If Only Buying Salad Were As Easy

Romaine, Radicchio, and Endive Salad

“Romaine, Radicchio, and Endive Salad” from Martha Stewart

It’s now exactly one week until my contract ends in this job. The feelers are out and the applications have been sent and the interviews they have begun. I am so excited about a potential change in job that the only thing that has killed my joy is remembering all the stuff I’ll need to get in order before I leave if things work out. I’m really hoping I won’t have to sign my next contract in the middle of it all.

And because there are things to be done I had to procrastinate at least a little to make sure that I felt productive for at least part of my day. So I’ve been very busy punching holes into old papers and putting them into binders, buying comic books and graphic novels, organizing the folders on my work computer, browsing the latest literature on Amazon.com, eating lunch… Well attempting to, anyways.

I decided to start my lunch with the salad that some family member had packed yesterday and not taken to work/school. It seemed like a perfectly nice salad. I put in some dressed and shook up the container and then tried a bite. Tasted… not right. Not rotten but not like salad. It tasted like chili peppers. I don’t like chili peppers. And as I ate a few more bites the worse it got and the more I thought to myself: Worst Salad Day Ever…

And thus I ceased eating the salad and drank a bottle of water to try and get the taste out of my mouth. Still not sure what was going on there. I can eat hot foods but I really don’t like the flavor. Especially in my salad. Now, if only buying a new salad to go along with my lunch break of buying new comic books were easy across the board. a few clicks here a password linked to a debit card there and viola! Salad!

But it seems that salad is not to be on the menu today… Sigh. And I was really looking forward to that.

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Ass-Pear-A-Goose

Linguine with Asparagus and Egg

“Linguine with Asparagus and Egg” from Martha Stewart’s Asparagus Recipes Pinterest Board

Say what you will about Martha Stewart but that woman(‘s people) know her(/their) gastroporn. All the massive piles of pork aside, her recipes are often clean and include ingredients that I often approve of. One of my many resource lists generated her “Asparagus Recipes” Pinterest Board and I really like asparagus. Had some just yesterday for Easter Lunch. Easiest way to prepare Asparagus is to just lay them out on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, a squeeze of lemon juice, and bake at 375 F for about 25 minutes with a quick shake/turn somewhere in the middle. I usually add the lemon to the tray (cut side down) and it adds a nice garnish at the end that’s useful for those who like a little extra zest on their asparageese.

Vegetarian?

Cheesy Skillet Polenta and Eggplant Bake

Cheesy Skillet Polenta and Eggplant Bake

So the other day the above photograph showed up as a post from America’s Test Kitchen. The post read something like polenta is a vegetarian option blah blah blah being a vegetarian is no fun because then you have to eat polenta blah blah…

In case it isn’t apparent, I don’t like polenta. It makes this sort of dry hard lumpy mass of grits meets cream of wheat and I don’t like any of those above descriptors. Now, maybe you like polenta. That’s up to you and your taste buds. But I do not and I also do not like people bashing on vegetarianism. Yes, I do love goat curry and satay and yes, I do occasionally enjoy a good burger. But I was a vegetarian until I was 17 and my mom let my dad take me on a trip to Africa instead of attending my high school graduation and my dad was NOT raised a vegetarian and I was told I was old enough to try for myself and make a decision. So I tried lots of things and I decided I was no longer strictly a vegetarian. Still don’t like chicken much, however.

There seems to still be some sort of stigma attached to vegetarian cooking these days that just seems silly. While I eat meat occasionally I almost never (and I mean NEVER) cook meat at home. I’m sure I could if I had to in order to save my family from murderers but that’s about it.

My brain tends to run a mile (or two) a minute so between seeing that post yesterday and now I’ve been thinking a lot about goo resources for vegetarian cooking that makes it both appealing and non-disgusting looking. I’ve seen a lot of craptastic vegetarian food and I would never wish that on any of you.

In some of my musings and milling aboutness on the internet I saw a few cookbooks that I have previewed and which, I feel, seem somewhat promising. The first one is “Meatless: More Than 200 of the Very Best Vegetarian Recipes” by Martha Stewart. Say what you will about the woman but she’s got a decent set of gastroporn in her back pocket and I often approve of it.

Meatless: More Than 200 of the Very Best Vegetarian Recipes

Meatless: More Than 200 of the Very Best Vegetarian Recipes

The biggest problem of eating vegetarian is that too many people try to REPLACE meat with something that isn’t meat and try to pass it off as meat. Stop. Don’t do that. Once you start trying to replace your meat with a “meat-like” mass, you’re doomed.

Check out this burger:

Spicy Black Bean Burgers

“Spicy Black Bean Burgers” from Skinnytaste.com

No meat, no problem.

Being vegetarian or vegan can sometimes come with religious or spiritual backgrounds but for a lot of people it’s a fad or a phase. Like “I’m so cool because I’m a… Vegetarian…” (insert some over the top facial expressions and maybe even a hair flip  in there somewhere). The problem with that is that you take it seriously for a while then you get these cravings and it’s all over. So better not to do that.

Of course their are health benefits to cutting out meat in the average diet. If you want any of these benefits it’s like using that exercise machine. Doing it all in a week then sitting on the sofa the rest of the month isn’t going to help your fat ass get any sexier. Although some people have a sexy fat ass… I think you all are much smarter than the majority of students I have to deal with and can figure out for yourself what you need to do.