Category: Veggies

Roasted Sausage, Beans, and Greens

After talking about how much I’ve been lusting after Cheese Club at Cyril’s, I went! They had to reschedule December’s pick-up party because of the weather, so I could make it happen. It was better than I could have imagined. I picked up a block of Rocket’s Robiola from Boxcarr handmade cheese, tasted four others [two of which were also Boxcarr’s], and had a pairing with Clay Pigeon’s 2013 pinot noir and a beer from Occidental that I can’t remember now. A couple of the bottles of pinot came home too. They were having a 25% off sale. Can you blame us?

Simplicity has been the name of the game since the weather has been crap, we’ve been busy, or there have been holiday leftovers in the fridge. Recipes like this are what I want. Protein. Greens. Fiber. Put in a pan. Roast. Eat. Cheese not optional. This works with pretty much any combination.

Inspiration: Food52

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch Swiss chard
  • 1 16oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1lb sausage [about four], cut in half lengthwise and then sliced
  • Salt and pepper
  • Shredded parmesan, optional

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Tear the Swiss chard leaves into bite size pieces. You can not use the stems if you want, but I chopped them up and used them.

In a large baking dish or ovenproof skillet, combine the chard and beans. Season with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, mustard, paprika, and olive juice. Drizzle over chard and beans. Mix thoroughly with your hands. Nestle the sausage pieces into the greens.

Nestle the sausage pieces into the greens. Roast for 20-25 minutes. The chard should be tender and the edges crispy. If your sausage isn’t precooked, it should no longer be pink.

Top with shredded parmesan before serving.

Cacio e Pepe Pasta with Roasted Vegetables

I’m really, really falling for Cyril’s @ Clay Pigeon Winery lately. They have three of my favorite things — wine, cheese, and charcuterie. They have a lovely space. They have a cheese club that I haven’t brought myself to participate in but follow it with rapt attention. They hosted an urban winery event recently with more of my three favorite things. Fourteen wineries were in attendance. Nonperishables for charity were contributed. It was a great time. Wineries now on my radar that weren’t before — Fausse Piste and Jasper Sisco.

Cacio e Pepe. Cheese and pepper. Two of my favorite things. What don’t they make better? I like to eat vegetables, but I definitely don’t eat as many as I should. I could blame it on a variety of reasons, but I’ll just own it. I did eat a jar of canned beets standing over the sink the other day. That’s the kind of classy vegetable lover I am.

The article from Bon Appetit that spawned this whole thing said a lot of what I feel. It spoke to me. Sometimes I want a certain level of vegetable matter in my dish because a salad just feels silly. Roasting a ton of vegetables, covering them in a buttery cheese sauce and a ton of pepper really makes all of this worthwhile. The pasta is just a filler. I could have easily doubled the vegetables and eaten them as is. I went with sweet potato to finally kill that craving from months ago and some Brussels because it’s the season. The world is your oyster. Just make sure they’re evenly sized pieces so you can let them roast together.

Inspiration: Bon Appetit

Ingredients

  • 1 large sweet potato, cubed
  • 5-7 Brussels sprouts — halved or quartered to get them the same size as the sweet potato
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2lb pasta of choice
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • Pecorino cheese

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line a pan with parchment or a Silpat. In a large bowl, toss the sweet potato cubes and brussels sprouts with the olive oil and salt and pepper. Spread the vegetables on the pan in an even layer. Roast them for about 45 minutes or until soft and browning on the edges.

Cook your pasta according to package directions. Before draining, reserve a cup of pasta water.

In a large skillet, melt the butter and add a ton of black pepper. Add a ladleful of the pasta water and bring the mixture to a boil. Toss the cooked pasta in the mixture. Make sure it’s well coated before adding the vegetables. Grate a ton of Pecorino cheese over everything. It should melt into the hot ingredients and turn glossy. Taste for more salt, pepper, and cheese.

Beans and Greens with Sardines

It’s really hard to get a decent photo of an egg salad sandwich, so there isn’t one for you. If you have any interest in the salad of eggs like I am, you should make this one. It was so good. I promise you can’t really taste the anchovies other than a hint of saltiness. I toasted sourdough and topped it with some mixed greens.

The thought of sardines may make some your nose crinkle, too. In that case, you have my blessing to add whatever else sounds good here. Anything would be good here. Nothing would be good here. I’d gladly eat collards and white beans most days [which is pretty much all I bought at the store tonight]. It’s a comforting kind of wonderful. Sardines added a nice little saltiness and protein that you wouldn’t have otherwise. You probably see all of those red flecks of crushed red pepper. You’re not surprised anymore, are you? Add more or less. I added even more after I took the photo.

I’ve been toying with making beans from scratch, but I’m afraid. Afraid I’ll never want to eat them out of the can anymore, and I never plan ahead to soak beans overnight.

beans-greens-sardines

Inspiration: Epicurious

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 large bunch of collard greens, thick stems removed, and chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 15oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 4.2oz tin of sardines in olive oil [I used Matiz Gallego]

Preparation

Heat four tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and crushed pepper. Stir often until the garlic starts to turn colors. Add greens by the handful so it’ll all fit into the pan. Toss to cover in the oil. Add the broth, cover, and simmer until the greens are tender. This should take about 5-7 minutes. Add the beans and simmer uncovered until the beans are warmed and the liquid is mostly gone. Stir in the vinegar. Add salt and pepper.

Chop the sardines into small pieces and sprinkle over the top of the greens.

Thai Sausage with Bok Choy

I’ve toyed with the idea of getting a steamer basket, but it’s just one more thing to add to the already cramped kitchen cabinets. I have been known to cheat the system and use the microwave, a bowl, a little bit of water, and a plate over the top. That seems to work ok. This time, I used a metal strainer in the pot of water. It meant the lid couldn’t be on that great, but it seemed to work. It definitely requires batches because the strainer isn’t that big, but it worked. It was far superior to the microwave. I’ve used it a couple of times now. I’m still toying with a steamer basket just so I can do more in one batch.

This whole thing was a vehicle to try the new Thai sausage, Sai Ua, from Pok Pok’s Andy Ricker and Olympia Provisions. It was just as good as I imagined it would be. Ricker doesn’t half-ass anything, and there hasn’t been an Olympia Provisions meat that I didn’t like. I sliced it into coins and sauteed it in a wok. The fragrance alone is enough to transport you back to Thailand.

[An Asian food aside: I just finished up Rice, Noodle Fish: Deep Travels Through Japan’s Food Culture. Officially craving Japanese food full force.]

This NY Times recipe was the base for these greens. I’ve used it a couple of times now. The first time in the wok and the second time in a large saute pan. The wok was superior, but it can be done either way. I don’t seem to have rice wine, only vinegar, so I went the dry sherry route instead. Take the time to get some broth together instead of water. I tried the water method the second time, but realized it lacks so much more flavor that way.

thai-sausage-and-bok-choy

Inspriation: NY Times

Ingredients

  • Two sausage, any variety will do, sliced into coins
  • 1lb of sturdy greens, any variety [bok choy for me]
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minuced ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • salt to taste
  • sesame seeds, for garnish

Preparation

Trim the bottoms off the bok choy. Cut the stalks in half, if they’re large, and cut into 2″ pieces. Bring an inch of water to boil in the bottom of a pot, place a large strainer inside just above the water, add the greens and cover with a ltd. Steam for a minute before removing and squeezing out the excess water. Feel free to use any steaming method of choice if you have one you’re more comfortable with.

In a small bowl, mix together the broth, sherry, soy sauce, and cornstarch. Keep it it near the wok, or large saute pan, along with the rest of the ingredients.

Heat the wok on high heat. Add the oil. Add the sausage and sear on all sides. It’ll release a bit of oil to the existing oil. When they’re browned, remove to a paper towel lined plate. Add the garlic and ginger. Stir for about 10-15 seconds. Add the bok choy. Sprinkle iwth salt and sugar. Stir for 30 seconds. Add the cornstarch mixture and stir for another minute. Fold the sausage into the greens. Remove from heat and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Udon Noodles with Spring Vegetables

Vegetables! Give me spring vegetables.

It can’t be pizza all the time around here. But I wouldn’t complain if it was.  

This came from a fierce craving of something fresh, green, and crisp. It’s rather coincidence that sugar snap peas are all the rage right now. Thanks Spring. I had a handful or two [probably two, lets be real] of dried udon noodles left over in the pantry, so noodles! I spent a crazy amount of time julienning again because it’s turning into a soothing ritual. Who am I? Meditating is all the rage, right?

If I’m honest, I really just wanted the vegetables [of which I ate a ton while cutting them up] and this sauce. The udon noodles just kept me from gnawing my arm off within an hour after eating. I love any excuse to use toasted sesame oil. It’s such a specific, slight overpowering flavor that it takes time to find those recipes that it would be good in. Rice vinegar, soy sauce, peanut butter, garlic, and ginger round out the rest of the flavors. It’s very bright and tangy. It feels almost as crisp as the vegetables. I added red chile flakes and a bunch of the seaweed gomasio, which is sesame seeds, salt, and seaweed. I had to immediately put half of this in a to-go container so I could eat some for work the next day, otherwise I’m sure I’d have eaten all of it in one sitting.

Spring Udon Noodles

Inspiration: Sprouted Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 6oz dried udon noodles, cooked to package directions and rinsed/drained under cool water
  • 1 large cucumber, julienned
  • 2 handfuls of sugar snap peas, halved
  • Green onion, red chile flakes, sesame seeds for garnish

Preparation

In a small bowl or in a jar with a lid, add the vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, peanut butter, garlic, and ginger. Whisk or shake together.

In a large bowl, add the vegetables and the dressing. Toss everything together before adding the noodles. Serve and top with your garnishes.