Saturday, October 6, 2012

Portobello Caps, White Asparagus and Quinoa Salad - MoFo Post 6

Remember when I used to manage a veg*n restaurant? From time to time I will help them out with catering or waiting tables when they are short-staffed on weekends. I love everyone there, it's 3 blocks from my place, the food is bomb and I just generally enjoy being there, when it doesn't involve me being the boss! Today I spent my afternoon catering a wedding with them on a Spirit of Boston Cruise on Boston Harbor. I was scared shitless going into it, not because of the job but because I get seasick. I popped some Valerian Root and made sure I had an empty stomach going into it, just to be safe. I didn't get seasick and actually had an awesome time. Luckily it was buffet style so once we set up and left the dock we had a lot of downtime while the ceremony and cocktails were going on upstairs. Because I live here I don't generally do anything considered touristy but it was so nice to be able to see Boston from the water, I just wish I had thought to bring my Nikon. I did get a few crappy pics on my phone though...

Once I realized I wasn't going to get seasick, claustrophobic or just be generally anxious I started getting really hungry. I was able to snack on some bread and scarf down a bowl of amazing vegan Italian Wedding Soup before we had to start serving. After the festivities, while we were cleaning up, I was able to get another small bowl of soup, half a veggie burger and a tiny piece of vegan Black Forest Cake.

I was done and home by 5 and found myself very hungry again. I don't generally do much on Saturdays except lay around with the bf and/or the pups all day being lazy so being out and about (read: not lazy) about, like a normal person, had me feeling hungry again. I was also feeling exhausted so dinner had to be something that required minimal energy. All I wanted was pajamas, wine and bed. (I currently have all 3 as I write this)

A few days ago I decided this Saturday nights dinner was definitely going to include portobello caps as the main part of whatever meal I ended up with. I also decided, once my bf confirmed we had quinoa, that I would make our favorite quinoa salad so now all I needed was to settle on a side vegetable.

As I was wandering around the market I happened upon some white asparagus. I have never cooked or eaten white asparagus before so I decided to buy it, just for funsies. Also, to be perfectly honest, the tops sort of looked like a penis which made me want to buy it more (food porn anyone?) After all was said and done, I will likely not cook white asparagus again.  Not that it wasn't tasty, because it was, but it required a little more effort than green asparagus and definitely more effort than I wanted to put into a vegetable this evening. I bought it thinking it would be the same as green, toss it in the steamer, sprinkle with some salt and lemon juice and voila, delicious veggies but nope. While I was sitting outside of the market waiting for my cab I decided to google the difference and see if I needed to prepare it any differently ( I should've done this while I was in the market, but whateves). Apparently white asparagus needs to be peeled and is more fragile to handle than it's counterpart. I definitely did not have the patience to peel them by hand so I busted out the potato peeler and like an idiot I was holding the stalks in my hand like a potato peeling them, forgetting their fragility and ended up snapping quite a few. Everything I found said to boil them but I wasn't sure how I felt about that, I hate boiling vegetables, I prefer sauteing, broiling or steaming them. I boiled them anyways, gently.

For the shrooms, I marinated them in Bragg's Liquid Aminos, rice vinegar, vegan worcestershire sauce, olive oil and chopped garlic. I didn't use any measurements, just mixed and added things until it made my taste buds happy. It had the perfect balance of sweet, salty and tang. After I had a glass of wine, they sat for a bit, I threw them in a frying pan with the marinade so it could cook down a bit.

It was pretty quick to pull together once I got the friggen asparagus prepped and turned out the be exactly what I needed after a long afternoon on a boat.

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