Wednesday, January 28, 2009

In the Heart of Winter

It's snowing again, adding another 6 inches or so to the mounds already on the ground. In preparation, last night I prepared a feast from leftovers fit for those wanting to hibernate until it's all over.

On Sunday, I was enticed by carefully placed display at the local Shaw's, which advertised free bags of onions, potatoes and carrots if one purchased a three pound roast. Of course, when you arrived at the meat aisle the only 3+ pound roasts were on the pricey side - but I found the least expensive one I could which was a brisket, and vowed I would get 3 meals out of it. That night I prepared a pot roast with the usual suspects, adding a little chipotle pepper for flavor and interest. By the time we stuffed ourselves the brisket was fork tender and delicious (as were the carrots, potatoes and onions!)

Round 2: I'd carefully saved the broth from the pot roast / brisket, and after preparing a couple of containers of leftovers there was still a slab of brisket left. With toothsome memories of the famous Hadden risotto, I decided there was no reason I couldn't experiment. Replacing the stock with the leftover brisket broth, replacing the dry white wine with some dry red, adding some wild rice to the risotto, and slicing up a package of mushrooms and the leftover brisket, I happily stirred away. The results were hearty and delicious!

It reminds me that much of creative cookery is improv, and the stove a stage. . . . Occasionally one must endure boos and rotten tomatoes. Consider the following recipe for Blushing Bunny which my mother carefully prepared in my salad days - it went down in infamy. We all loved Welsh Rarebit, but this one my sister correctly termed "Blushing Barf" due to an unfortunate curdling incident! We never let Mom forget it.

Blushing Bunny

Put into a chafing dish 2 Tbsp. butter; when melted add 2 Tbsp. flour. Pour in gradually 1 cup of thin cream or milk. When thickened add 1/2 cup of tomatoes and 1 cup of cooked macaroni. Then add 1/2 pound cheese, grated and 2 eggs slightly beaten. Season with salt and a little cayenne pepper and mustard.

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