pWdumaNjA-6CEEBhRoD5euxNETs When All This Actual Life Played Out: Tough times demand tough talk (and free produce)

07 October 2013

Tough times demand tough talk (and free produce)


Washington Monument
Washington, D.C.
12 April 2009

I wanted to write a funny post about how I will be arriving at National on October 17 (which I am, in fact. Parents' Weekend. It's been planned for awhile) prepared to give our nation's putative leaders the talking to that their imbecilic behaviour demands before sending them to bed without supper. Because if you act like spoiled children, I'm certainly going to treat you thusly.

(For the record, my children got frequent lectures but were never sent anywhere without proper nourishment. I never tied food to punishment or reward. For Capitol Hill, however, I'll make an exception.)

In any event, I really don't have the heart for it. There just isn't any humor in the situation.

In other news, my neighbor R. has been dumping enormous piles of produce on my front step. We had one of our wretched windstorms this weekend and she didn't want cherry tomatoes blowing all over her yard, so I was the recipient of a couple of pounds. I got cooking and made the perfect dinner for Meatless Monday:

Cherry Tomatoes and Capers over Whole Wheat Fusilli:

1 pound whole wheat fusilli or other short pasta
3 Tbl olive oil
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
1 tsp dried oregano
1/16 tsp crushed red pepper (optional)
3 Tbl capers, drained
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

Cook pasta according to package instructions until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic, and cook, stirring, until just golden, about 1 minute. Add cherry tomatoes, wine, capers, oregano, crushed red pepper. Reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring, until tomato juices run, about 5 minutes. If the sauce becomes too dry, add another splash of wine or water. Add pasta and 1/4 cup Parmesan to the skillet and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with more cheese if desired.

I adapted this recipe from Martha Stewart's Tomato and Olive Penne. I love kalamata olives, but my family doesn't, so I used capers and wine together to help cut the sweetness of the tomatoes. It was very good!

Of course, it didn't hurt that the tomatoes were free. I'll pay her back with homemade banana muffins.

Tech stuff: Taken with my Nikon D40. For those of you who live in the U.S., consider donating to a local food bank if you're able. Many people are losing services thanks to the shutdown, and whatever your politics, there's really no need to let others go hungry. Well, unless you're Reid or Boehner.

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