Originally posted August 2012.
You are out of control and need to be stopped. Freeze. Wait, don’t freeze. That’s the opposite of what I’m trying to convey. Put down the pumpkin beer. Stop pinning football recipes. Step away from the displays of Halloween decorations. And for the love of bacon, don’t even think about pulling on that wool cap.
People, it is August. It is AUGUST 20TH. It is still summer, and will still be summer for another month. Please, just let me revel in this for awhile. I saw this comic the other day and wept a little on the inside because I think I can count the number of times I’ve been to the beach on one hand and the days are getting shorter and I want it to be summer forever. And you people, all of you, are pushing fall WAY TOO EARLY. Fall, it’s not your turn yet. We still have 33 days of summer. Just let it be. We’re all going to be miserable, pasty crankypants counting down the days till spring soon enough. Can’t we just enjoy the sunshine? The warmth? The abundance of zucchini?
I’ll be the first person to admit that my love of winter/comfort foods is somewhat infamous, but light, summery dishes have sidled their way into my heart. I’ve always loved tomatoes — and really, Jersey tomatoes in August simply can’t be beat — and recently developed a taste for zucchini.
Yesterday, I decided to take advantage of the sizable zucchinis and nice bunch of fresh thyme I’d bought at the farmer’s market, along with the three large, quickly ripening tomatoes from my mom’s garden, when making myself lunch.
Not only that, but as my handsome man celebrated his birthday this weekend, and we naturally did a lot of eating, I wanted something a little lighter and less likely to make me feel like I need to be rolled from room to room. I threw together this nice little couscous dish and was not disappointed.
Herbed couscous with zucchini and tomatoes
1/2 zucchini, cut into coins
1/2 large tomato, cut into chunks
4-5 sprigs fresh thyme
drizzle olive oil
pinch of salt & pepper
grated parmesan cheese
To prepare your couscous: For one serving, put 1/2 cup of water, a pinch of salt and a couple of sprigs of thyme in a small pot and bring to a boil. Add 1/2 cup of dry couscous, remove from heat and cover. Allow to sit for about 5-10 minutes. I let mine sit a little longer, so the thyme flavors would kind of seep into the couscous.
Preheat your oven to about 350. Toss your tomato, zucchini, olive oil, some fresh thyme leaves, salt and pepper, then spread the veggies out into a baking dish. Top with a couple of pinches of grated parmesan, then bake for about 10 minutes. If you want the cheese to be a little meltier, you can broil the veggies for another minute or two.
Remove the thyme sprigs from your couscous. You can pull the leaves off and sprinkle them into your dish, if you’d like, for extra flavor. Toss your roasted veggies and, if you want/think the dish needs it, add a little more parmesan cheese and/or salt and pepper.
Enjoy, with a cold glass of sweet tea, before heading off to the beach/getting on a boat/going to a barbecue/NOT WELCOMING FALL.