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Guest Blogging: My Mom and a Vegetable Galette

August 23, 2010

Last night, we had dinner at my parents house. A few weeks ago I explained to her that I was going back to being a vegetarian, and last night I told her that we decided to raise Serafina as a vegetarian. Like any daughter, I was worried about what my mother would say. Since I think she did a fantastic job raising us, I really respect her opinion. I knew this was going to be a big deviation from how I was raised, so I was worried she would disagree. However, my mom was incredibly supportive, explaining that she knew so many vegetarians these days it will not be so hard for our family. We talked about how raising her vegetarian would be no different, in that I would need to be thoughtful about what I feed Serafina. I also thought back to when I first had the conversation with her at 12, when vegetarians were less common, and she had the exact same supportive response. I shouldn’t have been surprised; my worry relaxed into relief.

So, my mom enthusiastically created a superb vegetarian main dish. I was both honored and proud. Sometimes cooking for someone with a different diet can be overwhelming to a host. I even called my mom beforehand suggesting I bring an extra dish so that she wouldn’t have to work too hard. She insisted that for this dinner she had something special to show me, and that our next visit we can start a new tradition of bringing a vegetarian dish. She was right, this meal was special. The food and the conversation reflected that ever evolving nature of relationships where you support the people you love.

Guest Blogger: The Vegetarian Salmon’s Mom

My mom needs little introduction on this blog, as I often refer to her cooking, advice, and recipes. However, I would like to mention that she is an Italian cook at heart, who raised us on food that is now considered trendy. She loves simple fresh ingredients, and everything is always cooked to perfection. After coming home from track practice, I used to sit on the countertop and talk to her while she prepared her meal. She completed every one of her swift moves in the kitchen with ease and culinary discipline. Despite going back to school for her college/masters/ phd, while working as a teacher, my mom insisted that she make us a well-balanced meal with fresh ingredients. We didn’t really eat processed foods, except for when friends came over then, and only then, we were allowed to have sodas and hostess treats. She would never acknowledge it, but she was on the cutting edge of culinary fashion.

True to her roots, this recipe involves my childhood food staples: tomatoes, onions, zucchini, peppers, and eggplant. A mandolin makes chopping the tougher veggies faster, and chopping is really the most challenging aspect of the meal. However, the result is a spectacular main course worthy of the finest restaurants.

Thanks for the wonderful dinner mom.

Vegetable Galette

  • 1 package of puff pastry
  • 2 tomatoes sliced
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • 1 eggplant sliced
  • 1 yellow pepper sliced
  • 1 zucchini sliced
  • 1 bunch of basil chopped
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • Pecorino Romano Cheese
  1. Pre-heat the oven at 350
  2. Take the sliced vegetables and put them in a bowl with kosher salt. Sweat the juice out of the vegetables. This prevents a soppy pastry.
  3. Roll out the puff pastry into a square, using a brush sweep olive oil over it.
  4. Layer the veggie slices in whatever pattern you desire.
  5. Top with basil, a dribble of olive oil and pepper
  6. Cook for 40 minutes in the oven.
  7. Next, turn the oven to the broiler, and cook for a couple of more minutes- or until your vegetables are crispy
  8. Remove from oven and top with the cheese.
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