Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Holiday Anxiety Season

Does anyone else get the nerves around holiday time?  One of my character flaws is over thinking and over analyzing everything.  Holidays bring about anxiety to the fullest--pressure to see family, buy the perfect gift, put in enough days at work, too much impulse shopping, entertaining on a budget, etc.  Plus this holiday season will be one spent without my new hubs due to him being out of town.  SIGH.  Any suggestions on how to not run away screaming for two months???  Dont get me wrong.  I dont want to be negative so that is where that kind of talk will end for today.  On to the food....

In the past week, I believe I cooked dinner for friends twice.  First night was Greek.  Homemade falafels, mixed greens salad with lots of feta, tzatsiki sauce from scratch, and cous cous with garlic, parsley and olive oil.  Yummy.  I even converted a confirmed meat and potatoes man to eat this veggie fave.  Woo hoo.  Take a look-sie:

The thing I love about cous cous is that it is so easy to make, you can throw just about any ingredients into it and make it a meal, can be eaten cold or warm, etc.  I could go on and on but I wont. 

The thing that is great about my salad is that I now have a quick and easy salad dressing out of 3.5 ingredients- balsamic, high quality dijon mustard, olive oil, and pepper.  I can share the recipe...you only have to ask. 

I forgot to mention in my intro paragraph this amazing appetizer that you must must try.  Super simple to make I promise.  Grill an eggplant and cut into chunks--try to have the purple skin on each piece that you plan to put on the stick.  Cube a nice brie into the same size as the eggplant.  Alternate on the stick, arrange on a nice contrast plate, and drizzle with S&P, balsamic, and olive oil.  Thank me later. 

The pics of the falafel, pita bread and sauce didnt come out so well...you will just have to imagine it.  The falafel was nice because it had a nice spiciness and was perfectly fried aka not dried out. 

The next dinner with pals turned out to be Halloween.  I may or may not have been irrationally fearful of opening my door to strangers at night on a constant basis.  I had to lure my friends over with food bribes to help me get through the night.  Pathetic really.  The menu?  Crispy tacos, lemon cilantro garlic rice, organic refried beans and chicken enchilada soup from scratch.  My tacos are practically legendary if I do say so myself.  Super simple--but you have to use good ingredients! Dont cheap out on the cheese...

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