I love coming home to the smell of dinner. Since no one ever cooks for me but me, the only way to achieve that is to be productive before I leave for work. So about 6 o'clock this morning, I took out my battered copy of Food Revolution to refresh my memory on Jamie's version of a stew, and ran with it. I didn't have any wine on hand, so I substituted stock with a good lug of POM pomegranate juice. I didn't have any canned tomatoes in the pantry, so I used the last few remaining ones from the garden and supplemented them with a tin of tomato paste mixed with water, and the remains of a jar of salsa from the fridge. Instead of fresh thyme, I decided to use fresh sage, since it's growing rampant in the garden right now. I also opted to finely dice up two fresh jalapeno peppers from the garden and throw them in for some added kick. I started the stew off in a large pot on the stove, and then transferred it to the crock pot on low heat for the rest of the day.
When I got home from work, I removed the stoneware, and layered the top of the stew with my cooked potatoes. I sprinkled them with fresh thyme, salt & pepper, and spritzed them with olive oil. Then I put the stoneware in the oven for 40 minutes. The aroma was tantalizing, and the stew was even more delicious than I remembered. I seriously want to drink all of the juices, they are so good. I helped myself to two large bowls for dinner, and I never go back for seconds. It was that good.
While the stew was cooking, I started looking through cookbooks, trying to find something quick I could whip up for dessert. I don't have much fruit on hand right now, so I needed something simple.
292. Lovely Lemon Curdy Pud (Happy Days With The Naked Chef, page 284)
JamieOliver.com recipe link
I've made a simlar version of this dish before, so I was happy to find out that Jamie had his own version. All I needed to have on hand was milk, eggs, flour, sugar, and one lemon. Wheeeee! So I mixed up butter, lemon zest & sugar, and added egg yolks, milk, flour, and lemon juice. I whisked up the egg whites by hand until almost stiff (no way was I going to hold them over my head though!) and then mixed everything together. This batter went into a greased casserole dish and into a water bath for 45 minutes.
It really crisped up nicely on the top, yet was quite pudding-like underneath. Not too sweet either, which is nice. Really, even with the butter, a pretty light dessert. Yummy.