Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Bonus Recipe Links: Broccoli Gribiche plus.

Here's a link to the recipe I made this weekend. I loved it and it was hoovered up at a potluck.

Heidi Swanson's Broccoli Gribiche

which is, strangely, not on her own really excellent and beautiful website  101 Cookbooks

(home of the infamous Golden Crusted Brussels Sprouts which could not possibly be better )

but is in her terrific second cookbook  Super Natural Every Day.

But the person who transcribed it on her own blog took some good step-by-step photos - I like step-by-step photos in a recipe, especially of the steps that make me say "Ew, that looks gross. That can't possibly be right, I must have messed something up."  For example: whisking hard-boiled egg yolk and red wine vinegar together.

Obviously I'm babbling.
The end.

Dinner tonight: Veggies, roasted, blanched and ravioli-ed

I posted this on Facebook, and the 'likes' seemed to be swarming, so I thought I would describe how I made it.

 Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

 Into a large bowl, slice half a large white onion, about a cup of grape tomatoes, 2 cloves of garlic, half a gigantic red pepper, and whatever other leftover veg you have knocking around your fridge - I had about half a yellow squash. You can slice as thickly or thinly as you like - the thinner you slice, the sooner it will be ready. You don't have to slice the tomatoes much, though. Halving or just squishing them is fine.

 Toss with a small splash of oil, either regular olive oil or flavored oil like that herby Basting Oil they were giving away at Wegman's last week. It's quite a nice thing to have around, incidentally. Sprinkle some salt in, toss to coat, and dump out onto a rimmed baking sheet. Spread out to make a mostly single layer (you don't have to be OCD about it.) Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes, and check it. You want the veggies to be soft, and some to have touches of brown but not entirely blackened. Mine took a total of 30 minutes. After the 20 minute check, put a pot of water on to boil. Once it boils, turn it down.

 Now slide a whole 8 oz package of Rising Moon Organics Frozen Feta-Hazelnut Ravioli with Butternut Squash into the hot water. The package is covered with instructions that say Never cook ravioli in rapidly boiling water and Do not overcook! and I didn't, and you probably shouldn't either.

 Immediately also drop in several big handfuls of cut kale. I bought mine in a bag at Trader Joes, and it was cut into about 1 inch pieces. So I recommend that size of bits if you have to cut your own.

 The ravioli package directions say to cook for 8 minutes, and mine weren't quite as soft as one might hope, plus the kale was still really hard, so I let mine go a little longer - probably 10 minutes. Remove your veggies from the oven and put them back in the bowl they started in. Fish out your raviolis and kale and add them to the bowl. Toss everything together to spread the fabulous oil and veg juices around onto the pasta and kale. Plate. Eat. The kale is still a little crunchy after cooking for 10 minutes; the veggies are soft and carmelized, and the pasta is creamy/silky and absorbs the garlicy juices. Plus it's gorgeous. Plus it's 30 minutes.

 My husband is constantly bugging me to 'write down that recipe!" Look, honey, I wrote it down. Go me.

Thursday, September 06, 2012

and all manner of things will be

Sausage Creole and other surprises

Sausage Creole.

Get out a lot of pans. Frying pans and saucepans.

Start with the sausage. Let’s say it’s Tuesday afternoon and you think you might whip up some spaghetti with sausage meatballs. It’s fast, and everybody likes it. And you know you have sausage in the freezer.

Pull out some sausage to defrost in the micro. Notice that your husband has picked up a pound of fresh andouille sausage links from the Giant. It was on sale. You are not sure your kid will eat this kind of sausage, but you assume you'll be able to hide it in the tomato sauce. Thaw it and rip it into small chunks, which you then roll into small balls and set to cook in you big cast iron skillet.

Being afraid to burn it, throw some water into the skillet when you’re heating the pasta water. Having put those fears to rest, feel free to go play with your kid. It’s not like you’re leaving the area or anything. You can see it from where you are. It’ll be fine.

When your son mentions that something smells burny, take the pan off the stove and remove the sausage balls. They’re pretty much done, and mostly intact. There’s a pretty bad layer of burned scum sticking to the pan. Please don’t forget to let that pan cool before you soak it.

Grab another frying pan. Chop an onion and a red pepper (or whatever else you find in the fridge) and cook that over high heat for a few minutes in olive oil. You don't need to get all the way to carmelized - just let it get a little brown and sticky, then throw some water (it’s boiled by now) on the veg and turn down the heat, and let that cook. Refresh the water every once in a while so the pan doesn’t burn dry.

The water will turn brown but it will, unfortunately, still taste like water. Stir in some Heinz Chili Sauce – not even a quarter cup. If you have a ripe tomato, squish it with your hands and add it to the pan. Add the sausage balls. Cover and simmer slowly.

This would be good with rice. Make some brown rice.

When the rice is done, stir a few big handfuls of greens – I had spinach – into the simmering pan of sauce and sausage. It’ll practically disappear in a few minutes.

Serve the creole over rice to your husband, knowing that your kid would never in a million years eat it. Realize you have no spaghetti sauce for the kid. Which is okay because you forgot to boil the spaghettti.

Offer him a hot dog. He asks to taste the red stuff you’re eating. He loves it! He eats his own portion and some of yours. He snipes sausage – the sausage that you were sure was too spicy for him– off everyone’s plate.