Friday, April 24, 2009

homemade pasta with morel mushroom sauce

yay! it's morel season! I friend of mine is an avid shroomer, and he gave me a couple handfuls of his find. I haven't been able too cook much lately (hence the tumbleweeds blowing across ironstef...), so I wanted to go all out. well, not ALL out, as it was a weeknight. But I did find this recipe for a simple homemade pasta with mushroom sauce. Homemade pasta...that's pretty special, right? So that's how I spent my thursday night, and it was glorious and uplifting to cook again. The results were good...the pasta was a bit dense...I don't think I cooked it long enough. The sauce was rich and meaty-tasting, despite having no meat.

Homemade pasta with morel sauce

2 cups AP flour
Dash salt
6 Tblsp. water
1.5 Tblsp. Olive Oil
5 large egg yolks
water for boiling (6 quarts)

Olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced thin
1 shallot, sliced thin
3 cloves garlic, minced
large handful fresh morel mushrooms (about 1.5 cups) cleaned and halved
about 2 cups cremini (baby bella) mushrooms, washed, sliced
1 tsp. dried thyme
pinch of fresh grated nutmeg
salt & pepper
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 cups chicken stock
toasted pine nuts and parmesan for serving

combine flour and dash of salt in food processor. combine water, olive oil and egg yolks and stir well with a whisk. with processor running, pour egg mixture in through the chute, processing just until dough forms a ball. turn out onto a lightly floured surface, knead 5 ties. shape into a disc, wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

pat dough into a rectangle approx. 8" x 3", 1 " thick. Divide into 8 equal portions. working with one portion at a time (cover remaining dough to prevent drying), divide dough into 14 equal pieces. Roll ech piece between your palms to form a 2 inch strand. put strands on a well floured pan. repeat with remaining dough.

boil 6 quarts of water. Shake excess flour off pasta and add to boiling water, cooking until done, about 1.5-2 minutes. Drain.

heat oilve oil in large skillet over med. high heat. Add onion, sautee for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. make a clear spot in pan, add garlic and thyme, cook for about a minute, then add salt & pepper. Add cremini and morel mushrooms, reduce heat, cover and cook for about 4 minutes. remove cover, and cook about 2 minutes until liquid almost evaporates. clear a spot in the pan, add tomato paste, cook about a minute, then stir tomato paste in with mushroom mixture. Stir in 1 cup of chicken broth. cook for 8 minutes until very thick. add rest of chicken broth, cook for 4 minutes more until slightly thick. Turn off heat and toss sauce with cooked pasta. serve topped with toasted pine nuts and grated parmesan.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Leftover Ham Recipes

I hope everyone who celebrates Easter had a nice one! Do you have leftover ham? Sick of sandwiches? I was in that predicament a few months ago. Here are 3 recipes that helped me use it up:

Chicken & Ham Enchiladas

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Ham & Walnuts

Ham Stirfry

Thursday, April 09, 2009

garlic lemongrass shrimp with coconut rice

I had some lemongrass. I had shrimp. I googled. Not surprisingly, a Simply Recipes recipe came up. Never fails! Elise's recipes are always a sure thing, so I went with it. I used a bit more lemongrass in mine...I grated some into the marinade. I used more coconut milk, too, because all I could get was a 14 oz. can rather than the 2 5.6 oz. cans the recipe called for. I would totally make this again. It was simple and fast and nice and spicy! I would use whole coconut milk instead of the Lite I used this time, though. I didn't get much coconut flavor. I also forgot how badly Sriracha sauce flows out of the bottle, hence the odd-shaped blobs all over the dish...

Friday, April 03, 2009

still here, don't worry!

I am sorry for the lack of posting this week. I have been doing a bit of cooking, but everything had the added ingredient of FAIL it seems. Even this seemingly simple Bittman recipe didn't work out for me. I tried it a couple times, and both times they were denser than I anticipated, and had a strange bitterness. I don't know if the fact that I found "chick pea and fava bean flour" instead of "garbonzo flour" made a difference? I mean they were edible and not bad at all, just not right, I don't think. So I got nuthin for you.

Fear not, though. I have lots of new cookbooks to inspire me, including one dedicated to fat, one dedicated to terrines, and one about making bread! Also, for my birthday I got a bunch more vintage cookbooks for my collection. So ironstef readers should have plenty to look forward to.

In the meantime, did you all see Jim Gaffigan's new special, "King Baby?" It was hysterical, and mostly about food. Here's a clip: