Friday, May 9, 2008

Pasta Night: Lemon & Garlic

Jessie in Lexington, Va., had a classic cook's conundrum: an exotic ingredient she wanted to play with, but no clue how to use it. (How she came to have an excess of salty preserved lemon around to begin with is a mystery.) She writes:

"I'm never quite sure what to do with salty preserved lemon, so last night I tried adding it to a simple pasta dish. Throw a bunch of trimmed ramps (that have been blanched in boiling, salted water for about 3 minutes), lots of roasted garlic, olive oil, preserved lemon, and a squirt of fresh lemon juice to a food processor and pulse into smooth. Toss with al dente spaghetti, and top with grated parmesan and freshly ground pepper. Serve with a slice of homemade bread and home brew."

We're submitting this dish to Ruth's Presto Pasta Night. Crossing fingers...

The home brew is delightful, but hardly simple. If you have a few hundred free hours on your hands, give it a shot. Here again is Jessie:

"Making homemade beer is sort of like canning vegetables in that it requires standing over a 3 to 5 gallon pot of boiling liquid for a couple of hours while all the windows in your home fog up. But unlike canning, it's crucial to regularly measure the density of the liquid with a hydrometer before adding additional ingredients (tales abound of home brew bottles exploding under pressure due to imprecise hydrometer readings). What you're looking at here is a blond ale, with a 7 percent alcohol content, comprised mostly of malted barley and stored in 3-4 cases old Grolsch bottles. The entire process--boiling, bottling, and, in particular, fermenting--takes about 10-12 days. The taste reminds this beer maker of the English ale New Castle. "

A hydrometer???


JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

Quite a feat! I have always wanted to try to make beer at home, not sure when I will find the time...but we can dream right?!

Welcome to The Foodie Blogroll!

Ruth Daniels said...

The pasta looks awesome and I'm glad you decided to share with Presto Pasta Nights.

As for the too salty preserved lemons...I have a batch in my fridge. Apparently you're supposed to get rid of the pulp and rinse the lemon pieces well before chopping them up. It probably will take me a year to use up my batch.

Beer, on the other hand...well, let's just say patience is not my virtue and hand me a cold one please!

Corinne said...

I've wanted to make a batch of preserved lemons, but I'm afraid I'll have to much and not enough to do with...
Thanks for the great idea! The home-brew looks delicious too!