstar for these sausages as they are by far the most realistic looking and tasting fake meat product I’ve ever used, end plug).  Add the sausage and tomatoes to the cooked vegetables and, if necessary, add enough broth to make sure there is a scant 1/2 cup in the bottom of the pan.  

Add one or two tablespoons of milk (depending on how white you want your sauce) then, one tablespoon at a time, add the flour until the broth thickens to a gravy.  Add a little salt and crack a ton of black pepper into that guy. Turn the whole lot out over a bowl of rice and sprinkle some parm on top.  


Serves: 1
Ready in: 20 minutes 

By the by.. I also apologize for what will be a ridiculous influx of zucchini based dishes in the coming weeks.  The entire world has been pawning them off on me.. there’s even one on the counter right now because they just don’t all fit in my fridge.  

And speaking of grumpy-feel-better kind of food, I think a chocolate banana smoothie is calling my name.


Filed under Vegetables and Sides