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Long-winded March leftovers

April 20, 2010

It seems like I just did a leftovers post, but no matter. I’m a little behind on posting, clearly (as well as reading others’ blogs, sorry everyone! I will catch up). Time is just flying—soon it’ll be time for April leftovers already, not to mention the maple cinnamon pecan milk entry I promised Hannah, plus I have to tell you about my trip to Chicago a couple weeks ago, and the vegetarian Ethiopian cooking class I took last night! Needless to say, there is much to come in the next few weeks.

First up is a pizza that Matt helped me make on a Sunday evening. I bought a refrigerated ball of fresh-made multigrain pizza dough at Whole Foods, split it in two, froze one half, and used the other for this thin-crust pie. I made the pizza sauce recipe from Skinny Bitch in the Kitch—I’ve cooked a lot from that book lately! It turned out so fantastic that I ate several spoonfuls straight out of my Vitamix. (Perhaps I’ll do a post on that sometime down the road.) Anyway, we topped the pizza with all the leftover veggies in my fridge – including onion, zucchini, red bell pepper, and probably more I can’t remember – along with a packet of Boca crumbles and a couple ounces of finely shredded jalapeño jack-style almond cheeze. I was never a cheese person, so I’m not much of a fake cheese person either, but I gave this stuff a whirl and I actually really enjoyed it. SO, long story short: we made a pizza. It was awesome.

Matt came over hungry one night and I, like the thoughtful and accommodating person I am (::cough::), threw together a nice little meal for him of a veggie burger on an Ezekiel bun and a warm barley-vegetable salad tossed in a garlicky vinaigrette and garnished with minced fresh spinach. We also had a bottle of Spanish cava (sparkling wine) on hand, so we popped that open and drank it out of my hand-blown Murano wineglasses I picked up in Venice. Am I fancy, or what?

I made mini versions of Love and Olive Oil’s double shot mocha cupcakes (crowned with chocolate-covered espresso beans), and Matt went so nuts for them that I made (and we ate) two more batches by the end of that weekend.

Somehow I ended up on a fried rice kick, and I cooked or ordered it half a dozen times in the span of a week. This one’s from Bangkok Pavilion, a nearby Thai restaurant my friends and I like.

Here’s another seemingly-effortless dinner at home that makes me look like quite the domestic goddess. (My modesty is just alarming, isn’t it?) I bought a fat loaf of ciabatta bread at Whole Foods, tore out and snacked on the insides, and oven-toasted the “shell.” I then topped it with slices of rice mozzarella, leftover homemade marinara sauce (recipe/post coming soon), leftover homemade TVP meatballs (recipe/post also coming soon; gah, more promises to be fulfilled!), more marinara sauce, and a quick-sautéed mixture of mushrooms, onions, and garlic. I put the open-faces sandwiches under the broiler for a few minutes, and voilà—vegan meatball subs! They were perfect with a Spanish Jumilla red wine. Yeah, I gotta say…I’m good.

Matt and I tried a new restaurant, Ra Sushi in Leawood. It’s not a traditional Japanese dining establishment by any stretch—it’s full of Americanized glitz, glamour, and pretension. Nonetheless, it was incredibly good. To start, we shared the “spicy rice crispy treats,” which are soy paper hand rolls filled with crispy rice balls, spicy tuna mix, cucumber, avocado, lettuce, and sautéed nuts, served with a soy chili sauce. Impressive! Tasty, too.

The sushi roll I chose, the Yellow Monkey, was equally unique and delicious—mango, roasted red pepper, marinated artichokes, and cream cheese, rolled in rice and seaweed, topped with mango and cashews, and drizzled with a kiwi-wasabi sauce. Wow! I’m not usually a fan of cream cheese in sushi (or much of anywhere else), but I’m glad I rolled with it (har har) for this one. So good!

We walked across the street to complete our meal with gelato at Paciugo. After my gelato binges in Europe set the bar so high, I’ve been pleased find that the gelato here at home is excellent too. In mine (on the left), I got tiramisu, crème caramel, stracciatella (chocolate chip), and wedding cake (a new favorite of mine, and one that I [not surprisingly] never saw abroad). You’d have to ask Matt what all was in his, becausing I was too busy “mmm”ing over mine.

Genghis Khan! Mongolian barbecue, a local legend, and my favorite restaurant in the world. I made my usual mix of broccoli, carrots, red bell pepper, edamame, corn, tofu, peanuts, egg noodles, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic water, white pepper, and a storm of curry powder. I don’t know how I find room for the sesame bread and fresh fruit.

Matt and I went out for breakfast/brunch at First Watch. I ate the fresh fruit crêpes stuffed with strawberries and banana and topped with organic strawberry yogurt, with a small cup of granola, a toasted English muffin, and a side of my beloved breakfast potatoes.

Matt had the Floridian French toast, made with sourdough bread, wheat germ, and powdered cinnamon sugar, topped with strawberries, banana, and kiwi, and served with blueberry syrup. (Just ignore those sausage links.)

I’ll end this post as I began it, with pizza. This is at Pizza Fusion, and it’s got tomato sauce, red and yellow peppers, artichokes hearts, roasted garlic cloves, and vegan cheese on a whole grain crust. Delizioso!

If you like this, you might also like…
Belated February leftovers
December-January leftovers
Random 2009 leftover madness

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. April 20, 2010 12:20 pm

    This stuff all looks yummy, especially the Mongolian Grill stuff and the pizzas! I’m still looking for a vegan cheeze I like, but pictures of pizzas like this give me hope:)

  2. April 20, 2010 8:49 pm

    The sushi looks amazing as do those cupcakes!!!!
    wow!!

  3. Cheryl permalink
    April 20, 2010 9:04 pm

    Mmm, the gelato, meatball subs and homemade pizza look wonderful, not to mention the mocha cupcakes!

  4. April 21, 2010 12:14 am

    *waves* Hi! I shall forgive you the lack of cinnamon pecan milk as OMG head explode this all looks so good! I’ve already clicked through to the mocha cupcakes, sighed with envy over your access to good gelato (though to be fair, I haven’t looked for it in Canberra yet), and genuflected before your domestic goddessery.

    You awe me. (I’ve decided that’s a legitimate phrase).

    Also, um, you know our eventual bloggie-swap? I’ve decided I want a Vitamix in mine. Thanks! 😀 😀

  5. April 22, 2010 2:43 pm

    That’s some fancy looking sushi! I love new combos like that… Sure wish more places would get creative with the classics, and have more vegan options too.

  6. John B permalink
    April 27, 2010 4:41 pm

    Hey Amber, I had no idea you were so hardcore about your diet. That is very impressive! As is your dedication to your cooking.

    Your dishes all look really delicious. Congratulations on cultivating such skills. 🙂

  7. April 30, 2010 12:16 pm

    McKella—Since I never liked cheese, I’m not a big fan of “cheeze,” but I will say this almond-jack stuff was probably the tastiest I’ve had.

    Averie & Cheryl—Thanks! The consensus on those cupcakes was that they were some of my best ever.

    Aussie-Hannah—You are just too damn kind to me! I’m really not that cool/great/interesting, I swear. Allow me to genuflect before you for your use of the word “genuflected.” Love it!

    Bittersweet-Hannah—I love creativity in sushi too, and there definitely needs to be more out there for vegans besides boring carrot-cucumber-avocado rolls.

    John—Thanks for stopping by! I hope you keep reading (and PS, it was awesome seeing you at Buzzard and Gusto last weekend!).

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