Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Eureka, a Goat Cheese Salad Len likes!

One of the things Len has never liked is goat cheese and so I even though I love it, I only make dishes that include it when I make something to take somewhere. I found a salad on-line at "the kitchn" and made it to take to a potluck. I found the original recipe too bland even for my timid taste buds and revamped it. To my amazement, when I served Len the leftovers, he asked me to write down what I had done so I could recreate it.

Meyer Lemon Grain Salad with Asparagus and Chevre
4 ounces uncooked farro
4 ounces uncooked pearl (Israeli) couscous
1 lb asparagus
olive oil
1 cup toasted sliced almonds
3 ounces soft chevre, crumbled
2 Meyer lemons, zested and juiced
1 lg shallot, finely diced
1 tblsps olive oil
1 tblsp walnut oil
salt and pepper
chopped Italian parsley
Cook farro and couscous according to directions and allow to cool. Coat the asparagus with olive oil, salt it, and roast it. Slice the asparagus into bite sized pieces. Mix all the ingredients and add salt and pepper to taste.
This salad keeps well in the fridge and improves the next day. We had it with leftover chicken breasts and they were great together. The chicken breasts were dusted with salt, herbes de Provence, and chopped garlic, then drizzled with Meyer lemon juice. They were then sautéd in olive oil.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Cacio e Pepe

This is out of the February 2010 Cook's Illustrated. It's a good quick weekday pasta for which boiling the water is the biggest time suck. I've made it a couple times now and think it may be something of a replacement for my famous ham and cream pasta which often ends up too hot for Eeva's taste. I fudge a lot of the stuff in the recipe (don't measure or use a Dutch oven) and it turns out just fine.

6 ounces Pecorino Romano, 4 ounces finely grated (about two cups) and 2 ounces coarsely grated (about 1 cup)
1 lb spaghetti
2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons finely ground pepper

1. Place finely grated Pecorino in medium bowl. Set colander in large bowl.

2. Bring 2 quarts water to boil in large Dutch oven. Add pasta and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt;cook, stirring frequently. Drain pasta and reserve cooking water. Return pasta to bowl.

3. Slowly whisk 1 cup reserved water into finely grated Pecorino until smooth. Whisk in cream, oil, and black pepper. Pour mixture over pasta, toss to coat. Let rest, adding up to 1/2 cup more water to adjust consistency as needed. Serve passing coarsely grated cheese separately.