Monday, November 21, 2011

Kitchen Time

I spent a lot of time over the weekend in the kitchen.  Granted half of that time was spent cleaning up after myself, but hey... that counts too, right?

Friday night was ravioli in tomato with oven roasted beets and homemade green been casserole (a practice for non-canned casserole for Thanksgiving) and pumpkin pudding (see the recipe on smittenkitchen - it was delicious) for dessert.

Saturday was chili and cornbread for the folks coming over to watch the Husky game.

Sunday was a last-minute-what-do-we-have-on-hand type meal.  I pulled a pork roast out of the freezer in the morning and created a meal around it.  Came up with butternut squash, chanterelle and baby pea risotto and kale chips as sides, and whooo-boy it was a fantastic meal.

Highly recommend.

Oven Roasted Pork Loin
I rubbed our 3lb loin with a full coating of Martha Stewart's All Purpose Meat Rub, then tossed it in the oven until the thermometer said 155 (Betty Crocker says 20 mins/lb, but I just used a thermometer), then let it rest for 10 minutes. It was absolutely moist and flavorful.  No knife needed.

All Purpose Spice Rub
From Martha Stewart

1/3 cup coarse salt
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup paprika
2 Tbsp black pepper
2 Tbsp oregano
2 Tbsp thyme
1 Tbsp cayenne pepper

Mix all ingredients and store in an airtight container.

Note: I gave this out for Christmas last year.  Not sure if anyone used it(?) but I think it's tasty.

Butternut Squash, Chanterelle and Baby Pea Risotto
Strongly butchered from the Seattle Times

3 cups butternut squash, diced
salt and pepper
2 tsp thyme
1 onion, diced
2 Tbsp butter
1 cup arborio rice
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup chanterelles, chopped, frozen*
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 cup grated Parmesan

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray baking sheet with Pam.  Toss squash with a spritz of Pam, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste.  Roast for 20 minutes, or until soft, stirring after 10 minutes. Set aside.

Pour stock into pot and heat to simmer.  

Heat skillet over medium heat; melt butter.  Add onion and saute until soft, about 3-5 minutes.  Add rice.  Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes.  Add 1 cup stock.  Cook until all liquid is absorbed. Add chanterelles.  Continue adding stock, 1/2-1 cup at a time, cooking until liquid is absorbed.  After addign 3 1/2 cups stock, taste the rice.  It should still have some chew but be tender.  If necessary, add the remaining stock. Add peas and cooked squash.  Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese.

Kale Chips

1 bunch kale
Seasoning Salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Rinse kale.  Remove leaves from stems.  Discard stems.  Tear or chop into bite sized pieces.  Dry thoroughly in salad spinner or with paper towels. Spray baking sheet with Pam and layer kale.  Spray tops with Pam and sprinkle with seasoning salt (I used Johnny's - MSG is delicious). Bake 10-15 minutes, or until edges are crispy but not burnt.  Let cool, if you can resist.

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