I have two little boys who are passionate about origami. I have, however, been angsting over how to feed their origami habit without starving the environment of trees. Suddenly it came to me, and this morning I strolled up to the Neighbourhood Centre with an old Oprah magazine my sister once bought me. I was able to use their guillotine to cut up the magazine and create new origami paper. Within minutes it yielded over 300 pieces of beautiful origami paper, each a unique piece in itself.
Coincidentally, while I was there, I got involved in a discussion about World Environment Day and suggested that the Neighbourhood Centre build their Event around our Community Market. We could do with some advertising and support as we’re all volunteers with very little money to promote ourselves. They were thrilled and leapt at it so, bingo, effortlessly my political action done for the day!
The boys had a ball with the origami paper when they got home:
My “guilt garden” is also well underway with our first milk cartons already sprouting pea shoots:
And our outdoor garden surprised me with its first delicate green parsnip “hairs” … soooooo cute … meanwhile the broccoli, red cabbage, broadbeans, brussel sprouts, peas, lettuces and rocket are ripping that CO2 out of the air and making my mouth water at the thought of all the great meals to come. Tonight, for my second vegetarian meal this week, I looked first at my garden …. we’re still growing eggplants, beans, tomatoes and basil (bizarre I know at the tailend of Autumn) so I chose this absolutely delicious meal adapted from Diane Seed’s Top 100 Italian Dishes:
Melanzane Alla Siciliana (or baked eggplant Sicilian Style)
2 large eggplants
salt, black pepper
2 eggs beaten
60ml olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped oregano
250gm mozarella cheese cut into thin slices
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 basil leaves
Cut the eggplant into 5mm thick slices. Cover with salt and leave an hour to purge the bitterness. Wash and dry (I often omit this step and the dish is still delicious). Dip slices into egg then flour and fry a few slices at a time in hot oil until they’re golden brown. Rest on a plate until they’re all finished. (You may need to wipe the oil out of the pan if the flour in it browns too much half way through)
Oil an oven dish large enough to contain half the eggplant in one layer. Season the first layer with salt, pepper and oregano then cover with the mozarella. Arrange the remaining eggplant over the cheese. Season in the same way. Bake in a preheated 170C oven for 15 minutes. Serve accompanied by tomato sauce and fresh green beans or salad.
To make the sauce, heat the oil and gently fry the onion and garlic. Add the tomatoes and cook quickly so the sauce thickens but remains a bright red colour. Season to taste (pepper, salt, optional flick of sugar) then add basil leaves. You can puree but I didn’t bother.