lunch @ work, and hot vs. cold

As a teacher, I find it difficult to find snack breaks, so by the time I get to my lunch time, I’m starving! But what can I bring for lunch that won’t weigh me down after snarfing it down in under 20 minutes? That’s exactly what I was thinking about when I saw this post last week from The Kitchn. I liked reading the ideas from The Kitchn’s readers, but to be honest, most of them didn’t seem all that new to me. One thing, however, caught my attention – the post from Our Semi Organic Life – she had posted something mysterious, just interesting enough that I had to check it out… It’s something called “disappearing zucchini orzo” and the recipe comes from Animal, Vegetable, Miracle.

I appreciate the value of recipes, but sometimes, they’re just SO hard to follow! I don’t measure, and then I don’t have one ingredient so I add something new, and then I get a bright idea about making it a hybrid with some other recipe, and pretty soon, it’s no longer the food the author had intended.

Anyway, I loved the idea about grating the zucchini and making that the sauce for the pasta, so off I went… I roasted some chopped garlic in olive oil with Adobo and Vegeta, then grated in the zucchini. I cooked it really slowly and then the zucchini seemed to melt away – what was left was a silky green/yellow sauce with tiny strips of dark green. I cooked the pasta (not orzo – I was trying a low-carb pasta) and tossed it all together.

Ok….. I’ll admit it. I added feta.

…and lemon juice.

The result? REALLY zesty pasta salad… OR really zesty hot pasta.

… which brings me to my next topic. I have been making cold salad leftovers into hot food! We had a really (and I mean really) limited supply of foods that we could mix together last week, and so we started this mystery dish with chicken chorizo… At this point, I began walking around the kitchen asking myself what on earth I could add to it. My other half grabbed the leftover bulgar salad with feta and asparagus and asked if it was “still good” – smelled good, so I tossed it in! It had a light vinaigrette on it, so it stayed moist in the pan and made a little tiny bit of sauce, and then a wonderful thing happened…

…the feta melted. What a great accidental “we have almost no food to work with” dish. =)

I feel I will be doing something like that again soon. That is, if I can remember how I did it in the first place.

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