Mountain Bread is Enormous!

There is a local, Lebanese bakery which provides a variety of pita breads to all the local Whole Foods locations in Houston. I made this connection a year ago when I went directly to the bakery to get falafel sandwiches (during Lent).

Today, we learned that their “mountain bread” is fit for the apetite of a Hobbit! Once we got them unfolded, the diameter was easily 18 inches, if not 24. We had opted for the mountain bread because we wanted to make some wraps for dinner, and had figured that the pita, pocket style bread would be too thick as is, and would fall apart if opened up.

So, apparently we were in for some serious wraps.

I quartered an eggplant (a longer, thinner variety than the typical Italian, but not as long and thin as the Japanese styles) and then sliced it into roughly half inch wide bits. I salted it and cooked it with jalapenos, onion (received in trade from a fellow gardener for some of my extra radishes), a pale green bell pepper (from my plot) and roasted garlic. Once well along, this skillet was put into a 400 degree oven next to a second one containing olive oil and some pre-made falafel (from a bulk warehouse store and which is distressingly good) for about 30 minutes, give or take.

The enormous bread was laid flat. Ruffled lettuce (from the garden) was arranged in the center along with some shredded cheese. The falafel was squashed to help the whole thing wrap up, and then it was topped with the roasted vegetables. The whole universe was then rolled up snug.

This was a much, much better success than the pickles.

Tenser’s Cheesy Disks

In addition to celebrating Bright Week with meats, we celebrate with dairy as well. In addition to cream in my iced coffee [1] once again and milk in my steamed steel cut oats, our house has been a veritable chees-a-po-looza (see previous mention of tacos).

Last night was quesadilla. Normally I would make these in a cast iron skillet on the stove top, but last night I got the bright idea to do several of them at one time on a half sheet in the oven. 350 degrees, 15 minutes on each side, perfect.

I de-seeded four large jalapeno peppers and sliced the fruit into small crescents. I cut one sweet onion (not a “Vidalia” brand, and yes that word is a brand, but whatever the local variety is) into similarly sized shapes. These were set about to browning in some olive oil, roasted garlic and salt over high heat in a cast iron skillet. Meanwhile, a can of┬ácannellini beans was opened and drained. Once the savory items were well along, a tub of baby spinach was tossed into the pan and wilted. Some left over rice and left over pico de gallo may or may not have been thrown in just to use it up.

Several small tortilla were arranged on the half sheet. Shredded pepper jack was applied. The beans were spooned onto the cheese. The skillet mixture was placed on top. Everything was worked a bit to flatten it out, and then tortilla were placed on top of each. Half sheet went into the pre-heated oven directly onto the oven stones. After 15 minutes the tray was removed, each item was flipped, and then the tray went back in for another 15.

The cheese melts, the beans melt, the roasted garlic melts… SO GOOD.

[1] Any time the temperature is above 85 degrees, I require iced coffee to function. Living in Houston means I drink a lot of iced coffee these days.