After dutifully plodding through leftovers on Monday and Tuesday, we finally busted loose for some much more exciting fare tonight, munching our way through a variety of savory snacks. It was a nice way to spend an April evening.
Stuffed grape leaves have been on my mind for a while now; I've had them in restaurants, but I had never made them myself, so I was excited to try.
I stuffed the leaves with some leftover brown basmati rice, chick peas, lemon juice, and fresh mint. I love the tang of the leaves with the taste of fresh mint. On the side (lower right corner in photo), I made some Bulgarian-style tofu yogurt, and added some cucumber and parsley to it. The recipe is from Bryanna Clark Grogan, and I read about it in this post from The Airy Way blog...Zoa from The Airy Way is right: this stuff is good...it's not sweet like store-bought soy yogurts tend to be, and you can add any flavors to it to make it as sweet or savory as you like. Thanks to both Bryanna Clark Grogan and Zoa!
This plate has some marinated asparagus with butter bean and rosemary hummus and some kalamata and manzanilla olives on the side. The idea for the asparagus came from Alicia of Vegan Epicurean, when she posted about the benefits (both health- and taste-wise) of eating raw asparagus and provided a quick and delicious recipe for making a marinated asparagus salad. I've always loved asparagus in any form, and this made a crunchy delicious dipper for the hummus. Thanks Alicia! ( And yes, we double dip...hee-hee.)
For the hummus, I blended 1 cup cooked butter beans, 1 small clove garlic, two tablespoons of ground flax seed, 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice, and I think about 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Over the top we drizzled some extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled fresh rosemary to taste.
I have two containers of French sorrel in my garden and I'm trying to use it on a regular basis. It tastes like sour apples to me, which makes sense because it's in the same family as rhubarb. Lately, I've taken to pinching off leaves and snacking on them while I potter around in the garden...I find the taste addictive. Above, is a small-chopped, horiatiki-style salad on sorrel leaves. I didn't have any tomato, so red pepper, kalamata olives, red onion, and cucumber sufficed along with some lemon juice, black pepper, and olive oil.
And finally, here are some stewed tomatoes and artichokes along with whole wheat pita and some carrot crackers that I found at Whole Foods. The artichokes are stewed with fresh tomato, shallot, and garlic...I have some pretty pictures of the baby artichokes, so I'll post about that separately.
I leave you with a wee asparagus sandwich :