Adventures in Food

Continuing in the theme of sustainable foods and enjoing oneself, I bring to you this post!

Jon and I have been scaling back on our meat-eating. I think it was accidental, we didn’t consciously say, “let’s be vegetarians!” or anything. In fact, previous times when I’ve tried to turn ourselves over to a more veggie-centric menu, it’s been met with failure. I think that going to the farmers markets and focusing on what we can get locally and seasonally has influenced our habits. That, and some adventurous cooking.

A few weeks ago I made a lentil soup from scratch. The basic ingredients were red and green lentils (2 cups total), 6 cups water, veggie boulion, potatoes, onions, garlic, lemon, lemon juice, carrots, celery, olive oil, salt, pepper, turmeric, paprica, red chili flakes and a long time on the stove. This time I’ve added some lacinato kale, tossed out the veggie boulion, and focused on making a fine veggie base and THEN added the lentils. It looks really good so far! I ate the last batch of soup every day for lunch for a week, I hope to do the same with this batch.

Last night, Jon was squeeing over making paneer. I had gotten it in my head that I wanted us to make mattar paneer. It’s one of the few things I can order at an Indian restaurant and know what it is. When Jon and I were looking for a recipe, a friend pointed us to a recipe that goes from scratch, including making the paneer (cheese). Now, in Chicago, I know where I’d buy pre-made paneer. I’d go straight to Rogers Park and just walk westward on Devon. I’d be bound to run into an Indian grocery in mere moments. Here? I have no idea! Luckily, Jon seemed to have a rather easy time of making the paneer, and it’s AWESOME that he made cheese in an evening. Even better, he made it from raw milk from a local dairy! We’ll see tomorrow how the mattar paneer turns out.

I like this cooking thing. I cook less from recipes, and more like I paint — slapping flavors together into a composition like I would colors on a canvas.

I look forward to more adventures to come.