Teaching a class tonight.... and getting paid! It's gigs like this that allow me to do HPCP. I can make as much as I usually make in several days, in about four hours. I'll post pictures as soon as I can, but I wanted to get the recipes on here so all of my faeries could keep up with what I'm doing. Love you!
1 1/2 pounds eggplant (1 large), roasted in the skin (see directions below)
1 TB olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, from the tender inner stalks, diced
3 large garlic cloves, minced
2 red bell peppers, diced
1 TB chopped rosemary and thyme
1 bunch parsley, chopped
Salt to taste
1 14-ounce can petite diced tomatoes (in puree)
3 heaped tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped pitted green olives
2 tablespoons sugar, plus a pinch
3 tablespoons red or white wine vinegar, or sherry vinegar (more to taste)
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1. Roast the eggplant, then allow to cool. Chop coarsely.
2. Heat one tablespoon of the oil over medium heat in a large, heavy nonstick skillet, then add the onion and celery. Stir until the onion softens, about five minutes, and add the garlic and herbs. Cook together for a minute, until the garlic begins to smell fragrant, and add the peppers and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Stir until just tender, about eight minutes. Add the eggplant, and stir together for another five minutes, until the vegetables are tender. The eggplant will fall apart, which is fine. Season to taste.
3. Add the tomatoes to the pan with about 1/2 teaspoon salt and a pinch of sugar. Cook, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan often, for five to 10 minutes, until the tomatoes have cooked down somewhat and smell fragrant. Add the capers, olives, remaining sugar and vinegar. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring often, for 20 to 30 minutes, until the vegetables are thoroughly tender and the mixture is quite thick, sweet and fragrant. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and remove from the heat. If you have the self control, allow to cool to room temperature. If possible, cover and chill overnight. Serve at room temperature.
To roast an eggplant – halve it longways, leaving the skin on. Score the flesh with a sharp paring knife in a diamond pattern almost all the way down to the skin, drizzle well with a good olive oil, season well with salt and pepper, put in a lightly sprayed roasting dish and bake at 350° until it is deeply browned and softened.
Herb Crusted Roasted Pork Loin with Mustard Sauce
chopped herbs of your choice – we will be using what I call the Simon and Garfunkel Mix (if you need this explained, have I got an album for you to listen to)
a couple of garlic cloves
salt and pepper
3# pork loin
good coarse grain mustard
salt and pepper
Combine the herbs, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor, making a paste. Add a little panko until its a moist crumble. Season the loin well with salt and pepper, and sear all over in a heavy pan. Remove to rest a bit, then cover completely with crust mix. Place in a roasting pan and roast in a 375° oven for about an hour, until it registers 160° on a thermometer. Remove from the oven, and let it rest at least 15 minutes before slicing and serving.
Put the roasting pan over medium high heat on the stove after removing all of the extra fat. Add the butter and shallots, and scrape up any browned yummy bits on the bottom of the pan. Add a good amount of wine and a touch of the mustard, and cook until it begins to thicken. Adjust seasoning and serve with the pork loin.
Roasted Fennel and Pear Salad
2 fennel bulbs
4 d'anjou pears
salt and pepper
1 shallot, minced
Cut the tops off of the fennel and reserve the fronds for dressing and garnish. Cut the bulbs into thin wedges. Core the pears and cut into thin wedges. Toss both with a little olive oil, a little chopped thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the same oven with the pork until they are browned and tender. Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature. In a small mixing bowl, add some sherry vinegar with a minced shallot, chopped thyme, salt and pepper, and some of the fennel fronds minced up. Mix in some olive oil and make a nice vinaigrette. Toss this with the baby arugula, and divide on to plates. Top with the roasted fennel and pear, and serve.
Potato and Parsnip Rosti
3 large russet potatoes, peeled
4-5 parsnips, peeled
1 sweet onion, minced
1 TB chopped herbs (Simon and Garfunkel is awesome)
salt and pepper
olive oil for frying
Grate potato and parsnip together, and place in a strainer over a bowl to collect the starch. Mix everything together, season well with salt and pepper. Drain the liquid from the draining bowl, being careful not to lose the starch in the bottom. Mix that in with the other stuff. Heat a heavy saute pan over medium low heat. Add some olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan and get it heated up. Add enough of the rosti mix to make a nice layer in the bottom. Press it down and let it cook until the bottom is browned nicely. Slide it on to a plate, put the pan over the top and flip it back in. Cook the other side until its browned. Remove to a pan and keep warm in the oven while you do a second one (if you have enough of the mix). Cut into wedges to serve.
A couple of notes: Use the grating disk on a food processor to make this lightning fast. If you don't have one (I don't either, so don't feel bad), a box grater works perfectly. You want the strands of potato and parsnip so they can get crispy and yummy.
Sweet onions are my choice, but if you like that bite, use whatever onions makes you happy.
If you want to make it a little fluffy, add a beaten egg. You will have to cook it a little longer to make sure it's set.
If you will be making these for a dinner party, you can grate everything ahead to make it easier. Soak the potato and parsnip in enough water to just cover until you're ready to cook the rosti. Drain well, but the odds of you having any starch left over is going to be slim. You may need to add a little potato starch back in. Or, cook the rosti ahead and reheat in the oven while you're roasting your pork.
You can make these in one big pancake and cut into wedges, or make littler like latkes for ease in serving. (They are pretty much the same thing.)
Lemon and Rosemary Infused Buttermilk Pannacotta with Blackberry Cabernet Compote
Pannacotta: makes 12 - 4 oz ramekins, or one big mold.
1 ½ tsp unflavored gelatin
1 ½ TB water
¾ c heavy cream
1/3 c sugar
2 stems rosemary
zest of 2 lemons
1 tsp good vanilla (or ½ vanilla bean, split and scraped)
1 ½ c buttermilk
a few grains of sea salt
Put water in a small bowl, and sprinkle gelatin over the top. Let it set. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, combine cream, sugar, rosemary, lemon and vanilla bean. Bring to a simmer and keep it there for a few minutes. Remove from heat and let the flavorings steep until it reaches room temperature. Add the buttermilk and whisk well, making sure everything is well combined (if you are using vanilla extract, add it now), and pour into serving dishes. Chill for about 4 hours before serving. Serve in the ramekin topped with a little of the blackberries, or unmold and surround it with the compote. If you want to get really fancy, top with a piece of rosemary and a little finely chopped candied lemon peel.
I recommend using only ceramic, glass or plastic to mold this. Any rust spots in metal molds can react to the acids in the buttermilk and make black spots.
Blackberry Cabernet Compote:
¼ c water
½ c cabernet (see note)
2 TB sugar
juice and zest of 2 lemons
pinch of salt
1# blackberries, fresh or frozen, divided
Put water, cabernet, sugar, zest and juice, and about 1/4# of the blackberries in a heavy bottomed, non-reactive sauce pan. Bring to a simmer and reduce by half, about 10 minutes, until it's thick and syrupy. If it seems to have gotten too thick, add a little water. Add the rest of the blackberries, stir well to combine, cook briefly just to bring everything up to temperature, then pour into a serving dish. I would always serve this at least room temperature if not a little warm.
Note: if you don't use alcohol in your cooking, you can use a good all fruit juice of some sort with excellent results. Choose something that is flavorful, like blueberry, acai or cranberry, but make sure it's all juice, not colored sugar water. Treat it just the same as the cabernet.