It’s colder than a well-digger’s arse…

February 3, 2011

I finally took off my coat 30 minutes ago, some four hours after I got home.

Credit this guy:

Hot looking little thing, innit? Certainly warmed up my evening.

I ate him. And nine of his brethren. Or sisteren, being that I am not certain of their gender, albeit they are of my own creation. The dawg got one I dropped, and Child C, she of a marked lack of good taste, took a bite, allowed she didn’t like it, and gave the remainder to the dawg as well.

These are sweet potato ravioli. They came out of my freezer, where they’d been reposing for a month or so, when I decided about 6:45 p.m. that (a) I really was hungry, and (b) I most assuredly did NOT want Papa John’s Pizza, which the kids were having.

I boiled them for about seven minutes; drained them on a paper towel, plopped them into a skillet with some sage brown butter, and fried them until they were crispy. Then I sprinkled them with grated Manchego cheese to which I’d added a teaspoon of pimenton dulce.

Thusly:

We will not discuss calorie count. Because, well, we just won't.

Yep, this is the answer to the sweet potato ravioli, all right. The grated Manchego was wonderful, with the pimenton dulce; I was headed for the Parmigiano, but I had been munching on some Manchego with honey while I was cooking, and had a piece left that grated up into precisely enough cheese. So that’s what I used.

This was eminently good, but it was even better in comparison to lunch. I’d been eyeing with interest the signboard promise, “Opening Soon” on the restaurant and health food store opening down the street from my office. They finally opened, and today was the first day I’d had a chance to drop by.

Um. Bless their hearts, but I don’t much think I’ll be back. I like a veggie as well as the next guy, and I’m fine with a restaurant that doesn’t serve meat and a store that doesn’t sell it, now and again. But vegan cheese is an abomination, and it has no place in anything I’m ingesting.

I walk in. It’s early. I am the only customer in the place. I look at the menu, and quickly twig to the fact there are some things, well, missing. Like the “e” in “chick’n.” (Which, by the way, they sell in cans, on their as-yet-poorly-stocked shelves. Cans, I tell you. It just ain’t right.) So I order the vegetarian quesadilla, because I have not yet twigged to the notion this place is not a vegetarian establishment, it is a vegan establishment. The quesadilla promises portabello mushrooms, spinach and caramelized onions with cheddar and mozzarella cheese, guacamole and pico de gallo. Cheddar and mozzarella cheese. Not “soy cheese.” Not cheese-in-quotes. Not “cheeze.”  Nothing to twig the unsuspecting carnivore to the fact an atrocity is about to be precipitated.

While I’m waiting for the quesadilla of which I’m becoming increasingly suspicious, I browse the menu some more. That’s when I see the caveat (OK, so it’s on the freaking cover of the menu. I looked past it the first time): All dishes are vegan.

OK. I’ll try this.

And then I amuse myself by tallying up incongruities in this place. Bear with me here while I make a racially tinged observation. The lady manning the front desk was a retirement aged African American lady. The chef, whom I can see down the hall into the kitchen, is an African-American man of indeterminate age — somewhere betixt late 20s and late 40s. I am having trouble squaring African Americans with vegan cuisine. We do part hard with our stereotypes.

Meanwhile, there is a string quartet arrangement of the old spiritual, “Whispering Hope” playing on the sound system. (We did not sing it like that at Liberty United Methodist Church, back in the day, I’m telling you.) And the sole piece of decor on the wall is a harp. Not one of those big floor model babies, but a harp about three feet tall.

So the quesadilla comes out (I get it to go). I go get Child C’s Sonic cheeseburger combo, and I go out to her workplace to eat with her.

Eh. I’ll pass on vegan quesadillas.

But I’ll hang with my sweet potato ravioli.

And now I’m going to bed to read. You and y’mama ‘n ’em have yourselves a warm evening, if you can.

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One Response to “It’s colder than a well-digger’s arse…”

  1. Len Cleavelin Says:

    I boiled them for about seven minutes; drained them on a paper towel, plopped them into a skillet with some sage brown butter, and fried them until they were crispy.

    In other words, toasted sweet potato ravioli. (Well… a variant, at least, since proper toasted ravs are deep fried, per my source.)

    I want to say that the corpse of some St. Louis chef is spinning in his grave right now, but you know how I feel about sweet potatoes. 🙂 Glad you enjoyed it, though!


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