Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summer Yummers!

There is nothing better in the summer time than fresh produce. The vegetable choices are at their peak. Whether you harvest from your own backyard, find at a farmer's market, or swing through the produce aisle, summer veggies are a quick go to for a meal. One of the easiest and yummiest way I cook up my garden finds is to saute them and serve over pasta. And of of the best things about this dish, you can easily make it your own. Rarely do I serve it the same way. Use whatever you have on hand! Below, is what I happened to have on this particular day.
Angel Hair with Summer Veggie Saute
2 TBSP olive oil
2 cloves minced garlic
dash red pepper flakes (if you like a little kick)
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 meduim zuchinni, chopped
1 medium squash, chopped
1 cup diced tomato (can also substitue with a can)
1 cup baby spinach
Angel hair, cooked according to package directions
How to:
Over medium heat, saute the garlic and red pepper flakes. There are few things as good as fresh garlic cooking up!
Next, add in the onion and saute a few minutes. The squash and zuchinni are next in the pan. Allow the veggies to cook and soften a bit before adding in the tomatoes. Cook for another minute or two. Turn off the heat and fold in the spinach. The heat of the vegetables will help wilt the greens.
Now that the vegetables are finished, serve them over the pasta. On this particular night, I had some shrimp I needed to use. So, I seared them with a little lemon juice, butter and cajun seasonining.
This dish is very simple and good. I have even served it as a side. Like I said above, this is really just a method. Throw in any vegetable you enjoy! I love cooking with eggplant and mushrooms.

Restaurant Review 1: Steak and Catfish Barn

I'm a sucker for tv, especially shows about food. Food Network and the Cooking Channel are at the top of my list. Travel Channel also has their fair share of great food shows, one of which being Man v. Food. I love learning about great places to eat in cities that I would love to visit. Although it may also be that Adam Richman, the show's host, looks a lot like a grown up Kevin Arnold. ;) Wouldn't you know it, Adam (and the show) visited Oklahoma. I had to go check it out.
A few weeks ago, my family visited the zoo and worked up quite an appetite. We weren't too far away from an eatery where the show filmed. The Steak and Catfish Barn it was!
I admit, driving up to the place wasn't the most exciting. It truly does look like a truck stop off the busy interstate. The inside stayed with that theme. It was a little dark and seemed like it hadn't been decorated in about 15 years. That didn't bother us. It was clean, and honestly some of the best eats come from hole in the wall establishments.
The waitstaff was very friendly and attentive. Our boys enjoyed looking at all the decorations covering the walls. The menu was large enough, mostly with fried foods. But after all, that's what The Travel Channel came for, and so did we! My husband and I both ordered the catfish dinner. It came with hush puppies and our choice of two sides. I chose the green beans and okra. He chose a side salad and fries. I also ordered a side of the green tomato relish. Our oldest chose his favorite, popcorn shrimp. Boy #2 opted for the catfish. The baby was happy with Cheerio's.
The food was good. I won't say spectacular. Honestly, I prefer my catfish a little more thinly cut. My husband enjoyed the catfish and had no complaints. I will say, the green tomato relish was delicious! Eating it with the hush puppies, catfish, or straight....YUM! (mental note for a recipe search....) The boys each enjoyed their meals as well. The food was very fairly priced, and the service was great. It was easy place to eat with the children as well. If we are up on the north side of Oklahoma City again, we may head back.
And a shot of Adam for the road.....