Have you ever been to a restaurant and taken a picture of the food to show to your friends? This week’s changers, #49 from Gourmet Online’s “50 Women Game Changers,” made a business out of doing just that—sharing pictures of food. Alexa Andrzejewski got the idea of creating a guide to food when she was visiting Japan. With the help from Ted Grubb, a techie, the idea turned into photo sharing software. When Soraya Darabi came on board, her background as social media manager for The New York Times gave credibility to the project and the team secured $3 million in funding. The name of the website and i-phone application is Foodspotting.
Alexa, Ted, and Soraya are not famous cooks or chefs. They just like the idea of knowing what’s being served at your neighborhood restaurant. So for today’s recipe I’m choosing a food that I like to eat at one of my favorite restaurants.
I rarely eat out in restaurants. It’s no fun for me to try something hoping that it will be good. That’s not enough; I have to know it will be good. Since I can cook most anything that’s plated up for me, I’m often left thinking “I could have made this at home and saved fifty bucks.” But, there is one restaurant I like to visit here in Tempe, Arizona. Haji Baba is small Middle Eastern restaurant that has very affordable pricing, and the food is very good. I started going there when I moved to Arizona a long time ago. My favorite plate is the vegetarian platter, which includes baba ganoush, tzatziki, falafel balls with a special tahini sauce, stuffed grape leaves, tabouli, and a side of pita bread. Their tabouli is good, heavy handed on the parsley, and light on the grain. I learned to love Middle Eastern food at Haji Baba, but still prefer my own tabouli. I think you’ll love the following recipe, and it’s a healthy choice!
Prep Time: 25 minutes, and 3 to 4 hours for the salad to chill
Yield: 8 cups
1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
1-1/4 cups whole wheat cous cous (available at Trader Joe’s)
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
6 scallion stalks, chopped
¾ cup minced parsley
1 tomato, core removed, and chopped
2-1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste
1) Put a small pot of water on the stove and pour into it 1-1/4 cups of water, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring the water to a boil and then add the cous cous and stir well. Remove the pot from the stove, cover it, and let it sit for 5 minutes.
2) After this time, fluff the cous cous with a fork and then allow it to cool. When it is cold enough, put it into a large bowl and place it in the refrigerator to chill.
3) When the cous cous is cold ad the cucumber, bell pepper, scallions, parsley, tomato, lemon juice, and the olive oil. Check the seasonings, and add salt to taste.
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