When you love someone, you love all of him. There's no separating the good and the bad and taking what you want, like picking the onions or peas out of a dish and setting them aside, only to throw them out or leave them for someone else to finish off. Every piece of him comes together to become who he really is, who you fell in love with, and who you want to be with for the rest of your life.
I was thinking about love as I ate dinner tonight. There was something about the way all of the ingredients melded together to create this perfect dish. It was a medley of sorts, a handful of vegetables I bought at the farmers market yesterday -- zucchini, green onions, beet greens, sweet corn, tomatoes -- sauteed with black beans, squirted with lemon, topped with a sunny side up egg, and mixed together with the yolk's rich sauce. No fancy seasonings or complicated sauces, but simply the flavor and texture of each ingredient, strong enough to stand alone but mixed together to create something much more. Yeah, it was good.
I took my plate outside before I dug in, and set it out on the balcony to take a few pictures. As I stood on a chair and took overhead shots of my plate, Murdo watched from the window and shook his head. That's when I realized that I have my quirks, too, and he loves all of them, too. My obsession for eggs, my need to take a photo from every angle before I eat, my love for tinned sardines and ramen noodles (never together though, don't worry). Each is its own texture. I thought of all this while I ate, and it made me enjoy this dish even more.
You probably have a recipe like this one in your back pocket. It's a simple go-to and a great way to enjoy summer's bounty. It's quick and requires little thinking. And you probably have your favorite veggies that you like to add, but I'm sharing this particular recipe with you because like I said, there was something about the textures of these ingredients that just went together so lovingly. The black beans work as a soft, thick base, while the beet stems offer crunch. The zucchini is tender and meaty, and the corn is sweet and plump. The tomatoes are juicy, the egg is rich and creamy.
I understand that love is much more complex that a pot of black beans and veggies. Trust me, I get that. But for just a moment tonight, it was so much simpler. It was a smile and a shake of the head through a window, and for a moment it all made sense.
Corn, Zucchini, and Black Bean Saute
2 medium zucchini, chopped
Corn stripped from one ear
1 bunch beet greens and stems, chopped
handful of green onions, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
handful of grape tomatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
fresh lemon juice
Heat olive oil in large saute pan. Add garlic and green onion, cook for a minute or two before adding zucchini, then cook another 3-5 minutes. Add corn and black beans, cook until heated through, about another 5 minutes. Add beet greens and stems and cook until greens are just wilted, then add tomatoes. Squirt juice from a wedge or two of lemon, and salt and pepper to taste. Top with a sunny side up egg.