Saturday night – 07/24/10

I think the headcount this week was 11. Some at dinner said this was the best meal so far. Not sure myself but I’m always harder on my cooking than others.

The Menu
Oven braised country style pork ribs
Rice & Lentil Pilaf
Ana’s Persian style Carrots
Roasted Baby Bok Choy
Oatmeal bread from ted_badger

Pineapple Upside-down Cake for dessert

One might ask, how did we end up with this menu? I received an e-mail during the week with the recipe for Rice & Lentil Pilaf and wanted to give it a try. Our CSA box this week had lovely golden carrots, more pale yellow than orange and a recipe for a “Persian style” carrot dish. We had a bunch of bok choy left over from the previous week that needed using up as well so I searched for something other than steamed bok choy. I think the pork ribs were on sale this week at Hannaford and I wanted something more savory than BBQ. So there you go.

For the pork I ground up a tablespoon each of fennel seeds, coriander seeds and celery seeds, added a heaping teaspoon of salt & pepper, mixed it together and then tossed it with the pork. I spread the ribs in a single layer in a large pan and roasted it in the oven at 250°F (yes, that’s 250, low and slow) for 2 hours. I then switched the oven to “keep warm” and let them coast for another hour or so until dinner time. The extra time helped to break down more connective tissue so the pork was falling apart when I plated it. It was, unfortunately, a bit dry to my taste.

In the pilaf I left out the tomatoes because, well, I didn’t remember to buy tomatoes. The dish was a success without them.

The bok choy was great.

As I mentioned the carrot recipe came with our CSA box.

Ana’s Persian Style Carrots

  • 15 Siena farms golden sun carrots peeled and split in half lengthwise
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • pinch of saffron (about 1/4 teaspoon)
  • one third cup water
  • teaspoon of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Saigon or Vietnamese cinnamon
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped about 2 teaspoons
  • half lemon

Soak saffron in the 1/3 cup of water for at least 15 minutes

In a very large skillet with enough surface area to hold the carrots, heat the olive oil over medium heat and stir in the carrots to coat them.

Continue to cook on medium-low heat, adding the cinnamon, sugar & garlic. Stir to coat evenly and season the carrots with salt and pepper to taste.

Add the saffron water and cook over medium-low heat for another 6 minutes or so until the water has been absorbed by the carrots and they are glazy.

Squeeze the juice of a half lemon over the carrots and serve.


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