Meal No. 26: Mushroom and Goat Cheese Crostini; Grilled Pork Paillards; Pasta Verde; and Cherry Ice
The entire menu is, once again, available online. Why, exactly, did I spend money on this cookbook?
Number 26! This means I am halfway through the book!
I know I said BBQ was next up, but we deviated from the order in the book a bit. We will probably make the summer menus as fresh, local produce is available.
This was easy– make crostini, then top it with goat cheese, sautéed mushrooms (I used a mix of cremini, shiitake and oyster), and chives.
This was fine; it’s hard to go wrong with goat cheese and mushrooms, yet it needed an herb or two aside from the chives. Maybe even a bit of cayenne would have helped.
You know how Oprah was sued by the Texas Beef guys? Well, whoever is on the Pork Board, if there is such a thing, should slap Martha with a cease and desist order. Her pork recipes have been so boring and bland, it really is giving the other white meat a bad name.
This recipe called for pounding boneless pork chops thin (ergo the paillard part), and marinating them in balsamic vinegar. Then they’re wiped off with a paper towel, salted and peppered, and thrown on the grill for a minute per side.
Bo-ring. Wiping off the meat saved me from a flare-up, but also wiped off the flavor. They had a hint of the vinegar taste, but that was it.
By the way, the prep work for the rest of the meal took so long that I had to grill these in the dark. The ones in the photos had deep grill marks, but she said to cook these over medium, so that didn’t happen for me. They look as bland as they tasted.
This is a pasta salad, served warm or room temperature. Gemelli is tossed with a dressing (mustard, vinegar, olive oil salt and pepper), basil, baby spinach and shallots, then with some vegetables that were sautéed in the following order: sweet onion, zucchini, and sugar snap peas.
Thankfully, this had a lot of flavor. The Husband thought it was oily, but I thought it was fine. It made a ginormo amount. I had prepared all the veggies by the time I realized she was calling for a pound of pasta, so I went ahead and made the whole batch. She says it served 4, but a 1/4 lb of pasta as a side dish seems ridiculous. This makes at least 8 servings.
This is a lazy person’s frozen dessert–it’s chunkier than a sorbet and doesn’t require hauling out the ice cream maker. Cherries are pureed until coarsely chopped, then added to some dry white wine, lemon juice, sugar and water. It’s frozen for 20 minutes, then stirred. You have to keep stirring it every 10 min or so for an hour, then it’s served.
This was really good, and refreshing, especially since it was 100 degrees when we made it. Our cherries weren’t all that flavorful and this still worked! We made a half batch, and were sad we didn’t have any more left. Good one, Martha!
I would have been happier with this meal without the pork; the crostini, pasta salad and the cherry ice were plenty by themselves. Make this for your vegetarian friends (maybe add some Parmesan to the pasta)!
Pasta Verde: A
Cherry Ice: A