The True Purpose of Academic Achievement


I am officially dating a master.

80P graduated this weekend and because he will now have tons of time (um, besides the whole job search thing) he will be back to blogging. Okay, probably not. Maybe just picture taking. Anyway.

Momentous occasions, whatever the occasion, is really about the food. Fuck that MPP. Fuck that honors GPA. That’s not all that important when we get to use this event as an excuse to eat some really good food. 80’s parents were in town and the night before the ceremony they treated the master and his lowly BA-holding girlfriend to a lovely dinner at Restaurant Eve. The food was great but my favorite part were the sea beans. I’d never heard of them before and they were described as so salty they were like potato chips. SOLD! And salty and crisp they were, just like the ocean water that they grow near. They were green bean shaped, not black bean shaped. They were thin and dark green and so much fun to find on the fork, nicely contrasting with the soft flesh of fish.

After graduation we skipped the mob scene of the school’s brunch reception and went to Wagshal’s deli for sandwiches (and pickles!). But I only ate half my lox and bagel sandwich because we had 80’s classmate’s graduation bbq. See, everyone knows that graduations are not for the cap and gown but for good eats.

MCB, the host, provided kabobs and a few guests brought sides. I decided on couscous early on, as it’s become my party go-to. The problem, well not problem, but adjust-maker, was that I didn’t have all that much couscous¬† in the cabinet, which I didn’t check until 45 minutes prior to the party. But I did have Israeli couscous on hand so I went with it.

Asparagus, Goat Cheese and Red Onion Couscous

Like everything I make, most of this came together with what I had. I did special purchase the goat cheese at Wagshal’s earlier that day, but I brought home the asparagus from the market and had the onion from before.

I’ve been blanching my asparagus lately and then quickly sauteing in oil, so that’s exactly how I did it this time. I let my asparagus boil for over 2 minutes, but I think that may be too long. Advice?

But I’m also a crazed environmentalist so I also have not been draining the water. I scooped out the asparagus and brought the water back to a boil and then threw in the Israeli couscous for about 8-10 minutes, re-salting the water (which I don’t think is necessary.)

While the couscous cooked I chopped the asparagus into small pieces and chopped up garlic chives, another market purchase. For even more onion flavor I diced half of a small red onion.

Once altogether, I splashed oil on everything, seasoned with salt and pepper and mixed in crumbled goat cheese. Once I got to the party I stirred the couscous salad around with a zingy sauce I’d made for another asparagus-staring dish: ramps, yogurt, oil, garlic and s&p.

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