Food on the Brain - writercize #53

For whatever reason, lately I have serious food on the brain.  

It could be because I just returned from visiting my in-laws, where the meal is undoubtedly the highlight of the day.  It could be because getting back, the fridge was completely devoid of food so I went grocery shopping starving and ended up with an unbelievable amount of food.  It could be because my stomach is craving everything it didn't get to eat for a few weeks while I was away, as well as everything that it did eat.  Whatever it is, I'm obsessively thinking about my next meal.  I used to tease my mother-in-law about this; she would literally begin talking about dinner while doing the lunch dishes, but for the past few days I am beginning to understand her a little better.

So, today's writercize is all about food.  Give me some good ideas, and try not to drool on your keyboard!

writing exercise:  How would you prepare the following ingredients?  A few of the ingredients are a little autumnal for this time of year, but run with it if you can and feel free to add any additional ingredients.  Maybe we'll do a summer one in a few weeks.  Write your own recipe or share good prep techniques.
  • prosciutto
  • squash
  • zucchini
  • tomatoes
  • cucumbers

Click "read more" for writercizer sample response, including pasta dish, cold cuts and salad.
writercizer sample response:

Eggplant, Zucchini and Squash Penne
  • Chop eggplant into 1/2 inch cubes, peel on.  Sprinkle with salt and set aside in a colander for 45 minutes to sweat out the bitter flavor.
  • Meanwhile, chop zucchini and squash into 1/2 inch cubes, keeping the peel on the zucchini.  Buy precut squash
  • Shake the eggplant in the colander to get the salt and sweat off.
  • Saute eggplant in extra virgin olive oil, salt and parsley over medium-high heat for about 10 minutes, then add cubed squash and saute another 10 minutes.  Add olive oil and/or tomato sauce, water as needed to ensure veggies do not stick to the pan.
  • As you add the squash, turn water on to boil in a separate pot.
  • When water is boiling, add penne and follow instructions on box for how long to cook - generally 8-12 minutes.
  • Add zucchini to eggplant and squash mix, and continue to saute.  Add basil, onions, garlic to taste.
  • When pasta is done, drain pasta.
  • Pour half of veggie mix into the bottom of the pasta pot, along with shredded cheese and stir over low heat.  Add pasta.  Pour remainder of veggie mix over the top.  Stir well and serve with cheese, as desired.

Plate thinly sliced prosciutto with blocks of parmesan and provolone cheese and serve.

Tomato and Cucumber Salad
  • Thinly slice tomatoes and cucumbers and place in salad bowl.
  • In a small bowl, mix olive oil, dried basil and dill and salt thoroughly.
  • Pour over tomato and cucumber salad and serve.


  1. Hi Alana,

    I signed up to follow you, but none of the new blogs I've signed up for are coming through to my dashboard, so I'll subscribe by email.

    Hmmm, how would I cook those ingredients? I don't know what prosciutto is! But for the rest, I'd cut them up and sautee them in butter, sprinkle with garlic powder and then add some cut-up bacon (cooked till crispy!)

    How's that sound?

  2. Sounds delish! And you hit the nail on the head -- prosciutto is essentially bacon. It's thinly sliced and salt cured, so you can eat it raw, but it's the same meat! :)


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