Monday, August 20, 2007

Moroccan Food=Yummy

Once again I have been betrayed by the Yakima Farmer’s Market. Saturn peaches, aka donut peaches, aka squashy peaches, are no more. Gone, along with my waistline. So I have been forced to find another reason to wander aimlessly on Third Street every Sunday morning. The reason? Moroccan food. This week I hit the pavement with a long list of supplies, all of which were easily found here in small town America.

It’s ironic that my commitment to eating locally has led me to a love affair with food from another continent. When my peaches were replaced with late summer veggies, I began searching for ways to incorporate the abundance of zucchini, giant heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet and spicy peppers, and pungent leafy herbs into my family’s diet. North African and eastern Mediterranean cuisines use all of the above ingredients as well as lamb, couscous, bulgur wheat, and plain yogurt, all of which can be found locally and inexpensively. The dishes are super yummy and just spicy enough to tickle your palate without blistering it. In other words, it’s a neo-hippy housewife's dream. Last night we had a cinnamon and rosemary roast with tabbouleh, and tonight I will make stuffed zucchini with a vegetable salad called Fattoush.

And so I inadvertently discovered another benefit of the 100 Mile Diet, if saving a sickly planet isn’t motivation enough: it nudges us out of our suburban spaghetti/tacos/barbecue routine and provides a framework for experimenting with new ideas and flavors.

Yes, recipes will follow later this week.