Food: Pasta with kale and apricots - The Lyorn's Den
Mon Nov. 25th, 2013
11:17 pm - Food: Pasta with kale and apricots
I cooked this for the gaming group today, and it was fast and simple, and very tasty. I had expected it to turn out well (obviously), but in fact it was even better. It's also vegetarian and can be made vegan with little effort. Get the kale frozen and already chopped, or it will not be fast... The following will probably feed six. If you want to make sure it's enough, just make more pasta.
You need a large pot, a large pan, a strainer large enough for all the pasta, an old marmelade jar with a well-closing lid, a knife for cutting small things, and a fine grater.
Start the day before by putting three tablespoons of smoked paprika powder (sweet or hot, to taste -- I used sweet) in a small jar that closes tightly. Add about 50 to 100 ml of olive oil. Stir, then close tightly and shake well. Set it in a dark place to settle.
Thaw about 600 grams of kale. Best to do it in a sieve in a bowl, so excess water can run off.
About 30 minutes before serving, peel and finely dice three or four cloves of garlic. Cut one or two red medium hot chillies into rings. Cut about 12 dried apricots into strips. The apricots should not be too dried. If they are leathery, cover the strips with warm water with a drop of honey and let them soak for 5 or 10 minutes before using them.
Put on water for about 600 grams of pasta. I used fettuccine. Tagliatelle will do, too, if your pot isn't quite that large, try orecchiette. Heat about three tablespoons of olive oil in the pan on medium and gently fry the garlic and chillies for a minute or two. It should not brown. Prepare about half a litre of veggie broth (from cubes).
Add the kale and the apricots to the pan and heat on max until it just starts to stick, then add half the broth and deglaze. Cook on medium heat. Stir occasionally and add broth as needed. (If you did not have time to thaw the kale, pour the hot broth on it first and cook with a closed lid until its thawed.) It should end up more-or-less dry.
The water in the pot should now be boiling. Cook the pasta. While it cooks, grate the peel off one lemon. Grate about 100g of parmesan cheese.
Strain the pasta and put it back in the pot while it's still damp. Add salt, a little olive oil, and the lemon peel, then throw in the contents of the pan. Mix, and serve with the parmesan and the paprika oil. When you use the paprika oil, try to get the clear part, not the powder that has collected at the bottom: It looks prettier.
In other news, I bicycled to work today although temperatures were below freezing. It was fun, but now my throat hurts. My new coat does not close well over the chest. I am trying to get an outdoor jacket. So far I have not found one that I liked.
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