Tuesdays are Tuesdays

Okie dokie, I started this yesterday and never uploaded it. So some stuff is from Tuesday.

***

Not quite the middle of the week but Monday is over. LOL

Going to another ball game today. The weather is lovely at the moment and hope it stays warmer than the last game. Will be bringing my afghan to work on since it did such a great job covering my lap during the last game.

The troops at work are rallying and trying to make sure things are covered while I am out and I am only a cell phone call away, so trying not to feel too stressed about it. If the weather gets nasty on any given day, I could pop in for a half day, even if it’s just to open my email program and let is all upload.

***

Recipes for sauces since I am determined to bring more lunches to work.

Velvety Broccoli and Feta Pasta
serves 2-4

1 pound broccoli
2 tablespoons water
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
1/2 small onion or two shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup chopped flat parsley
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 cup feta cheese (low-fat if you want to be good) – divided
1/4 cup water

Cut the broccoli into small florets and steam on the stove or in the microwave with the 2 tablespoons of water. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large sauté pan. Cook the onion and garlic until it just begins to soften then add the broccoli. Cook for several minutes or until the onion turns translucent. Add the parsley and cook until it’s well wilted. Pour in the lemon juice and simmer for about two minutes.

Transfer to a blender and add 1/4 cup of the feta cheese and the 1/4 cup water. Puree until smooth, adding a drizzle of olive oil and a little more water if it sticks and turns to a lump. Puree until as smooth or chunky as you prefer.

Taste and add any necessary additional salt and pepper. Serve with a good ridged pasta.

Wild Mushroom Pasta Sauce
serves 4

1 1/2 ounce package wild mushrooms
1 cup chicken, vegetable or beef broth, boiling
1 cup white wine
2 tablespoons butter, divided
3 8-ounce packages of white button or portobello mushrooms, washed and chopped
4 large shallots, minced
4 large cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped sage
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
Salt and fresh ground black pepper

Crumble the dried mushrooms into a glass bowl or measuring cup and pour the boiling broth over them. Let steep for at least 20 minutes. Drain and reserve the drained liquid. Mix the drained liquid with the white wine.

Heat a tablespoon of butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chopped button or portobello mushrooms and let sit, without stirring, for about four minutes or until they have thoroughly browned on one side. Stir and let them cook on the other side – again, without stirring – for about four minutes. Add the shallots, garlic, sage and steeped wild mushrooms. Turn the heat to low, and cook until they are all fragrant and soft.

Add the second tablespoon of butter and, when melted, add the flour. Stir rapidly, letting the flour thicken with the butter into a paste. Have a whisk ready! Slowly pour in the mushroom broth and white wine, whisking rapidly. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking, until the mixture thickens. It should thicken to the consistency of a thick gravy.

Add the chopped parsley, stirring until wilted. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately over pasta with plenty of fresh Parmesan.

***

Oh, speaking of food. I really liked the Pierogi Casserole. Rob thought it was boring and Ryne wouldn’t try it since there were buttered noodles in the fridge.

So next time. More cheese and a layer of spicy sausage and maybe some cabbage?

***

Wednesday Stuff

The game was good but we left early because it was getting late and cold. The Defenders won, extra innings.

Went to the park today and ate my fish sandwich while watching friends with their kids. Oh what a wonderful break. Heavenly!

***

Recipes:

Pork Stir-Fry with Asparagus and Sugar Snap Peas
serves 4

1 small pork tenderloin (between 12-16 ounces)
salt and pepper
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons sherry
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon corn starch
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 shallots, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch piece ginger, peeled and minced
1 pound asparagus, trimmed and sliced into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Slice the pork into medallions about 1/2-inch thick. Then slice each medallion into 2 or 3 strips.* Season the strips with salt and pepper.

Whisk together the soy sauce, sherry, brown sugar, rice vinegar, and corn starch. Set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the sesame oil in a large (14-inch) sauté pan over high heat. Add the pork and cook, stirring and turning strips once or twice, until edges begin to brown and they are just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add the other tablespoon of sesame oil to the pan, and cook the shallots for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute. If the garlic is getting too brown, lower the heat to medium-high. Add the asparagus, cook for another 30 seconds to 1 minute, and then add the sugar snap peas.

Pour half of the water into the pan, and scrape the bottom of the pan to pick up browned bits. You may need to add all of the water, depending on how high the heat and how brown your pan. You want to allow the vegetables to steam slightly and keep the shallots and garlic from burning, but most of the liquid should evaporate quickly.

Sauté the vegetable mixture for another 3 minutes, until asparagus and peas are bright green but still crunchy. Add the red pepper flakes. Add the sauce and the pork. Cook and stir until everything is coated in the sauce. Serve over rice.

*If the meat is too pliable to cut accurately, freeze it for 15 minutes.

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Tuesdays are Tuesdays

Okie dokie, I started this yesterday and never uploaded it. So some stuff is from Tuesday.

***

Not quite the middle of the week but Monday is over. LOL

Going to another ball game today. The weather is lovely at the moment and hope it stays warmer than the last game. Will be bringing my afghan to work on since it did such a great job covering my lap during the last game.

The troops at work are rallying and trying to make sure things are covered while I am out and I am only a cell phone call away, so trying not to feel too stressed about it. If the weather gets nasty on any given day, I could pop in for a half day, even if it’s just to open my email program and let is all upload.

***

Recipes for sauces since I am determined to bring more lunches to work.

Velvety Broccoli and Feta Pasta
serves 2-4

1 pound broccoli
2 tablespoons water
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
1/2 small onion or two shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup chopped flat parsley
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 cup feta cheese (low-fat if you want to be good) – divided
1/4 cup water

Cut the broccoli into small florets and steam on the stove or in the microwave with the 2 tablespoons of water. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large sauté pan. Cook the onion and garlic until it just begins to soften then add the broccoli. Cook for several minutes or until the onion turns translucent. Add the parsley and cook until it’s well wilted. Pour in the lemon juice and simmer for about two minutes.

Transfer to a blender and add 1/4 cup of the feta cheese and the 1/4 cup water. Puree until smooth, adding a drizzle of olive oil and a little more water if it sticks and turns to a lump. Puree until as smooth or chunky as you prefer.

Taste and add any necessary additional salt and pepper. Serve with a good ridged pasta.

Wild Mushroom Pasta Sauce
serves 4

1 1/2 ounce package wild mushrooms
1 cup chicken, vegetable or beef broth, boiling
1 cup white wine
2 tablespoons butter, divided
3 8-ounce packages of white button or portobello mushrooms, washed and chopped
4 large shallots, minced
4 large cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped sage
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
Salt and fresh ground black pepper

Crumble the dried mushrooms into a glass bowl or measuring cup and pour the boiling broth over them. Let steep for at least 20 minutes. Drain and reserve the drained liquid. Mix the drained liquid with the white wine.

Heat a tablespoon of butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chopped button or portobello mushrooms and let sit, without stirring, for about four minutes or until they have thoroughly browned on one side. Stir and let them cook on the other side – again, without stirring – for about four minutes. Add the shallots, garlic, sage and steeped wild mushrooms. Turn the heat to low, and cook until they are all fragrant and soft.

Add the second tablespoon of butter and, when melted, add the flour. Stir rapidly, letting the flour thicken with the butter into a paste. Have a whisk ready! Slowly pour in the mushroom broth and white wine, whisking rapidly. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking, until the mixture thickens. It should thicken to the consistency of a thick gravy.

Add the chopped parsley, stirring until wilted. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately over pasta with plenty of fresh Parmesan.

***

Oh, speaking of food. I really liked the Pierogi Casserole. Rob thought it was boring and Ryne wouldn’t try it since there were buttered noodles in the fridge.

So next time. More cheese and a layer of spicy sausage and maybe some cabbage?

***

Wednesday Stuff

The game was good but we left early because it was getting late and cold. The Defenders won, extra innings.

Went to the park today and ate my fish sandwich while watching friends with their kids. Oh what a wonderful break. Heavenly!

***

Recipes:

Pork Stir-Fry with Asparagus and Sugar Snap Peas
serves 4

1 small pork tenderloin (between 12-16 ounces)
salt and pepper
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons sherry
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon corn starch
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 shallots, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch piece ginger, peeled and minced
1 pound asparagus, trimmed and sliced into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Slice the pork into medallions about 1/2-inch thick. Then slice each medallion into 2 or 3 strips.* Season the strips with salt and pepper.

Whisk together the soy sauce, sherry, brown sugar, rice vinegar, and corn starch. Set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the sesame oil in a large (14-inch) sauté pan over high heat. Add the pork and cook, stirring and turning strips once or twice, until edges begin to brown and they are just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add the other tablespoon of sesame oil to the pan, and cook the shallots for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute. If the garlic is getting too brown, lower the heat to medium-high. Add the asparagus, cook for another 30 seconds to 1 minute, and then add the sugar snap peas.

Pour half of the water into the pan, and scrape the bottom of the pan to pick up browned bits. You may need to add all of the water, depending on how high the heat and how brown your pan. You want to allow the vegetables to steam slightly and keep the shallots and garlic from burning, but most of the liquid should evaporate quickly.

Sauté the vegetable mixture for another 3 minutes, until asparagus and peas are bright green but still crunchy. Add the red pepper flakes. Add the sauce and the pork. Cook and stir until everything is coated in the sauce. Serve over rice.

*If the meat is too pliable to cut accurately, freeze it for 15 minutes.

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