Monday, April 11, 2005

I made stuffed zucchini the other night, partly with zucchini from Trader Joe's and partly with zucchini from The Box. I was debating a zucchini carbonara or zucchini lasagna instead, but the stuffed zucchini won out.

I trimmed the zucchini, sliced it in half lengthwise, turned it face down on an oiled baking sheet and baked at 400 degrees until browned on the bottom (maybe 15-20 minutes?) In the meantime, I fried up a mixture of chopped yellow onion, chopped garlic, leftover cooked barley cakes (bound with egg, seasoned with thyme, cutting celery, and sage, and fried till brown), chopped sprouted whole-grain bread from TJ's, golden sage, cutting celery, salt, and pepper. Once the zucchini was done and had cooled off a bit, I scooped out the centers with a teaspoon, mixed the pulp into the stuffing mixture, filled each zucchini with a heaping serving of stuffing, put a slice of lactose-free yogurt cheese on top, and baked in the 400-degree oven for another 20 minutes or so, until browned on top. It was very good.

The rest of my food weekend:
Saturday morning, I accompanied Rahul to West Berkeley and had a cup of delicious, hot, sweet soy masala chai at Peet's while he met with Nathaji about the Sacred Space website. We walked a one-eyed white dog--a pitbull, maybe, but she was small and narrow-headed--named Snowball (her ear had been torn, and she was very excited about going out, trying to escape behind my leg and jump on me while I tried to put the collar on her). She was a nice dog. Squirrel, the dark brown resident cat at the shelter, was looking fat, sleek, and happy. I petted him for a bit while he lay on the warm CRT monitor at the front desk and purred. I went over to the tag area to put away my tag and say hello to a rat with lice, and Squirrel came over to me and very self-assuredly jumped up onto the counter, and then straight onto my shoulders, where he settled like a fur stole, purring like a maniac and looking very comfortable. He pushed his head against my face with affection and draped himself around my neck. He didn't use his claws at all--he was very soft all over. Of course, I had allergies for hours afterwards, but it was totally worth it.

I also tried the Best Chocolate Ever at the fancy food store on 4th Street. It was Michel Cluizel's Plantation Grand Cru "Concepcion" and my God, did it taste good.

Rahul and I went to Vik's after the animal shelter, where I had another chai and my Lactaid pill, fried mashed potato cakes with peas in them, covered in a chickpea tamarind sauce (aloo tikki cholle) and Rahul had samosa cholle (samosas covered in the same kind of sauce). We saw Daryll and Melanie there.

I played Diner Dash a lot on Saturday night. It's a step up, gameplay-wise, from Restaurant Empire, at least in terms of the actual flow of a restaurant floor.

On Sunday we finished coloring some posters for the Zachary's contest. Rahul and I drew a toothy green frog-like monster hanging upside-down from a branch, with flying pizzas surrounding it. I don't know what the deal is but it made me laugh whenever I looked at it. Kenny drew a fat man in a blue jogging suit being attacked in the middle of the forest by a remote-controlled robotic unicorn controlled by a small, evil guinea pig. It said "ZACHARY'S [ELEVATION]" on the bottom. We bought some Zachary's spinach and mushroom with lowfat mozzarella and whole wheat crust, and ate it in the children's vegetable garden at Thousand Oaks School. The sun was shining and a small child was laughing hysterically at a green balloon mounted with a noisemaker nozzle: his father would blow up the balloon, let it go, and let it whiz around the schoolyard making a loud whistling noise.

On Sunday night I went down to Mom's for dinner, and met her former student Sarah. We had blue potato Terra chips, green English peas with chopped tofu (smoked?) and water chestnuts, red and black steamed rice, a tomato omelet (sweetened, with green onions, and the eggs wet and creamy--it makes my mouth water just thinking about it), Chinese broccoli, and quail eggs. I also had a brownie that Sarah made.

I forgot to update about last Thursday, when Rahul and I had dinner at Roy's for Aleks and Shane's farewell party. I had an apple martini, a French cosmopolitan (orange vodka and Cointreau were the distinguishing factors), black truffle and asparagus risotto, fresh spring rolls stuffed with avocado, with chili pepper dipping sauce, a fresh cabbage salad with ginger-sesame oil dressing, and grilled tofu with sprouts and ponzu, served on rice. Dessert included a strawberry stuffed with whipped cream, a real tiny cream puff, and a fudgey dark truffle square. It was a nice evening, but I woke up at about 4 AM with a terrible sick, painful feeling. i thought I might have food poisoning but it was not so.

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