Thursday, April 23, 2020

Quarantine Food: What Am I Eating?

     This morning, the answer is easy: roast beef hash with a cornmeal crust and an egg baked on top of it.  It's my answer to the increased amount of water and fat in canned hash and it works pretty well.  It's an inexact art: you mix up some cornmeal and flour, possibly with a little seasoning, and sprinkle a layer into the pan before adding the hash. Fifteen or twenty minutes later (most of it covered), you should have well-cooked hash on a nice, crunchy crust and if you had broken an egg on top, it'll be baked all the way through.  Getting the exact perfect, golden-brown crust is a bit chancy and I'm still working on the proportion of flour to cornmeal.

     Last night was a simple dinner: some fancy bone-broth tomato soup with grilled-cheese sandwiches.  Yes, tomatoes don't have bones, but chickens do and the stuff was made with chicken-bone stock.  Very tasty, too.  The sandwiches were grilled Swiss on rye, which I think is the ideal combination.

     Night before last, pasta!  Rotini and some of Sunday's sauce, "stretched."   I sauteed celery, white carrots and half an onion in a little butter with a dash of garlic power, then pushed it to the sides of the pan and added a can of diced tomatoes and some spices..  Diced was all I had -- but I also have a potato masher* and it turned them into crushed tomatoes in short order!  Then I added the leftover sauce, which had plenty of meat, and simmered the whole thing together.  Time spent in the freezer had only improved the previous marinara sauce -- the finished dish was even better than Sunday.  Despite having made a big pot of pasta, we each ended up about two or three giant rotini short, to which Tam remarked that she did not remember ever having regretted a lack of noodles before.  The sauce was fine by itself, but adding the texture of al dente pasta made it even better.

     Monday was beef stew: really nice stew beef Tam saw at the neighborhood grocery, seasoned and browned.  Once it was well underway, I sauteed carrots, celery, leeks and an onion with it and then simmered everything in beef bone broth.   It was wonderful and warm -- and even better for lunch the next day.  You can go from raw materials to finished stew in about a half-hour but it's better to cook it low and slow or let it rest after the quicker cooking; give it a couple of hours over low heat on the stove or a night in the fridge and you've really got a treat.

     We're eating well.  Nothing fancy, and all based on a pretty simple list of ingredients, but it's good stuff.


Anonymous said...

It all sounds awesome - my stomach growls in agreement early this morning, lol. Down Simba ! :^)

Paul said...

Tastee stuff for sure. Was looking at the hash in Wally just the other day.