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Porphyrous Passion

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Yes, I could have just said “Purple Passion.” But the post sounds much more erudite this way, don’tcha think? (Of course, I just took it down like 5 vocabulary levels when I wrote “don’tcha.”)

For a reason unbeknownst even to me, I have a fascination with purple foods. Imagine my delight, therefore, when I saw the following in the produce aisle:

I brought my violet asparagus home and set off on a purple meal-making adventure. My purple recipe of choice was Happy Herbivore’s Thai Spicy Basil and Asparagus. Miss Lindsay (a.k.a. Happy Herbivore) has not failed me yet with a recipe, and this one was no exception. I listened to Lindsay’s optional directions and doubled the sauce amount, so the resulting dish was spicy, saucy, and basily (no, I don’t care if “basily” is not a word; I’m using it anyway).

After giving myself a generous 1/2 of the recipe, I served the rest to my mother. Mommy dearest wasn’t thrilled with the dish at first. “It needs something,” she complained. But once she foraged around in the kitchen and added some sugar to her serving, her opinion changed dramatically. “Wow, this tastes exactly like the garlic eggplant they serve in Chinese restaurants,” she proclaimed. Yet another Happy Herbivore hit!

On a side note, the chameleon purple asparagus did a cool little trick upon being heated– they turned green!

Another side note: I think I may need this bumper sticker. Now you all know what to get me for Christmas. 😉

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. loveofoats says:

    mmmmmmmmm yum!!!!! and your use of the word basily is very fitting to describe the flavors of this disk, so i’m glad you used it!

    i love the bumper sticker… too funny :)

  2. romina says:

    Purple is my favorite color!! I wish I could find purple foods. =(

  3. Ricki says:

    How very cool–never seen purple (or porphyrous!) asparagus before. Too bad it changed back to green–would have looked great next to that eggplant. Glad your mom liked it, too :)

  4. Anonymous says:

    is it just me or do you eat more around your parents! sorry for the odd question.

  5. aTxVegn says:

    That’s nice that the asparagus turned green when you cooked it. I think it’s purple cauliflower that turns an unappetizing shade of gray. I’m going to enjoy your infatuation with purple food. You know how I love my purple cabbage!

    Erudite is another of my favorite words.

  6. ChickPea says:

    I love purple foods! I have never tried purple asparagus, but I got some nifty purple beans from the farmers’ market last summer. They turned green upon cooking as well, but it was still fun to see them brighten up my veggie drawer!
    Love that bumper sticker…

  7. Anonymous says:

    I just discovered your blog a few days ago, and now I get so excited when I see you have posted! That dish looks so yummy and you are so lucky that your mother embraces vegan dishes. Whenever I cook for my parents, they always end up adding cheese or butter to it! Anyways, keep up the great work!

  8. Veg*Triathlete says:

    Oooo, I’ve seen purple cauliflower but never purple asparagus—until now! When I was kid, I was totally in love with this store in Boston that was devoted to purple stuff. I thought it was the coolest thing ever

  9. Lizzy says:

    Ahh I need that bumper sticker! This is so true. When I see something that’s purple there’s no doubt I’ll buy it: candy, clothes… whatever =p

    Too bad it turned green, but purple asparagus surely looks amazing =)

  10. shellyfish says:

    I was making a berry smoothie this morning and totally though of you Special K- it was purple!!
    Now here’s a question for you- do you like beets? They are one of the only things I don’t love- I tolerate them, but wish I liked ’em because they are soo good for you.

  11. oatmeal says:

    I didn’t know purple asparagus existed! But wow they turned green? That’s so exciting! 😀

    And who knew sugar would work so well with savory dishes!

  12. Jennifer says:

    I love your purple asparagus, how fun! I wish I liked eggplant, because I’ve been eyeing that dish. I’ve only had eggplant a couple of times and didn’t like it either time I had it. But that was a LONG time ago. Before I even went veg. Maybe I should give it a try. I think I may end up getting eggplant in my CSA anyway.

    I love that bumper sticker!

  13. linds says:

    Hmmm…well I *could* just order you a new one, but I think it would be much more fun to launch a covert spy operation into FedEx’s headquarters and recapture your precious giant banana….What d’ya say???? haha

    Good luck with your job hunt, it really isn’t fun at allll. But on the plus side, your dinner looks awesome!

  14. Cassie says:

    Wow that’s cool! I have never seen purple asparagus! And it’s even cooler that it turned green when cooked.

  15. Mihl says:

    Living in a country where white asparagus rules the spring months I always thought that the green variety was something special. I didn’t even know there was purple!

  16. Eric says:

    Hey this is eric from vegangrub….thanks for leaving a comment on my blog!

    I love asparagus and I love purple. I actually have a few things they sell at the purple store, but I didn’t guy them from that site (the purple camo pants and the purple tie). That bumper sticker rules!

    I recently saw that purple asparagus at the grocery store, and the tag called it “Purple Haze Asparagus”. I had to buy it!

    Anyway, great blog and I’ll be adding you to my google reader and blogroll!


  17. Kumudha says:

    I too love purple color…

    purple asparagus looks cool!

  18. Bianca says:

    I bought this same asparagus at my Kroger a few weeks ago! Is it not the girthiest (also not a word, but I don’t care) asparagus you’ve ever seen?! I couldn’t believe how fat it was?

    And yes, I was a little sad that it turned green…just like plain ol’ regular asparagus, but sure was pretty in the raw form.

  19. Danielle says:

    LOVE PURPLE! and this blog, you’re on my new blogroll :) hope you don’t mind!

  20. Kelly T says:

    ha- i was confused for a sec. I oculdnt understand why you would buy purple asparagus and then use green.

    weird that happens.

    I always get the purplest artichokes i can find. Makes it more fun.

    Never tried that purple ketchup though- too weird for me.

  21. Ruby Red Vegan says:

    Wow, this looks delicious! I really need to try this recipe! The title kinda reminds me of the Thai Dynamite Vegetables & Tofu at Pei Wei – have you been there recently? They added this item to the menu, and it’s got the leaf next to it so it’s vegetarian. :) But it is spicy and has Thai basil in it, and I know we both love the Teriyaki bowl, but I’m telling you the Thai Dynamite is definitely worth trying.

    Purple asparagus is so awesome – I only realized recently that it is asparagus season! Too bad it turned green again after you cooked it.

    And you and your big vocabulary words! I looked up “erudite” in the dictionary and at least I can have a new word in my vocabulary now, ahahaha.

  22. Happy Herbivore! says:

    purple freak, (i mean that lovingly) you were at my breakfast table this morning. I made the tester spelt muffins and they came out PURPLE and I couldnt help but smile and think of you – go to the squads page to read how the purpleness happened!

  23. ChocolateCoveredVegan says:

    1st Anonymous—
    Sorry, I don’t understand your question. When you say, “Is it just me” do you mean that you eat more around your parents, or are you saying that you think I do?

    2nd Anonymous—
    Wow, thank you so much for leaving your comment. It was seriously one of the sweetest things I’ve ever read, and it just made my day. Reading comments like yours really makes blogging worth the effort. (Oh, and I can definitely relate to parents putting cheese on everything. If I make my mom pasta, chili, or another vegan dish, she’ll usually add cheese to it. But I’m just glad she’s coming around to trying vegetarian foods, because when I first became a vegetarian, she wouldn’t go near a piece of tofu with a ten-foot pole!)

  24. bazu says:

    I’ve never seen purple asparagus before- it’s gorgeous! Have you ever tried purple broccoli or purple artichokes? I bet you would love the way they look!

  25. Jenny says:

    I have never ever seen purple asparagus! How cool! Your mom is so lucky to have you cook for her!

    Oh, and about the running, thanks for asking! I’ve been running a little over a year (I did cross country in high school but wasn’t very good. i.e. I walked when no one was looking). I am now training to do my first marathon in January.

  26. Alice (in Veganland) says:

    Oh… they turned green! I hope you like the songs! I’ll send you more when I have my laptop again. I’m already in Spain, but very confused, haha, it happens to me every time I come: it’s my home, but it’s not my home, and I spend the first 2 days not knowing exactly what to do!

  27. Vegan Invasion! (Ashley Nicole) says:

    MMM that looks so good! I really love asparagus and eggplant, so this just sounds like such a wonderful meal that I could enjoy for dinner and again as lunch the next day! I <3 spicy garlic eggplant from Chinese restaurants, so this MUST be right up my alley.

    I’m the same way about purple food! I love to buy purple cabbage and purple cauliflower and I can’t believe I’ve never seen purple asparagus! So much fun! I’ve been on that purple store website before, looking for a purple kitchenaid mixer, haha.

  28. Shannon says:

    I love purple food also. I’m a vegetarian but I love your site with recipes ideas. I grew purple tomatillos last year in my garden. They’re called Tomatillo de Milpa I think and taste just like green ones for the ones I got. My dogs got in my garden and destroyed it mostly. I also grew purple and green green beans that were like 6″ long and delicious. I also grow chile peppers that start out purple and you can eat them when they’re purple but they turn yellow, then orange, then red and are supposed to be ready then. Sorry my post is so long. :)

  29. Bonnie says:

    I love your purple foods! It’s great that your Mom loved this dish so much, too! :)