Sunday, February 1, 2009

Coconut Vinegar Cured Tofu Scallops with Lemongrass Basil "Creme" Sauce and Cilantro Garlic Coconut Rice

This week proved to be a much tamer one for the Veganize It...Don't Criticize It E-mail box. Will I watch my mouth so that no one has a whack attack when they decipher my sarcastic words as literal? Hecks nah. You should all know me better than that by now.

Issue 2: I know look like a 12-year-old.

Bouncers, 7-11 clerks and general public of Los Angeles: I'm well aware that, for whatever reason, puberty didn't grace my body with the blessings of height and curvaceousness that typically accompany entering womanhood. The most womanly quality I possess is my booming Little Old Lady Chain Smoker From Brooklyn Voice, and I've grown to like it that way. There has not been a single alcohol, tobacco or lotto ticket purchasing experience over the past few years that hasn't resulted in extreme identification scrutiny, or sometimes just flat out embarrassment. It's a scrutiny I've come to expect as a part of my routine. But there are some occasions that just ice the cake. Here are some of my favorites.

1) Election Day, November 2008
I walk into my designated polling place. I'm all hopped up and excited to voice my opinion on my right to wed, and of course to show some support for Big O. I get in line. I wait. I wait longer. FINALLY, I get up to the table. The lady checking in voters looks at me, a kind yet sympathetic smiles spreads across her face. She looks me in the eyes and says "Oh, honey, where's your mother? Are you lost?". "No, I'm here to vote. My mother lives in Northern California", I say, watching her jump back in awe of my deep vocal resonance. She looks at my ID. She looks at me. She looks back at my ID, consults the registry book, and hands me the forms. "Don't worry...I drink from the Fountain of Youth. It's off Sunset and Doheny."

2) Barney's Beanery, September 2007
My best friend Sita and both happened to be blessed with youthful good looks. One night, we wanted to go out and have a quick drink. Options are limited in Santa Monica, so we decided on Barney's. As we're walking up to the door, the bouncer stops us both. He actually LAUGHS at us and says, "Sorry, ladies, we don't allow anyone under 21 inside".
I had had enough. I felt my inner Jewish bitch dying to be unleashed. I took a deep, calming breath. "Don't you think that maybe you should at least look at out IDs before turning us away? Maybe I've had plastic surgery or something. I could actually be 40." I hand him my ID, which he checks once under a lamp, then a second time under the flashlight. "This isn't the real DMV background", he says. "WHAT?!", I retort, "Sita..show him your ID". He holds our IDs side by side, actually growls at us, then lets us in. The waitress then ID-ed me again at the table.

3) Fantastic Sams Hair, August 2007
I was asked if I'd like to sit in the rocket ship for my hair cut. I shit you not.

And now, my recipe.

Two weeks ago, I had a fantastic visit to the Saturday Santa Monica Farmers Market at Virginia Park. I don't go the markets as much this time of year because Heirloom Tomatoes and Basil aren't in season, and quite frankly it makes me one Sad Panda. There's an adorable older lady that runs an organic herbs and greens stand. She says "I haven't seen you in so long!". "I know...Basil's out of season. I miss it so much". She pulls a bag out from under the table. "I have something special for you! Here!" She hands me two gorgeous bunches of organic basil. I turned as red as a school girl in love. Check out the rest of my Farmer's Market bounty...

I wanted to put it all to some good use, and I hadn't made my tofu scallops in quite a while. This is actually a pretty easy recipe.

21 comments:

Foodeater said...

I sure hope you took her up on the offer to sit in the rocket ship!

dietdessertndogs said...

I had similar experiences until I hit my late 30s. . . now I just look my age. Believe me, you'll miss it.

The scallops look GREAT!

kristine said...

What brand coconut vinegar do you use?

JennShaggy said...

Hey Kristine...
The brand I used is called Buenas. I bought it from an Asian grocer up in the East Bay.
Hope that helps :)

I ♥ puggies said...

I'm happy you got your basil! I know how you feel, basil is a staple in my kitchen too. I love farmer's markets. And the "scallops" look absolutely amazing. Thanks for sharing the recipe! :)

Vegyogini said...

Another fantastic recipe from the JennShaggy files. Scenario number 3 had me giggling out loud!

Chris said...

I'm sorry you haven't had much luck in the physical adolescence department. But just imagine how many would kill for your youth!

Tofu scallops?! Incredible! This seems like something I might be able to pass off to my Dad as real scallops (don't spill the beans!). Your unbridled creativity is showcased well in your recipes. Keep 'em coming! :)

Becks - Not a Rabbit. said...

LOL! I can totally relate about the youthful looks.
I often answer my door only to be asked if my parents are in! (which I often play along with, it gets rid of people much quicker that letting them do their sales pitch).
I also get charged a childs fare on the bus quite often, which is for under 14's.
I don't drink so I don't get I.D'd very often, but my husband was refused beer with our weekly supermarket shop one week, just because I was with him! (you only have to be 18 to drink here too!). My husband is 33, and I'm 28!
I despair! >:o)

Adriana said...

Basil is hardly ever out of season in S. CA. I'm growing seedlings right now.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

So you sat in the rocketship, right? This looks good. Too good. Cut it out.

Brittany said...

I want to read some of this hate mail you got. Seriously, hate mail is always hilarious in a "wow, the person writing this is an idiot" kind of way.

PS. The tofu scallops made me drool a little.

Jes said...

You're one of those people that I'll be jealous of when I'm older! I never get carded and I'm not far enough from 21 for that to happen. The tofu scallops look amazing--what a wonderful basil surprise!

quarrygirl said...

oh JEEZ. that is just ridiculous! i can't believe people question you, asking for your mom when you are showing up to fucking VOTE! like all those irresponsible kids, trying to vote too early...of course! yeah RIGHT...please! show some respect.

sorry, i forgot what i was saying. ima too busy drooling over that food.

miss v said...

man, i love your recipes. they always make it to my 'i need to make this' recipe box!

Joan said...

God, that is awesome. I too get carded wherever I go, and I'm 36! Hey, I say enjoy it while you can. Date 19 year olds with hot bods haha.

vanessa said...

Oh. My. Goodness. This is making me drool. I must try this! Great post! ^_^

Vanessa said...

and great photos!

Ashley said...

Sorry where exactly IS the recipe?? We live on an organic farm in costa rica and I am currently making coconut vinegar for the first time!

JennShaggy said...

Ashley:
If you send me an e-mail to..
veganizeit@gmail.com
I will send you the recipe. I had to remove many of my recipes for the sake of my cookbook, and just left up the posts with the photos.

Thanks for letting me know!
Jenn

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