Friday, May 1, 2009

Canned for your pleasure

Spring in Maryland is an odd time of year. It is 55 degrees, then 70 degrees, then 60 degrees, then 91 degrees, then 68 degrees, then 75 degrees; you get the picture. You gotta layer your clothes cause anything could happen at any moment. And forget about getting the temperature in the house right; it isn't unheard of to use heat, ceiling fans, air conditioning and fluffy slippers in the same 24 hour period. I love to see everything bursting into bloom, but a little weather consistency wouldn't be terrible. I'd rather have this schizey spring than live someplace without four seasons, but it does make planning for dinner a bit of a guessing game. Am i going to want hot food or cold food? Will i need homemade sorbet or hot soup? Your guess is as good as mine. Just as i was certain that warm, comfort stews were gone for the year we had a cold snap. The rainy blech-yness called for something hearty, but my tiredness called for something easy so i decided on a pasta concoction. I want to confess something right now that no one else knows - i have been terribly prejudiced against certain convenience foods. We've all seen the canned tomatoes with herbs and flavorings, right? I don't know why, but i have always though that using them somehow constituted cheating in the kitchen. Though there are lots of yummy sounding varieties i refused to buy them. Weird, huh? Anyhoo, i inherited a can of Italian Tomatoes with Basil and it just sat on the shelf. Sat and sat and sat. That is, until recently. I poured that can into a pan with some spinach, corn and onions; i couldn't resist adding more basil, garlic and fresh ground pepper. In another pan i boiled up some mini-shell pasta with carrot slivers. Right before the pasta was done i threw in some fresh broccoli. Drain the one pan and throw the contents into the other, stir and voila! A dish that felt springy cause of the fresh veggies, but was hot and hearty to combat the weather. After i ate some i decided that Parmesan cheese was in order. I think this dish has cured me of my aversion to canned, herbed tomatoes. I can't wait to go buy some different varieties. {BTW, how much do you love my new-to-me flatware? I got it from work for the bargain basement price of free a few months ago. I love the pattern.}

1 comment:

Kaaren said...

Random side note:

I saw someone spell "Voila!" as "Waahlah!" recently and about died laughing.