Monday, June 02, 2008

The Stalk of the Town

In cleaning out my refrigerator over the weekend, I discovered that I still had a few sad and tired-looking asparagus spears remaining from a friend's gracious gift.

I felt terribly ashamed to have neglected such bounty, so I promised myself that I would give those stalks one last fling in my kitchen.

It helped that the Southern Belle stopped by yesterday to deliver a gallon bag of pac choi leaves from the second thinning of that first row of greens. (How much they grew in one week! Wow!) So I thought that the two together would make a good fried rice dish.

Though I had made my fried rice for the Renaissance Man last week, I didn't use nearly enough pac choi, nor did I have all the appropriate seasonings, so it tasted a little bland, leaving him not wholly impressed. Of course, I couldn't leave him with that impression, so I determined to do better the second time around.

I showed up on his doorstep shortly after work, produce in hand, and washed the vegetables and chopped them (along with garlic and a bit of ginger). He had leftover rice in the refrigerator, so it didn't take long to throw the whole thing together.

And just for a little extra pizzazz, I took one of his gorgeous red roses from the garden, snipped the petals into strips, and garnished the fried rice with them. Granted, the rose petal garnish appears more in Indian or Persian cooking, but I thought the spicy flavor would go reasonably well with a more Chinese-inspired dish.

Was I right?

Let's just say, he'll be talking about this dinner for a while...

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