All ingredients easily found in bulk and or produce aisles.
P.S. I’ve stopped feeling guilty about those damn twist ties that accompany all bunches of spinach, cilantro, and parsley; I feel fortunate to find them not wrapped in plastic, and am thankful to eat healthy food.
The first places I visited outside of the US were Greece and Italy. I sold my beloved 1971 Volkswagen Bus (green and white 😍) and bought my plane tickets with the money.
I had the time of my life traveling and staying in hostels. My original plan was to work at a hostel on an island and chill for five weeks. We ended up staying for a couple weeks at Corfu, but then traveled on to southern Italy and eventually made our way back to Corfu.
While working at the hostel, I learned how to wash an outrageous amount of dishes very quickly, pluck a rooster, make Greek pancakes, serve wine, and make a killer Greek salad.
There were olives aplenty in Greece, and we used black olives for the salads, whole, not chopped, and it’s still the way I prefer my salads.
The hostel matriarch, Madalena, made her own feta cheese, and this time, I did as well. I cannot find feta unpackaged anywhere!
1 head of Romaine lettuce (I like the red)
1 can of olives (nope, not in bulk, but still recyclable)
2 Roma tomatoes
1/3 – 1/2 red onion
I own a mandoline slicer, and this is one of the few recipes I feel require a type of tool like this, unless you have mad chopping skills.
Tear or chop the lettuce and place into a large bowl.
Slice the red onion very thinly, then cut into half moons.
Slice the cucumber slightly thicker than the onion, cut into half moons if you wish. I do sometimes.
Slice the tomatoes into thin slices. I use a vintage tomato slicer that makes the perfect size slices, and cut into half moons.
Place all the vegetables into the bowl.
Top with olives, feta, and then I always pour some olive brine over the top of the salad, and then it doesn’t need any sort of dressing.
In case you couldn’t tell, I love orzo. It’s so fun, I can easily find it in bulk, and it can be made into a variety of dishes.
Here, I’ve cooked up yet another variation of pasta and beans. True love!
I started this soup off with the typical mirepoix which is onion, celery, and carrot. I know those vegetables aren’t deemed exotic or glamorous, but dang they are delicious and staples for a reason.
In an effort to reduce waste, I typically use an entire onion anytime I cook with onion. I also chopped up a few carrots and a few stalks of celery, including the leaves.
From there, I just built up the soup adding homemade bouillon, water, cooked Peruano beans, and nearing the end, orzo. It’s honestly that easy to have a simple, delicious dinner. This is easily vegan, just start with oil, which is what I did, or you can start with butter if you prefer that taste.
All this soup needed was some salt and pepper and a big, hearty slice of homemade sourdough bread to accompany it.
I hope to soon share yet another pasta + bean “recipe” for you!