Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Quinoa Tabbouleh with Edamame and Arugula: A recalibration

I thought I had the upper hand.

Thought I'd convinced him that he liked me more than I liked him. I topped off any sort of a complimentary statement with an edge of sarcasm. I told him he was like water in my ear. Ignored him when I felt like I was being too present. Shrugged off all of his complimentary statements with confident indifference.

I was not going to be that girl. That crazy, obsessive, planning-the-wedding-before-the-first-date girl. I was going to play it cool. Not blog about it. Not talk about it (too much). Keep the warm, stomach-churning flashes of emotion all wrapped up in a little box like a Christmas present under my nonexistent tree.

My master plan started to go awry last week. In the midst of all my snark and circumstance, I realized I was the one initiating the communication. I was the one playing Adele's "Someone Like You" on repeat for an hour straight while I clung to my phone, willing the green light indicating I had an incoming text message to flash.

I was the one imagining it to be something it wasn't. And liking him far more than I felt comfortable as the one who was supposed to have the upper hand.

The obsessive phone-clinging reached its peak on Friday. As I stewed over what his unresponsiveness meant, I glued myself to my couch with a bottle of Chardonnay. Love Actually accidentally slipped into my DVD player. A box of See's chocolates accidentally got opened. And in an instant, I accidentally became that girl.

Two glasses of wine into the night, I finally recognized her.


"Disgusting." I said to the reflection in the mirror.

I spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day trying to detox. Pretending that I was checking work emails or Twitter when my brother asked me why I kept looking at my phone. I did everything possible to distract myself -- playing card games with my brothers, crawling on the floor pretending to be a tiger with my two-year-old niece, watching the Michael Bublé Christmas special with my mom -- twice.

Four days after the peak of my complete metamorphosis into the most loathed character in romantic comedies, I'm attempting to claw my way back to normalcy. Back to the person who obsesses over ordinary, everyday things.

You know, Bar Method, Anthropologie and quinoa.

This is the salad I'm eating to recalibrate myself -- from the holiday cookies, the filet mignon with port wine shallot reduction, the twice baked potatoes oozing with neon orange cheddar cheese, and from the boy who almost made me lose my head.

Quinoa Tabbouleh with Edamame and Arugula
Serves 2

1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed well
1 cup shelled edamame, prepared according to package instructions
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon orange juice
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
Fresh ground pepper, sea salt, to taste
1 cup parsley, minced
3 cups arugula
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted

Bring just shy of 1 cup of water to boil in a small saucepan. Add the quinoa, reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes. Remove the lid, fluff with a fork and assess for doneness. If all the liquid has been absorbed, turn off the heat and let "dry out" for approximately 10 minutes.

Whisk together lemon zest, lemon juice, orange juice, olive oil, honey, salt, and pepper. Toss with quinoa, parsley, and edamame. Refrigerate for at least an hour so the flavors can blend.

Spread out arugula on two plates. Toss quinoa with almonds, then divide the salad evenly between the two plates.


bagnatic said...

it happens to all of us...though i must say quinoa is a good way to get yourself back.

i hope your feelings sorted itself out?

O'Leary Time said...

Of course it happens to all of us...but your "Love Song" (also by Adele, love her!) will come. Give yourself a break, as even the most beloved characters of romantic comedies touch hearts with their deeply raw emotion (reminded of a young Meg Ryan in "When Harry Met Sally", love her character!). Be proud of your feminine emotion and heart's longing. Someday there'll be a suitable man who'll relish in it. Love your blog and good to see you're detoxifying after boy stress,chocolate, and wine (although the latter two are always wonderful together on almost any other occasion!).

NathantheQuinoaKing said...

It's not you it's him, there are plenty of other fishes in the seas, don't be hard on yourself, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, he's not worth it. You'll find someone who really deserves YOU, and loves quinoa and bar method and anthropologie and myspace dot com.

Diana said...

Amy - Getting there! Thanks for the note of encouragement! :)

O'Leary Time - Hah, thank you! And yes, I agree - wine and chocolate are... wait for it... a match made in heaven. ;) No drama in that relationship! Thanks again for the sweet comment!

Nathan - Um, thank you?