Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Pan-Fried Gnocchi with Sage

Mmmmm....squashy! Not the ones you've had too much of all Summer...these are their hardier bros. Yep, Winter squash! I've had a couple of  these squash hogging up my hanging produce basket for over a week, it just wasn't the right time yet. But when the wind picked up the other day, and it was perfectly chilly outside, I knew it was time to turn the oven on. I roasted an acorn squash (I'm testing a recipe using these, not successful the first go round) and the butternut squash used in the recipe. I just rinsed them, sliced them in half, scooped out the guts, then drizzled them with olive oil, sprinkled them with salt and pepper, cut side down on a lined cookie sheet, and threw them into a preheated 425F oven. I tend to just check on them after about 20mn or so, and let them go a bit longer if you can't easily pierce it with a fork. The squash gets soft without losing all it's texture and it gets delicious carmelized bits. Roasting the squash is the hard part, now it's smooth sailing. I like to roast my squash a couple days ahead (or a couple at a time) to make it easier for weekday meals.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The elusive macaron.

No, I don't mean macaroon, the sweet haystacks full of coconutty love, though I adore those. Nor do I mean the other macaron, Parisian style sandwich cookies, as beautiful as they are tasty. Nope, worrying about whether or not my cookies have "feet" is just something I'm not prepared for. I'm talking about the OTHER macaron, it's almondy, chewy and not too sweet. They come from a village in France, St. Emillion, where they are famous for these little guys and their wine....

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Soup weather

It's hitting that point in Portland where it's getting dark earlier, there's more of a chill in the air, and you wanna stay in bed and snuggle just a little bit longer in the morning. To me, this means soup time. A nice comforting bowl of soup can warm me up quicker than our heater can, and costs less too! I was reading this post and I knew I just had to make it. With some revisions of course! I had some cauliflower to use up, so I decided to roast it, and ladle the soup over the top instead of using the crusty bread (although it looks amazing, I just didn't have any).

I took Heidi's adaptation of Richard Olney's recipe and varied it a little, because I just can't seem to make a recipe exactly as it's written. It's a real problem of mine.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Carnitas heaven...

(click the above photo at your own risk. You might be wiping drool off your keyboard though)
Ok, so I know it might be a bit weird to post a pork dish right after a vegetarian sausage recipe. It's how I roll. We don't eat much meat, and I generally prefer "faux meats" to the real thing. In the case of carnitas however, there's no substitute. I had this idea in my head that hours of slaving away were involved when making carnitas. This recipe completely blew me away! It's basically 2 hours of inactive cooking time (then maybe 20-30mn where you actually need to pay attention), and minimal ingredients!
I saw it on Homesick Texan, and it's DE-LI-CIOUS! I also wanted to mention that this recipe isn't particularly "south of the border". So, if you wanted to forego the tortillas, and just serve it with the rice you have on hand, you've got my permission. Or, you could serve it lettuce wrap style, with some shredded carrots, etc. It's really flavorful, so it doesn't really need anything actually. The husband and I ate the leftovers straight outta the fridge, with our fingers. Yeah, we're nothing but class around here.

You can adjust this to whatever size piece of pork you can get your hands on, but you're gonna want to make extra. Trust me. 

Sunday, September 27, 2009

It's veggie sausage o'clock.

Yep, it's that time folks. Can you smell it? It's good for breakfast, lunch, or dinner (shape it into larger links and throw it on the grill pan, or add it to pasta sauce or lasagna) depending on how you season it, unless you're like me and will eat a breakfast sandwich any chance you get. It's got minimal ingredients (unlike that tasty Morningstar stuff- but I can't even get through the ingredients list), and it wasn't made by some crazy machine, who knows where, and touched by who knows who. I have tweaked this recipe a ton, using many recipes I found on the web as starting points, because none of them came out exactly as I wanted them to. I wanted sausagey flavor, without the piggy creepy bits. Yeah, you know the ones. Not to mention I got a bit tired of paying $4-5 for 8 little pucks. So, here it is...the recipe of the veggie sausage gods. Actually, looking at the ingredients, unless there's some crazy rule about nutritional yeast or something not being vegan, these are vegan! Don't run in shame. Make them, love them, impress your friends. PLUS, it contains a secret ingredient, and we all know how much everyone loves those. Shhhh...