Sage Brown Butter for Pasta

Summer is here, the kitchen is hot and we haven’t been doing a lot of cooking of late. Here’s a little something for a quick weeknight supper. It is quick and flavorful. I like to use this with almost any filled pasta.

Sage Brown Butter for Pasta
Servings: 4
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: less time than it takes to cook your pasta


  • 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 7-10 fresh sage leaves, rinsed and minced


  1. Melt butter in a skillet over medium-low heat for 3-5 minutes. As butter heats the butter will start to sputter and pop as the milk solids give up the little bit of water they possess. Remove the pan from the heat when the sputtering stops.
  2. Add the minced sage to the pan and swirl to distribute.
  3. Toss with pasta and serve.

I prefer a stainless steel skillet for browning butter over a non-stick one. The stainless one makes it easier to observe the darkening of the melted butter.

The time from browned butter to “burnt” butter is seconds. Sound is your best indicator here; remove the pan from the heat as soon as the last pop is uttered by the browning butter. Just as you stop the microwave as soon as the popping kernels slow down it is better to remove the pan a little early than risk “burnt” butter.

Caramelized Onion, Mushroom and Bacon Barley

This recipe has either a small amount of prep and a lot of cooking OR a large amount of prep and comes together real quick. Either way there is a lot of time in between cooking the components to do other things.

[Caramelized Onion, Mushroom and Bacon Barley]

Caramelized Onion, Mushroom and Bacon Barley

As you can see, I made this in an electric skillet. Well, I baked the barley. I probably could have done the whole thing in the skillet though. Something to think about for another time.

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Saturday night – 07/05/2014

The weekend weather couldn’t have been better for grilling while the indoor temps actually lent themselves to using the oven. That’s a pretty rare combination for July in New England. The broccoli slaw idea came from something my mom made and everything else in the menu was built around that. It was a pretty good combination of flavors.

Grilled Chicken Thighs with Pomegranate Glaze
Caramelized Onion, Mushroom and Bacon Barley
Broccoli Slaw Ramen Salad
Homemade bread

Chocolate Cream Pie

Notes under the cut

Green Curry Country-Style Pork

I intended to make this earlier in the week however other obligations, and then heat, got in the way. Today it is rainy and in the low 70s, perfect weather for a quick pressure cooker braise.

I used garlic scapes in this recipe because I had some from our local food co-op. Scapes are the shoots that grow out of the ground from hard-neck varieties of garlic. When they’re young and tender, they look like curly green stalks with tightly closed buds on top. Farmers and gardeners harvest them at this time of year so that they won’t drain nutrients from the garlic bulbs that will be dug up in a couple of months, plump and glorious and ready for drying.

Green Curry Country-Style Pork
Servings: 3-4
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Special equipment: pressure cooker


  • 2.5 lbs. bone-in country-style pork ribs
  • kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. peanut oil
  • 1 onion, halved, peeled, and cut into strips
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 4 garlic scapes, trimmed and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 12 oz. jar Thai Green Curry Simmer Sauce (I used one from Trader Joe’s)


  1. Thorough pat dry the pork ribs. Sprinkle one side with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  2. Add the oil to the pressure cooker and heat over high heat for about 1 minute. Add pork ribs to the pot, salted side down, in a single layer. Sprinkle salt & pepper on the second side. Brown on the first side until it easily releases from the bottom of the pan, 2-3 minutes. Flip the pork over and repeat on the second side. When both sides are browned transfer the meat to a bowl and set aside.
  3. Drain the oil from the pot and return about 1 tablespoon. Add the onions, garlic and scapes. Stir to coat the vegetables in oil.
  4. Layer the pork ribs on top of the vegetables. Add the green curry sauce to the pot.
  5. Fit the cover on the pressure cooker and turn the heat back up to high. Heat until you reach a strong level of pressure release and then lower the temp so that you get a slow steady release. For my cook top this means lowering the temp to low.
  6. Cook for 25 minutes at a slow steady release. Turn off the heat, removing the pan from the burner if it remains hot after being turned off. If you are hungry then go for the quick release method. If time is on your side then let the pressure drop naturally, which should take 15 or 20 minutes.
  7. Give the meat a squeeze with some tongs. It should be fall-apart tender. If not slap the lid back on, put it back on the heat, bring it back up to pressure and cook it for another couple of minutes.
  8. Serve over white rice or steamed baby red potatoes.

If you can’t find the garlic scapes then I’d add a extra clove of garlic (or two) and add some chopped fresh chive at the end.

I copied the description of what garlic scapes are from The Crisper Whisperer: 7 Things To Do with Garlic Scapes on Serious Eats. They said it more succinctly than I could have.

You may need to brown the meat in batches. Better to brown half of the meat at a time than croud the pot.