A rainy, sloppy start…

October 6, 2016

to October had me thinking about  something quick, filling and a bit nostalgic…Sloppy Joes. While I can’t remember when I had had one last or if I had even made them before at all, it warranted some further study. Easy enough with a can of sauce, a pound of ground beef and some buns, what would happen if I tried to eliminate the meat? Pretty much magic on the first try and it couldn’t be any easier. Starting with a 15 oz. can of low sodium Sloppy Joe sauce and teaming it up with a 17.6 oz. package of steamed lentils I added 4 oz. of baby Portobello mushrooms that I had pulsed coarsely in the food processor and sauteed in a tablespoon of general use olive oil. As things started to simmer I pulsed 1/2 cup of walnuts until coarsely chopped and added them to the pan for additional texture. Doctored with a couple of tablespoons of maple syrup to round out the sweetness, a couple of tablespoons of bottled barbeque sauce for a bit more tang and a final adjustment of salt to taste they were done. Served up on a traditional soft bun with a side of slaw these have moved up to the top of my Meatless Monday rotation.

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It may seem like you’ve over done it, but between Christmas and New Years Eve you still have to eat. Fancy enough for company yet simple enough for any day of the week…Mushroom Stroganoff. A handful of ingredients and minimal prep will have four steaming bowls of comfort on the table in about 30 minutes.

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Always On Hand

December 11, 2015

Parsley, walnuts, Parmesan and Bucatini…simplequietmodern pantry staples. And, just what you need for Walnut-Parsley Pesto with Bucatini… a perfect Meatless Monday supper to give you a break from all the holiday party fare. Hearty and satisfying, you won’t be missing the moo, cluck or baa.

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This deconstructed pesto variation, adapted from the Chris Morocco original found in Bon Appetite, will serve four and can be whipped up at a moments notice. Gather your ingredients: 12 oz package of dried Bucatini, 1 cup of toasted walnuts, 2 cloves of garlic finely grated, 1 1/2 cups grated parmesan, 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 cup chopped flat leaf parsley and a couple good pinches of red pepper flakes. Pulse the walnuts in a food processor until finely chopped and add to a bowl containing the chopped parsley, parmesan, garlic and pepper flakes. Stir in oil to combine and season with salt and pepper. Cook the Bucatini according to package directions. Drain, reserving about a cup of the pasta water. Add pesto to the pasta adding small amounts of pasta liquid as needed until until the pasta is well coated. A glass of wine and a bowl of clementines and dinner is done.

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