Spaghetti with a creamy gorgonzola sauce; kale – 17 January 2018

We have about 1 1/2 cups of heavy (whipping) cream left after apparently overbuying for Es unbirthday dinner on the 14th. R&E took half of about 3 cups and we have the rest. So, what to do with it? Came up with a lot of things that use cream – fettucine with mushrooms and pea pods, poblano “quiche” and porcini “quiche,” penne with nasturtiums, M’s tomato soup (we have about 2 cups frozen, waiting for the cream finish), salmon in tarragon cream sauce, cream of mushroom soup, and a pancetta/mushroom cream sauce for pasta. AND, D found some recipes – rather one with some variants – in The Pasta Bible (Teubner), and he wanted to try those, so we are trying them. They both are based on stock and cream, plus an egg yolk, one with added herbs (tomorrow) and the other with gorgonzola or another blue (tonight). We had 2.1 oz (I weighed it) sweet gorgonzola pretty much none the worse for wear after sitting, well wrapped in paper (no air space) in the fridge for several weeks. I scraped the slightly-brownish bits on the surface, but it really was fine. D cooked this and I really didn’t watch, but it was straightforward.

[OK, let’s go to The Pasta Bible and record this recipe: Melt 2 Tbsp butter over med heat, sprinkle in 3 Tbsp flour, cook gently, stirring, 1-2 minutes, without browning. Add 2 cups chicken [or beef] stock – we used defrosted Swanson’s – whisking constantly. Season with 1/2 tsp salt, freshly ground white pepper, and a pinch of ground nutmeg. Simmer 20 minutes, whisking occasionally. Remove pan from heat. Whisk together 1/2 cup cream and 1 egg yolk. Add a little of the hot sauce to the egg yolk and cream mixture, then stir into the rest of the sauce. Strain the sauce [why? D didn’t do this.] Reheat gently (don’t heat fast or the sauce will curdle) and then add the flavoring and blend thoroughly. Flavorings: D used up our gorgonzola dolce – about 2 oz. The other option is herbs: “2 Tbsp fresh chives, parsley, oregano, thyme, sage.” which we are doing tomorrow, as I understand it. D moved the spaghetti into the sauce to coat it, and served with pepper over the top. Pretty!]

The kitchen island this afternoon. Why not ๐Ÿ™‚

This afternoon, I went out to pick some of the curly kale, but discovered that the “flat kale” plant was being encroached by those little grey spots – aphids or something? – so I took off all the leaves that were redeemable and that’s what we had for dinner. I think I will cut down the stalk and let it regenerate when the time comes (it seems to know) rather than leave the attacked leaves sitting there. The curly kale seemed less stricken by the grey critters last year (as in: not) so leaving that one and hoping it stays fine. Boiled 4 mins, heated with butter and salt as usual.

On D’s suggestion, I bought an Acme Italian Batard at the Bowl before lunch, but we ended up not having sandwiches, preferencing leftovers today.

D brought up a wine that was so old (July 2013) that D didn’t remember we’d gotten it at the North Berkeley Wine half-price sale. He bought a bunch of single bottles and we went back and got more of some, including this one ($19.25 reduced to $9.63) but I think we were overzealous. I really don’t love this wine. Except, tonight I poured it back and forth into a 4 cup measure several times (didn’t count) and I think that improved it.

 

 

Later, we had the very last of our share of E’s sumptuous birthday cake (see the 14th). It was still sumptuous ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

 

 

And even later, I walked by the island and the Sumo mandarins caught my eye, and I offered D half and we had that as dessert-dessert.

 

 

Lunch:

D decided to make a salad with romaine, a bit of radicchio, and a small avocado I bought on spec last week. He used some of the cilantro/mint sauce from E’s birthday mid-afternoon snack as a dressing. Not the best choice, I thought, but interesting. I reheated the rest of last night’s quadrucci with ham and bacon in the microwave, first 2 minutes at 6 power, then another 2 minutes at 7 power, and that worked great.

 

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