Monday, June 2, 2008
A Good Deed and A Good Meal
Meals are less planned in my life than I would like sometimes. It would make shopping trips easier if I was able to decide in advance what our week's menu will be. It just never happens. Some days I wake up with a firm plan about what we're eating that night (today, for example, I am pretty sure we're going to have pad Thai) and then BabyGirl has a really bad afternoon or Husband has to work a little late so that some prep work doesn't get done or I have a late-in-the-day hankering for something else.
The problem is that living so far from stores, we generally shop for fresh stuff just once every week to ten days. Anything that is quickly perishable has to be used in the first few days (which is why pad Thai is on the menu tonight; I bought bean sprouts over the weekend and they don't stay good for more than a day or two). Makes it difficult to have multiple dishes in a week that have delicate ingredients.
Anyway...this is all a way of saying that sometimes, menus are planned for me. Husband has a colleague here from a Middle Eastern country, and he's here for a month and a half, living just across the way from us. He has no transportation yet, so we offered to take him to The City when we went on Saturday. I looked up shopping possibilities that might offer him some comforts of home and found a good Mediterranean grocery, so off we went. I had in mind some good Bulgarian feta (which I got!) and a few other minor treats. He was thrilled, especially as they bake their own pita, something he was really missing.
He was going to buy canned baba ganouj, which just seems an abomination, so I told him I'd make him some instead. The only eggplants I could find were already old, so I made it yesterday, giving him half and keeping half for our dinner. I hope that it was up to par, but we certainly enjoyed it either way.
Being that we were starting out with one Middle Eastern dish, I stayed with the theme, so we enjoyed baba ganouj and falafel with chopped salad and tahina sauce. All very tasty, although it wasn't the best falafel mix I've ever used. Not a bad way to plan a meal -- do a good deed for a temporary neighbor and gain cooking inspiration at the same time.