Just found this lovely review today on Dupremarket.com (March 25, 2019):
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The grocery store had a variety called “Jaroma” that’s supposed to have a less “cabbage-y” odor. Not sure we noticed the difference, but the shape was like the Tendersweet. Another milder variety of green cabbage is the “point-y” one. (“Murdoc” looks like a 1920’s skirt, very flirty for a cabbage.)
The stir fry is very simple: onion, a generous hunk of fresh ginger, chopped, a few garlic cloves with the center sprout removed, 3 sausages, sliced thin and 2 carrots. When that looks sautéed, I add 1/2 a cabbage, sliced and chopped through a few times in the other direction, turn the heat down and let the cabbage slowly melt into tenderness.
A little cornstarch dissolved in cold water with the healthiest bouillon cube I could find made the sauce. 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper added a bit of zip.
Half-way healthy: I like to “cancel out” the sausage with cabbage family vegetables and I slice the sausage as thin as possible to get the flavor. Brown rice balances this stir-fry nicely.
Cheap: The cabbage was on sale for under $2 and I only used half. If you were cooking for a mob, you could use the whole thing with another carrot and onion for balance. I froze the rest of the sausages in the package.
Vote: Thumbs up! “It would have been too sweet without the brown rice.”
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And we’re back! In case you missed last week, this’ll catch you up:
My family endured, uh, . . . minimalist cooking during the publishing of my first book, TROUBLE WITH PARSNIPS. But they need vitamins and writers can’t run on chocolate forever.
Hence the Challenge:
—No recipes will appear here in their entirety.
—No holds barred. If the crew orders out for pizza, you’ll get the details here.
—At least one inexpensive vegetable must appear in the meal. (Honor of an epidemiologist!)
—Half-way healthy. An attempt at lower fat and whole grains will be made, but cream and cheese will inevitably appear. You’ve been warned.
Without further ado, this week’s vegetable is:
(Spinach would work here too, but Ruby Chard grows all season long. Healthy, cheap, and tasty.)
Mean Mac & Cheese adds a vegetable to a kid favorite. Purists can eat noodles from the middle. (Epidemiologists aren’t heartless.)
I fold ruby chard leaves in half, rip off the center rib and slice the stacked leaves nice and thin. The chiffonaded ruby chard gets tucked into the corners of a 9″ x 13″ pan or around the edges of my only big casserole dish.
Anna Thomas’s The Vegetarian Epicure* is the Béchamel sauce we use for Mean Mac & Cheese. (Sounds so much fancier than white sauce with thyme, bay leaf, cayenne pepper and salt. We’re all about the words.)
If you have people who balk at whole wheat pasta, try “hay and straw” (half “regular” pasta and half whole wheat.) Or try a different brand (or shape) of whole wheat pasta. (Some brands really do taste like cardboard. Persist! 🙂
Béchamel sauce can be lower in fat than whipping cream, if you use lowfat or skim milk and actually measure the butter. It helps to add extra milk to the sauce to make sure the ruby chard doesn’t dry out.
Sharp cheddar cheese has more flavor per serving of fat than mild cheddar so you can get away with a little less cheese. Adding a small amount to the top during the last few minutes of baking makes the whole thing seem cheesier (in the best possible way).
Cheap: I had a whole salad spinner full of ruby chard from the garden, so I didn’t buy my veggies. You can spend as much or as little as you like for whole wheat pasta and cheese.
The vote: Another thumbs up!
If you’d like to stay in touch, sign up for my Reader’s List. Once a month, I share new middle grade fiction, story-related freebies, and/or related blog posts. If it’s not your thing–I know, you’re all about the veggies–you can unsubscribe at any time.