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Cook With Wine, Feel Cheerful

I just made a most delicious late lunch, so I am going to make a blog post about it.  Alas, I did not take any pictures while I was doing it, so this may not be a really peppy post.  Still, you can’t have everything.

Yum!

I paused to take one picture.  Yes, I was cooking with wine.  This time I did not put any in the food.  I had a red pepper that was getting old, and I was in the mood to put something together.  The therapeutic benefits of chopping vegetables is not to be discounted.

The first thing I did, as usual, was to peel and crush up some garlic, and set the timer for 15 minutes,  so it could reach its full cancer fighting potential.  Then I chopped up an onion.  I was chopping it into small pieces, so I stopped after half an onion.  So I guess I did not get the full measure of therapeutic benefits available to me.

I put the onions in a pan with oil over low heat and chopped the pepper into small pieces, adding it to the onion.  I added the garlic after 15 minutes, covered the pan, and let them all cook for a while, stirring frequently (of course I didn’t note how many times or how often; I’m not that kind of a cook nor that kind of a blogger) (did I mention you can’t have everything?).

Eventually I added a can of tomato puree. I seasoned it with basil, oregano, salt and pepper.  Towards the end I put in a can of chopped clams.  I served it over angel hair pasta with grated parmesan cheese.  Yum!

So now I have managed another blog post without much whining.  In fact, after managing the blog post, I am feeling more cheerful.  Let this be a lesson to me:  make a blog post, feel cheerful.  I will try to duplicate the phenomenon tomorrow.

 

Saturday Clam Sauce

This will be a quick cooking post before I get back to enjoying my Saturday.  I must admit, it has been a largely wasted day, and never mind why, because people who go on about their health woes are tiresome (how’s that for a little passive-aggressive whining?).  I just about managed to get the dishes done by the time Steven got home shortly after six.  I had not planned anything for supper.  Suppressing my desire to send out for a sub or Chinese, I suggested red clam sauce or maybe eggs.  Steven opted for red clam sauce and I went to work.

First, OF COURSE, I crushed up some garlic and set it to breath for fifteen minutes.  It was from the bunch I purchased at the Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival in Little Falls, NY this past September, just to give the post a little local flair.  At first I said, “I’ll only do three cloves.  I won’t go crazy with the garlic.”  Not a minute later I said, “I’ll go crazy with the garlic,” and put in the entire bulb, which was not very big anyways.  Steven did not comment; he trusts me when it comes to cooking in general and garlic in particular.

I put the dishes away while the garlic cooked in olive oil.  That’s the kind of multi-tasking I can handle.  Incidentally, I forgot to mention that I was cooking with wine, a little 19 Crimes red blend, one of my favorites.  I soon added a can of minced clam with the liquid to the garlic.  I let that boil for a little bit before adding a small can of tomato sauce.  I took a can of mushrooms and drained its liquid into the sauce can, to get the last of the sauce without adding too much more liquid to the whole.  I had told Steven I was not going to include tomato paste, that it would be a thin clam sauce.

Basil and oregano were the only spices I used.  I would have put in a few hot peppers, but I left those outside, where I had been sprinkling them over my container garden to deter squirrels.  Note to self:  purchase more hot peppers.  I considered adding tomato paste anyways but decided to wait and see if the sauce cooked down.  Soon it was time to put on water for pasta.  Ziti rigati, which was all we had besides some angel hair pasta.  Further note to self: purchase more pasta.

The sauce turned out pretty good.  I added salt, pepper and grated cheese before devouring.  Steven added salt and pepper.  He also had a large piece of bread and butter, an extra thick crust on a loaf of Spano’s hard crust Italian.  This adds another local bit, because Spano’s is in Utica, NY.  I am Mohawk Valley Girl!