Tuesday, April 12, 2011

La Vita é troppo breve....

....per mangiare male.

Too true, too true.
Now unless you put yourself through a couple of semesters of Italiano, you have no idea what that says....save yourself the money, i'll translate :) It says "Life is too short to eat badly". Virginia Woolfe put it nicely as well..."One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." Now, to some this may mean following a healthy diet. While important, I feel that this means food that not only feeds your body, but also your soul (you should know i'm SO deep). In good form, for me, food that feeds my soul is that of the Italian/Mediterranean cuisine. My time in Italy has only made that love grow much stronger. I think that holds true for many, though. How many kids do you see that turn their noses up at a plate of steamy pasta covered in a rich marinara? So today I set out to recreate a delicious, comforting dish that will feed your soul..I present......

"Never Gonna Miss The Meat" Bolognese

and trust me...From the mouth of the omnivore "I may miss meat tomorrow, but I certainly don't miss it tonight". See, told ya ;)

½ med onion, diced
3 T minced garlic
1 carrot, peeled & diced
1 celery stalk, diced
½ lg zucchini, diced
½ lg eggplant, peeled & diced
1 c cooked lentils
½ c red wine
12 oz tomato sauce
2 T tomato paste
1 T dried oregano
1 T dried basil
½ t dried thyme
¼ t red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf

Cook ½ c dried lentils in 2 c vegetable stock in a medium sauce pan for 20 minutes. Drain & set aside. In a large deep sauté pan, heat extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic cook for 1 minute more. Place chopped carrot and celery in pan & sauté about another minute. Season with salt & fresh cracked black pepper. Add zucchini & eggplant, sauté about 3 more minutes. Next, add tomato paste & seasonings and stir until tomato paste is well combined. Add wine and stir. Next, stir in lentils and tomato sauce until combined. Cook over medium low heat, stirring occasionally until sauce has thickened about 15 minutes. Serve over cooked pasta (I used whole wheat spaghetti).

And in true italian form, with "un bicchiere di vino rosso".

Ahh....so happy :)

Until the plate is finished and I decide I need dessert. I decided to turn to a tried and true recipe that i've used MANY times. Borrowed, of course. From Neverhomemaker. Unfortunately, they are on a mini hiatus at the moment but that just means you have time to catchup on all their missed posts ;)

Pumpkin Brownies (adapted from Sweet Potato Brownies)
* 4 tablespoons canola oil
* 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
* 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
* 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 cup sucanat
* 2/3 cup pumpkin
* 1 flax egg (see directions below)
* 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 1/2 c walnuts

Method . . .

1. Spritz a glass baking dish with some canola oil. Set aside.
2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 tablespoon golden flax meal with three tablespoons boiling water. Stir and set aside to cool.
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Stir in walnuts until coated in flour mix. Set aside.
5. In another bowl, combine the pumpkin puree with the oil, flax egg, vanilla, and sugar. Mix until smooth.
6. Pour into your prepared pan. Then bake for 20 to 25 minutes. The batter will appear wet still, so be sure to poke through the center with a toothpick.

Hea-ven-ly!!! These are super rich, super fudgy and definitely in need of a fork!

Off to enjoys these with another Italian favorite~FASHION. What Not To Wear is on, i'm out!

1 comment:

  1. Did you take cooking lessons in Italy? This Bolognese sounds absolutely incredible. :-)