Hi Barb --
Here is another recipe for Feast Everyday from the food blog The Italian Dish. Laddie introduced me to the blog. Not every recipe on it is a winner, but this one is really good.
I usually triple or quadruple the recipe in a big pot and then freeze smaller portions. It is ridiculously simple and fast to make. I often use San Marzano crushed tomatoes because they are going to end up pureed anyway and they are slightly less expensive than the whole tomatoes.
I do use a little chili pepper per Charlotte's request, although it is good without. The sauce has great flavor and is a good consistency - not too thin and not to thick - in terms of coating pasta.
(from The Italian Dish)
you can add a little red hot chili pepper to the sauce, if you want a little zip ---
makes 2 cups
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground pepper
1/8 cup grated carrot
1 28-ounce can San Marzano Tomatoes
1 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoons dried thyme
a few fresh basil leaves (optional)
1 tablespoon sugar (optional)
In a large heavy pot, gently heat olive oil, onions, sea salt and a little freshly ground pepper (and the chili pepper, if using) and saute over low heat until the onions are soft, about 10 minutes.
Add garlic and saute for a minute. Add carrots and saute another 5 minutes.
Add the San Marzano tomatoes and their liquid and break up the tomatoes with a wooden spoon (or
just crush them with your hands, like I do).
Add the herbs and sugar, if you are using it. Simmer gently, uncovered, for about 20 to 30 minutes,
until the sauce has thickened.
Puree the tomato sauce either with an immersion blender right in the pot, or transfer the sauce to a blender and puree until smooth.
If you want to make a double batch, the sauce freezes very well.
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Sunday, May 12, 2013
Chive Cheese Bread
I continue to experiment with the No Knead recipes in Jim Lahey's book --- mostly making variations with whole wheat, rye and buckwheat. But our chives in the garden are going crazy this Spring, so I decided to add them to his basic cheese bread.
This bread is quite good --- the mild onion flavor of the chives goes well with the Fontina cheese. Black pepper adds a spicy element.
You can make the recipe without the chives and it would be excellent, too.
Chive Cheese Bread
(adapted from Jim Lahey's No Knead Bread cookbook)
400 grams bread flour
200 grams 1/2 inch cubed Fontina cheese
1 t. salt (taste your cheese and if it is salty use a little less)
3/4 t. yeast
1 1/3 cup of 55-65 degree cool water
lots of chopped chives --- 1/2 cup
lots of black pepper, at least 1/2 t.
extra flour, cornmeal or oat bran for dusting
It will take at least an hour and maybe two to double and keep an impression when you touch it. Remove it about a half hour before you think it will be ready so you can preheat the oven to 475 degrees.
Half an hour before the end of the last rise, place a clean dry covered dutch oven in to preheat.
Carefully remove the hot pot, carefully remove the cover, and carefully place the dough into the pot.
Cover it again and return to the hot oven. Bake for 1/2 hours.
Remove the cover and bake again for 10 -15 minutes until dark golden brown.
Tom loved it. It's on the make-again list.
Friday, May 10, 2013
Colleen's Chocolate Cream PieHi Barb ---
Here is a link to a chocolate cream pie that I've made a few times the past two weeks. A friend made it for me for my birthday once and Charlotte, William and Buddy just LOVE it.
I do change the crust recipe to use a whole box of Nabisco chocolate wafer cookies with 1 stick of butter but leave the sugar amount the same.
I also use more whipped cream for the topping: 2 cups whipping cream with 1/2 cup powdered sugar plus a teaspoon vanilla, whipped stiff.
It is not very hard to make, but there is considerable chilling time involved, so it is defiinitely a "make ahead" dessert or make in the morning if you want it for dinner.
It is an old-fashioned dessert. But sometimes that is nice. Kind of like whoopie cake. All I know is the kids will fight each other to get the last piece!
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Beef-Broccoli Lo Mein
Monday is often my time to cook as Barbara is usually off painting. This Monday was no exception, except Barbara was at the lake house and I was waiting for David to go play golf. While waiting, though, I thumbed through our very well worn cookbook "The Best of Cooking Light Everyday Favorites", and came across this beef-broccoli lo mein recipe that caught my eye. What made it interesting to me was the fact that it used pasta instead of lo mein noodles. A different kind of twist. The rest of the ingredients were pretty standard, but all sounded good. I actually prepped everything except the pasta prior to playing golf, and then threw them all together when I returned. This made for an easy meal to make.
This dish has all of the taste characteristics of the authentic version of beef with broccoli without the crunch of lo mein noodles or the fattiness of the sauce. Since it came from "Cooking Light" you can bet it is nutritious and low in fat and caloric content. Barbara had seconds, so I know it was good! David stayed for dinner and enjoyed it as well.
Beef-Broccoli Lo Mein
8 ounces of uncooked spaghetti (I used buccatini instead)
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
4 garlic cloves minced
3 cups chopped broccoli florets
1 1/2 cup sliced onions
1 pound flank steak cut across the grain into thin strips
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon chili garlic paste or sauce
Friday, May 3, 2013
Chicken Marbella has many fans, and probably just as many people who don't understand why people like it. It has olives, capers, prunes, lots of garlic and oregano, tangy vinegar and fruity olive oil, white wine, bay leaves, brown sugar.
We are fans! But think it is even better if you add some heat to counteract all of the sweetness -- we use hot cherry peppers or red pepper flakes.
The first time, while it is still hot from the oven, we serve it with grilled asparagus. Then cool it down and freeze it in 4 cup containers we can pull out to make quick additional meals.
Next, we make the leftovers into a pasta dish, using penne and the pan juices, and the meat removed from the bone. It is good either warm or cold.
But, our new favorite version uses Tom's Graduate School Chicken technique: We put basmati rice in the bottom of a casserole with the appropriate amount of chicken stock to cook the rice, add sliced hot cherry peppers, then layer the leftover Chicken Marbella with pan juices on top, cover it and bake it for an hour until the edges of the rice get brown and crispy like paella.
Note: Chicken Marbella must be marinated over night to keep it moist, so plan ahead.
(Silver Palette, page 86)
Serves a lot! Good for a party dish.
4 Chickens, 2.5 pounds each, quartered
1 head of garlic, peeled and finely pureed
1/4 cup dried oregano
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup pitted prunes
1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives
1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice (we used the whole jar)
6 bay leaves
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white wine (be generous)
1/4 Italian parsley, finely chopped
Our addition -- Optional: sliced hot cherry peppers or dried red pepper flakes, to taste
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
With a slotted spoon, transfer chicken, prunes, olives and capers to a serving platter. Moisten with a few spoonfuls of pan juices, and sprinkle generously with parsley. Pour remaining pan juices into a sauce boat and serve along with chicken.
To serve Chicken Marbella cold, cool to room temperature in cooking juices before transferring to a serving platter. If chicken has been covered and refrigerated, allow it to return to room temperature before serving. Spoon some of the reserved juice over chicken.