What do you get when you spend 4 hours planting nearly 100 tulip bulbs in hard clay soil on a hot, sunny day?
3. Sore muscles
4. An icy cold beer
5. All of the above
If I had a swimming pool, I’d have jumped in with all my clothes on. But since I don’t, I had to make do with a Devastator. We stopped at the Brewer’s Co-Op yesterday and picked up a couple of sixpacks. You can’t sample the beer there, due to Utah’s lovely liquor laws, but you can have a sample of their root beer. I love Devastator, but then, I’m a sucker for Bock beer. Ya gotta love the label – a Rocky Mountain Bighorned Sheep plowing through some of downtown Salt Lake’s iconic buildings. At 8% alcohol, it’s the strongest beer commercially brewed in Utah.
So now that we’ve had a drink, how about some food?
I basically used this recipe, but with eggplant instead of mushrooms. I used an 8-oz package of Trader Joe’s pappardelle for the pasta. I didn’t have any mushrooms on hand, but I did have a couple of small Japanese eggplants from the garden, and I figured they’d be a good substitute. I used some non-Roma tomatoes from the garden, as well as fresh herbs (oregano, thyme, rosemary, and parsley). The red bell pepper was from my garden, too, and I also tossed in a few halved cherry tomatoes. That pretty much cleaned out all of the harvestable goods in the garden, except for the spaghetti squash. I cooked the eggplant slices in olive oil – the heck with cooking spray. But then I didn’t add the extra olive oil at the end. For the red wine, I used a nice Zinfandel from Heritage Oak, which we got from the guy who built the winery. (Not the vintner – the contractor.) We thought the recipe turned out very well – it reminded us of something we would have had in Tuscany. I think I probably like it better with the eggplant than I would with the mushrooms – it was an inspired substitution.
Oh and just so you know, Costco’s 6-layer bean dip makes a very nice spread for Huevos Rancheros.
And did you know you could freeze tortilla chips? Well, of course you can freeze them. You can freeze just about anything. But the point is, they’re perfectly fine when defrosted. Just thought you’d like to know that. And Chex Mix freezes very successfully, too.