Friday, July 08, 2005

Eye Appeal

My brother and his wife ate over last night and inadvertently offered me a peek into the mind of an omnivore. My brother looked into the pot and asked if we were having the same beans and rice we had earlier in the week. While the beans (French Lentils) and the rice (actually barley) was used in a dish I made earlier in the week (it also had sauteed fennel, broccoli and a basil/fennel vinagrette) last night's dinner bore little resemblance to that dish, in terms of taste. Last night I added sauteed onion, garlic scapes, green pepper and fresh cilantro. (I love fresh cilantro!) Dinner was served with tortilla chips and topped with salsa.

However, it did initially look mighty similar. I think, for my brother, it fed into the notion that vegetarians always eat the same thing. I've made a mental note to pay more attention to the eye appeal of my dished when entertaining. A simple garnish would go a long way on this.

I've always worked on the assumption that familar foods would go over better with non-veg people. To that end and because it is very economical, I've often stuck with variations on beans and rice recipes. I'm thinking that since I've been veg so long, and since I generally entertain the same people over and over again, perhaps its time to trot out some of my more adventerous dishes the next time I entertain. Perhaps a gluten "pot roast" or vegan sloppy joes on whole wheat buns will be on future menus. How shocking would it really be? No one blinks when I bring vegan mac and cheese anymore.

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