This weekend was homecoming weekend, and hence it was full of reunions. (And hence the lack of blog updating on my part). Despite the weekend's long and exhausting festivities, I found the time today to make up for the lack of cooking and blogging by:
1. Cooking up a huge feast for dinner.
2. Featuring guest blog #2: Akshay!
My assistant chef, Akshay, who came to visit Tucson for the weekend!!!
I decided Akshay had to make time to cook with me this weekend, considering he is (almost) as fancy with his cooking as I am. We made it happen, and we cooked a huge Mediterranean themed dinner. It consisted of four items:
Spinach and Artichoke Hummus
Grilled Vegetable Medley
Parmesan-Crusted Whole Wheat Pitas
Can I say YUM?!
The secret ingredient to this meal was Tahini.
It tastes like peanut butter. It's kind of weird. But definitely a necessity for the dips.
First we started on the baba ganoush. The eggplant had to be baked in the oven for about 30 minutes at 400 degrees. Then, the eggplant had to be scooped out of the peel.
Into the food processor went the eggplant, some parsley, 3 tablespoons of lemon juice, tahini, and olive oil, 2 garlic cloves, and salt and pepper to taste.
Well, that was easy.
While I worked on perfecting the salt/pepper/olive oil ratio, Akshay worked on the grilled veggies, which consisted of zucchini, red bell pepper, mushroom, and asparagus (which happens to be this week's featured veggie!)
He added olive oil, red wine vinegar, parmesan, crushed red pepper, oregano, basil, and garlic salt.
And of course, some crumbled light feta on top!
After finishing the baba ganoush, I started the hummus.
- 1 can garbanzo beans
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 garlic cloves
- fresh spinach
- 1/2 cup marinated artichokes
I had no idea how much hummus this actually made, until I transferred it into this container.
Who needs to buy hummus when you can make it in five minutes?!
To finish off the meal, Akshay prepared the pitas. He mixed together olive oil, parmesan, and one chopped garlic clove in a bowl. (Parmesan Aioli, if you will).
This was lightly glazed on the pitas. These were then put into the oven (350 degrees) until the parmesan concoction was a crispy golden brown atop the pitas.
The meal was complete!