Thursday, September 5, 2013

Vegan! (except for the bacon)

I feel like I've written posts like this before.  I so want to be vegan - I do! Really! It seems so virtuous - so healthy - like all my past sins will be atoned for if I could just eat kale and tumeric not much else...

Then I open the freezer and I find the Wegman's bacon I stashed there in July just before our European Vacation and I loose all control.  Before I know it, I'm defrosting it in the microwave and heating the cast iron skillet in a 400 degree oven...

It was a beautiful evening at the farmer's market.  The organic veggie farmer and I discussed the stunning Swiss chard, with it's emerald city leaves and citron stem.  He had garlic too - and an heirloom style tomato, and oh-my-god: Swiss chard pesto spaghetti with a fresh tomato sliced on top.  I couldn't get home fast enough.

Roughly chopped chard, dropped into the Cuisinart, along with a small handful of cilantro I happened to have.  3 cloves of rough chopped fresh garlic.  Half a lemon squeezed in, half a lime, 1/4 cup of olive oil, pinch of sea salt, two or three grinds of pepper and a pinch of sugar to cut the bitterness.  Whirred it all up.

I thought it was great.

Smith took a taste - and he was - polite- but not enthusiastic.

That's when I heard the call of the bacon.

The thing to do is to cook the bacon in your big cast iron skillet then take the bacon out, let it drain on a paper towel, and when your pasta's ready, drain it and drop it into the skillet to soak up all that beautiful bacon fat.  Then stir in the pesto, slice the tomato and throw it on top.  Almost vegan!  Seriously! Almost!

Finish it with another pinch of fleur de sel and a dash of really good balsamic vinegar.  You won't regret the bacon.  Chard and bacon kind of cancel each other out - don't they?  I think they do.