Day 6: Re-create a restaurant meal.
I am not impressed with today’s prompt. You want me to make a restaurant-quality meal… on a Sunday?! I might not be religious, but Sunday is my day of rest. Sure, I might spend a few hours in the kitchen making big-batch food to freeze or use in lunches, but it is decidedly not my day of recipe experimentation. Plus, today is a special Sunday. A good friend is hosting a fundraiser for Second Chance Wildlife Center at a local winery tonight, and I’ve got to bake a couple cakes to bring. Hmm… so much for that day of rest.
Which is all a big long preamble to explain why I’m cheating on today’s MoFo post. Instead of actually re-creating a dish, I’m telling you how I would do it. But I’m not actually doing it. Because ain’t nobody got time for that. And by “nobody,” I mean me. And by “time,” I mean the inclination to shower, dress in real clothes, and run to the Asian market in between baking my Bundt cakes and finalizing my contribution for tonight’s silent auction, then come home and experiment with a dish I’ve never made before, then photograph it, then upload the photos, then edit them, then post about the whole shebang. Nope. Not happening.
If I did have the time and the inclination, though, I’d re-create my current favorite Thai dish: the generically named spicy Thai eggplant. It’s become my go-to order at Thai Tanium, a local eatery that’s a favorite among my mostly vegan coworkers. I love how the chunks of eggplant break apart and become almost creamy. I love the Thai basil, a bright note among a heavier base. I love it all! If I were making my own spicy eggplant, I would start with these:
These locally grown Purple Pixies are perhaps the most beautiful vegetables I’ve ever purchased. When I saw them at Wegmans, I couldn’t pass them up! They are tiny, perfect, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to eat them. (Just kidding; I will.)
If I were using them in a Thai eggplant dish, I’d stop by the Asian market and pick up some black bean sauce. I’d also look for vegan fish sauce, but if they didn’t have it, I’d probably make my own. I’d check for Thai basil, but my homegrown regular ol’ basil would work just fine in a pinch. I would base the recipe on this one, but I’d take some notes from this recipe, especially for the sauce. I wouldn’t deep-fry the eggplant, though, and I might add some tofu for added protein. I’d serve it with brown rice, and it would be delicious.
Apologies for the cop-out — I don’t intend to cheat on any more prompts this month!