I was hanging out at the Waterman's house, just chilling and drinking stick wine with DMa. Stick wine, aka Cantina Zaccagini, can be described as "a dashing wine with exuberant and savory flavors of juicy black fruit, coffee, chocolate and vanilla, with tannins that are smooth as silk." Its absolutely delicious and very please to drink with a meal or on its own.
After drinking a bottle, we decided we were getting hungry for dinner. We were trying to think of a restaurant in town that we could get some good take out from, and really couldn't come up with anything that sounded appealing. Instead we headed into the kitchen to see what we could come up with ourselves. The end product was quite impressive and better than any take out available in Westborough !
DMa had a recipie she wanted to try out - breaded baked artichoke hearts. It was a very easy and healthy recipe. Open a can of artichoke hearts, dip them into an egg, dip them into some bread crumbs, put them on a baking sheet, bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes. DMa also whipped up a delicious dipping sauce for these bad boys. Again very easy - not so healthy. It was a combination of mayonaise, half a clove of crushed garlic, and a squeeze of lemon juice. This dish was tasty and would be a great appitizer or side dish for almost any meal.
While DMa was working on that I was brainstorming what I should make. The recipe she had was printed out from a cooking website, and had a list of other dishes on it as well. One of the dishes listed was a salad with quinoa. Quinoa is a super grain ! Its very high and protein and provides a complete set of amino acids for the human body. It is also a great source of fiber and is gluten free. It is great to add hardiness to salads, or can be served with herbs and spices as a side dish similar to couscous.
I took this idea as inspiration and raided DMa's pantry and fridge to come up with the rest. The end result was amazing, if I do say so myself. I combined spinach, black beans, roast corn, fresh tomatoes, roasted red peppers, Mediterranean dressed quinoa, and lemon juice. When I was making it, I was a bit nervous that I was making too much and no one would really like it, but it was definitely gone in 15 minutes, and me and DMa ended up making it again the next day for lunch !
To make the Mediterrainian dressing for the quinoa, DMa equally combined a sweet pommegrante paste, a mildly spicy red pepper paste, pommegrante molasses, and pommegrante balsamic vinegar. This definitely added a lot of flavor to the plain grain and took the salad from decent to spectacular. These ingredients can be found at a Mediterranian or ethnic foods specialty market.
We thought the entire meal was sooo delicious. Our enthusiasm may or may not have been affected by the fact that by the time we finished dinner we were two bottles deep in stick wine.