Wednesday, June 28, 2006

parsley from the past

after recovering from the meat-fest-out west last week,
we have been on a veggie/seafood kick since returning home.
my colon is lovin' it.
It feels good not to eat so much red meat.
we usually only eat meat on the weekends, it's kind of a treat.
that and steak goes sooo well with a good bottle of Rodney Strong 2002 sonoma county merlot.
(looking forward to cracking that on Friday) and I usually only drink wine on the weekend.
with the exception of the "teething times"
which I guess you could say has been for the past 5 months.
which would make me an...alcoholic...kidding.
but seriously, I do try to "abstain" from vino during the week,
not very Euro. I know.
but in the never ending quest to slim down I'm trying to avoid the extra calories.
but back to the chow.
I absolutely love Mediterranean food.
loads of flavour, and really healthy.
I once worked in a Lebanese restaurant when I was in high-school,
my nickname during that summer was shwarma.
the wife of the owner used to come in covered from head to toe, and I remember being in awe.
(I was 16 and from a small town, so this wasn't something you saw everyday.)
she didn't say much, mostly because she didn't speak English and she was pretty busy watching out for three small boys.
But I remember catching her sneaking a cigarette one time.
It was strange to see her lift her veil to have a drag of a duMaurier.
For some reason that image has always stuck with me.
that and the scars on the chefs arms that I saw once.
(he and his family fled Lebanon to come to Canada for a better life.)
I never asked how he got those scars.
but they were realllly bad. so I can only imagine. I still get shivers.
I remember teaching him how to write and speak in English,
and he taught me how to write my name in Arabic.
My name (with a different spelling was actually Arabic) who knew?
surely not my third generation/canadian/irish/english parents. Kewl...
I worked at that place for a summer.
It turned out to be a pretty good learning experience.
besides being exposed to an entirely different culture other than my own for the first time,
I learned how to make a mean tabouli salad, fattoush, kebabs, shwarmas and shish tawook.
extra sumac please. such a tasty spice.
I'd rather go out for falafel, no deep fryer in my kitchen.
not too big on grease smells.
I think I could eat Tabouli every day.
actually I did for an entire summer and shish tawook my personal fav.
so delish.
I think I was a whopping 100 lbs. back then (if that)
maybe I should go on the tabouli only diet...


sunshine scribe said...

I could also eat tabouli every single day. Yum.

Are you coming to the blogger thing that Her Bad Mother is organizing tomorrow?? I am totally nervous but looking forward to it. Hope to meet you then or maybe at some other one that will happen.

metro mama said...

Big Papa makes a mean tabouli.

Hope you can make it tomorrow!

Sheena said...

I haven't made tabouleh in years. Now I'm tempted.

One thing I know I'll miss about living in Ottawa are the great Lebanese restaurants all over town. I love a garlicky shawarma as a late night munchie fix.

Fairouz on Somerset is amazing Lebanese fine dining.

Any recommendations on places in TO?

petite gourmand said...

arabesque @ dundas and college has excellent falafel etc.
sadly he doesn't make salads...but maybe with enough requests he might start??
the Jerusalem up town-keele and Leslie..
(though I think they might have moved) has a an awesome lunch buffet.
I think there is one on eglington as well.
more hummus than is humanly consumable.