Jan 29, 2008

B is for...

Big, as in the size of this post. Really, it could've been for lot's of things. Bathroom for example. I could've been showing you the second bathroom at long last except, all these months later, it's not quite done yet. There are 2 key details missing and who knows when they'll be completed because my friend who's been doing the work is busy with his daughter's Bat Mitzvah. Actually Bat Mitzvah could be the perfect B because DQ's is just a year away and very much on my mind.

IMG_2322B could also stand for books like these from the library I manage. These may look familiar because they are the case reporters that are used as a backdrop for so many legal shows and commercials for lawyers. They are what librarians refer to as a space hog, taking up lot's of room and not getting much use since most cases these days are pulled from an online vendor. I'd like to see most of these gone.

I feel much more affection for my collection of knitting books or any of the other books in my house. And you probably thought that all I stashed was yarn. Not even close! I have countless books that I've bought because I just had to read it right away and then I didn't. I don't stash books intentionally but I will admit that I've had a totally irrational fear since childhood that I would run out of stuff to read. Yes, it's crazy but true.

IMG_2293As you can see, I had lot's of inspiration for B but, believe it or not, B is for Broccoli. I have loved it since I was very little and today, it's the only veggie that everyone in my house will eat. They might not all eat the whole thing - DQ likes the stalks and Stinky likes the flowers but makes a great big deal about how she eats the whole thing now - but they all eat it so it makes the shopping list every single week. Often we just steam it but frequently it gets special treatment and becomes one of Stinkerbelle's favorite meals... Broccoli Pasta! She requests it at least once a week and loves to help me make it. Grating the cheese is her favorite job. When she was younger, she would pick out the sun dried tomatoes but recently she's developed a taste for them and now she adds them to other things she eats. Wanna make some yourself?


Broccoli Pasta

One bunch of broccoli (2 if you love it as much as we do) cut up into roughly 1-2 inch pieces
One block of Parmesan Cheese (enough to produce about 1 to 1.5 cups grated)
One package of penne pasta
Minced garlic
Sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil (julienned)
A pinch of salt

Here's the rough instructions on how it's made.

Boil a large pot of water with a little bit of salt. When it comes to a boil, add the pasta.

Put the sun dried tomatoes (about 1/4 cup depending on your taste) in a large pan with a bit of the oil they were packed in and the equivalent of a few cloves of garlic. I use about 4. Move it around the pan to coat the bottom. The oil will keep things from sticking and help to spread the flavor of the sun-dried tomatoes.

Grate the parmesan cheese while you watch the pasta. When it's not quite al dente, add the broccoli to the pot. It will only be in there about 2-3 minutes. At this point start a low flame under the pan to heat up the sun-dried tomatoes and garlic. You can add just a little bit of parmesan to the pan too.

Scoop the broccoli out of the pot and move it to the heated pan with the sun-dried tomatoes etc. It tends to stay on the top of the pot of boiling water so it's easy to scoop it out using a bamboo handled strainer like this. Mix it with the contents of the pan to coat well before adding the pasta. Keep folding it over and mixing it up while adding pinches of cheese periodically until the edges of the pasta start to be a little golden and most of the cheese is melted.

Serve with a sprinkle of cheese on top and enjoy!


sprite said...

Mmmmm... You've made me hanker for my mom's chicken, rice, and broccoli -- my brother's favorite dinner when we were growing up. I suppose these days I'd describe it as an Americanized curry.

Carole Knits said...

Oh boy, does that sound delicious!

Carol said...

MMMM! Great B post! And I like the way you cook. I have a similar recipe cept the veggie part is sun dried tomatoes, fresh spinach, pine nuts, garlic and asparagus. shlurrrp. A space hog of knitting books sounds devine.

Margene said...

Must try that recipe...it has many of my favorites, too!

Cursing Mama said...

jeepers that looks yummy -

skhpottery said...

We tried it last night, Yum. We added some chicken as well. Our similar recipe has gorgonzola cheese and spinach and also sugared walnuts. It will be nice to have an alternate.