i had to do it.
i had SO MUCH SAUCE, all sorts of hot and chunky,
and spicy, and thick as heck,
and it was begging me to activate some serious eats.
and to do it, i used eggplant.
melanzana, aubergine, venata, EGGPLANT.
call it whatever you want,
but that scandalous symbol of free-looks and sneaked peeks
is the actual fruit that i needed to hook up a heapin' helping
'do-no-harm'esan'-style baked/fried hottness.
check the total-package-eggplant-parmless-type teleport:
MOLTISSIMO MARZO ITALIANO!!!
that eggplant, tho.....
it's damned good, but only if you know what you're doing.
if it's thick, and dry, and sh!tty?
you did it wrong, you played yourself, and you effed it up.
don't despair, because now you know what NOT to do!
1/4' circles, that's all you need.
not so fat that they stay pithy and lame,
but not so thin that they disintegrate and become oil sponges, either.
the skins won't be a problem in little bitty strips like that,
if you have access to graffiti of italian eggplant?
don't be dumb.
the skins on'em are melt-in-your-mouth easy to eat when cooked.
eggplant wants to be dope,
you've just got to help it out-
when you salt it and rest it,
and let the bitter juice seep out first,
you're already ahead of the game.
(do that, btw, or you're cheating yourself out of better eggplanty flavor)
i had mine salted and soaked and sitting pretty,
you're gonna want to dredge and bread these babies,
because and and all the exxxtra-favor you can activate
is only gonna help it out even more.
the liquid is a a tablespoon or two of milled flax & chia blend,
in about a cup of soymilk, with a punch of nootch,
stirred and expanded and sticky.....
the crust, since i had no breadcrumbs,
consists of the following:
nutritional yeast (nootch, bro).
make more than you think you'll need,
in whatever proportions you'd prefer.
i like mine crusty-crunchy, not bready,
so i go heavy on the 'flakes.
you do what you want.
a few tablespoons of HOT oil in a hot pan,
while your oven sits at 375F, so the transfer can stay smooth, is key here.
wet, crust, oily pan, browned on both sides, and baked.
boom. boom. boom. boom. BOOM.
while those are in the oven, staying crisp,
you might wanna start thinking about the chee' situation.
the creamy custom extra-milk-thinned underchee' scene always wins.
3 T cashew-garlic-tofu chee',
plus 3-4 T soymilk (or whatever one you like man)
and verry finely chopped daiya provolone and mozzarella,
maybe a tablespoon of each, tops,
with added GPOP for good measure, but all of it by eye, and totally unmeasured.
that's the thing, friends,
you want to FEEL it.
trust your intuition,
make choices, take chances, blah blah blah....
for real though. adventurous eaters go on ADVENTURES in the kitchen.
it's not just about sampling new flavors, it's about MAKING them.
i stacked and arrranged the eggplant with spoonfuls of the chee'-blend,
and any leftover daiya sprankles, in stacks, and let 'em stay in the oven
for about ten more minutes-
which fused each heap into heroic helping of melty, otherworldly crispy,
cheesy, savory, smooshably mountainous total and complete expertism.
that's the truth.
i had my angel hair pasta prepared,
and tossed in extremely virginal olive oil,
with parsley spranx going hard and heavy,
and a whole lot of my never-the-same-way-twice-marinara SAUCE!!!
what a meal!!!
when you doubleoverdose on tomatoes,
and go deep into the past,
back to nana and papa time,
there's a sort of nostalgic haze that surrounds each dish.
i've been straight-up vision-questing this whole month.
i don't normally even give two sh!ts about this food,
but i wouldn't even think of doing anything else.
i've got a plan, man,
and it's unfolding according to the blueprints...
my day off was awesome.
and lots of it,
plus baking and kneading and stretching and mixing and planning and preparing....
that's what i do.
and i feel better when i do it.
i don't relax,
and i don't have fun.
i think those things are kind of a waste of time.
if i wasn't always making something,
i don't know why i'd even bother to stick around.
creating is what i'm here for,
and i plan on making sure i earn my keep;
never quiet, never soft.....