Friday, April 08, 2005

speedy meal

Tonight it's going to be a super speedy meal--not because I'm pressed for time, but because I'm uncharacteristically not in the mood to spend much time in the kitchen. The warm-ish weather also has me thinking about my future vegetable garden and that means I should probably use up the pesto I made last summer, much of which is still sitting in its little frozen cubes in the freezer (if you've never frozen pesto before, it does OK in the freezer, though it gets a little muddy colored when it is defrosted. I freeze it in ice cube trays and then pop out the solid cubes and put them in ziplock bags.) I also have some "idiot's salad", that is to say, pre-washed over-priced baby greens and some asparagus that should be used. So the menu stands at pasta with asparagus and pesto and salad with whatever accompaniments can be dug out of the fridge (I think there are some beets and feta in there that haven't gone bad yet but will have to give them the sniff test before using...)

Report from last night: the collards with tomatoes were terrific and super easy; I just added 1/2 C canned diced tomatoes (Muir Glenn) and a bit of salt and pepper to a big bunch of collards and cooked them up till tender. Nice to know I can have collards without having to manhandle a smoked pig foot.

And thanks to Ami's recommendation, I took the comfort food up a notch by making a batch of this month's Cook's Illustrated Ultimate Oatmeal Cookies. They were packed with toasted pecans, dried cherries and chocolate chips and were a big hit.


Susan W said...

Mmmm. Aren't the ultimate Oatmeal cookies from Cook's just delicious?

I'm having a birthday party for Jim this weekend... about 12 people coming over and I'm totally freaking out about the food. I've made (I think) a great menu of small finger foods but I'm of course having the pre-day jitters. (did I get everything at the I have time to make it all...etc) Let's see, here's the menu for the party:
black bean cakes w/cilantro sauce
chicken satay
meatballs in chili sauce
roastbeef w/gorgonzola and asparagus wraps
raw veggie platter with homemade dip
pastry shells with brie, apples and walnuts

apple cake
chocolate/peanutbutter trifle
Gosh, I hope this all comes together. Enjoy your evening of homemade pesto - yum!

Kate said...

Oh my GOD Sue, you are an insane whirlwind in the kitchen! I assume with all that food it isn't a surprise party :) The closest I came to something so big was the time I made my goat-cheese and spinach stuffed leg of lamb for about 15 people one New Year's Eve...

Take some pictures of your spread and share them with me--I'd love to see all that good food!

Edward Vielmetti said...

Kate - next time you're googling for collards ideas, look for recipes for "sukuma wiki". It's an African (variously Kenya and nearby) collards or kale dish that takes tomatoes and sometimes meat to make it a stew.

one example is here:

it sounds a lot like what you made, plus or minus an ingredient or two, and you might find some ideas for spices there.