I am deliriously annoyed by Ubuntu, the newish vegetarian restaurant in Napa run by serious cooks.
I love vegetables.
I love being oomphed into a new take on preparing vegetables in my own home by a hotshit restaurant.
Thanks to Ubuntu, I have now created two of my own spin-offs of their lovely, though often flawed, cooking.
(Please note: Not so flawed that I will never go back, no. Ubuntu is still on my list.)
Here's the history of yesterday's meal. I ordered a dish at Ubuntu of toasted pearl pasta in broth, topped with greens. It was beautiful, hella. Although some of the greens tasted skanky. Not rotten, just... unfamiliar (and I'm not talking about the pea greens, yum).
So I didn't love it, but...
Back home, we have a cauliflower development. The beautiful green romanescos are bolting into shootiness. That is, the cauliflowers have unwinded themselves and sent tender buds skyward. The tender buds are even turning purple! Some of them.
So, how about an Ubuntu rip-off?
I waltzed around the spring garden yesterday, collecting frayed onion greens and boisterous herbs, then I robbed the refrigerator of carrots and other tasties for a vegetable broth.
Within that now strained broth, I cooked the cauliflower buds, along with some fregola, aka toasted pearl pasta. This cute mess was then topped with fresh sorrel leaves from the garden, which I pushed down into the hot broth to get them cooked (as they turned that sad shade of khaki). Cranky's cool idea was to strew shaved radish over the top for color and excitement.
Verdict: Oh, you know! We loved it. It was stylish, filling, delicious. We are so happy to be pushed into experimentation, and to be so pleased with our results.
Now you try.