Monday, July 09, 2007

SGOTW #62: The Greens Cook Book

It certainly has been a while since I had time participate in SGOTW. I was making out my weekly menu for a trip to Wegmans this afternoon when I realized that I hadn't checked the CLBB for this week's SGOTW posting. This week we are to pick a recipe from cookbook #98 which, for me, happens to be The Greens Cook Book by Deborah Madison. Deborah Madison was the founding chef of Greens Restaurant in San Francisco.

Over on Amazon, I see they have a new release of this cook book, but I have this older 1987 version:
When DH and I first got married, I did not eat meat. Not for ethical reasons, I just suddenly became disgusted at the sight or thought of eating meat. I began to think of it as dead cow instead of ground beef. I was not technically a vegetarian, however, because I did still enjoy seafood. It wasn't bloody like meat. My SIL also did not (and, unlike me, still does not) eat meat and she introduced me to several vegetarian cookbooks.

My meatless days were also the days when I really challenged myself with cooking. I wasn't satisfied with serving the same old, same old, I wanted to try things that were new (to me) and more challenging. I guess that's why I bought this cook book. My style has changed over the years - now I tend to favor foods that require a lot less time in the kitchen. This cook book is a bit fussy. Flipping through the pages, there are very long lists of ingredients and quite often, within the already long list are embedded recipes from other parts of the book (broths, sauces, etc), making for some pretty time-consuming cooking. Still, the recipes themselves are excellent, if you're willing to invest the time.

Spinach Salad
Determined not to be daunted by long ingredient lists, I searched for a side dish that might compliment one of the main dishes (in this case, a grilled salmon dish) I had already chosen for my weekly menu and settled on a simple Wilted Spinach Salad. It did not disappoint. The salad calls for a unique method of preparation - the addition of hot olive oil to the fresh ingredients to slightly wilt the fresh spinach. The only major modification I made was to cut back on the olive oil and the feta cheese to make it a bit more healthful. This salad is excellent and simple to prepare, ensuring it a spot on our regular rotation.

I go back and forth about whether to keep this book or not, but since my tastes and style of cooking seem to go through changes over time, I think I'll keep this one around, just in case.

Since I usually post the Sunday AFTER the new game is posted, I'm a bit ahead of myself this week. I'll post the rules of next week's game on Sunday and get back to my usual schedule.

I will be back to post the salmon recipe tomorrow and there will be a lot more grilling to come this week including turkey burgers, steak, and a vegetarian sandwich. It's good to be home and cooking again!

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