Without really meaning to, I've been leaning towards vegetarian meals in the last couple of days. It's up for debate whether it is really more healthy because I end up eating more dairy/cheese/eggs, but there's no question that this is just as delicious as anything I've made with meat, and moreover I haven't really felt the absence of meat at all. Pretty remarkable for someone who really loves her meat.
I just made this rich, crispity-crusty, super flavorful savory bread pudding with mushrooms. I had to improvise a bit because I didn't have 8 eggs, or parmesan. I did manage to buy some heavy whipping cream (calories be darned) and am so glad I didn't try to use milk or some other such horror.
Changes I made:
- Made one quarter of the recipe
- Used week old bread (it was like sawing a rock apart)
- Skipped the step of pre-toasting the bread altogether since it was so dried out already, which meant I skipped the fresh thyme too
- Used a mix of portobello and brown crimini mushrooms
- Used smoked cheddar instead of Parmesan because that's all I had
- Skipped the bell peppers; I HATE cooked green bell peppers
- Probably added way more onion and garlic than was necessary
- Used a mix of olive oil and butter instead of all-butter
- Added chrysanthemum leaves (I had some sitting in my fridge for a while, and I got the idea from the savory bread pudding I had once at Bar Tartine which used nettles of all things) as well as some homemade leek confit I had in the fridge
- Skipped the parsley
All told, I don't think I really missed any of the stuff I skipped because the end result was PHENOMENALLY YUMMY. I had it with a side salad of heirloom tomatoes marinated in balsamic, olive oil, and basil leaves, sitting on a small bed of arugula, topped with pine nuts.
On Saturday I made up a relatively quick, totally veggie sandwich:
- Toasted pepper bagel from Noah's (my favorite!)
- Smoked babaghanoush (eggplant dip) from Bi-Rite market (omg sooo good!)
- Aforementioned leek confit
- Goat cheese crumbles from TJ's
- Sliced zucchini sauteed in olive oil, salt and pepper
- Aforementioned arugula
In the end, I think the only missing were tomatoes. That would have really put it over the edge.
Lastly, for brunch on Sunday I made a creamy scramble with sauteed diced zucchini, portobello mushrooms, shallots, and spinach. Topped with jalapeno jack cheese. Yom. Now I have to worry about what I'm going to eat for lunch tomorrow.