Monday, August 31, 2009

"A good cook artist whom one may bless after having eaten the courses he has served, an officer who will make one's table the envy of all who have shared its good cheer, ”
Isabella Beeton (1836-1865)
The Book of Household Management (1861)

While we were in Pittsburgh last weekend we stopped at Trader Joe's on Penn Ave. in Shadyside. I have heard of Trader Joe's so frequently while I lived in the south that my expectations were high.

Trader Joe's features organic foods at reasonable prices. Within seconds after arriving inside I was over whelmed by the plastic wrap on almost everything. After walking around the store a few times trying to figure out what draws customers to this store I discovered a nice young man cooking food samples for the lines of people. The food featured this day was Cheese Ravioli fried in olive oil, Chicken Cheese Red Wine Hot Italian Sausage, Wild Mushrooms served with a dollop of Trader Joe's Marinara sauce.
Recipes are an inspiration point for me rather than a formula to follow precisely. The flavors in the sample were enough to send my imagination running wild. Cook in living color with a healthy variety of vegetables each day to make a nice meal.
Imagine an aubergine eggplant washed cut into cubes, leave the skin on, saute in a large pan with heated extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic and a pinch of sea salt. Cook the eggplant down until almost tender the add a generous handful of diced peppers green, red, yellow and orange.
Thoroughly cook the Chicken Hot Italian Sausage in a hot skillet with a few drops of olive oil. After sausage is cooked remove and discard the grease drippings. Then cut sausage into bite size pieces to be added into the sauteed vegetable mix.
Wash, core, remove the seeds then cut the four peppers into small pieces. Toss an handful in with the eggplant & garlic. The remainder of the peppers will be stored in the freeze in an air tight plastic sealed container ready for the another cooking adventure.

Trader Joe's featured a package of dehydrated assortment of wild mushrooms. Rehydrate the mushrooms in a pan of hot water, remove mushrooms then reserve the water after mushrooms are pulp and full. Next heat the water to boil before adding one package of Trader Joe's Cheese Ravioli. Remove from the hot, wild mushroom flavored water after cooking.
This flavorful reserve liquid will be cooked down to coax tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, oregano, basil, parsley & Italian seasonings into a wonderful marinara sauce that will accompany your Chicken Italian Sausage, Cheese Ravioli, Wild Mushrooms & Colorful Vegetable Medley. Combined into a one dish then topped with a sprinkle of a good quality Parmesan Reggiano Cheese.
This meal is sure to excite your sense of taste, smell and sight as well as providing a chew that is pleasant to the pallet. Adjust portion size of ingredients to meet your needs.
Good cooking is meant to be savored and shared with friends or family. Invite someone to dine with you or bring extras along to share as a picnic lunch at the office.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails