Going Green

Here’s a little secret:  I judge people who talk about the weather.  I think it’s a topic too easy to revert to when you can’t think of anything else to say.  There are two reasons this is kind of humorous.

1.  I am shockingly awful at making conversation.  If I’ve known you for a while, I’ll never run out of things to say to you, but if we’ve only met once, I will likely bring up the weather.

2.  I am going to bring up the weather right here and now.

It’s really warm out.  I love when it gets warm, because I love my warm weather clothes infinitely more than my cold weather clothes.  My warm weather clothes are brightly colored and fun, and they let me show off my legs which have been turning a glistening shade of white after hiding in jeans and leggings since October.  However when the time comes to switch to my warm weather clothes, and show off my Snow White-esque legs, I often find parts of me that are slightly larger than I remember.  Ah, winter weight, how I loathe you.

I’m not one to skip a meal, and I don’t think I’ve ever dieted in my life.  So when this happens to me, dear readers, I look to the good green Earth for inspiration.  I up my fruit and veggie intake and try and play down the carbs and proteins.  And that helps me zip my cute warm weather clothes.  This week, I didn’t cook anything too jazzy in the main dish department for exactly that reason, but I did have occasion to dress up some of my favorite green veggies.

I wrapped my roasted asparagus in prosciutto and was ever-so-pleased with the salty results.  I eat roasted asparagus the same way I eat french fries.  Which is to say, I don’t stop.

You will need:

  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 oz. prosciutto, thinly sliced

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Wash your asparagus and snap the ends off.  Asparagus is one of those miraculous foods that mother nature has taken care of for you.  When you bend the bottom part of the stem, it will snap and you can discard the bottom, woody part, while maintaining all the flavor in the stalk.  See?  Miraculous.  Place the asparagus on a baking sheet, and toss with the olive oil, salt and pepper.  Place in the oven for 10-14 minutes.  The thinner your asparagus, the quicker it cooks.  Once the asparagus is done, cut your slices of prosciutto in half the long way.  Gather a few stalks of asparagus and wrap the prosciutto around and around till you have a little bundle.  Voila!  Dressed up veggies.

The second veggie I glammed up was green beans.  I love green beans, and don’t cook them nearly enough because, for some reason, snapping them annoys me.  Though I’m content to roll a pie crust by hand and stir risotto for the better part of an hour, I never feel like snapping beans.  My life is so hard.  When I can muster up the energy to snap, I never regret it.

You will need:

  • 8 oz. green beans or haricot vert
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 2 T of fat (butter and/or evoo in any combination)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.  Blanch your green beans (cook them) for 2 1/2 minutes, and plunge them into an ice bath if you’re like Ina or Deb, and don’t if you’re like me.  You’re already halfway done.  In a 12 inch saute pan or skillet, heat your butter and oil until hot and/or melted.  Add the diced shallots and saute until tender, about 5 minutes.  Add the green beans, salt, and pepper and cook for about 2 more minutes.

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