I miss Europe's simple, but delicious food. I'd like to emulate that now that we're back home. I'd prefer that all our meals looked something like this: Nothing fancy, no tedious chopping, no sweating in front of the stove for hours. Just yummy, fresh ingredients, quick prep, and skip to the eating.
I made a stop at Trader Joe's today to replenish our very bare refrigerator. TJ's the the best. They don't carry as much produce as other grocers, but I got what I needed. They have healthy options for snacks, delicious dips, and my favorite, coconut water. I also got...a BASIL PLANT!! Basil's my favorite herb, and not only does the plant look cute and taste yummy, it also makes the kitchen smell good.
I'm not at all exact in my cooking. I'm bad at estimating how much of each thing I used; I think of measurements in terms of 'pinches' and 'handfuls' rather than teaspoons and tablespoons, and pinches and handfuls don't necessarily always mean teaspoons and tablespoons. I basically play it by ear (or mouth or whatever) and add more of an ingredient if the dish tastes like it needs more of it. I also cook like my dad does: I grab whatever's closest and add it to the pan first instead of following protocol (like my mom) and adding things in a sensible order.
Today, I made a super fast and easy Caprese salad snack, much like the appetizers we got in Italy.
- 2 small tomatoes on the vine
- Fresh mozzarella cheese
- Basil leaves
- Olive oil
- Ground black pepper
Chop tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil leaves to whatever size you want and arrange it on a plate, Drizzle with olive oil and season with black pepper. Eat it soon after you put it on the plate, because if you don't, it'll get soggy from the tomato-water and olive oil, and you'll be eating a sloppy mess.