Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

You know that scene in Ferris Bueller’s Day off when Ben Stein is addressing his class and they’re literally falling out of their chairs with boredom? Well that pretty much describes my relationship with food over this past summer. Don’t get me wrong–I ate quite well, especially on my jaunt to Italy, but lately cooking has seemed as attractive as an emergency root canal. Well I’ve never had one but it looks like a doozy!

So what did I do to remedy this cooking rut?? Absolutely nothing! That was the problem. Do you guys ever find yourself in this situation? I’m sure it didn’t help that I was eating wonderful food in Europe and when I returned I was really turned off by the food I found here. I know–complete snob. Hey, at least I’ll admit it! 🙂

In any case, I’ve come to realize that I function much better when I’m on a routine. Now that school has started again, I am back on my work routine and I am much more apt to get back into the kitchen and bring some new recipes to you! During the summer I’d sleep until 10ish (ok, fine, until noon) and my eating schedule would consist of snacking and then usually dinner with friends or something quick and easy. I always have all these grandiose plans during my summer vacation in which I believe I’ll have so much free time that I’ll cook, bake, and work out twice a day and then when summer rolls around I become even more lazy than during the normal school year! What’s up with that?!

Well ladies and gents, fear not! I am back and vegetarian!!! Wait, what??! Yup, you read correctly. I’ve been eating meat free meals for about 2 weeks now (and man does it feel like an eternity). You’re probably asking yourself why I decided to embark on this meat free adventure, or maybe you’re not, but I’m going to tell you anyway.

For the past few years I have been increasingly disturbed by what I have read and heard concerning factory farmed meat in this country. I find it disgusting and cruel! Being an avid animal lover it really tugs on my heart strings when I see and hear about the cruelty done to these animals. Both of my parents are vegetarians and I have always loved and embraced lots of fruits and veggies so when a friend began reading Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer (incredible book, btw) I asked him if he would do meat free meals with me for 30 days and he agreed! Yes! So now I have a vegetarian buddy who keeps me on track, and I him, and it makes the process much easier!

I really can’t say that I miss meat. I have cravings sometimes and have had one relapse (whoops, nobody’s perfect, right?) but overall I do feel a difference in my body. It’s a bit challenging sometimes to come up with balanced meal ideas because I have been indoctrinated since I was a kid to have meat, starch, veggie on my plate. I am still eating seafood (I mean, please, I live in Miami–killer seafood) so I guess if you want to get technical I am a “pescatarian” but that just sounds silly to me!

So here we are. I haven’t decided yet if after the 30 days I’ll go back to eating meat, but I have a feeling that I won’t or maybe I’ll become a “flexitarian” (silly title, again) which is mostly a vegetarian diet with the inclusion of meat occasionally. Who knows? I’ll let you know when I get there.

Tonight’s recipe: Salmon burgers with a cucumber dill yogurt sauce on a bed of greens

Here’s what you need:

about 1.5 lbs. of salmon, finely chopped

2 scallions, chopped

1 shallot, finely chopped

1 egg, beaten

1 teaspoon of finely grated lemon zest

1/2 cup bread crumbs

1 cup of greek yogurt, plain

3 tbsp of dill, or more if you like a strong flavor

half of a cucumber, chopped

lemon wedges

salt/pepper/butter or olive oil for sauteeing the patty

Here’s what you do:

Combine the finely chopped salmon, lemon zest, scallions, shallots, egg, salt and pepper, and bread crumbs and mix to form your patty mixture. Make into burgers and place in the fridge for an hour or so. Or you can make these the day before and refrigerate them overnight. The longer they sit and firm up the better.

To make the yogurt mixture, combine the yogurt, dill, cucumber, salt and pepper and refrigerate until you’re ready to use it. This also really goes well on grilled chicken breasts as well, if you’re into that.

You can grill the burgers, pan fry them, or use a grill pan. Your choice. You can also use burger buns instead of a salad if that floats your boat. Whatever you want! These are delicious, low fat, quick, and meat free!! Yippee!

Happy cooking!

-Melissa

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Categories: Recipes, Seafood

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One Comment on “Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?”

  1. September 10, 2012 at 12:25 am #

    LOL

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