I know what you’re thinking: “Dinner!??” But this is THE BREAKFAST BACHELOR. “What on earth could he be doing fixing dinner!?” Well, folks, I suppose the cat’s out of the bag (though not literally, because ours has spent the last day and a half hiding inside a discarded paper grocery bag in a vet-induced haze) — I eat dinner too! I used to be all about dinner: Thai peanut stir fry, vegan palak paneer, Moroccan sweet potato stew, beef tenderloins with bordelaise sauce … you name it, I was making it.
And then dinner fell apart. I moved to New York and the concept of “dinner” literally fell apart. I was just a “diner,” then (less so now). One little letter lifted away and I was no longer experiencing a meal, but nourishing my concrete-addled body. It may have happened at 10pm, or 11pm, or not at all, blurring into the next day’s breakfast. The strife of a full day of work was too much to attempt a meal. It was delivery.com or bust. Breakfast was suddenly the place to be, for how nice it is to cook and cook and cook after a full night’s rest! But things are changing, friends, as you know, and dinner’s making a comeback.
On Thursday Ian made pesto. Armfuls of fresh basil, cloves upon cloves of garlic, parmesan, pecorino, roasted walnuts, and olive oil enough to make you sing. He was spending the weekend in Vermont, and I was lucky enough to steal away a tiny jar of this verdant elixir. On Friday I made mayonnaise. It was kind of boring, but also with enough olive oil to be worth the 15-minute arm workout. Today, Saturday, I made pesto mayonnaise. I put the pesto … in the mayonnaise. And life has already taken an enormous leap for the better.
I slathered a slice of sourdough in this new oily concoction, braised some arugula in what else, more olive oil and more pesto, tossed in some pasta and a splash of starchy water, poached an egg in the rest of it, and stacked it high with some crushed red pepper flakes. Now, pay close attention: it was 7:30pm on a Saturday. PM. POST MERIDIEM. Twelve hours late for breakfast, this aromatic adventure could be called nothing but “dinner,” at long last reawakened and ready for a night on the town. But I still put an egg on it for good measure. Why can’t there bea little bit of breakfast all the time?
The basil mayo will definitely be joining the breakfast ranks though (Can you say toast with bacon, tomato, and mozzarella???). But we’ll just have to wait until tomorrow to see what comes of that.
Here’s the mayonnaise recipe I used (sub olive oil for the milder oils they ask for, and use any kind of citrus juice you desire! I tried grapefruit but you can’t really taste it…), and as for the pesto, Ian does magical things with his food processor so that’ll just have to remain an enigma for now.
It’s Saturday night; go party!