Monday, September 28, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
The Finished Product
Given that ratatouille is basically a vegetable stew, I decided that allowed for a certain amount of license in choosing ingredients. We bought a box of slightly damaged Roma tomatoes at our favorite farmers market on Sunday…13 ½ pounds for $8! When I came out into the kitchen wondering what Peter was up to when he didn’t turn up in the sunroom for TV and newspapers first thing yesterday morning, it was to discover him up to his elbows in tomatoes, blanching, peeling, seeding.
I pitched in to help and in about an hour we had conquered them. He spent the rest of the morning making both a basic tomato sauce and a marinara – huge quantities of each. I co-opted a pound of the tomatoes for the ratatouille. The pattypans came from our garden, as did the thyme and oregano.
This recipe takes some time both for prep and cooking in stages. Be patient, it’s worth it.
2 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
2 large carrots, cut in 1/2” rounds
2 1 lb. eggplants, diced to ½”
½ cup (or more as needed) chicken stock
1 green bell pepper, ½” dice
4 palm-sized pattypan squash, ½” dice
2 Anaheim chiles, peeled and seeded and chopped
1 lb. Roma tomatoes, peeled and seeded and chopped
2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
2 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
salt and pepper to taste
red pepper flakes to taste
Heat the olive oil in a large non-reactive pot.
Add eggplant and chicken stock and cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add tomatoes, stir, and bring to simmer.
Add chiles, pattypan and bell pepper.
Add thyme, oregano, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
Bring to a simmer, stirring to mix thoroughly. Simmer 10 minutes and check for doneness of pattypan. You don’t want it flabby or squishy – rather a bit al dente.
Taste for seasonings and adjust as necessary.
The finished product, again:
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Today I got around to making rellenos again and, with a camera for documention, and a different set of ingredients to play with, I ended up with a similar but different dish, one that was spectacularly flavorful.
½ cup shredded or grated cheese (any kind that melts well)
While the peppers are roasting, cook the brats by placing them in a skillet and adding ¼ cup water. Cover the pan and let the brats steam for 5 minutes. Remove the cover, add a little bit of olive oil and continue cooking the brats, turning occasionally for another 8 minutes. Remove the brats from the pan and allow to cool to room temp. Cut them into a fine dice and set aside.
In the same skillet, heat 1 tbsp olive or vegetable oil. Add the onion and jalapeno and sauté for 3 minutes. Add the green tomatoes and continue cooking for 5-6 minutes. Add the enchilada sauce and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl, combine the corn kernels, brats, cheeses, 1/3 of the diced onion and ½ of the jalapeno, salt and pepper to taste. Toss well to combine.
Carefully stuff the poblanos with this mixture and place them in a glass casserole just large enough to hold them in one layer. Set aside or refrigerate until later.
When the time comes to heat this up for dinner, preheat the oven to 350°. Spoon the sauce over the peppers, but not right on top of the opening where you put the stuffing. Scatter a good amount of shredded cheese over the top, this time covering the slits in the peppers.
Bake for 30 minutes until the cheese is melted and starting to brown and the whole mess is bubbling. Allow to stand for 5 minutes and then serve garnished with cilantro and yogurt (or sour cream if that’s what you have).
I found 4 or 5 recipes via Google that I more or less cherry picked from to make this lovely pate with just a few ingredients and with the flavors I knew I would most like.
As it happens, we have had these little ramekins for years. I do not remember ever having used them, but Peter tells me I have, though quite some years ago. You can put the trout in any glass container.
12 oz. trout filets
3 tbsp butter
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp scallion, chopped
1 tbsp parsley, chopped
2 scallions, white and green parts, finely chopped
juice of ½ lemon
bacon fat or additional butter
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Place the trout on a small baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and dot with 1 tbsp of the butter. Bake for 10-12 minutes until opaque throughout. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
Remove the skin from the trout and put it in a food processor with all remaining ingredients. Process until smooth.
Taste and add any of the seasonings until it suits to your taste. Put in ramekins or a glass bowl. Top with bacon fat or melted butter, just enough to cover the surface of the pate. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.
Serve on toast points garnished with cucumber (as in the picture) if you wish.
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