A year of pescetarian parenting and related discoveries.

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Thursday, February 18

Our Sexy Saint Valentine's Day Dinner

     It's been a hectic week so I apologize for the lateness of this post, but still want to share with you the meal I prepared for Valentine's Day. The highlight was my new favorite food which I had just tried for the first time a few days earlier at a wonderful Cambridge, Massachusetts restaurant called Casablanca. My friend Kathleen introduced me to it and in keeping with the holiday at hand, I fell madly in love with Muhammara. I began studying recipes when I got home and will post my version for you which came out wonderfully but you can try another or tweak it to taste. It's very easy and adaptable and there are lots of versions depending on the region of origin. I can't resist adding fresh herbs which is not standard. I am sharing with you the description of this wonderful syrian dip given by award winning food blogger Barbara Fisher because I simply couldn't say it better;

      "Muhammara: It's Vegan, It’s Good For You and It’s Damned Sexy
     Muhammara is a dip, spread, sauce, condiment or salad that is said to have originated in Aleppo, Syria, although, it is served and eaten all over the Middle East. It is also sexy: red, a little spicy, smooth, and oh so slippery on the tongue and tingly on the lips. It’s like a long kiss that you don’t want to end: and the best part is this–it’s good for you. It is made from ingredients that are full of anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals, and it is just plain good. Low in calories, high in nutrients, and it tastes naughty, like you are blowing your diet just by looking at its come-hither-scarlet self. Muhammara. Say it with me, slowly, sensually: “Muhammara.” ...  Mmmm. Yeah. "

     How could we ever have had anything else for Valentine's Day?!? So I served it as part of a traditional mezze plate as our appetizer, with fresh pita bread, baba ganoush, and olives.

Our second course was a delicious spinach salad with orange slices, pomegranate seeds, toasted almonds, tossed with a refreshing pomegranate dressing. We paced these courses slowly over the evening, while sipping Joe's pomegranate cosmos.

The main course was pan seared Moroccan scallops with eggplant confit which I served over whole grain couscous. The recipe was courtesy of http://vanillabeancafe.blogspot.com/2008/06/moroccan-scallops-with-eggplant-confit.html who is one of my favorite food bloggers. Here's my photo;

I only serve dessert on special occasions and on this night we shared one. A scoop of mocha java chip ice cream with butter cookies and  chocolate covered stawberries. It was a memorable meal which is what I think life should be marked by. And most of it was as good for our bodies as it was for our souls. I can say there were no complaints from the meat eating man...

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