Thursday, October 13, 2011

Garlic and Bacon Green Beans- Metro Style

IMG_5160After spending a week in the provincial town of Svay Rieng which has a rather limited repertoire when it comes to meals and restaurants. I returned to Phnom Penh craving a really good meal. Cue lunch at Cafe Metro. The first thing I ordered was a great frozen drink with raspberries and orange sherbet because if there is anything you always need in Cambodia it is a cold drink. And then I spotted this gem on the small plates menu… garlic and bacon green beans-- they were the best green beans ever. I also had some amazing Australian beef sliders. So I came home determined to make my own metro style green beans.  (yes, I love recipes with a story)

Here’s how it goes…

1 1/2 lbs. of fresh green beans, washed and trimmed. Steam them until tender.

Meanwhile, cut 2-3 strips of bacon into small pieces. Cook it over medium heat in a medium sized skillet. When bacon is mostly cooked but still soft, add 7 cloves of freshly chopped garlic, and sauté  together for about 2 minutes. Add the green beans and toss them together with bacon and garlic. Season with black & white pepper and coarse kosher salt.

Future additions some pinenuts or almonds.

Not a bean remains in the house…

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

warning: you might find this offensive

IMG_5136The other day I came home from shopping and tried on a dress for my husband (this dress)…

“What do you think?” I stand a few feet away.

He looks up, “Are you going to wear a sweater with it?”

“Huh?”I question “It is a sweater, why would I wear another sweater with it?” I was quite proud of myself for finding a warm, comfortable, practical dress, suitable for New England winters.

“Well,  it’s just A LOT of STRIPES,” he said rather seriously.

“Stripes?” I ask incredulously.

“Yah stripes, it’s just… well it’s a lot of them,” he responds in a sort of warning tone.

I am lost in the logic of this conversation. After watching Visual Acoustics together this week, a fabulous documentary on Julius Shulman’s photography of modern architecture and I totally thought we were on the same aesthetic wavelength.

“Is the wearing of stripes visually assaulting? I mean is wearing  numerous stripes in close proximity to each other impolite? I have never heard this too any stripes thing before—really?”

He is serious.

Maybe using contrast with such wild abandon is akin to conspicuous consumption—like driving a super gas guzzling vehicle?

Or maybe he was thinking it was like a strobe lights and afraid it would cause people seizures and wanted to be sure I was ready accept responsibility for my actions?

Do you think this flagrant use of stripes makes me I look like I am stealing style from a chunky zebra?

Are we really talking this dress?? I liked it…and I think this stripe thing is crazy talk.

I am guessing it’s part of some engineer ethos, “Be reserved, and above all else don’t wear too many stripes.” Being married to an artist, well I guess he never knows when I might get wild and try to pull a striped fast one on him. Maybe we should stick to a simple pass/fail system or go back to the ranking system implemented after this incident. So tell me are my stripes offensive?