Happy Friday! Since mid-summer I have been feeling behind on my Cook the Book Fridays cooking. With this post I am officially caught up! (with the exception of the apricot kernel ice cream, which I may or may not get to). Let’s see what delicious things I made over the last couple of weeks:
Buckwheat Polenta with Braised Greens, Sausage, and Poached Eggs
I have always liked polenta, but for some reason I don’t make it very often. This recipe gave me the excuse I needed.
There are a lot of pieces to this recipe: the polenta, the braised greens, the sausages, and the poached egg. I feel like I used every pot in the house to make it!
I made Buckwheat Polenta with Braised Greens, Sausage, and Poached Eggs on a chilly, rainy night, and it was a perfect bowl of hearty comfort. For my appetite, I don’t think it needed the sausage and the egg, but it was a delicious combination of flavors nonetheless.
Herbed Fresh Pasta
I can’t remember the last time I made fresh pasta. It’s been years since I pulled out my Kitchenaid pasta attachment. Freshly made pasta is wonderful, but time consuming to make. Not the type of thing a mother has time to make very often.
I was happy to finally have an excuse to make fresh pasta! I learned several things with this particular recipe: 1) I have never been brave enough to add in any kind of herbs or flavoring to my pasta and this recipe taught me how (I used just parsley); 2) The recipe I have used in the past has no mention of using rice flour or semolina to toss with the freshly cut pasta to keep it from sticking together. Knowing about this is very helpful!; and 3) While the recipe itself didn’t teach me this, I researched and learned how to freeze fresh pasta for later use. I figured if I am going to go to the trouble of making pasta, I should at least get several meals out of it. More about how to freeze later.
I spread the work of making this pasta throughout the day, so it didn’t really feel all that work intensive. I made the dough in the morning, cut it in the afternoon, and cooked it at dinner time.
Wow, so delicious! I served the pasta with Summer Tomato Sauce that I had in the freezer, which was made from garden tomatoes. What a treat in the middle of November!
To freeze fresh pasta: I portioned the pasta into single-serving piles that I tossed with extra semolina flour to prevent sticking. I left the pasta out and uncovered for a few hours to dry it slightly. Then, each portion of pasta went into its own freezer bag, and the smaller bags were put together in a larger freezer bag. Into the freezer it went! When it’s time to cook the pasta, don’t thaw it. Just cook it from frozen. I tried some of my frozen pasta this week and it cooked for the same amount of time as fresh. And it was just as delicious!
This post participates in Cook the Book Fridays, a group cooking our way through David Lebovitz’s wonderful book My Paris Kitchen. You can find today’s recipes on pages 158 and 230.
I wish all of my American readers a very Happy Thanksgiving! Everyone else, have a great weekend!