Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wish List

So my computer, the one that took me through grad school, is really dying. I have had a new computer for a while now, but there were music files that I did not transfer to itunes and that was a mistake. I can't listen to any of the songs that are still on the old computer without the song distorting into static half way into the song. Sadness, I know.
I'm also tired of the music on my itunes and through complete laziness I've lost a lot of old music, so for anyone who is inclined, I'm requesting a mixed tape for my birthday. It would make my year. Thank you.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sea Wolf

Hey all,

No time to drag it out today. Just a quick note that Sea Wolf is rad. I kid you not. Check'em out below:


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Who pines for pie?

This year i did something amazing. For this past Thanksgiving I ventured into the buttery land of apple pie. I took a little faith, a bag of granny smiths and a load of butter through the threshfold from pipe dreams of pie possibility to the real thing. Behold!


Isn't she pretty?


Let's get a profile shot...


Ou la la! Tres belle!

While we're on the subject of pies and Thanksgiving I want to give Laura and her Thanksgiving pie a shout out. Laura is amazing like me, not only because she can also make beautiful pies (see below) but because she was my pie baking cheerleader. Much appreciated, my dear!


"Pumpkin Pie Rests" (composition by Laura)

Okay, well that's enough boasting and pie talk for one day. Two more important holiday events await us before the year wraps up. I know I am not always the best at keeping up with people, but I do love you all and wish you all the best at the end of this year and much more in the coming year. Be safe, eat with joy, Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!

Monday, December 21, 2009

4.0, and make it a double

Little one, aka Maybelle (butterfly, kitty, unicorn, etc. etc.) has brought home another 4.0 at the completion of this semester. We're all really proud of her. She totally deserves props. Dast ist die uber frau!!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

It's been a long week!

Hi everyone. It's been a long week and I'm a bit backed up in posting tidbits. I don't have time right now to do an indepth update, but I wanted to pop in and say hello. I'm taking a quick work break to bring you my two favorite New Zealenders and one of their sweet tunes, "Sugar Lumps." Enjoy!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Dinner at Sylvia's

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of seeing Lia's family. I had not seen Don and Linda in a long time, and it was great to catch up. I'm a little sad that Eric wasn't in town, but there's always next time!

See, aren't they a handsome bunch?


We had dinner at Sylvia's, the famous soul food restaurant in Harlem. It was a wonderful time. I ate fried chicken, collard greens and mac and cheese. It was tempting to eat as much as possible, but Don, Lia's dad, spoke so highly of the peach cobbler I knew I had to save myself. I used my deep mental powers to excercise restraint. Lia took a different approach, keeping one eye on her plate and the other on Pete's.


Eventually the time came for dessert and the glorious peach cobbler arrived at the table:

Since everyone had eaten a large meal, we decided to split two cobblers between four people. Don and Pete had one and Lia and I had the other. Linda was the true picture of restraint, opting out of dessert. We fork-cheered as Linda documented the sweet ritual:


We may be two dainty ladies but we managed to finish up our dessert, while Don and Pete lost steam, sadly leaving some of their cobbler on the plate.

We win!



Sylvia's

328 Lenox Avenue

New York, NY 10027

(212) 996-0606

www.sylviasrestaurant.com

email: info@sylviasrestaurant.com




Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Creatures of the Forest Update: Ouija Prize

I played Ouija for the first time with Laura and some friends a few weeks ago. Possibly the most memorable part of the evening was when I asked what possible suitor I should pursue and I received the response: "You are special!" which was reverberated through the room by all the ladies in attendance. Yes I am, and indeed you are too, which is why I am looking forward to both the magic of your costume and and your beloved presence at Creatures of the Forest 2010.
Lest you think that I am merely hamming it up here, let me clue you in on my dedication to your attendance. As a teaser I am unveiling a part of the grand prize that will be awarded to best costume of the evening:



It's a Ouija board!


As you can see it's custom made with color detail. You're not getting a work of art like this from Hasboro, that's for sure. So should you skip Creatures of the Forest 2010?



Well hello there Mr. Moon, looks like the board has spoken. Let's ask the board one more question before we sign off. Should our dear readers delve into the craziest and most creative crevasses of their imaginations to make their costumes?




As you can see my friends, the board has spoken! I hope you guys are excited. Let me know if you want to keep seeing more teasers.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Don't Diss Mrs. Freshleys

It's a good day today. I broke out of my cave to a beautiful blue sky after a night of pretty consistent rain. I'm happy for the zoo tour guide I met yesterday on the elevator. She has to work today. I made a wish for the day to be sunny for her sake, and boy did that wish come true. Altruism people: it works!

In other news, I'm seeing my mom today for lunch and it's Friday. It's a very good day and I'm looking forward to an equally sweet weekend, as good as last weekend I hope. Below are pictures from last Saturday.

I got to hang out with some friends. First I went shopping with Steph, then we went to see her fiance David practice with his band. Afterwards the band, Steph, I and Yuki enjoyed an evening of tasty ramen, plus drinks at the little gem Umi No. Below are some blurry pictures I took while we were waiting for David and the rest of the boys to finish up so we could go to dinnner.



Dave showing everyone how it's done
.




Steph and Yuki!


A Mrs. Freshley's carrot cake that's not so fresh anymore.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Creatures of the Forest, Save the Date!


You guys know I love my birthday, so it's no surprise that I'm thinking about how I'm going to celebrate it now. Laura and I thought up a trully amazing idea over Halloween and this past weekend I threw the idea out to some friends to see if it might work. Everyone I've told has been enthusiastic about it, so I have decided to go with my idea and do my best to nurture it to it's fullest potential.


My grand idea for this year's party is a costumed pub crawl. The theme is 'Creatures of the Forest.' Yes, it's time to take your creativity off the shelf and start thinking of an amazing costume. You don't have to stick to real animals. As long as it's a creature of the forest it's game, so let your imagination run wild. I am making a prized gift basket for best costume of the night.


This celebration will be Saturday, the 30th of January. Save the date! You have plenty of time to start brain storming. Tell your friends and to all of you guys not in NYC, consider coming up for the weekend. I can host at least a few people!


Saturday, November 14, 2009

BOAT, Laura, and a bicycle wheel

Last night was super sweet. Laura and I met up for some dumplings and then went to Union Hall. The first picture is next to the food coop in Park Slope. Laura mused that it would be a fun place to take a picture. What do you guys think of the result? I sort of look like a girlish version of the villain in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, don't you think?




The effect of the rain on my glasses made for some freaky looking eyes. Watch out! I might be an evil toon....blahhaahha. Below is lovely Laura, and I, waiting to see BOAT. I didn't know much about them before checking them out, but let me tell you it was a super duper fun show--there was a dancing apple with the Mets logo, Village Voice confetti and plastic whistle toys and the music was kick ass. You should really check BOAT out!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Diddly Doodle Do


Those are mostly my doodles. I took the picture with my phone, so I couldn't get a shot of the whole wall. The niffty Tim Burtony faces are drawn by Helena, my boss's daughter. Her dad's an artist. Looks like she may follow in his footsteps.

Ana Yolanda: Awesome


Esta semana tuve que traducir algunos documentos a español. Estaba un poco nerviosa, pero lo termine con suficiente tiempo y todos estaban contentos. Quiero agradecer a mi mamá por su paciencia. Ella escucho a mi traducción entera por el teléfono. Ese favor fue una gran ayuda. ¡Gracias Mami!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Faith 47, A Silent Nation



Eric, Lia's very cool brother has been learning about public art. He's pretty into it and found out about an artist, Faith 47. Her work is compelling. I've posted a shot of something she did. Anyway, she's trying to fight the man. Below Eric explains what exactly she's doing. Check it out if you get a chance.

Faith 47 is heading a petition effort to oppose new South African laws that would make all public art illegal. That would include graffiti that is vandalism, but also commissioned murals and welcomed artwork done by professional and reputable artists. I felt moved to sign the petition, because I know how important a lot of this public art is. There are surely better ways to eliminate vandalism. I welcome you to look into it. At the very least, do a Google search for "Faith 47 art" and see what I'm talking about. Or you can take my word for it and just sign the petition.

Monday, November 9, 2009

No Scrabble at Rosemary's Greenpoint Tavern

This weekend I met up with Beth for cheap drinks and some Scrabble. I suggested Rosemary's Tavern on Bedford because of their cheap and genormous styrafoam cups of Budwesir. For a while it was all good times. I was inching my way to victory sipping my beer when the proprietess of the establishment came to our table to inform us that games are not allowed at Rosemary's. This was sort of hillarious to us, but since we didn't want anyone else to get in trouble we tried to think up ways to keep others from committing our faux pas. Which do you like the best?







Saturday, November 7, 2009

Descending on to Earth

Yuki is a total climbing buff. Over the summer she took me to her climbing place where I tried out the easy wall. First time up I punked out about two thirds up the wall. Then I tried it again.

video

Friday, November 6, 2009

Check out The XX

My friend dog puppet has a recommendation. I'm not sure what his name is yet, but I am taking suggestions.


video

Forget honey bees, doggy bees are just as sweet!


This Halloween was pretty sweet. Like I mentioned earlier, plans fell through at the last minute, but it was still good times. The day started off with a trip to McGolrick Park for a doggy Halloween parade. Here is a picture of some doggy bees. They were super cute. There was a costume contest. My friends and I would have awarded a tiny dog in a top notch lizard/dragon costume, but poor pouch was robbed.

Will dance for food

So my friend Yuki was very awesome and made me a wonderful dinner a few weeks ago. We had chicken with potatoes and bacon. She also made broccoli. It was supper tasty. Below is some questionable dancing from yours truly.
video

Zombie's eat too


This year I was going to be the Easter bunny. After a lot of preliminary work, however, plans changed at the last minute and I was a zombie instead. Above is a picture of the results. I wish I had taken a picture at the end of the night. Some other zombies helped out with blood, giving me a truly awesome goriness. I looked like I'd had my fair share of brains. Brains.....yum.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Pasta Rituals


So if you're anything like me, when you come home from work you're tired and you're hungry and the last thing you want to do is get into some complex and time consuming meal preparation. Don't get me wrong. I love food and I love cooking, I'm just so hungry when I get home that I fall on my most primal instincts, which are A) get a snack, B) find the quickest way from point a (hunger) to point b (dinner).


The first thing required in my A to B dinner tactic is to make sure I have snack food at home. I bought some blue corn chips a while ago and they have served me well. At other times I've done a sliver of cheese and crackers or left over steamed plantains slices. Carbohydrates seem to be a common theme.


Pasta is a staple because it is both cheap and fast. My friend made pasta with peanut sauce for me and since then I have reconsidered my dislike of wheat pasta. Consequently, I always buy the wheat variety, but I tend to vary the shape to keep things fresh.

I also buy sauce. I know there will be hecklers who will go on about how I could very easily make my own, which, in a pinch, I've done before. Don't forget, however, that one of the highest values in this whole adventure is speed. You can't beat pouring from a jar.

Additionally, I keep Parmesan cheese in the house. I have a chunk of it and grate what I will mix into my pasta with a steak knife. To recap, having to make you're own pasta sauce is a load of crap, but grating your own cheese will certainly, the palate, please. (Sorry, I couldn't help myself).

For a long time I was only eating pasta. It was really sad because when I lived near the Park Slope Coop, I always ate great produce and I varied what I ate quite a bit. I was lamenting my addiction to pasta and my lack of vegetable eating, but not really doing much about it until I went to visit my aunt.

While I stayed with her she made extravagant meals every night. There was a lot of grilled meat, but what struck me the most was her sauteed spinach and the green peppers left on the grill. I was in heaven, it tasted so good and it was just the inspiration I needed to re-inject the color green into my daily eating habits.

Now that I'm back in New York, I am still eating my pasta but I've also added a lot of green to my plate. I supplement my meal with mixed salad greens that are drizzled with olive oil and toasted sesame seeds and some other cooked greens. The first week I had sauteed spinach just like my aunt made. I ate it cold out of the fridge for a week. The following week, however, I opted for steamed kale drizzled with olive oil and a sprinkle of pepper flakes.

Adding the green hasn't added much time to my meal prep, but it sure has added flavor and nutrition. When I get home, I get my snack food out. I heat the water for the pasta. take out the pre-washed greens and put them on a plate. I then take out the cooked greens and put them on the plate too. I take out the olive oil and the pasta sauce and the cheese. The pepper flakes and sesame seeds are already on the table. I season my greens and cook the pasta. When it's close to done I drain the water and put the pasta, still in the pot, back on the heat. I pour the sauce on with the cheese, mix for a minute or two and serve. This whole ordeal never takes more than fifteen minutes and it's just so yummy.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tart and Salty, but I'm Sure You're into It


Bringing good snacks to work is really a challenge, especially if you want to venture beyond cereal and oatmeal. When my mom visited me earlier this month, she brought me soap, dish towels and a bunch of oranges, all very practical gifts. The following week I ate an orange every single day at work. It was so good! I basically just cut them up and sprinkle them with salt. I like eating oranges like this so much that this week I didn't even buy orange juice. I've been eating two oranges a day. One for breakfast and one around 3 oclock.

There are lots of ways to eat an orange. I like slicing them and sprinkling them with salt because the wedges make it easy to eat without getting your hands messy, which is key when you're eating and working and I love how the salt sharpens the sweetness and tartness of the oranges. I hope you'll try it too. You'll be eating well and warding off your snarky cubicle-mate's cold. Win, win!

Green Plantains, Yum!


I am sure that if you have ever had Cuban or another Carribean food, then you have eaten green plantains. Usually they come as two squashed fried chips next to a meal of seared meat with beans and rice. Of course, they can also be seen in the supermarket next to ripe plantains. The other day I was in the supermarket and the green plantains were so cheap I could not help but snatch them up.

Last night after eating a sad dinner of ham on wheat bread I looked in the fridge for something else. I saw those large green plantains. I was reluctant to tackle them tough. They were large plantains, and I wasn't that hungry. I decided, however, that if I didn't begin to use them they would go bad or I would begin on a cycle of continually passing them over until they became inedible.

So I took one long plantain out and took the green peel off, below is what I did after that. To try it yourself you will need:

A large garlic clove
A neutral oil
Salt and pepper
The plantain, of course

Slice up the garlic clove as the oil heats. You don't need a lot of oil, just make sure you use a non-stick pan. Then heat garlic until it sizzles. Then lay out your slices in the pan. Turn when the slices 'pop' with a golden yellow. In a medium sized pan you will probably need to do two batches. Then season with salt and pepper and drink a coffee with warm milk. It's a great snack or savory dessert when you are curling up with a good book or a movie. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

When in Greenpoint, visit this imp's sweet spot: Peter Pan Donut and Pastry Shop


With so many bakeries in Greenpoint, I wanted to know which bakery was worth going to. My friend, who lives in the neighborhood, told me to go to Peter Pan Bakery. He said they have great dounuts and looked at me as if I should be impressed. I nodded ambivalently and mumbled something about checking it out.

The day I had wanted to go with my parents, my plans fell through. A few weekends ago, however, I had the great fortune to go into the little storefront bakery with my sister by chance. I was instantly charmed. The decor is very old school. It screams establishment, in the good way, of course. I ordered a coffee with milk and sugar and a powdered jelly donut. A teenage girl in a retro coffee shop uniform gave it to me. My sister and I went and sat down at the undulating counter and I took a bite of a light powedery and perfectly sweet donut, then chased it with my coffee. I felt like I was inside of a weightless soapy bubble blown out by a child in the park: totally timeless, totally at peace, totally content.

I don't know that every trip to Peter Pan's Bakery will be as enchanting, but I'm convinced that its name could not be more apt.


Peter Pan Donut and Pastry Shop
727 Manhattan Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11211
(718) 389-3676

Chicken Quesadillas on a Tuesday Night


I tend not to buy meat because I don't feel totally comfortable cooking it. It seems alien to me and I also feel guilty if I do not buy organic or farm raised meat. The last time I went to the supermarket, however, I compared the price of prepared fake meat products with the price of organic farm raised chicken breast. The chicken breast was cheaper and the whole chicken was a lot cheaper!

When I got home I put all my food away, including the raw breasts. I eyed them in their fleshy brightness and wondered if I should just cook them right away before I forogt about them. It is one thing to let carrots wane in your fridge and rotting meat another. I took the chicken out and then needed to tackle the next issue: how to cook this in a generally neutral way so I can use it for many different meals and how can I cook it so that it doesn't taste like bland rubber?

Luckily, because I am brilliant, I had the answer to those questions. Below is the recipe for cooking the breasts (and how to make quesadillas with the meat).


Chicken Quesadillas

4 chicken breasts
1/2 an onion
1 tomato or 2-3 smaller tomatoes
1/2 a green pepper
Generous dash of dry oregano
Salt, to taste
Fresh cracked pepper, to taste

For quesadillas

2 tortillas
A few slivers of sharp chedder cheese
Salsa


Prep your vegetables by slicing the tomatoes and onions in 1/8-1/4 inch slices. Then julienne the green pepper by the same diameter. Lay your breasts on a pan and in the areas around the breasts put your vegetables. Dash the breasts with salt and the oregano. Turn heat on medium and cover. When you hear and can smell the meat cooking, about five minutes, you will need to turn the meat. Uncover the pan. After you flip a breast over, you will ease the vegetables under the raw side of the breast. The result is that you will have the cooked side facing you and the raw side will be buffered from the pan by the vegetables. Now dash with salt again and crack pepper over the whole thing. Cover and reduce heat to low. Let the meat cook for about twenty to twenty-five minutes. When this time has elapsed you will have a lovely broth on the bottom of the pan with tomatoes and peppers whose flavors have intensified and sweetened, and best of all you will have four juicy delicious breasts.

When you are making the quesadillas you will take each tortilla and bend it in half so that you have four pieces. In a pan or a griddle you will place the first 1/4 inside of the pan. Next take two or three slivers, not slices, of cheese. The cheese is an element, not the highlight here, so please show a little self control. Use just enough so that when it melts it will more or less cover the area of the tortilla without melting over the tortilla's border. Next you will take some of those tomatotes peppers and onions from the chicken pan and drape a layer of them over the cheese. Then slice off a few pieces of chicken of a breast and place on tortilla as the third layer. Next, add more cheese, with the same restraint used before. Top with one of the tortilla quarters and then do the whole process with the last two quarters of tortillas. Put a low heat below the pan and cover. Check the quesadillas in a few minutes. Turn and heat the other side. Plate and enjoy with salsa. Voila, you've got a lovely healthy meal on your hands. Congratulations!!!

Mercadito Cantina, Where They're Gonna Know My Name




I like tacos. They are great. They bring together many things I love, such as citrus, tomatoes, avocado, tortillas, grilled meats, heat, acidity, beer, and the list goes on. When I lived in Memphis my friends and I would travel almost thrity minutes to eat at a taqueria where guys wore real cowboy hats. I'm not sure that makes it the real deal, but it was pretty darn good.

Up until recently I had not had any mind blowing tacos in New York. Then I read about Mercadito Cantina in the New York Times' $25 and Under column. Not only is the place worth a visit, but it's good in the best way a restaurant can be. Every time I go, I am humbled by the fact that I know that I cannot replicate this at home. The caliber of the execution is top notch.

Mercadito strikes the perfect balance between East Village casual cool and delicate, uncompromising culinary delivery. The salsas are not chunky approximations that you can buy in the chips aisle of your supermarket. They are perfectly calibrated in texture without being soupy.

The tacos, as well, are exacting. When I eat their tacos I feel like I've entered the sushi realm of taco making, not because they are playing at fusion, but because each taco comes to the table with a clear nod to aesthetics and balance. Like sushi, each taco comes with sharply defined elements that drape the pallett like a rainbow. You marvel at the clarity of each flavor and how beautifully it blends into the others. Like sushi, too, they are smaller, and so allow one to sample a greater variety of flavors.

I think though, what really makes this place a winner is not just the easy, yet tasteful decor or just the thrilling food, but the combination with a helpful, non-intrusive staff. It is a rare thing to feel so completely taken care of and pampered at a restaurant with so few interruptions. This place is perhaps my favorite discovery of 2008 and I can't wait to go back this year.

Mercadito Cantina
172 Avenue B (Btwn 10th and 11th Street)
New York, NY 10009
212-388-1750

Petu's chicken soup with dumplings (variations included)


I don't know about you, but I have a long list of sick friends. I feel like the last one standing! Below is my chicken soup recipe, so you can nurse your clan back to health.


Ingredients


1 Whole roaster (variation: chicken breast, pint of mushrooms or even better, dried mushrooms like porcini, butter or quality olive oil)

A few celery stalks

A few carrots

An onion

A few garlic cloves

Salt, to taste

Pepper, to taste

A few sprigs of fresh parsely**

Sprig of fresh rosemary**

**Totally unnecessary, but lovely additions


2 cups of flour*

2/3 cup milk (at least 1%, whole being ideal)*

2 tbs of butter, melted*

1 egg, well beaten*

4 tsp of baking power** (If you are omitting dumplings, then you don't need these ingredients. Alternatives are wild rice (cooked), noodles, or potatoes)


Broth


The first step to make a good soup is making a good broth. Wash your vegetables. Crush garlic to remove outer skin. Remove outer layer of onion and slice in half. As long as you have clean carrots well you don't need to peel. These vegetetables will be discared, no need to make them pretty.Next, if you bought the whole roaster, take the giblets out and whatever packaging was inside chicken must be discarded. In a large pot put whole chicken and giblets then fill with cold water. add the vegetables, bay leaf (also rosemary sprig if you have it) and cover. Apply medium low flame and leave it for about 40-45 minutes partially covered; do check though to make sure your broth doesn't boil down too much. If you aren't using the roaster, you would only put in the mushrooms and the fat (butter or olive oive oil about 1 1/2 to 2 tbs should be okay). If you do have chicken bones you could put those in too, but who just has chicken bones lying around? Oh, also if your chicken breasts aren't already cooked, you might as well put them into the broth to cook.


Soup Prep


While your making your broth you will prep the vegetables for the soup. Clean your celery ribs, carrots and potatoes (If that is your starch). Peel appropriate vegetables. Cut vegetables pretty small, what is most important, though, is uniformity. You want to cut them so that they will cook evenly, so celery a little thicker and carrots thinner smaller, etc. When your broth is done you will remove the roaster and put in the fridge for 15-20 minutes. Then you will take off all the fat, bones and skin and discard. Then cut the chicken into bite size peices, of course if you're using the chicken breasts you can skip the earlier part. Cover your chicken and set aside with preped vegetables. Next you will strain broth. Keep liquid, discard the rest. At this point, you can actually put everyting away until you're ready to eat (Great if you have errands to run!).


Soup


If you are making dumplings you will want your dumpling ingredients ready to go. Sift flour salt and baking powder. Combine the egg, melted butter and milk and add to the flour mixture, stirring quickly until just smooth. Do not overstir as it will make your dumplings rocks. At this point you are ready to heat the broth under medium heat. Drop in your vegetables and the chicken. Season with salt and pepper to taste. While you wait for liquid to heat, finely chop parsely, if you have it, and add. Drop dumplings by spoonful evenly into boiling soup. Cover tightly and simmer 18 minutes. Do not peak. If you aren't making the dumplings, then you can add noodles, rice or potatoes when you first add the vegetables. Whatever starch you add, it wil be good, but I am partial to the dumplings. Anyway, that's it. Time consuming, but really great.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Pairing Protien with Pasta

Today on The Minimalist column of the New York Times, we were told that uncooked beans trump canned. I am personally not sold on this, although I usually agree with Mark. The problem with uncooked beans is that you have to make that time to make them ahead. With canned beans you can just open the can and presto, you've got your protein done. The recipe below contains chickpeas. Try cooking raw dry chickpeas and getting them to be the texture of canned ones. I dare you.

Pasta dressed with Tomatoes and Chickpeas

1/2 box of angel hair pasta
1/2 can of whole stewed tomatoes
2 garlic cloves sliced
1 carrot peeled and finely chopped
1 small bowl of shredded purple cabbage
Italian spices
Salt
Fresh crushed pepper
Olive oil

Begin by heating water. You can prepare vegetables while it is hitting a rolling boil. Open can of beans and dump salty water into the pot of pasta water. Return to a boil. Meanwhile, circle pan on medium high heat with olive oil. After about a minute add garlic and brown. Afterwards add carrot and cabbage; season pan with all spices to taste. Your pot of water should be back to a boil. Dump pasta in pot. Then make sure all flavors are distributed in pan by turning vegetables. Then cover and lower heat a bit. When pasta is cooked drain pot and put back on burner with flame off. Dump the correct portion of tomatoes from can and with a wooden spoon crush each tomato to release its liquid. Next, return your attention to the pan. Add the chickpeas and use spoon to combine with vegetables. Let everything alone for a minute and then dump the contents of the pan into the pot. Stir everything together and taste to make sure seasoning is to your liking. Voila, dinner!