Archive for April 16th, 2007

Ratatouille

This is a traditional southern France vegetarian dish that I first had at JBQ’s grandmother place. This version is without any olive oil and it only has 100 calories (add butter or olive oil instead of cooking spray if you are not dieting. This is also a Paleo recipe). I would suggest you also shape a burger out of 100 gr of fat-free veal ground meat and either grill it or fry it using non-stick spray. The two go well together.

Ingredients: (for 1)
* 1/3 of a small eggplant (25 cals)
* 1/3 of a small zucchini (20 cals)
* 1/5 of a green bell pepper (5 cals)
* 1/5 of a yellow bell pepper (5 cals)
* 1/2 cup of vegetable broth (5 cals)
* herbes de Provence (0 cals)
* 1 big tomato (30 cals)
* 2 onions or shallots (8 cals)
* 1 garlic clove (2 cals)
* black pepper to taste (0 cals)
* 2 sprays of 0 calorie non-stick spray (0 cals) or 2T olive oil

Execution:
1. Cut in small cubes the eggplant, zucchini, ball peppers and tomato and set aside.
2. Finely chop the onions and garlic. Under medium heat spray on a pan with the non-stick spray and saute the onions and garlic. Preheat oven at 350 F (180 C).
3. Add the cube’d vegetables in the pan and stir. Sprinkle a bit of black pepper and herbes de Provence.
4. Continue stir-frying in the pan for 3 more minutes and then add the vegetable broth juice.
5. Take a small, shallow baking dish and pour the ingredients into it. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve hot or cold.

Ratatouille

My earliest memory

JBQ blogged about his earliest memory in life: a toy. My own earliest memory is walking down the streets of Athens with my mother when I was about 1 or 1.5 years old (we used to live in Athens back then) and entering a grocery store where we would buy “Fanta” (which was our favorite drink).

So, JBQ’s earliest memory is a toy and mine is food. 30+ years later and JBQ’s biggest enjoyment is still toys and mine is still food. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Maybe some things are indeed written in our genes and not just “developed” that way later in life.

Regarding Revenge

For those who watched Lost’s first few episodes in Season 1 would remember Saywer’s letter to himself to keep reminding him that he has to kill the person who was ethically responsible for the deaths of his parents when he was a kid.

I confess that something similar happened to myself when I was a kid. There was a person who brought my family in the brink of destruction when I was about 2 years old. His name kept popping up when my parents would keep fighting about it years later. I was about 6 years old when one night I started repeating his/her name in my head over and over and over again. I did that for a few weeks in a row. My goal was to make sure I remember his name so when one day I would be old enough, I would go and talk to that person and explain the pain he/she caused (no, not killing him/her).

But you know, I am not the avenging kind of type. Soon enough his/her name faded away from my memory banks (I don’t remember it anymore) and that was not because I was just a child that I easily forget (the fighting never stopped you see). But instead, I just stopped caring about it and as I grew up I learned to forgive and not to re-open old wounds.

You can surely expect from me huge explosions of anger, but I usually kiss and make up within 30 minutes. Forgiveness is not something my parents understand though. For example, I have forgiven the mother of my ex-ex-fiance for all the pain she caused to both our families, but my parents will never do so. I am happy that I have grown over this behavioral limitation.

…or maybe it’s Maybelline…

For those who watch LOST lately, there is this new “Other” character introduced called Richard Alpert. The character is portrayed by Nestor Carbonell. Now, just a few weeks in his introduction and he already has a nickname by the LOST fans: “the Maybelline man“. Apparently Nestor has naturally long eyelashes that also create an “eyeliner effect” so I guess he earned the nickname in all fairness (photo1, photo2).

Diet Recipe: Orzo with vegetables

JBQ is on a diet (he is now thinking of following the South Beach Diet after buying the book yesterday) and so I decided to start over again too. I think I will follow a combination of South Beach’s suggestions regarding carbs (e.g. whole grain bread/pasta, brown rice) and my previous low-calorie/fat-free kind of diet. So, I started my diet today by cooking the following for lunch, a vegetarian dish which weighs only 200 calories although it fills you up as it has quite some quantity.

Ingredients: (for 1)
* 42 gr orzo or other pasta (150 cals)
* 1 cup of chopped veggies: button mushrooms, shallot, zucchini, eggplant, ball peppers, asparagus, carrots etc. (35 cals)
* 1 cup of fat free chicken or vegetable broth (5 cals)
* 1 tbspoon of parmesan cheese (10 cals)

Execution:
1. Cook pasta according to package’s direction. Drain.
2. Cook the veggies with the broth in high heat.
3. When there is very little broth left in the pan, add the pasta and mix all ingredients well.
4. Serve hot and sprinkle the parmesan on top.

Orzo with vegetables