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The fusion cuisine of Casa Armone

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docoflove1974

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What's a girl to do? I've got leftovers of a seasoned long-grain and wild rice mix (which is excellent), and I don't really want a ton to eat. Well, you create new culinary delights!

 

Ok, that's going overboard...but somehow I got in my head that a Mediterranean Fried Rice was in order.

 

I've been making fried rice for years...it's actually really easy, but requires regular rice, either white or brown. Wild rice does not make for good fried rice, at all...it's too chewy, and doesn't absorb much more than it already has. Basically, one has to pair this well, and make it so that your 'additions' are ready to sit in the pan for like 5 minutes, tops, or the wild rice will be gross. But I didn't really know what to do with this stuff, and thought, well, why the hell not? What's the worst that happens...I have to toss it because it's revolting?

 

So...out with the egg omlet, and in with the mushrooms. Out with the ginger and green onions, and in with the leek. Out with the Chinese 5 spice powder, in with the pasta seasoning (which has the fennel and paprika that I needed). Out with the soy sauce, and in with the basalmic vinegar...very sparingly, might I add. Out with the sesame oil as garnish, and in with the kalamata olives.

 

It's not bad...not bad at all. Actually, as I sit here post-meal, I can taste lingering effects of the sweet balsamico, the briny olives, and the peppery spices. The rice is chewy, but in a good way, and there's a crispy rice bit every once in a while. Overall, a pretty good experiment!

 

When people bitch and moan about cooking, about how it's time consuming, I point to stuff like this. From prep to sit-down, I was in the kitchen for 15 minutes. That's it! Granted, I have a stocked pantry and fridge--I'm never without mushrooms and leeks once the autumnal equinox rolls around--but a lot of it was thinking about what I wanted this to taste like, and using the skills I have. It's not hard, it's just practice.

 

Now...there's a bit left in the pan...and I want seconds...'scuse me ;)

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Shit yes. There's a pseudo-fast food restaurant chain in the area called Noodles & Co. and they used to have a dish called Mediterranean mixed grill. It was a plate with a little pasta, some fresh spinach, balsamic grilled meat (beef or chicken or both), cucumbers, red onions, kalamatas, feta, and some tzatziki to dress it with. They've since changed it to mostly shitty lettuce and pasta, but that original dish was one of my absolute favorite meals of all time. I would eat that every day if I could. I would also eat crab and lobster every day if possible.And German food. And fuckin ripe avacados with salt and pepper. And good beer. Ahhh jesus.

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