Thursday, May 27, 2010

I have always had trouble cooking with wine, since I love using it but hate to waste an entire bottle when all I need is a few Tablespoons. :( Wine can only last about 7 days before it gets sweet and icky. SO...the other day I was lamenting over a great bottle of wine I had used to cook with that was now going bad on our counter, when I thought....I'll just freeze it into cubes! Then, whenever I want a little wine, I can pop out a few cubes and keep the rest waiting for me! I am sure this is not a novel idea...but you can do it with pretty much any liquid or sauce you want to use in the future. You can freeze pesto, homemade BBQ sauce, etc. I used our frozen wine cubes in this marinara I made.

Marinara is something so simple to make it is ridiculous to ever get it out of a jar. If you want to use your own tomatoes, just boil them and then immediately put them in an ice bath to get their little skins off...or you can used canned tomatoes. Either way, put the tomatoes (chopped or crushed up) into a saute pan with their juice and add whatever else you think is yummy. This batch of marinara had brown sugar, sea salt, red wine, fresh garlic, and a variety of herbs I chopped up out of my garden today. I think I picked basil, oregano, and rosemary. I also added olive oil to this batch. I let it simmer for about an hour while I made the flat bread to go with it.

The flat bread was a beer/brown sugar flat bread with olive oil, sea salt, basil, oregano, rosemary, green olives and kalamata olives on top. It was really really great:

This was pre-baking.

After its visit in the oven.

The flat bread recipe is below:

2 tsp of pizza yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup beer
2 Tbs brown sugar

Let the above ingredients sit in a bowl for about 10 minutes
Add 1 Tbs sea salt.
Slowly add in 4 cups of flour and 1/4-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Let this mixture sit for about 1 hour with a warm towel over the top, in a warm place.

After 1 hour, spread the dough out on a long cookie pan, and bake for 5 minutes at 400 degrees. Pull the dough out, and spread your toppings on (we used green and kalamata olives, olive oil, nutritional yeast, corn meal, and a bunch of fresh herbs with a ton of garlic and sea salt). Cook for another 15 minutes.

We had a TON of leftover flat bread, so Jay used it to make himself a sandwich using a jalepeno sauce and white bean hummus with basil. :)

In other news, we took Lulu to get her nails trimmed yesterday and had a terrible experience that ended with me prying some old bats hands off my dog and Lulu victoriously not getting any of her nails trimmed. :( Here is Lulu after her total win:

...and the two of them. Gloaters.

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