For dinner last night, we made Mark Bittman’s pasta with gorgonzola, arugula, and cherry tomatoes. The recipe was really more of a starting off point, though, since I deviated right from the get-go by sauteeing some sweet onions. We used Barilla whole grain penne in place of the farfalle, and grape tomatoes instead of cherry tomatoes. I didn’t take any pictures of the meal itself, but this is the cheese that we used – Neal’s Yard Dairy Colston Bassett Stilton.
After reading some of the comments on the blog entry, I was a little worried. My concerns were unfounded. The blue cheese mellowed out significantly during cooking, but the arugula maintained its peppery bite. Although the grape tomatoes weren’t all that sweet on their own, they complemented the dish nicely.
My first haggis was of the canned variety. It was good, but it didn’t feel authentic. Let’s compare:
My first haggis looked like this prior to cooking.
My second haggis looked like this prior to cooking.
A bit different, yes? But both the canned variety and the traditional variety are basically a lamb sausage. You guys are smart enough to go to Wikipedia and look it up yourselves, but in case you’re lazy, here’s the Wikipedia entry on haggis. My first haggis was baked in ramekins in the oven. The preparation of the second was a bit different. We cooked it in its casing rather than cooking its contents separately. After simmering in water for 45 minutes, the haggis looked like a balloon… if balloons were filled with meat.
After removing the haggis from its casing, this is what it looked like. It’s very dense, much more dense than the canned haggis, and much less salty. The lamb:oat ratio was quite a bit higher.
The traditional side dish is mashed turnips and potatoes, but we roasted our neeps and tatties instead of mashing them.
The verdict? I preferred the consistency of the Savenor’s haggis, but it was underspiced. If – no, WHEN – I make haggis I will add more salt and pepper, as well as rosemary and garlic.
Saturday night was a busy night in the kitchen…
We started with arugula salad with caramelized onions and fontina cheese. The arugula was lightly dressed with Ken’s Sweet Vidalia Onion dressing.
There are so many recipes for cider glazed root vegetables – this has become my go-to for cooking vegetables when I don’t have anything else in mind. We had cider glazed carrots with ginger and cider glazed brussels sprouts with apples (which I tested out in November).
And the main event: chicken florentine from America’s Test Kitchen’s Light and Healthy 2010. Pan seared chicken and spinach in a creamy lemon sauce. We agreed that the lemon sauce would have been perfect for chicken piccata. It was quite tangy and deceptively rich (the recipe calls for very little cream – this is “light and healthy” after all!)
No, I haven’t posted in a while. I had grand plans to write a big entry about my trip to Taiwan. But as you can see that didn’t happen.
In the meantime, here’s a bright spot on a dreary day… sunshiny lemon curd.
And the final product!