When the weather turns cool, I like to spend an afternoon in the kitchen. And with my big range–yes, we know it is bright blue, we think of it as ‘French blue–that puts out a lot of heat when the oven is on, today seemed like the perfect time to use it. I started with apple cakes that I’ll heat up tomorrow night and serve with ice cream for dessert. For the main course–I’ll serve it tomorrow but it’s best made a day ahead–I made short ribs with dark beer that braised in the oven for 3 hours. (Click here to read the recipe.) And then, with all that empty space in there I tackled the great vegetables I got at TJs today. Quartered gold potatoes tossed with olive oil and salt, wedges of fennel treated the same way, and then a bunch of carrots cooked until brown to add to the short ribs when I heat them up tomorrow. Last to get roasted were some brussel sprouts pulled directly off the stalk from one I bought at TJs. More on my favorite ways to cook those lovely baby cabbages this week. For now, I’m settling into the kitchen with a glass of wine and just enjoy the aroma of beef and beer.
As I wait for the polls to start closing, I’ve whipped up a batch of meatballs that will be served with tomato sauce on penne (rather than spaghetti which would be hard to deal with sitting in front of the TV.) It’s my standard recipe with beef, fresh bread crumbs, eggs, Romano, parsley, basil, garlic, s&p. Two thirds will also get chopped raw onion, while the rest will be without for a diner who doesn’t like onions. Tomato sauce is really simple, just whole tomatoes, garlic cooked until golden in olive oil and a splash of white wine. Letting that cool now, will put it through the food mill later to create a smooth sauce. I usually fry the meatballs, but with two pounds of meat I’m going to try baking at high temp and see how it goes. Will report back later. I’m looking forward to a great evening.
Back in August I posted a recipe for Spaghetti with Cherry Tomatoes and More, but I didn’t have any pictures of it. So I’m correcting that with today’s post. Yes, we had that same dish again and to be honest I hope we continue to have it at least once a week for the indefinite future. Of course that all depends on whether TJs continues to carry the heirloom cherry tomatoes that are the heart of the dish–and the one exception I am happy to make when it comes to buying tomatoes out of season. They’re not what I’d choose for a salad, but in this recipe they bring both a freshness and depth that totally makes the dish.
This is one of my husband’s creations and as you can see he gets the ingredients–(from left to right) tomatoes, proscuitto, oil-cured olives, parsley, garlic–all prepped before before he even pulls out the saute pan. Try this dish when you have a chance, I’m pretty sure you will love it.