Wednesday, October 26, 2011

When it rains, it pours.... peasant food

"stay off of your feet," the kind doctor told me.

Yes, a mere three weeks post food poisoning, I was attacked by fire ants and ended up couch-confined with a serious infection.  Some say this is the karmic result of my constant reference to the 1992 Ross Perot SNL skit describing the role of Texas fire ants in the death penalty.... I've always accused God of being a fair guy.

Regardless of nature vs. nurture or where an apple falls in relation to the tree, two days on the couch has forced me to embrace my biology: one half Milchovich who can't sit still and one half Atkinson who can make a meal from anything.   With the inability to peruse the grocery store, I was confined to the findings of our fridge and pantry.  Luckily, we received a farm share box three days prior to the outbreak.  With leftover veggies, and a pantry of staples I have been able to throw together two humble but tasty meals; one was a simple vegetable soup enjoyed with the Level Headed One, who took pity on my condition and completed 100% of the clean up.  The other was a pasta dish.  Leftover pancetta, veggies and whole wheat pasta came together in a wonderful meal that we enjoyed bowl after bowl.

BLT-ish Pasta
Recipe Created By: Lori Pierce
Serves: 4 
2 swirls of the pan grapeseed oil
4 ounces pancetta, diced
1 spring or yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp crushed red peppers
salt and pepper
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
3 fresh tomatoes diced
1 handfull of green beans trimed and halved
parmesan cheese
1 pound whole wheat pasta

  1. Heat a heavy bottomed pan over medium heat.  Add grapseed oil and warm through.  Add pancetta and saute until browned.
  2. Add the onion and cook stirring until softened, about 3 minutes.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 30-60 seconds. Add the red pepper flakes and stir before immediately adding the tomatoes.  Bring to a simmer, lower heat and cook for 10-15 minutes.  Add the green beans and cook 5 minutes longer. 
  3. Meanwhile, boil pasta in plenty of salted water reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Drain pasta, do not rinse.  
  4. Combine the pasta and sauce adding cooking water as needed.  Garnish with grated parmesan cheese and enjoy.  
In an attempt to follow doctor instructions, I sat at the bar with my foot propped on an adjacent stool while chopping.  The husband helped with cleanup and we were able to avoid take out for one meal.

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