The mystery of aioli

At my cousin’s wedding, they served “lite fare” for dinner: basically three items served to each table and people could pick and choose for themselves. I couldn’t have the crab cakes or chicken (obviously) so I had the fried green tomatoes. I was a little leery at first, though, because it said that they were cookied with “garlic aioli.” I didn’t know what aioli was, neither did any from my table, and neither did my aunt. So, I had the tomatoes, and fortunately, they were safe.

Butterfly Saffron

Last night’s experiment was the relatively easy Butterfly Saffron recipe from Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant. It was a bit heavier of a dish than I usually like for my pasta (it used butter and heavy whipping cream in addition to freshly grated Pecorino cheese), but the end result was nice and creamy and had just a hint of the saffron flavor. I have a feeling I’ll return to this one again and I think it would make a good dinner party-type dish.

Falafel and cucumber sauce

On Friday I tried out this falafel and cucumber sauce recipe. It took a lot longer than expected (because of a number of mistakes and lack of foresight on my part), but the end result was very tasty. The cucumber sauce was excellent and surprisingly easy to fix and would work well with a number of other dishes. The falafel took some work, but was worth it.

The one major change to the recipe is that step 4 should be step 1—the cucumber sauce should be chilling in the fridge for about 20 minutes before you even start to make the falafel.

Vegetarian wedding fare

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Vegetarian wedding fare pro and con

Since I’m in the midst of wedding planning right now with my non-vegetarian fiancee, this clip from Ann Landers was interesting.

My take on the subject: if the bride and groom choose to serve a vegetarian meal at their wedding, they have the full right to do so. While taking your guests’ preferences into account is important, there are plenty of ways to satisfy guests’ appetites with non-meat meals. In our case, we compromised: we’re having a couple of chicken/fish dishes but will also have a good vegetarian option. We’ve also spoken with the cook and she’s willing to make a couple of the vegetarian meals vegan by leaving out the dairy and eggs.

The most interesting quote, I found, was this: “Many meat-eaters see vegetarianism as a moral judgment on their own dietary choices.” And I think that’s true… but if somebody else serving you a vegetarian meal makes you feel like you’re being judged, then doesn’t that indicate that you’re not comfortable enough with your own dietary decisions?