Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Gelato Classico

Outside on Castro St.

The weather has been warm and sunny, the perfect atmosphere for enjoying some gelato. Gelato Classico is locate on Castro St, and always seems to be busy. Long lines usually indicate that the product is worth the wait. Matt, AJ, and I decided to check it out. 

So many choices!

This little shop had a plethora of choices from pumpkin, to pistachio, to white chocolate raspberry. The long line gave us ample time to decide. After switching my choices a couple times, I finally landed on the small cup with strawberry and double espresso bean. AJ went with the jamocha almond fudge and pistachio, and Matt chose dark chocolate and cherry.

The owner does all of the scooping.

You can also order a medium (with 2-3 flavors) or a large (3-4 flavors).  Gelato is generally much richer and creamier than ice cream, so usually a small tides me over.  They also serve milkshakes and sorbet. A milkshake will cost you $7! I'm not sure who has that much to spend on treats these days.

Strawberry and Double Espresso Bean.

While I was unsure as to how well strawberry and espresso would go together - I was pleasantly surprised. The sweet, slightly fruit strawberry went well with the strong espresso flavor. The espresso bean was probably my favorite, with pieces of chocolate covered beans mixed into the espresso flavored gelato. AJ's nutty combo - chocolatey almonds and pistachios was a bit overwhelming, but tasty all the same. The simplicity of Matt's dark chocolate and cherries was a definite winner. 

Jamocha almond fudge and pistachio.

So you might be asking yourself, what is the difference between gelato and ice cream? I had heard that gelato actually has less fat than ice cream, so I was curious as to why it always seems creamier to me. I went to the internet to find some answers. As I had suspected gelato tends to contain less fat, using a higher ratio of whole milk to cream. This method allows the flavors to stand out. In addition gelato is churned at a much slower rate, which decreases the amount of air that is pumped into the mixture, leading to a creamier taste. As one site put it: gelato = less fat + less air = richer creamier taste. 

Gelato just makes people happy.

While I have never had gelato in Italy, I will be back for some more gelato in Mountain View, CA.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Kapp's Pizza and Grill

Gibson Girl - mushroom, zucchini, pineapple, onion, bell pepper, tomato

There are a couple pizza joints on Castro St in downtown Mountain View. Seeing as AJ could eat pizza for every meal, we decided to check out Kapp's Pizza and Grill on Friday night. We were seated promptly and settled on some fried zucchini sticks and the Gibson Girl - a mix of veggies and pineapple. It was time to get back on the veggie track after the jerk chicken feast earlier. While I will eat meat on occasion, I still plan on eating mostly vegetarian.

Fried Zucchini sticks

The zucchini sticks came out first, and were perfectly cooked, nice and crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. The breading was flavored with italian seasoning and was light and crispy. My only complaint with the sticks is that they were so skinny, sometimes the breading overpowered the sweet flavors of the zucchini. A thicker cut might solve that problem (I say this like the owners are going to read this).


The pizza came out fairly quickly. I could tell right away that the pineapple was canned. I guess its hard to expect fresh pineapple from a pizza joint. The crust was thick and yeasty. While enjoyable, it was hardly the best crust I have ever had. Two slices of this pizza was extremely filling. The vegetables were very fresh, and there was tons of garlic. Matt felt it to be a bit overpowering, but if you love garlic like I do, this was a plus!

Another classic Ariel photo. Am I surprised? Am I scared? Am I just zoning out?

Puhlease pineapple!

The staff was very friendly, and our waters were constantly being refilled. The owner even came over to check on us. While I wouldn't say the pizza was amazing, it was decent and the staff certainly take care of you. Kapp's is a place to go for some beers, pizza, and to hang out with friends.

Kapp's Pizza and Grill
191 Castro St
Mountain View, CA

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The meeting of the food bloggers! (AKA The first time I ate meat in 20 days).

Jerk chicken and pork with plantains, rice, and beans.

On Friday AJ and I met up with Matt, and his friends from Swathmore, Vernon and Cathy. Cathy is also the wonderful author of the food blog, Gastronomy. I am a huge fan of her blog, so I was very excited to be able to share a food experience with her. I am sure she will post about her perspective of the our meal, so be sure to check that out!

Cathy has family in Northern California, so she picked out a place in Menlo Park that had received good reviews. We met up at Back-A-Yard, a caribbean american grill. They are reknowned for their jerk chicken. AJ and I had gone 20 days without meat, until we looked at this menu. The vegetarian option of jerk tofu just didn't sound appealing. After much debating, we decided to share a jerk chicken and pork platter.

The restaurant

We placed our orders at the counter and sat down to wait for our meals. Back A Yard is a very casual eatery with maybe five tables clustered together in the small space. Scenes of Jamaica and the caribbean adorn the walls. Some evenings reggae music is played, adding to the ambiance.

I finally get to meet the "Gastronomer"!

Ginger beer and grape soda.

We sipped on some sodas while waiting for our meals to arrive. I got a Jamaican ginger beer, essentially a sweeter spicier gingerale. Matt got a champagne cola - another soda with some Jamaican influence. We were a little disappointed to find out that the sodas are manufactured in Canada. So much for authenticity. The ginger beer was really spicy, but a little too sweet. It went well with jerk chicken.

Sippin' on champagne...cola that is.

Festivals - fried corn dough.

Cathy and Vernon were generous enough to share some of the festivals they ordered. Festivals are a jamaican treat, similar to a funnel cake, but made with cornmeal. I don't think I've encountered a fried dough I don't like. These were quite tasty.

Cathy and Vernon deciding how to split up their plate of chicken and pork.

Our food arrived nice and warm. AJ and I ordered all white meat chicken, which was extremely moist and juicy. The pork was fatty and tender. I love fried plantains and was extremely pleased with the sweet, caramelized fruit. The rice and beans were served up in two big scoops. The rice and beans had a sweet yet salty taste. AJ and I were fans. The best part of the meal was the jerk sauce, which comes on top of the meat and in a small cup on the side. I wish they sold this stuff, cuz I would love to have taken it home with me. The sauce is super garlicky, with a subtle peppercorn flavor, tangy vinegar and a little sweetness round it out.

Jerk chicken, plantains.

While I was feeling pretty full, I saw a sweet potato pudding on the menu. I absolutely love sweet potatoes and decided to give it a try. When my dessert got to the table, I was thoroughly disappointed by its pale appearance. Where was the bright orange hue. Also this pudding looked more like a pie. The flavor was extremely dull, starchy and a little sweet. The best part was the caramelized edges. Vernon finished this off for me. Cathy ordered the key lime pie. She made the right choice. It was tart, creamy, and sweet. The graham cracker crust added a little crunch. If you're looking for a tropical way to end your meal, choose the key lime pie.

"Sweet" potato pie.

Back A Yard is a great place to get a cheap, tasty meal. While I am not sure it was totally worth eating chicken instead of tofu, I would recommend this place for meat lovers with a hankering for something different. It's worth a trip just for the jerk sauce. Hey, maybe even the tofu would be good with this stuff.

Back A Yard Caribbean American Grill
1189 Willow Rd
Menlo Park, CA 94025

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Dip Night

Homemade guac.

March madness is upon us. There is nothing I like better than sitting on the couch, watching some basketball, and chowing down on some guacamole and chips.  California has some great avocados, so I decided to mix up my own batch, rather than buy some from the store. To make this more of a meal, I decide to add some black bean dip and veggies to the guac and chips.  Dip can make a satisfying dinner.

Black bean dip, guacamole, bell peppers.

Both dips were very easy to make. I sauteed onion and garlic in a saucepan, added some canned black beans, cilantro, cumin, red pepper flakes, and some hot sauce. When it was heated all the way through I put it in the food processor and it was ready to go.  I recommend making the guacamole last, so it doesn't start to brown. Again the process was simple, smash up to avocados, with minced garlic, cilantro, lime juice, and a little hot sauce. 

The black bean dip was hardy, with nice smoky flavors from the cumin. The cilantro added wonderful freshness, and the hot sauce gave it just enough kick.  The guacamole was soo fresh, and reminded me homemade is so worth it. Fresh lime juice, cilantro, and creamy avocados. Cut up some fresh vegetables, break open the chips, and dinner is served!


2 avocados, peeled with pits removed
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lime, juiced
1 bunch cilantro, torn
1/2 tsp hot sauce
1/2 tsp salt

Combine everything in a large bowl. Mash until somewhat chunky consistency is achieved.

Spicy Black Bean Dip

1/2 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 15 oz can black beans 
1 tsp cumin
small bunch of cilantro, torn
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp hot sauce

Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Sautee onion and garlic until onion is translucent. Add black beans, and remaining ingredients. Cook until heated through. Blend in food processor until smooth.

Pistachio Muffins

I love the green color - what a great way to celebrate spring!

Boy do I love nuts - walnuts, peanuts, cashews, almonds! Another nut I love, but don't often buy a lot of, is the pistachio. It's beautiful green hue and sweet crunch scream spring! In honor of this sweet nut, I decided to make some pistachio muffins. I used to love the pistachio muffins from Giant grocery store. They were a staple in my household growing up, and had to weight a pound each! The artificial pistachio flavor and neon green warmed my heart.

I shelled these nuts by hand!

My muffins were going to be a little more natural in flavor, using ground pistachios, a little cardamom and orange zest. I tweaked a recipe from Gourmet magazine for pistachio cake, because let's be honest muffins are really just mini cakes without frosting. The recipe was pretty simple. You just want to be careful when you're grinding the nuts that you don't overprocess them into a paste.

A beautiful and fragrant batter.

I added a little bit of green dye to enhance the color - ok so not so natural, but there is something about the visual appeal of the green that makes these more appetizing. The batter was super fragrant from the cardamom and orange zest. The zest really brightened the flavors. I only made six and AJ had eaten four by the end of the day! This recipe is a keeper!

Pistachio Muffins

3/4 c unsalted shelled pistachios (red skins removed)
1/2 c white whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 c reduced fat organic milk
1/8 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 c pure organic cane sugar
2 free range eggs
1/4 c (1/2 stick) unsalted organic butter, softened
1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest
2 drops green dye

Arrange oven in middle rack and preheat oven to 350 F. Butter muffin tins, then dust with flour, knocking out excess.

Using food processor, pulse 1/2 c of pistachios until finely ground, about 40 seconds. (Do not overprocess, or mixture will become paste.) Add flour, baking powder, cardamom, and salt and pulse briefly to combine.

In small bowl, combine milk and vanilla.

In large bowl using electric mixer at moderate speed, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce speed to low and add pistachio and milk mixtures alternatively in batches, beginning an ending with pistachio mixture and beating after each addition just until combined. Chop remaining pistachios and add them and orange zest and mix just until combined. For a greener appearance add two drops green food coloring and mix until evenly colored.

Pour batter evenly into muffin tins and bake until wooden skewer comes out clean, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 10 minutes, then run knife around tins to loosen and invert onto rack. Makes 6 muffins.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes

Pumpkin Pancakes with Organic Vanilla Ice Cream.

So I have definitely been in the baking mood. One thing I used to love as a child was breakfast for dinner. You mean we can have pancakes for dinner?! Oh the excitement. I wanted to recreate that joy with some whole wheat pumpkin pancakes.

I came across a recipe on the blog "We Are Not Martha" for pumpkin pancakes. They used Trader Joe's pumpkin puree, which is what I had in my pantry! I figured that was a sign. I followed the instructions to a T. The batter was quite thick, and the pancakes were a little denser than I would have liked. The pumpkin flavor could definitely have been amped up. I served mine with vanilla bean organic ice cream and some pumpkin butter to boost the flavor.

While not my favorite pumpkin pancakes, they were still tasty. I think I'll keep looking for that perfect pancake recipe.

Smiles for pumpkin pancakes and eggs!

1.5 out of 3 JAMs

Thursday, March 26, 2009

One Saucepan Brownies

Mmm chocolatey.

After a delicious stir fry dinner, I was craving something sweet and chocolatey. AJ and I went for a walk down Castro St to find something to satisfy our sweet tooths. As we looked at some treats at Le Boulanger, I thought to myself why don't I just make some brownies?

I had some cocoa and some semi-sweet chocolate chips. I searched Hershey's website for a recipe that included both, and came across a one saucepan brownie recipe. I halved the recipe and substituted white whole wheat flour. I also left out the nuts.

Whisking the eggs before adding them, so they don't scramble!

The recipe was super simple, with all of the mixing being done by hand in the saucepan. After heating the melted butter, cocoa, and sugar, make sure to remove the pan from the heat before adding the eggs, you don't want them to scramble!

I could almost just eat the batter.

I greased an 8-in pan and baked them for about 20-25 minutes. Let them cool for 10-15 minutes, so they don't fall apart when you cut them. I like to serve mine warm with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream!

2 out of 3 JAMs

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Mushroom Stroganoff with Brown Rice

Portabello, shitakes, and browns - yum!

AJ and I stumbled across a PETA brochure at Garden Fresh Veggie Restaurant in Mountain View, CA. While I am not always a proponent of their scare tactics or their messages, they did have a recipe for a mushroom stroganoff that looked intriguing. I tweaked their recipe slightly.

One of our favorite stands at the Farmer's market has been the mushroom table, they always have some unusual ones to try. This time we stuck with some more basic varities, which I think really work well in this dish.

Another reason to save scraps of veggies - you can make your own stock!

The recipe called for vegetable stock, which brought back horrible memories of the last vegetable stock I bought from the store. It seriously tasted like they poured tap water into the container. Where were the vegetables, the herbs? I knew I would be making my own, having saved up scraps of asparagus, squash skin, leftover portabellos, onion, garlic, and a ton of fresh herbs. Add about 4 cups water, bring to a boil and then let simmer for two hours. The smell is wonderful, reminding me of my mother's fabulous stuffing. AJ thought it smelled like his family's aromatic spaghetti sauce.

Simmering my mushroom sauce - low and slow baby.

The vegetable stock, combined with onions, garlic, mushrooms, roux, and balsamic vinegar made for a delicious sauce. I added a couple tablespoons of plain yogurt for some extra tang and creaminess. Served over rice, you can't ask for a more comforting meal.

Acting like a mushroom, although I would say it looks like I'm "on" 'shrooms.

Chowing down!

Mushroom Stroganoff

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
3 cup quartered shitake, button, and portabello mushrooms
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp white whole wheat flour
1 3/4 cup vegetable stock
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp italian seasoning
1/4 tsp fresh thyme
2 tbsp plain nonfat yogurt

Heat oil and saute onion and mushrooms. Melt butter and sprinkle flour on top and cook to a paste. Add herbs and the vegetable stock, balsamic vinegar and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20-25 minutes. Mix yogurt into sauce and heat through. Serve over brown rice or noodles. Garnish with parsley.

2 out of 3 JAMs

A Light Local Meal

Mixed Field Greens Salad and Mashed Butternut Squash

Sometimes, all you want is a simple dinner.  As a new vegetarian I would like to explain my philosophy.  As I mentioned earlier I wanted to challenge myself to eat more vegetables. But my new diet is really more than that, it is a lifestyle change.  Reading Michael Pollan's "Omnivore's Dilemma", among another articles, has led me to become a believer in the local food movement.  This movement is based around eating food that is produced locally, with the benefit of an established relationship between consumer and grower. With the knowledge of where your food is being grown comes a new level of accountability.  You can expect more from your local farmers, because you see them and talk to them.  They are held to a new standard if they expect you to return to their stand.  AJ and I have made it a goal to buy 70-80% of our food from our local farmer's market. The rest of our purchases, we will try to buy as less processed as possible. If I buy peanut butter, I try to buy some that is produced in California, and the only ingredients are "dry roasted peanuts".  By sticking to simpler ingredients I know what I am eating.

For simple vegetarians, sometimes all you want is a simple meal. I had some butternut squash leftover from the pizza and decided to make a butternut squash mash per AJ's request. This dish is so simple. Simply cut the squash into 1/2 in thick slices, drizzle with olive oil, salt, and roast at 400 degrees for 30-40 min. Remove flesh from skin, and mash with a fork. Add in a tablespoon of butter, tsp grated fresh ginger, tbsp brown sugar, a pinch of salt and mix well. 

The mashed squash has a somewhat stringy consistency, much less smooth than a potato mash. The sweet squash and ginger were a great combination, but I must say I think I prefer my butternut squash roasted in slices. 

We served this mash with a wonderful mixed greens salad with broccoli, strawberries, goat cheese, and a balsamic vinagrette. The classic combination of tangy goat cheese and sweet berries is phenomenal. Simple, local, and healthy - dinner is served.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Hot Wings...for vegetarians?

Tempeh Hot Wings with Asian Slaw and Brown Rice

While I haven't been craving meat the past couple of weeks, AJ and I do love hot sauce and decided to try our hands at a vegetarian version of hot wings. I had recently seen a recipe for bbq tempeh on Kim O'Donnel's blog, A Mighty Appetite.  It inspired the use of tempeh as the main ingredient.

I decided to bake my tempeh in the oven, making sure to turn the slices every 15 minutes to achive browning on all sides. The sauce was very simple, requiring a couple tbsp of butter heated with hot sauce and a couple whole cloves of garlic. I tossed the tempeh "wings" in the sauce and they were done.

Tossing the tempeh "wings" in hot sauce.

While celery and carrots are traditional accompaniments, I wanted to serve something a little different. An asian slaw would provide a similar cooling effect, plus I had plenty of cabbage left over from St Patty's Day. I sliced the cabbage real thin and grated some carrot. For a little something extra I added a julienned granny smith apple. This was tossed in a mirin vinagrette.

Asian slaw with cabbage, granny smith apple, carrots in a mirin vinagrette.

The slaw provided the perfect compliment to the tempeh, cool and sweet to the tangy and spicy sauce. The slaw was really great with the fresh ginger, lime, and dill in the vinagrette. I recommend serving the tempeh over brown rice to sop up some of that delicious hot sauce. 

While I would never confuse a tempeh "wing" for a chicken wing, I think this meal really hit my craving for a hot "wing".

Tempeh Hot "Wings"

1 8 oz package tempeh
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup hot sauce (like Frank's Red Hot - I found a nice organic version at Whole Foods)
3 cloves garlic
pinch of salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Slice tempeh into 8 pieces. Place pieces in baking pan lined with aluminum foil. Grease pan slightly with olive oil. Cover pan and bake in oven for 45-60 min, turning slices every so often to achieve browning on all sides. Remove tempeh from oven. Heat butter, hot sauce, garlic, and spices in skillet. Toss tempeh in hot sauce. Serve over brown rice.

Asian Slaw

1/2 head cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 granny smith apple, julienned
1 carrot, grated
1/3 cup mirin rice wine vinegar
3 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp honey
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
1 tsp fresh dill
pinch of salt and pepper

Combine cabbage, apple, and carrot in large bowl. In small bowl, combine the remaining ingredients, whisking until well combined. Add vinagrette to slaw and mix until well combined. Refrigerate an hour or until ready to serve.

2 out of 3 JAMs

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pizza with Whole Wheat Crust

Butternut squash pizza chillin' on my new pizza stone.

Veggie Planet Pizza in Cambridge, MA has changed how I think about pizza. AJ and I attempted to recreate our favorite pie at Veggie Planet, the Lunch for Henry. Lunch for Henry is a delicious combination of butternut squash, fontina and goat cheese, caramelized onions, garlic, and rosemary. We stuck with those ingredients, but added some portabello mushrooms as well.

I was excited to try my hand at my first pizza dough. I bough a pizza stone, known for its ability to produce crispy crusts. I wanted to make a whole wheat crust and stumbled across a recipe for a super thin crispy crust. While I usually prefer a softer pizza crust I decided to give it a try.

Chopping up fresh thyme and rosemary for the pizza dough.

Mixing the whole wheat flour, salt, and herbs.

The pizza dough was fairly easy to put together. I began by proofing my yeast, a process that determines whether the yeast is alive. I placed a packet of active yeast in a little over 1/3 cup of warm water and a tablespoon of honey. It didn't start foaming initially, so I added some more warm water. Sure enough it started bubbling a minute later.

Proofing the yeast.

Letting the dough rise.

I mixed white whole wheat flour, salt, and some freshly chopped thyme and rosemary together in a large bowl. (JAM Note: The dough only needs to rise 20-30 minutes, so you can make this dough right before you plan on serving the pizza.) After the yeast mixture had sat for 10 minutes I added it to the flour. I mixed this with a spoon until it began to form a ball, adding a little bit of water until it came together. I turned the dough out onto a floured surface and began kneading it while adding about 1/4 cup of flour gradually. The final ball of dough was then placed in an oiled bowl and left to rise in a warm spot for 20 to 30 minutes.

Roasting the butternut squash, onions, and garlic.

With the pizza dough done, I decided to get working on my toppings. I peeled the top part of a large butternut squash and cut it into thin half moons. I placed this in a pan with olive oil, rosemary, an onion and a couple cloves of garlic. I roasted these at 400 F for 20-25 minutes.

Rolling out the dough.

When the vegetables were done roasting (JAM Note: This can be done a day in advance), I began sauteeing the onions and portabellos. While those were cooking up I rolled out the dough into a thin circle. I preheated the oven and placed the pizza stone into the cold oven. I added some oil and cornmeal to the stone so that my crust wouldn't stick. You want to place the pizza stone in the oven before it heats up because you want the heat to distribute evenly throughout the stone. This even distribution of heat is what makes the crust crispy.

Sauteeing the portabellos and onions.

After the oven preheated, about 10-15 minutes, I placed the dough on the stone and baked it for 15 minutes (JAM Note: I would probably only cook this for 10 minutes next time). After the crust has browned a little I added my toppings: goat and smoked fontina cheese, butternut squash, portabellos, onions, and garlic. I cooked the toppings for an additional 10 minutes.

The crust was super crispy, a little crispier than I like my crust, but it was very flavorful thanks to the addition of the fresh herbs. The roasted squash and goat cheese combo was phenomenal. I could almost just eat those two together. The roasted garlic and onions added nice sweet yet pungent component and the portabellos were a nice meaty addition to these earthy flavors. We may not be able to eat at Veggie Planet Pizza, but we can come pretty close to replicating it!

Next time I am going to work on a softer crust...

2.5 out of 3 JAMs

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Noodless Eggplant Lasagna

Eggplant lasagna - the eggplant is the noodle!

AJ and I have been rather obsessed with eggplant, putting it in dips, stir fry, sauces, etc. I was in the mood for Italian and decided that an eggplant lasagna would be nice. The eggplant however would be cut up into thin slices and used in place of noodles. This dish is super simple. I chose to make my own sauce to spread on top, but you could easily use a jarred variety. Simple layer sauce, a cheese mixture, and eggplant and bake for 40 minutes.

Thinly sliced eggplant.

Tomato sauce with onion, mushrooms, and kalamata olives.

I used a plain yogurt instead of the traditional ricotta mixture.

While ricotta is traditionally used to layer between lasagna, I chose to use plain yogurt because that is what I had in my fridge. I added one egg, some fontina cheese, fresh thyme, and rosemary. The taste was very similar to what one would get from the ricotta. The yogurt baked almost like a custard and the fresh herbs were wonderful.

Layer with the yogurt mixture and cheese.

The eggplant doesn't even need to be sauteed before baking. This saves time and a few calories. Which can be saved for seconds!

Noodless Eggplant Lasagna

1 large eggplant, thinly sliced
1/2 onion
3 cloves garlic
1/2 c chopped mushrooms
1/4 c chopped kalamata olives
1 15 oz can tomatoes
3 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup plain yogurt, drained for 2 hours
1 egg
1/2 c fontina cheese
1/2 tsp fresh thyme
1/2 tsp fresh rosemary
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sautee onion and garlic in olive oil. Add mushrooms and olives. Sautee for a couple minutes and then add tomatoes and paste. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Mix yogurt, egg, herbs, and spices. (JAM Note: Plain yogurt can be drained in a couple paper towels for a couple hours to remove excess liquid). After 20 minutes remove sauce from heat. Spread a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of an 8 in pan. Then layer slices of eggplant on top of sauce. Spread the yogurt mixture on top of eggplant. Then add another layer of sauce, then another layer of eggplant. Top with some more sauce and grated fontina cheese. Bake covered for 35 minutes. Remove aluminum foil and place under broiler for a couple minutes until cheese has browned. Serve warm out of the oven.

3 out of 3 JAMs