Mish Mash in More Ways Than One, Just Like The Maya Liked It


I have a problem. I am keeping house with two sinus-infected-and-spewing hooligans and sleep has not been aplenty. As such, please disregard me and my bizarre forthcoming allusions to Central American indigenous peoples.



I’ve been meaning to tell you that I tried out a new recipe I made up. And the reason I was called upon to pull a meal out of thin air — which I don’t do gladly or well-ly — is because we invited our neighbor over for dinner last week and after visions of garlic salmon on sauteed spinach, accompanied by mushroom couscous filled my head, I found out last minute that she was vegetarian and didn’t eat gluten.


And so I must say I had no faintly idea what to do. Already the salmon thing was a stretch because my usual criteria for dinner-making is thus:

1) Can I cut all the ingredients in the palm of my hand?

2) Will it all fit in one pot?

3) Someone else better the hell do the dishes.


So now what? I googled “gluten-free” and “vegetarian,” but I might as well put in “bile salts” and “requires many pots and dishes.” Then it hit me. Eggplant! Of course. I will do something with eggplant. It’s a vegetable and it just came to me in a flash, which must portend fortuitousness. So I had it. Eggplant. The food of the Mayans. My neighbor will like that ancient vegetable reference I think (she seems appreciative of the historical arts), and will never know it’s not the food of the Mayans.

Unless she’s borderline intelligent and eats maize.


So eggplant it is. But again I ask “now what?” Only thing I could think is to do what comes naturally — dice all the ingredients in the palm of my hand and pop ’em into one pot.


And that’s what I did. I hacked some garlic and onions and sauteed them in olive oil, added some salted eggplant, chopped tomatoes and chick peas. Then I threw in some white wine and veggie broth. Also fresh oregano and basil. A generous helping of Real Salt, and freshly grated Romano cheese. At that point, I knew I must break my one-pot rule if we were to have any side dishes — a phenomenon wholly unknown to my family — and so partnered the eggplant Mayan mash with quinoa.


In sum total, I gotta say the meal didn’t completely suck — a phenomenon wholly unknown to my family — and my neighbor did not die a horrible botulism or food-borne pathogen death, so that was a big plus.


Of course, after dinner we painted our neighbor blue and ate her heart for dessert, but it was Mayan Night.


11 thoughts on “Mish Mash in More Ways Than One, Just Like The Maya Liked It

  1. You make me laugh. And I needed that, too, my head feels like it’s splitting off. Come paint me blue and eat me for dessert before things get messy.

  2. Aztecs did similar things with their “guests”. Plus, they LOVED fire. You should have added lots of candles to the table and upped the ancient civilization points.

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