I’ve have been so focused on some of my other projects I have not been cooking as much lately. However, a couple days ago my BFF emailed me asking for some advice about a recipe and was worried about paired the wrong cheese with any given vegetable. And that’s something I’ve had concerns about over the years too.
So I pulled together a list of common cheeses and what kind of vegetable I’ve consistently successfully paired them with:
Feta: Spinach, kale, onions, sweet potato, mushrooms, zucchini
Blue cheese: butternut squash, bitter/more intense greens, portbello mushrooms
Cheddar: broccoli, onion, cauliflower, tomato
Fontina (the kind at Trader Joes): Asparagus, eggplant
Parmesan: basically everything
Goat cheese: pretty much everything, although not always ideal for baking
I hope you found this little table (illustrated by some of my recipes from this blog) helpful if/when you’re pulling together a new recipe. Let me know if you have any cheese/veggie pairings I missed that you think are awesome! Song of the Week: La La La/Bang Bang mashup from Penn Masala. This is a super fun mashup by one of my favorite a capella groups. It’s fun and super pop-y and I’ve been listing to it a lot when doing tedious stuff at work.
There is one thing I hate about living in DC (besides the weather) – the tomatoes are just bad here. I know I grew up spoiled eating tomatoes growing in my backyard, but still. Disappointing. But baking the tomatoes or sticking them in dishes works fairly well, and I wanted to make Ottolenghi’s Herb-Stuffed Tomatoes recipe ever since I saw the picture. So this week I did, adjusting the recipe based on my fridge as always.
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
3 tablespoons chopped parsley
6 chopped kalamata olives
handful of toasted pine nuts
parmesan for serving (optional)
Cut off the tops of the tomatoes and using a spoon, clear out the middle part of them. Lightly salt the insides of the tomatoes and turn them upside down so the juice comes out. Meanwhile, saute the onions and garlic until the onion is transparent and fragrant. Add the bread crumbs, parsley, olives, and pine nuts and mix them in. Take the filling and use it to stuff the tomatoes. Bake at 325 for 3o minutes or until the tomatoes are soft. Sprinkle on parmensan if you want and serve.
I really liked this recipe. It was pretty simple and tasty and hey, if you don’t add the cheese it’s even vegan! It’s not a wow of a recipe, but it’s good. I actually thought it tasted better when I had it as leftovers the next day for lunch. My only warning is that the tomatoes kept tipping over on the pan, which was slightly messy and worrisome. Definitely pair with dry white wine – anything else would be overpowering. Song of the Week: Good as Hell by Lizzo. I heard this song a couple weeks ago on the amazing podcast Soooo Many White Guys, and have been in love with it ever since. It just makes you feel better and more awesome. Also, the background on the chorus. If you can, watch the video too cause it’s also friggin awesome ode to black female beauty.