So I’m having an affair. I am 100% falling in love with the State of California. Seriously, Cali, where have you been all my life!? Ok, well, I actually know the answer to that previous question but whatever. I guess the more appropriate question would be, where have I been this whole time?! I mean, I figured I’d like California in general and kind of like Los Angeles but I never thought I’d like it this much. I mean, this morning I was at the farmer’s market in my neighborhood and tonight I’m going to Drag Queen bingo. I mean, what’s not to love in a city that offers a mommy that kind of diverse Sunday Funday?!
But in all seriousness, being away from my husband has been extremely hard and draining, but this city (along with my daughter and my mom) has kept me company and I’m so grateful. This week at work has been full of orientation meetings, CPR training, more meetings, ice cream and then even more meetings. My ‘mommy guilt’ has only increased with every work day that passes by. Even with my mom here, I still feel incredibly guilty every time I leave the house. I know this feeling is completely useless but it’s still very real for me. Tonight’s night out with my dear friend, Jessie, is a huge personal triumph. I’ve tried several times to attend a workout class with her during the week, after work, but once I’m home the idea of leaving the kiddo again just tears at my heart-strings. I’m hoping that once she’s at school and she has a more engaged daily schedule, I won’t feel so guilty if I leave for an hour or so in the evening in order to take care of myself. I am such a frikkin’ hypocrite right now because I am the first one to advocate for self-care and here I am completely ignoring my own advocacy pitch. I’ll get there. I’ll get there eventually, right? So far, my nights have looked a lot like me putting the kid to bed by 8pm and then climbing into bed with a mug of Trader Joe’s vanilla soy ice cream (covered with sprinkles, obvs.) and watching reruns of Parks and Rec, which, by the way, is my new favorite show (sorry Nashville). I’m not sure where I was around 5 years ago when everyone was on board with this show but whatever. I’m here now and I’m completely obsessed with Ron Swanson, Leslie Knope and the whole lot. So yes, I guess this means I’m now 3-timing my husband with the State of California, the City of Los Angeles and a hilarious NBC mockumentary. That doesn’t make me ‘loose’, right?
So the recipe below is for my go-to Shabbat lunch and/or picnic favorite meal. It’s been revealed recently that some of my favorite people don’t like eggplant because of the texture, but I’ve decided to keep them in my life, despite the CRAZINESS of not liking eggplant. I L-O-V-E love eggplant. It’s my favorite vegetable of all time. This recipe is easy, delicious and doesn’t need to be assembled until the day of Shabbat so it’s great for the last minute Shabbat meal scramble (y’all know what I’m talking about). Enjoy and have a wonderful week.
- 4 - 5 medium whole wheat tortilla or wraps
- 1 medium eggplant, sliced to 1/2 inch thickness
- 2 tbsp kosher salt (for getting out excess moisture from eggplant)
- 4 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 tbsp ground pepper
- 3/4 cup whipped cream cheese
- 1 avocado, diced
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro OR chives (OR BOTH!)
- 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tbsp table salt
- Place sliced eggplant on paper towels so that they do not overlap. Salt each eggplant and let soak in salt for at least 30 minutes in order to draw out excess moisture.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- After 30 minutes, place eggplant on baking sheets and brush each eggplant with olive oil.
- Place eggplant in oven for 20 - 30 minutes.
- While eggplant is roasting, prep all over the other ingredients for your wrap.
- Place cream cheese in a bowl. Add in cilantro, garlic powder, ground pepper and additional table salt. Mix until well combined.
- Once eggplant is finished roasting, stack your eggplant and slice for easier bites.
- For wrap assembly: Spread herb cream cream mixture onto a wrap. Lay diced avocado on top of cream cheese and mash for an easier rollup (try to keep all toppings off from the direct sides of the wrap. This way they won't burst out when you actually roll everything up). Place eggplant on top of the avocado and any left over herbs that didn't make it into the cream cheese.
- For rolling: Tightly tuck in one end of the wrap and roll, tightening along the way. Slice the finished wrap into 2 inch rolls.