Linguine with tomato sauce and goat cheese; broccoli; lettuce and carrot – 26 May 2014

Still at Mom’s, but this time I’m cooking my food – after a fashion. I have no garlic, for example, and what herbs I want I have to buy in plastic containers instead of running out to the garden (wrong climate for May herbs, here). I’m trying to cook meatless food for Brother and spiceless food for Mom, which makes for a challenge. This was a passable remake of a favorite recipe, though I’d make some changes next time (which might be next week).

main140526The original is from The Pasta Bible. For this simple remake, hoping Mom might find it a useful addition to her repertoire, I used mostly ingredients she would find convenient. I chopped some onion into a small dice – perhaps 3 Tbsp (she will use less) – and cooked in a few Tbsp olive oil till softened, then tossed in one 14.5 oz can of Hunt’s diced tomatoes with rosemary and oregano, drained (I would not drain next time) and perhaps 2 Tbsp chopped fresh sage leaves, and I think I ground in some pepper. I let this cook while worrying about other parts of dinner, so it probably cooked on moderate heat for 10 minutes. I used 1/2 box (=1/2 lb) San Giorgio Linguine, and cooked per package directions for softer pasta (Mom cooks spaghetti forever, so I at least used the longest of the three recommended cooking times when making food for her) then drained [using the water to heat the bowl) and returned the pasta to the saucepan (with the burner still on, but on its lowest heat). I added the tomato sauce to the pasta and stirred in well, then added 2 oz chevre, that I had broken up into small pieces, and stirred in. I should have stirred while adding so the cheese didn’t clump. My only problem with this recipe overall was that it was too dry, and I expect that simply not removing the liquid from the tomatoes would fix that. Since the pasta water is in the serving bowl (heating it), that could also be used to thin the sauce if necessary at the last minute.

setting140526I cooked broccoli with this – cut up the florets from two good-sized stalks and peeled the stem of one of them, cutting into bite-sized pieces about 1 or 1 1/4″ long and maybe 1/3″ across (in both remaining directions ;)).  I steamed the broccoli over boiling water probably 7 minutes – meant to do 5, but I think it was not quite done – then drained the pan (heated the serving bowl with the water, of course) melted butter in the pan, and returned the broccoli, salted it, and tossed well. Kept warm over lowest heat till serving time, but that was not more than a minute or two.

wine140526We had a baguette with some whole wheat in it, and Mom sliced this and buttered one side, and we broiled the pieces, butter-side-up. She also set out iceberg lettuce and baby carrots, as is her wont, and we all had Safeway’s Lite 1000 Island dressing on these.

Ah – good wine with this. Here in Controlled Liquor Land we have to shop at the county stores. Fortunately, the local one is quite good, though the prices of wines I recognize are shockingly high. This one we’ve gotten there before, and Bro and I really liked it this time. Cahors, a 2012 Malbec by Gouleyant (“C’est notre vin d’annee.”)

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