And I put it on top of a salad.
And I ate it.
In one week.
Is this what happens when you turn thirty-seven? You start eating vegetables on top of other vegetables? Like, on a regular basis? And not just because you’re trying to impress some cute vegetarian dude who asked you out?
Not that I’ve ever done that.
I mean, I’ve gone out with a vegetarian before. I just didn’t feel any need to eat vegetables to impress him. In fact, I think the reason why I went out with him was because I was happy to finally meet someone I wouldn’t have to share my bacon with.I’m blaming Real Simple for my new vegetable-on-vegetable eating habit.
(Yes, I’m calling it a habit. I mean, twice in one week, guys! That’s more than I comb my hair!)
You know how some women read fashion magazines and end up feeling really bad about themselves afterwards because they don’t look like supermodels?
Well, that’s my relationship with Real Simple. Except it makes me feel really bad about myself because my medicine cabinet doesn’t look like this:
Instead, it looks like this:
Yes, that is my kitchen counter.
And, yes, that is a bottle of wine in the back there. But it’s red wine, you guys. Which I’m pretty sure is full of Vitamin C or echinacea or something.In case you’re not familiar with Real Simple, Wikipedia describes it as a “monthly women’s interest magazine” featuring articles on “homekeeping, childcare, cooking and emotional wellbeing.”
But, you guys, I can’t help it.
The magazine just makes all this hard stuff look, well, simple.
Like, oh sure, why don’t I just make a doily out of powdered sugar for the top of a cake? I can totally do that. Even though I can’t remember baking a cake, like, ever.
Or, oh yes, I can turn someone down without stuttering, breaking out into hives and then telling him that I might have body lice.
But when I spotted the January edition at the grocery store, I had to buy it.
Because I want to be the happiest, healthiest me!
I mean, who doesn’t?
Plus, I kind of have this thing for the color green.
I mean, who doesn’t?
Somewhere after the article that explained how to get rid of unsightly, under-eye circles and instructions for DIY Valentine’s Day cards, I found a recipe for something called “kale and roasted cauliflower salad with tahini dressing.”
And because the only word I could really understand in all of that mumbo-jumbo was “cauliflower,” I ended up buying a cauliflower roughly the size of my head.
And, lest you forget, I kind of have a big head.
Since I didn’t have any of the ingredients for the Real Simple-sanctioned salad, I had to make up my own recipe.
It went something like this:1. Cut up half of the humongo cauliflower into florets.
This will be hard to do seeing as the only cutting board you own is roughly the size of a postage stamp.
And because you have a tendency to cut your fingers every single time you pick up a knife.
EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.2. Toss the cut-up cauliflower with some garlic, parmesan cheese and olive oil.
I would give you the measurements, but measuring ingredients is not really my jam.
Besides, you can never really have enough garlic, parmesan or olive oil.
That is a fact.3. Put the cauliflower into the oven at 450 Fahrenheit for twenty minutes.
Or until the fire alarm goes off no less than two times.4. Beat the fire alarm with your hand or the closest available shoe.
Because, seriously, that fire alarm needs to know who’s boss around here.5. While the cauliflower is roasting (and in between pounding the fire alarm into submisison), assemble your other salad ingredients.
This includes salad mix, feta cheese, grape tomatoes and balsamic vinaigrette.
Which is basically everything in your fridge except for the beer and bacon.
Come to think of it, you really should have added bacon to this salad. And possibly some beer.
Rookie mistake.6. Replace the pine nuts in the recipe with sunflower seeds.
Because, seriously, you guys, do you know how much a pin nut costs these days?
I spotted an itty bitty container of the stuff the other day at the grocery store.
It cost nine dollars.
That’s a lot of money for a nut that’s not even a nut.7. You may wish to toast the sunflower seeds because the oven is already on and you’re feeling fancy.
Besides, what’s the worst that can happen?8. Pretend that never happened.
Use untoasted sunflower seeds because you’re not feeling like such a fancypants any more.9. Take the cauliflower out of the oven.
This will be hard to do seeing as you don’t own a hot pad.
And because you have a tendency to burn yourself every single time you operate an oven.
EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.11. Toss all the ingredients together.
Consider eating the whole thing directly out of the big, plastic, mixing bowl. Possibly with your hands. While standing over the sink.
Because you’re hungry, you guys. I mean, you’ve been cooking for forever.
Or twenty minutes.
Same-same.12. Put the salad into an actual bowl. Like, one that was made to eat out of.
Because, hey, you’re thirty-seven now, and that’s what thirty-seven-year-olders do!
Later you will regret this decision when you’re washing a million bowls because, sadly, you’re not one of those thirty-seven-year-olders who owns a dishwasher.
But for now you’re living in the moment!
Grabbing life by the horns!
Eating out of bowls!13. Pose your salad with the Real Simple salad.
Because, hey, your salad kind of almost looks like the one in the magazine.
And it tastes pretty darn good, too.
You know, for a salad. Especially for a salad that doesn’t have any bacon in it.15. Think about tackling the powdered-sugar-doily cake next week.
Or maybe that thing where you turn people down without having to tell them you might have body lice.Have a tasty salad recipe you want to share? Yes, I just used the word “tasty” and “salad” together. Let’s stop making such a big deal about it.