Foodie: I’m home!
Beast: (Shaking his head in disgust.)
Foodie: What’s wrong?
Beast: You are too tanned! Look at you!
Foodie: I can’t help it, man! I think it’s just from riding my bike to and from work.
Beast: Well, you should cover up! A woman your age shouldn’t be getting so much sun.
Foodie: I know, but it’s too hot to cover up. (Sitting beside the Beast.) Look: we could be a couple from that Spike Lee joint.
Beast: Jungle Fever? What’s for dinner?
Foodie: You’re favourite! Pita Party for Dinner!
Pita Party for Dinner is when you take some pitas, grill them on the barbecue and top them with grilled vegetables, homemade salsa and feta cheese. I think I got the idea from an Everyday Food cookbook. I’ve made Pita Party for Dinner about three times now, and I love it! But the Beast doesn’t think it’s really a complete dinner (because there’s no meat) and after we finish eating them he says, “Great appetizer. What’s for dinner?”
Beast: Great. You make snacks for dinner and when it’s my turn to cook, I make steak. It’s not fair.
It’s true: the Beast has taken on more responsibility at mealtime. I assigned him two dinners last week, when I was extremely busy with a few projects, and he rose to the challenge with aplomb. First, he made flank steak with arugola, cherry tomatoes and slices of parmigiano reggiano.
And the next night, he showed real initiative, and good planning technique, by using up the leftovers to made steak sandwiches with caramelized onions and avocado.
He even bought fresh horseradish to grate on top of the steak.
I don’t think I’ll encourage him to do that again, though. It seemed to put him in a peculiar mood.
Foodie: Just admit it–you LOVE Pita Party for Dinner! We’ll have so much fun.
Beast: I need to have a cold shower first. I’m melting.
While he cooled off, I prepared the vegetables for grilling.
And then I had a cold shower and then I made us cocktails. But not any cocktail: I made us the cocktail that I DESIGNED FOR CHARITY! My friend Laura, the founder of Paws for the Cause, came up with the brilliant idea of selling lemonade made by chefs and food bloggers during the weekends this summer to help raise funds for the Ontario Veterinary College’s Pet Trust Fund. And last Friday, I made three gallons of classic lemonade for the booth set up at King and Portland.
I also included a recipe for a cocktail featuring lemonade and I called it THE UNDERDOG. Get it? Laura did, and she might even feature The Underdog as one of the specialty cocktails for the big Paws for the Cause gala on October 27.
Anyway, when designing a cocktail, you need to do a lot of taste-testing which might lead to dependency issues when you get home from work and just need an Underdog or you’ll just die.
Upstairs on the deck.
Beast: You’re plants look dead.
Foodie: I know. I’ve been terribly neglectful.
Beast: Yes, I can see that! (Examining my vegetables before putting them on the grill.) Can you please be more careful when removing the red pepper seeds? They’re poisonous, you know.
Foodie: No they’re not.
Beast: You know what food mispronunciation is the funniest to me? “Anti pasta”. Think about it: Yes, how was the negation of the pasta?
Foodie: I never thought about it like that.
Beast: And “brushedda”.
Foodie: I hate “marscarpon”. There’s only one “r” in mas-car-pone-eh. And four syllables, not three.
Beast: We’re a bunch of assholes.
Downstairs, we assembled our pitas and watched the season premiere of Hell’s Kitchen, where any number of true assholes can be observed.
Foodie: I LOVE PITA PARTY FOR DINNER! This is so good!
Beast: It is good.
Beast: You don’t even notice that they’re vegetarian because the mushrooms are so meaty.