As a special Weekend herb Blogging Event, Kalyn, from Kalyn's Kitchen, is hosting Holiday Cooking With Herbs.
I'll be honest, when I first started thinking about this I couldn't come up with a thing! My holiday cooking seems to include a lot of fat (Pan-Seared Foie Gras) salt (Smoked Salmon) and chocolate (Buche de Noel). Healthy eating of any sort is at the bottom of the list. Then I started thinking about the rest of the dinners, and, yes, the herbs were there, just hiding. And not only herbs, but vegetables and other good stuff. Plus my vegetable freezer is full.
Since I can't figure out how to work herbs into the Foie Gras, other than as a pretty garnish, my submission to Holiday Cooking is (note the "Christmas" plate):
frozen spinach, 5 oz, (150 grams)
1 tsp basil
1/3 cup ricotta cheese
3 tbs Parmesan cheese
pinch of nutmeg
Thaw spinach – using hot water, microwave, heating on stove top, whatever. When thawed squeeze out all excess moisture (rinse with cool water first if too hot to handle). Butter 2 ramekins and line with buttered parchment or waxed paper. Put egg in medium bowl and beat lightly with whisk. Add ricotta, Parmesan, basil and nutmeg and whisk well. Add spinach and mix well with a fork. Divide spinach evenly between the 2 ramekins. Put into a baking pan (I use a bread pan) with deep sides. Pour hot water into the pan coming half way up the sides of the ramekins. Bake in 400F (200C) oven for 20 – 25 minutes, until set – top will be firm. Remove from oven and carefully remove ramekins from hot water. Run a knife around edges of timbales and invert onto small plates. Remove paper. Spoon tomato sauce on the side and serve – garnished with olives if you have some.
8 oz fresh tomato sauce I had uncooked, skinned, purreed tomatoes in my freezer from last summer. If you are not that lucky use whole, canned tomatoes. Drain them, then purree them.
1 small shallot
1 clove garlic
1 tbs olive oil
1 tbs fresh or frozen basil I used one cube of basil in stock that I froze last fall
1 tbs fresh or frozen (or from a jar) pesto I used one cube of pesto that I froze last fall
1/2 tsp Balsamic vinegar
Finely chop shallot and garlic. Heat oil in small sauce pan over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and bring just to a simmer over medium heat. If you are using all fresh (or frozen) ingredients you don't want to cook them, just heat them. Serve on the side with timbales.
A lovely Sancerre would set this off perfectly….
This is it from the Vendee for two weeks. We're off to the 'upper U.S.' tomorrow; cold, snow, winter; that whole bit. But I'll have a computer to use….and, maybe, I'll be able to break away from the Mall of America long enough to read some blogs and post some thoughts….
Check out Kalyn's blog for the Holiday Cooking with Herbs Recap, ongoing for the next 2 weeks.