Saturday, January 9, 2016

hearty winter pasta

I woke up that morning and wanted so badly to continue the dream I had. I kept my eyes closed. And for few more minutes I was able to keep some memory of it. Then, as you might guess, I needed to go to bathroom and when I got back to bed I closed my eyes even harder. Nothing happened, I was not able to recall it. Sometimes I am not even able to remember the things from a daily routine but I was curious what happened to that rabbit..
I stayed in bed for a bit longer, stretching and thinking what I might cook for that day and enjoyed the feeling of a pleasant dream that by far fade away completely. I've focused my thoughts to crowd pleasing. I didn’t have many ideas of what to cook that very day. I was a bit lazy for going to the market. It was pretty cold which is no surprise for January but a fine excuse for me not to leave the house and stay by the blurred window observing people rushing in different directions.
Around noon I somehow knew it would be one pot dish and thought that in that case I should have all ingredients I might need.
Before I started to cook I actually listed things I would put in a pot, and before I made a list I checked ingredients in a fridge and in a pantry. Carrots, onions, tomato juice, fresh dates, dried apricots, candied orange peel, sausages from the freezer, bay leaves, aromatized wine – Vinglogg.  
I ended with two pots but only one had some aromatics going on and it was the aromatics worth of having a recipe. 

Hearty Winter Pasta
serves 4-6 
2 tbsp vegetable oil
6 carrots (about 285g when peeled)
2 medium onions
2 fresh medjool dates, pitted
2 dried apricots (only two were left)
1tsp candied orange peel 
400g pork sausages (I used homemade sausages, basically minced pork meat seasoned with salt and sweet paprika and slightly smoked before frozen)
2 bay leaves
2 cups tomato juice (I used homemade tomato juice which includes only a bit of salt and sugar plus homegrown tomatoes)
1,5 cups sweet aromatized wine (I used IKEA Vinglogg)
2 cups of water
pinch of coarse sea salt
grated Parmesan

Chop onions and carrots and place them in a pot where you already warmed the oil. Let the vegetables soften for just few minutes and add bay leaves and chopped sausages. Stir for about 10 minutes on medium heat, later on add sliced apricots, pitted dates and orange peel and stir for minute or two before adding wine. After you add the wine let cook uncovered for about 15 minutes. Add tomato juice and water and once it boils let cook for about one hour (covered) on a law heat. Check the seasoning and add salt if needed.
Serve with flat pasta or gnocchi and add grated Parmesan on top of each portion.  

With this dish life really gets a little bit sweeter. And it wasn’t just a dream, it was a meal that made me happy that day.

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