Yesterday I realized that the end of college is actually a long string of endings – finishing classes finishing the thesis, burning the thesis, passing orals, finishing finals –leading up to the big one – graduation, which for Reed is this Monday. I’ve spent the last few days tying up loose ends – binding my thesis, clearing off my library desk, paying my printing fees and overdue fines, selling back all the books I thought I’d want but now I’d rather trade in for money.
My parents arrive tomorrow, and a lot of great eating will ensue (stay posted!). For now, though, here are some loose ends from the week:
- I found not-too-expensive early raspberries at Trader Joe’s the other day. I cannot resist raspberries – ever. I ate half the container when I got home. The next morning I baked the rest into muffins with walnuts and gifted them to Matt and my hungry finals-ing housemates.
- I went to Café Castagna for dinner the other night with Matt. I had heard nothing but raves about it, and so I was very excited to eat there. We had a pork liver pâté appetizer, and then he had a burger and I had a white bean and rapini stew with chorizo. The pâté was tasty, but my entrée was way too salty. Matt’s burger was slightly over cooked, and he said the last time he was there his fries were way too salty too. I couldn’t help feeling disappointed when we left. Not only was my stomach full from such a heavy meal, but that salt – uh. I love salt, but never so much that you can taste it.
- The Moreland Farmer’s market opened yesterday! It was too rainy and cold to mill around too much, but I bought some delicious honey Greek yogurt, leeks, pea shoots, and this:
I made some green soup a la Orangette and served it with a bit of Manchego on top and roasted carrots on the side. It fed all of my housemates with no leftovers.
- Leftover salmon makes a lovely substitute for steak in my improvised Thai salad:
I mixed together baby greens, extra spinach, and a chiffonade of basil (however much looks right). Into that goes red onion or shallot sliced into very thin moons, diced cucumber, and the salmon (if I had had red pepper and/or left-over blanched veggies, that would have gone in as well). If you aren’t allergic to peanuts like I am, I imagine that a small handful of chopped toasted peanuts would be good on this as well. To make the dressing, I whisked together rice vinegar, lime juice, siracha, salt, and pepper, and then drizzled in a bit of sesame oil followed by olive oil. Dress the salad lightly and eat immediately.
On salad dressings: I always make my dressings to taste and on the fly, so they are always different. If you’re making your own, start with your acidic base and then add oil until it tastes right to you. If you want your dressing to be fully emulsified (most of the time I don’t really care), try making it in a small screw-top jar. You just dump everything in and shake vigorously until combined. It’s much easier and less messy than using a whisk. Also, it is already in a storage container if you make more than you need.