When we go to potlucks, it's always a challenge. I want to make something that is shockingly good, especially when there are non-vegetarians present. And these days, it has to be easy finger food for toddlers. (And frankly, easy to prepare.) Plus, I like it to be good at room temperature. My parents happened to have been leaving town the weekend before the event to which I brought the falafel and had left us with lots of lettuce.
This Food Face gave the model an ear-full of leftover falafel. We started with half a toasted pita and a drizzled line of homemade tzatziki. Nora is a condiment girl and would prefer to just lick off the dressing or ketchup, depending on the meal. So she doesn't get much condiment to start with. The ears are halved falafel. The eyes and mouth are fruit that had been sent home with us from the party where I brought the falafel. Fruit is popular in our house and was gone by the end of dinner.
Put beans, carrots, and garlic in a food processor and chop. Add remaining ingredients and stir. Grease a jelly roll or similar pan. Form falafel into half-dollar-sized patties and place on pan. Brush olive oil on top of falafel. Bake at 425 degrees 10-14 minutes, turning once. (I generally do 7 minutes on each side, but the original recipe says 10 minutes.)
Serve on pitas with vegetables and a yogurt dip of your choice.
We were freshly landed in New York, and it didn't take long for us to be getting really hungry. Paul's dad took us to a fabulous restaurant he had just discovered a few days before. Bread & Olive. I don't know how both of my in-laws have this sense in quality restaurants, but this one was completely fabulous.
The black bean burger recipe from Parents Magazine was so fabulous, I figured the recommended switch to chickpeas or garbanzo beans would also be a success. After all, we love the falafel recipe from a previous issue of the magazine.
Recipe for Dilled Yogurt Dressing
2 (heaping) Tablespoons plain yogurt
3/4 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon dried dill
1/8 teaspoon herb salt
Whisk together ingredients. Pour over and have extra on the side of wraps and salads. I have been using an herb salt we acquired on one of our trips. I'm sure regular table salt would work just fine.
Congratulations to our friends, Garret and Joy, on the launch of their new blog Cobblestone Rue. It's about living life to the fullest when your days are packed full. I'm excited and humbled to be mentioned among the first posts. I'm also happy I can now share my side of the story of Graycen and me playing with food in the kitchen. I've been holding off posting the story--mainly because it is so much cuter with pictures.
The weather has been mostly lovely in Orlando. And that's been quite appreciated as we have needed to get out and get fresh air. Sometimes, we get out and exercise. Other times, we bundle up a tad and sit by the pool and nap. However, yesterday I was too excited about my latest foodie mag, and Paul and Nora slept while I read it cover-to-cover.
Paul says I have written too much about stuff not tied into vegetarian cooking. Perhaps he's right, but blogging is an easy way to keep track of a diary of my trip--with and without food. Anyway, we were busy little travelers, and that yielded little opportunity to visit all of the restaurants on our list. We were sorry about that, but we were only able to eat three meals a day because French restaurants keep strict lunch and dinner hours.
This is a small, hole-in-the-wall restaurant with a Mediterranean food store attached. It has a Greek menu and has been voted Orlando's Best for a few years, with framed advertisements above the cash register. However, when you look at the plastic table covers with pictures of different kinds of pasta and the "silk" leaves and plastic grape clusters hanging from the ceiling, you might get slightly confused. Paul had a falafel sandwich in a great thick bread wrap. I had the hummus and tabouleh sandwich. Both had lettuce and tomato added with a creamy cucumber dressing coating every bite.
This is often a favorite lunch spot of us in Winter Park, Florida. It is very close to the hospital where Paul works and near shopping areas I may visit on my days off. The selling point of this restaurant is a relaxed atmosphere with outside eating, a selection of sandwiches and salads, and their amazing creation of smoothies--with or without yogurt.