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Daring Sauce of Vaguely Sicilian Origin, Version 2.0 - De File
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Daring Sauce of Vaguely Sicilian Origin, Version 2.0
I can't stand on my foot for very long still, so tonight's recipe had to be fast. Not that the one I posted here recently was that time-consuming. It's just that the new version is especially simple:
•Bring water to a boil and add the dried pasta of your choice
•Chop a large onion
•Open a can of anchovies in olive oil and pour the contents into a cast-iron pan
• Turn on the heat to medium-high
• Add the onion pieces
• Take a try pasilla or ancho pepper and cut it into bite-sized pieces, taking care to retain the seeds
• Combine the dried pepper with two or three handfuls of the tree nut of your choice. I used cashews tonight, to excellent effect
• Chop the pepper and nut mixture in a mini-Cuisinart or equivalent. Or mash them up with a mortar and pestle. You'll know they're sufficiently mixed when the nut pieces start to turn reddish
• Once the onion has turned translucent, turn he heat down to low and add two or three handfuls of raisins
• Cook the raisins, onion and anchovies for a few minutes on low, stirring frequently to prevent the raisins from burning
• Add white wine to cover the bottom of the pan and turn up the heat to medium high again
• Once the wine is hot and bubbling, stir in the pepper and nut mixture
• Since the nut pieces will rapidly absorb liquid, it is important to turn the heat down to low very soon after they have been added to the pan. Stir frequently
• Continue to cook for several more minutes, until half of the liquid is gone
• Add a few spoonfuls of the boiling pasta water to the pan
• Once again, cook on low until half the liquid in the pan has evaporated
• Turn off the heat
• Add the juice of two or three lemons
• Cut a handful or two of mint leaves into smallish pieces, taking care to discard the stems
• Add the mint leaves to the pan and stir
• Serve over pasta with pecorino romano or an equivalent hearty, dried cheese.
This may not sound like an impressive sauce, but the combination of strong flavors is seductive, particularly on a hot summer's day like today was here. Also, it tastes great at room temperature.

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5 comments or Leave a comment
xxxpunkxgrrlxxx From: xxxpunkxgrrlxxx Date: June 18th, 2008 05:42 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
your recipe posts are always so interesting!!
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: June 18th, 2008 05:44 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Thanks! I like experimenting in the kitchen. Plus, the food is usually better than what I'd get eating out affordably and also more plentiful.
xxxpunkxgrrlxxx From: xxxpunkxgrrlxxx Date: June 18th, 2008 05:57 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
and i've noticed that a lot of your recipes include raisins and spicy/savory things at once, which i'm a fan of.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: June 18th, 2008 03:17 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
They do. I like to mix the sour, sweet and salty, especially in the heat of a Tucson June. I often prefer tomatoes to raisins, the cherry 100 sort, which I slice in half, but they are getting more expensive and hard to find in decent shape of late. Raisins are a great back-up or supplement.
xxxpunkxgrrlxxx From: xxxpunkxgrrlxxx Date: June 18th, 2008 03:30 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
i'm not real keen on tomatoes unless they're really cooked down, or if they're raw in something, if all the seeds are removed. tomato seeds are slimy and terrible. but, what i do like is making some rice, but cooking some onion and garlic and then adding the rice to the pan and cooking it in the oil for a little bit before adding some curry powder and the liquid (water, vegetable broth, whatever), and then raisins or cut up dried figs or some dried fruit like that. i'm thinking of trying dried cherries and seeing how that works. it makes a good side dish!
5 comments or Leave a comment