Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Vegetarian Pasta Fra Diavolo, Green Tomato Chutney, Inspiration and your Last Chance at the Giveaway!

Guess what?  I had my final classes of Fall 2010 today.  It feels pretty good to be done, this semester in particular since I've had some great students.
I'm working on a new logo and packaging for Rosie's Best, and things have been chugging along.  You now have until 1 PM CST on Thursday, December 9th. to enter my big giveaway below.
Speaking of a giveaway, one of the entrants and commenters on that post is my friend Caitlin, who runs a blog at So Sous Me.  She earned her extra entry by posting about the giveaway on her blog.  Cait pegged a problem with this blog lately when she said:
"there are some older posts on there with really good recipes."
My head hung after I read this sentence, because it's TRUE!
So I'm going to make an effort to post more recipes, and to work to make this blog more user friendly.  Would you use print versions of the recipes if I made them?  I will also try to recategorize posts so it's easier to find what you want or explore.
This post has two whole recipes in it, so read on!
First I'd like to share this quick pasta recipe I threw together.  It is a riff on a fra diavolo sauce, which is normally made with shrimp. I threw this together with ingredients we almost always have on hand: beans, home canned tomatoes, whole wheat pasta, and local eggs.  We also used red wine instead of white.
Vegetarian Pasta Fra Diavolo
Serves two
Boil enough pasta for two the way you like it in well-salted water.
Meanwhile, in a sauce pan over medium high heat, warm up
2 tbsp. oil of your choice
when it's hot, add
1 diced onion
any vegetables you have on hand.  We used
5 chopped carrots
cook until the onion softens and becomes translucent.  then add
2-5 cloves thinly sliced garlic
cook until you smell the garlic, maybe one minute. don't let it brown!  deglaze with
1/3 c. red wine
then, add
1 quart (4 cups) of tomatoes, whatever you have.  Ours are whole and we break them up in the sauce.
2 cups beans, preferably dried.  I used garbanzo.
the diavolo in this recipe comes from chili flakes.  We used
2 tbsp. dried chili flakes
Cook this down until everything tastes right and the pasta is done, around 10 minutes.
While it's cooking away, fry up an egg.   (Here's how I do it.)
Drain the pasta.  While it's cooling, I like to throw a crushed garlic clove into the hot noodles.  We eat a ton of garlic.
Pile some of that sauce on the pasta
Top with the fried egg, another sprinkling of dried chili flakes, and a little parm if you've got it.
High protein, full of veggies, and easy to make vegan by removing the egg.  It also reheats well, so it's easy to take for lunch.
Believe it or not, we still had some green tomatoes hanging around a few weeks ago, so I made some green tomato chutney to use them up.  I tried to make this recipe lower in sugar by reducing it by half from most recipes I saw, but it still tasted pretty sweet.  If you like it on the sour side, you can use less sugar.  (Note: this is for a chutney that must be refrigerated.  If you want to can your chutney, you'll have to use more sugar.)  You can easily halve this recipe.
Green Tomato Chutney
Start with
5 lbs.  green tomatoes, chopped
2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
1 c. golden raisins
3/4 c. raw sugar
2 c. apple cider vinegar (We use Bragg's.)
a 2 in. piece of fresh ginger, grated or diced
1 tsp. all spice
1 tsp. fresh nutmeg, freshly grated
salt and pepper
Put it all in a dutch oven.
Simmer it all for around 30 minutes, covered.  This is about halfway through.  Let it cool, and then use it on everything from meats to bread with cheese.  It gives a sweet and sour punch, and the tomato flavor makes it totally different than any other chutney I've ever had.DSC09247.JPG
Now I get to tell you about the things that have been inspiring me lately.
The winter sky:
These women:  (If you wonder where my entrepreneurial sprit comes from, you've found your answer.)
This place, where I always feel warm and welcome:
These two, who are pretty darn cute.
And especially this woman.  Diana is still in the running for Project Food Blog, and you can vote for her here.  She has impressed me throughout this competition, and we had a fantastic time at the cafe talking about real food.
If you have the time and the inclination, enter my giveaway for some granola, crackers, AND cookies!
Otherwise, tell me, what's inspiring you these days?  What are you cooking?
Until next time, stay warm!


Tracy P. said...

Having a link to a printable pdf for your recipes I think would be awesome - I think it has the potential to be a lot of work for you though! I have in the past just cut and pasted (and then usually had to delete pictures to make it all fit on one page) when I've made hard copies of your recipes, but having something in a pretty format where your name and logo or something were on it would be really nice.

Caitlin said...

I love the recipe! And I didn't intend to make you feel bad. Your blog is the bomb dot com.

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