Jerusalem Artichoke Soup With Crispy Sage Leaves
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 leek, white and pale green parts, rinsed and finely chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped white onion
2 pounds Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and rinsed
5 cups water or vegetable stock
1 teaspoon sea salt
Crispy Sage Leaves
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
8 to 12 fresh sage leaves
1. Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the leek and onion and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the Jerusalem artichokes, water and salt and bring to a boil. Decrease the heat, cover and simmer until the artichokes are tender, about 30 minutes.
2. Remove from the heat and let cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender and process until smooth. Taste and adjust the seasonings if necessary. Gently reheat before serving.
3. To crisp the sage leaves, heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add the sage leaves and sauté until just crisp, about 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Garnish each serving with a couple of the sage leaves.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings.
Seven Vegetable Couscous
This makes a great meat-free main dish for a weekday night, and also for Thanksgiving. Despite the long ingredient list, it’s as easy as can be to make.
1 1/2 cups couscous, uncooked
1 tablespoon vegan margarine
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1 cup finely shredded white cabbage
1 medium turnip, peeled and diced
1 medium yellow summer squash, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 15- to 16-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups diced ripe tomatoes
2 teaspoons grated fresh or jarred ginger, or more, to taste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
Dried hot red pepper flakes, to taste, optional
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 cup golden raisins (for garnish)
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley (for garnish)
Sliced or slivered toasted almonds (for garnish)
1. Combine the couscous and 3 cups boiling water in a heatproof bowl. Cover and let stand until the water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork, then stir in the margarine, turmeric and salt. Cover and set aside.
2. For the vegetable stew, heat the oil in a large saucepan or soup pot. Add the onions and sauté over medium heat until translucent. Stir in cabbage and sauté until both it and the onion are lightly golden.
3. Add the remaining stew ingredients. Bring to a simmer, then cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes. Add water as needed to produce a moist, but not soupy, consistency. The vegetables should be just tender, but still firm.
4. To serve, arrange the couscous on the outer edge of a large serving platter and make a well in the center. Pour the vegetable mixture in the center, then sprinkle with the garnishes, topping with sliced or slivered toasted almonds. Let each guest place a mound of couscous on his or her dinner plate and top it with the vegetable mixture.
Yield: 8 servings
Pappardelle With Beets, Beet Greens and Goat Cheese
If you don’t mind eating pink pasta and you like beets with goat cheese, you’ll love this. I roasted my beets, blanched the greens and paired them with wide pappardelle noodles and goat cheese, both excellent partners. Make sure that you don’t drain the water from the pasta pot when the noodles are done (lift them out with a pasta insert or with a skimmer), as you need some of the cooking water to thin out the goat cheese.
-Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times
1 bunch beets, with a generous bunch of greens attached
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 or 2 garlic cloves, to taste
10 ounces pappardelle
4 ounces goat cheese
Freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon chopped chives (optional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut the beets away from the greens, scrub them and place in a baking dish or casserole. For this pasta you will need about 3/4 pound of beets, which may or may not be the entire bunch. Add 1/4 inch of water to the pan, cover tightly and place in the oven. Roast until tender, about 30 minutes for small beets, 40 to 45 for medium and 50 minutes to an hour for large beets. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until you can handle them. Slip off the skins and cut in 1/4-inch dice. Set aside.
2. While the beets are roasting, stem and wash the greens. Bring a large pot of water, preferably one with a pasta insert, to boil, salt generously and add the greens. Blanch for about 1 minute, just until tender, and transfer to a bowl of ice water. Drain, squeeze out excess water and chop medium-fine. Keep the heat on under the water.
3. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a wide, heavy skillet and add the garlic. Cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds, and stir in the greens, the diced beets, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir together just until coated with oil. Stir in the chives, and turn the heat to low.
4. Bring the water in the pot back to a boil and add the pappardelle. Cook al dente. Remove 1 1/2 cups of the pasta water from the pot, stir 1/2 cup of it into the beets and greens, and crumble in the goat cheese. Drain the pappardelle and add to the pan, along with the parsley and another 1/2 cup of the pasta water. Toss together, and if the mixture seems gummy add more of the remaining pasta water. Serve hot.
Yield: 4 servings.
Advance preparation: You can make this through Step 3 several hours ahead. Turn off the heat and reheat when you’re ready to cook the pasta. The roasted beets and blanched greens will keep for 3 or 4 days in the refrigerator.