Saturday, September 15, 2012


Friday, September 14, 2012

green gazpacho

Whenever someone near me on a plane orders tomato juice, I always wonder. When did they start drinking tomato juice? Was there some kind of pro-tomato-juice propaganda circulated during the war that makes grandparents love it? Are some people just more virtuous? Is it a Southern California savory-juice thing?

But last weekend we ended up with triple the normal amount of produce. Which meant triple the sprouts. A visit to a local sprout farm (my day job?) instilled a sudden craving. All of a sudden, growing sprouts didn't seem like a weird thing for other people's moms, the ones who served carob milk and listened to NPR... it seemed kind of fun. Like a science experiment. I crunched on them as they grew-- from lifeless white beans to green-tasting still-white beans. I sat writing all day, and all day the sprouts grew. All watched over by machines of loving grace! It was great-- I felt like the Dr. Frankenstein of healthy snacks. But then, what are you gonna do with all those sprouts? I don't even like sprouts. I made a salad. It did not look appetizing. Kedar's suggestion was to blend it-- probably the only thing that sounded worse than eating a salad with such a sprout to cheese ratio (a lot to zero). But then, it's hot out. Why not?

Most of the recipes were for throwing spinach into sweet smoothies with bananas, which turn out a kind of brown-green-grey and probably deserve their reputation. Green smoothie lovers, email me! Spring to the defense!

We figured that going full-savory was the only way to save dinner. Years of watching people drink virgin bloody mary mix and not gag supported the hypothesis. Into the blender with the salad: an onion, a head of romaine lettuce, bzz bzz. Half a cucumber. Handful upon handful of sprouts. Bzz Bzz. Pickled garlic. Oregano, I think.

I was skeptical. It tasted ok.: then salt salt salt, three tomatoes, another tomato, two hot peppers from the farm-- anchos? On top: some roasted squash seeds from a hopeful transition to fall-flavored root vegetables.  I started thinking of it as green gazpacho. I imagined myself saying the mere phrase "green gazpacho" while wearing a maxi dress and drinking white wine. Nigella Lawson was there. We discussed her weight loss. And I felt virtuous. Vegetables in a blender! I get it.