Monday, May 9, 2011


Mediterranean food is right up my alley. How could it not be? It involves a lot of vegetables and salty cheeses and delicious, delicious flatbreads. In particular, there's this sort of tapas-y thing called mezze, a collection of small portions served with bread as a lunch or dinner or appetizer option. I didn't make a true collection of mezze dishes, or even a selection of my favorites; I suppose it at best inspired my own meal. For one thing, I really wanted to make some baba ghanouj with this, and I have eggplant, but I was missing a variety of key ingredients for it. Instead, there were chickpea fries (thank you, Mark Bittman) with muhammara, zucchini and olives roasted with berbere, grapes with fresh basil, and some little mozzarella, tomato, and toasted kale stacks that I totally neglected to photograph.

Muhammara is really, really, really good. Really good. It's not me; it's what happens when you mix roasted red peppers and walnuts and other delicious things. I'd also highly recommend the chickpea fries, which are made by briefly cooking a mixture of water, olive oil, gram flour, salt, and pepper, spreading it in a dish to cool, cutting it into triangles, and shallow-frying the triangles (I also tossed them in a little crumbled Parmesan). I wish I'd spread the mixture a little thinner before I let it cool since I think thinner fries would have been a better vehicle for the muhammara and zucchini. Still, the insides were so delightfully creamy!

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