Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Last-Minute Sautéed Veggies and My Trip To Monterey

Near Cannery Row in Monterey, Ca.
When a vacation rolls around, it always bugs me when I end up with food left in the fridge that has the potential to spoil (especially produce).  Normally, if I didn’t have time to eat it, I would just freeze it and call it a day; however, before this particular trip, there was scarcely a square inch of space left in my freezer! (One of the reasons why re-organizing the freezer is on my to-do list.)  My mom had sent me some beautiful homegrown veggies shortly before an upcoming vacation, and I was scrambling to figure out what to do with them. 

So, I made a last minute (airplane friendly) carry-on meal of sautéed veggies and a side of leftover ground pork.  I’m always iffy about things I can bring on a plane, but food is ok as long as it doesn’t contain too much liquid, like soup for example.  I didn’t actually eat it on the plane, however, for the fear that the other passengers would be disturbed by the tantalizing smells of paprika and garlic, not to mention that I would probably have gotten a few quizzical glares.

How was the rest of the trip, you ask? ...It was absolutely wonderful!  The day after I arrived home, my parents and I began our drive up the California coast to Monterey, stopping overnight in Paso Robles for a quick wine tasting, which was also my first, at some lovely wineries.  We ate our way through the trip, as we usually do on vacation, often talking about our dinner plans while waiting for lunch to be served (ahhh, the foodie life).  But the highlight of the trip was surprising my sister there whose boyfriend, now fiance, planned the whole trip around popping the question on a picnic in Napa and surprising her at every turn (gentlemen, take note)...So, long story short, it was a great trip, and I have a wonderful new brother-in-law. Yay!

As the name of the recipe suggests, I did not have time to take any succulent, mouthwatering pictures of the sautéed veggies, so I thought I would add a few photos from the trip.

Last-Minute Sautéed Veggies

  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 2-3 medium button mushrooms, chopped
  • ½ large yellow onion, diced
  • 5 radishes, sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

  1. Chop, slice, or dice zucchini, mushrooms, onion, and radishes to roughly the same size as directed in the ingredient list.
  2. Heat coconut oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add onions and seasonings to the hot pan, and sauté for 2 minutes until translucent.
  4. Add remaining veggies and cook, tossing occasionally.  Sauté for about 5 minutes or until all veggies are browned.

Note: You can really use any vegetables you have on hand.  Even adding some greens to the mix near the end of the cooking time (like spinach or arugula) would work well, too!  And making a large batch to keep in the fridge is very convenient for adding to other meals like salads or scrambled eggs.  It’s a real time-saver that adds a ton of flavor at the same time!!