Posted by: Hil | August 28, 2008

Blueberry Mom on Seasonal Eating

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So, if you want to know what I ate today, please see yesterday’s post.  Today is choir night, meaning that I didn’t have time to do much with food besides heat up leftovers.  The one variation in my day was a very lovely homemade nonfat cappuccino, which took the place of the yogurt that I ate at yesterday’s breakfast.

In recompense for the boring state of my food today, I have something fun to offer you:  a guest blog by Blueberry Mom!  My mom is one of the best cooks I know and much of what I know about food, cooking, and eating, I learned from her.  I posted a couple of days ago about the challenge of reconfiguring one’s eating during the change of seasons.  My mom has also been dealing with this, so I asked her to write a bit about her recent attempts to figure out what her body is craving as the seasons shift.  Enjoy!

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Hi everyone,

This is Blueberry Mom, guest-blogging by Hil’s request. Hil and I have talked for years about the food malaise that seems to strike us at the change of season. What happens is that nothing seems good or satisfying, until we figure out that it’s time for different food, food appropriate to the coming season. I was especially surprised this year because the malaise seemed to hit during a week when it was 102 degrees at 9pm. Was my body really telling me it wanted Fall food? How likely was that?

Hil had an idea. “Why don’t you go to a restaurant you like, mom, and see what looks good to you on the menu. Maybe that will give you an idea of what your body is wanting.” I was so tired of feeling dissatisfied that I decided to carry out her suggestion.

I called a friend and enlisted her in the project. We went to the restaurant we always go to. It’s one of the nicer restaurants in town, lacking the ultimate cool factor because it’s not small and boutique-y, but with a fresh and seasonal menu that seems to get better and better over the years. Hil and the Lemonator love it.

We sat in the lounge because we always do. I started with a gin martini. The gin was new to me and I don’t want to say too much about it. Let’s just say that when I googled it when I got home, it turned out to be a venture into spirits by the family that owns this restaurant. “It’s my gin of choice,” said the bartender. I bet it is. Sometimes you pay for being adventuresome.

My friend was reluctant to help order but I urged her on. I was going for a win-win: my friend eats what she wants, AND I get information about what I want to eat.

This is what we ended up ordering: an eggplant “napoleon,” carpaccio on a bed of arugula with lemon and capers, a bowl of minestrone (me), and lobster ravioli (her). For dessert she had tiramisu and I had a vanilla and coffee panna cotta with caramel sauce.

These were my observations. The napoleon: roasted eggplant, YUM. Grilled mozzarella, YUM, especially the brown grilled parts. Fresh marinara, lovely.

The carpaccio: Hm, maybe I need to start eating more beef. (Maybe red meat in general because come to think of it, that pork chop with the grilled peach and arugula looked awfully good on the menu.) The strong flavor of the arugula with capers and lemon was heavenly, too.

The soup: well, I ordered minestrone but I got the soup of the day, which was random vegetables pureed. I decided to go with it. It had a lovely, complex flavor. I really wished I knew what was in it. But I vowed to start cooking soup again.

I had no desire for lobster ravioli.

The panna cotta was everything I hoped it would be. It made me think of adding a recipe for something densely creamy to my short list of “desserts worth cooking.”

What did I learn? Oddly, I do want food that’s at least a bit more Fall-ish. I want soup, and red meat, and grilled cheese, and roasted vegetables. (I know Hil roasts vegetables all summer long, but with the heat where I live, I sure don’t.) It’s true that the days are much shorter already. And the neighbor kids have started school. Plus the highs for the coming week are forecast to be under 100. It must be Fall!

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Responses

  1. What a lovely guest post!! I vote for more posts by Blueberry Mom 🙂 It’s a wonderful addition to this already wonderful blog!

  2. What a great post- thanks Blueberry Mom!

  3. If its the place I think you’re talking about… yum. Give me some of their risotto anyday.

  4. My mouth is watering for that eggplant napoleon! And what a brilliant idea to look to restaurants to figure out what your body is craving!


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