Food Buzz

Because maybe you do care what I had for lunch...

Monday, April 30, 2007

Penne with fava bean pistachio etc. etc. sauce

I didn't have a coherent plan for this one. You're shocked, right?

1 pound or so peeled fava beans
1/2 cup pistachios
2-3 cloves garlic
coriander seeds (optional -- well, everything on this list is)
1/2 cup arugula
olive oil
lemon juice
1 pound penne, cooked
4 little sausages, like this
3.5 oz yogurt, preferably Greek

I still haven't found a source for peeled fava beans. If you buy them fresh you must remove them from their pods, boil them, and then pop the beans out of their little skins. I keep meaning to try dried fava beans.

In a food processor, grind the beans, pistachios, garlic, coriander, arugula together with lemon juice (about one lemon), olive oil (about 1/2 cup depending on desired consistency), and salt. Meanwhile slice sausage and brown slightly. When penne is cooked stir in green sauce, sausage, and yogurt.

Jasper sat down and announced that he wasn't eating "this pasta." I made him take one bite. That's our rule. You have to try at least one bite before you reject your meal. He tasted it and decided it was acceptable after all. Please, Jasper, don't go through an "I don't want that stuff on my white food" stage. This is one of the reasons why I rarely make pasta.

We slurped down dinner in a hurry so we could watch the new Frontline documentary, The Mormons, on PBS. Lapsed Mormons though we both are, we were riveted to this film. It's not just narcissism, this is documentary story telling at its best. Helen Whitney has an Emmy, a Peabody, and several nominations to her credit. She produced Faith and Hope at Ground Zero. But one of the things that impresses me most is how she managed to raise funds for the documentary. Consider her task:

1. Find people interested Mormonism
2. Who are comfortable with funding a film that will not necessarily always show Mormonism in a positive light
3. And who have money coming out of their ears

I don't know, maybe I'm naive about the pockets of Mo money out there. Anyway, if you missed the first segment you can watch it online. Next segment airs Tuesday night.

One more thing -- the recipe for Supernatural Brownies is still one of the most e-mailed articles in the NY Times. I made them this weekend and by the hammer of Thor, they really are supernatural! That brown sugar -- well, I'll just say this, if you like your brownies dark, rich, and eeeevil chocolatey this is the recipe for you.

Adapted from “Chocolate: From Simple Cookies to Extravagant Showstoppers,” by Nick Malgieri (Morrow Cookbooks, 1998)

Time: About 1 hour

2 sticks (16 tablespoons) butter, more for pan and parchment paper
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
4 eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup dark brown sugar, such as muscovado
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or 3/4 cup whole walnuts, optional.

1. Butter a 13-by-9-inch baking pan and line with buttered parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In top of a double boiler set over barely simmering water, or on low power in a microwave, melt butter and chocolate together. Cool slightly. In a large bowl or mixer, whisk eggs. Whisk in salt, sugars and vanilla.

2. Whisk in chocolate mixture. Fold in flour just until combined. If using chopped walnuts, stir them in. Pour batter into prepared pan. If using whole walnuts, arrange on top of batter. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until shiny and beginning to crack on top. Cool in pan on rack.


Luisa Perkins said...

Oooh, gotta try the brownies--maybe for 'second breakfast.'

I love your approach to pasta. Fresh fava beans are such a pain, but worth it. IMHO, dried fava beans bear little resemblance to fresh. It's like the difference between dried peas (only fit for soup with a ton of ham in it) and fresh (ambrosial, delicate, lovely).

About the Mo money: it is shockingly real and copious, as is evidenced by the population of our stake (mostly CT folks). It boggles my middle-class mind. We are tuning in for Part 2 of the documentary tonight....

liz said...

I watched it too and wish I could sit at a round table and discuss it with all sorts of people to hear what they thought. Can't wait for tonight.