Sunday, June 04, 2006

Sliced Tomatoes in Tomato Sauce

When I first made this for the GF, she looked at me (and I love to use this word) askance. Part of it was the tomato sauce -- she's from Singapore, where tomato juice is unheard of. And part of it's the name of the dish -- tomatoes in tomato sauce? What's up with that? But it's hard to resist this much tomato-ness, and afterwards I started gretting messages from the GF satying she'd just happened to pick up some tomato juice and tomatoes, and could I make that tomato thing when I come over?

Sliced Tomatoes in Tomato Sauce

3 medium tomatoes
4 tsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
1/2 to 1 tsp finely chopped jalapeno or other green chile
3/4 cup tomato juice
1 tbsp chopped parsley

Cut tomatoes crosswise into 4 or 5 slices, about half an inch each. Put on a plate and lightly salt and pepper the slices on each side.

Put oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and jalapeno. Once garlic starts to sizzle put in tomato slices in a single layer. Fry lightly, about a minute on each side, so they develop a light brown tint. Add the tomato sauce and parsley and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and serve.

from World Vegetarian by Madhur Jaffrey

Moroccan Mint Tea

The first night I was in Paris, I drank the best tea I've ever had. My friend and I were exhausted from the train trip from London, confused by the strange city, and very, very hungry. We stopped in a hole-in-the-wall Moroccan restaurant and were served mint tea in small copper cups and huge bowls of couscous and stew. Afterwards, I was obsessed with buying mint teas, spending on various fancy packages of dried "Moroccan Mint Tea", all of which tasted far more like the Sleepy Time tea my grandmother used to give me than what I'd had in France. It wasn't until I made the recipe below that I realized my error -- good mint tea is little more than fresh mint boiled in green tea.

Moroccan Mint Tea

4 tsp green gunpowder tea
8 stlks of fresh mint leaves
6 to 8 teaspoons sugar (to taste)
4 cups of water

1. Combine all of the ingredients above in a saucepan over medium-heat, and bring it to a boil.
2. Cover and turn the heat off.
3. Let sit for five minutes.
4. Strain and serve.

Serves 2-4