Thursday, June 12, 2008
I went vegan for three months, vegetarian for more than a year. It was hard, especially when going out with friends. I could only eat certain things. And although, I am no longer of the veggie persuasion, I still have my veggie days and friends, especially as a yogi.
I have one friend who is raw and one that is vegan. I respect both diets, but find the true way of being raw a little odd because it doesn't include soap or deodorant. EWWWWW!
Recently, my vegan friend and I decided to cook together. She loves to cook vegan and I am all to happy to cook with her and for her. So we talked about making a burger or Indian food, but we decided on a Vegan Muffulleta with roasted potatoes.
So we met up at Target and went down the list: red pepper-check, eggplant-check, olives-check, bread-check. We then went back to her place to cook and sip wine. We split up the duties and I went to chopping and so did she. An hour later, we sat down to a wonderful meal. The olive spread was wonderful with the vegetables. The perfect light summer meal.
(adapted from Veganomicon)
Mixed Olive Salad Relish:
1 cup pitted kalamata olives
1 cup pitted green olives
1/2 cup coarsely chopped parsley
4 cloves garlic
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, oil packed or dried and reconstituted
4 tsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 small eggplant
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
3 cups fresh spinach leaves
2 roasted bell peppers (1 red, 1 yellow)
1 round peasant style loaf (or bread of choice), sliced
Preheat oven to 375. Lightly grease two rimmed baking sheets. Cut eggplant widthwise into 1/4 inch slicesand rub each slice with kosher salt. Allow to drain in collander for half an hour.
While eggplant is draining, place olives, parsley, garlic and sun dried tomatoes in a large bowl. Toss with the vinegar and dried herbs. With a food processor, chop the mixture in 2-3 batches, adding a little of the olive oil with each batch. Process only enough to chop the olives and tomatoes, scraping the sides of the processor often with a rubber spatula.
Rinse the eggplant slices with cold water, rub with olive oil, and lay in a baking sheet. Cut the bell peppers in half lengthwise and remove stem and seeds. Rub with olive oil and place on a second baking sheet. Roast eggplant and peppers in preheated oven for 20-22 min, flipping the eggplant once, until it is browned and tender. Remove skin of peppers if desired, and cut into thin strips.
For each sandwhich, spread a thick layer of olive relish on one slice of bread. Layer the spinach, eggplant, and roasted peppers on top of the olive relish. Place a second slice of bread on top and press down on the sandwhich. Enjoy!