Northwest NEWS

October 30, 2000

Home & Garden

Dining In

Caesar Pasta Salad
   1 garlic clove, halved lengthwise
   1 slice good quality white bread
   2 Tbsp. low-fat yogurt
   2 Tbsp. Dijon-style mustard
   1 tsp. lemon juice
   Pinch of cayenne pepper
   1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper
   8 romaine lettuce leaves
   2 large scallions, green and white parts, cut in 1/4-inch slices, about 1/2 c.
   6 Tbsp. coarsely grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
   4 oz. (2 c.) bow tie pasta
   To make croutons, rub garlic well over both sides of the bread.
   Reserve garlic for another use. Toast bread in a toaster oven or regular oven, but not in a slot-type toaster, in which the garlic might catch fire.
   Cut into 1/2-inch pieces. To make the dressing, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, cayenne, and black pepper in a small bowl. Tear lettuce leaves in half, lengthwise, then tear them into 1-inch pieces.
   Cook pasta, following package directions. Drain in a colander. Immediately return pasta to the warm pot. Add lettuce, scallions and two-thirds of the cheese. Add dressing. With a fork, toss to blend salad and coat it with dressing. The lettuce will wilt slightly.
   Divide the salad among 4 salad plates. Top with a quarter of the croutons. Sprinkle remaining cheese over the salads. Serve immediately.
   Note: To shred cheese coarsely, use the side of the grater normally used for carrots. Makes 4 servings.
   Today's Macaroni and Cheese
   2 c. milk
   4 Tbsp. butter
   1/4 c. all-purpose flour
   2 c. homemade style tomato salsa
   3 c. grated cheese, such as Mexican blend shredded cheese
   Salt, about 1-1/2 teaspoons,
   1 lb. dried pasta (though elbow macaroni will do, but I suggest you try corkscrew spiral rotini or fusilli)
   Fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish
   Into a large pot pour about 4 quarts of water, cover and set over high heat. Measure the milk in a glass measuring cup and warm for a minute in a microwave on high (or warm in a small saucepan).
   In a medium-size saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat, then stir in the flour and whisk until the mixture turns a deep golden, about 2 minutes.
   Add the warmed milk all at once and continue to whisk constantly until the mixture thickens and comes to a full boil, 4 or 5 minutes. (Whisk diligently and there will be no lumps.)
   Stir in the salsa, remove from heat, then mix in the cheese, stirring constantly until it melts.
   Taste and season generously with salt.
   When the water has come to a boil, add the dried pasta. Stir well so no pieces stick together and boil until the pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes.
   Drain thoroughly and return to the pot.
   Stir in the cheese mixture, then spoon into a serving dish, Sprinkle with the cilantro and you're ready to dig in.
   Makes 8 servings.
   Ohio Farmhouse Sausage Chili
   Brown in a large skillet:
   1 lb. pork sausage
   1 large onion, chopped
   Toward the end of the browning add:
   1 celery stalk, diced
   When the celery is softened add:
   1 28 oz. can (3-1/2 c.) whole tomatoes, chopped
   2 c. tomato juice or chicken broth (or a mixture of the two)
   1 to 2 Tbsp. maple syrup or molasses
   2 tsp. ground cumin
   1-1/2 tsp. powdered sage
   1/2 tsp. ground black pepper.
   Simmer for 20 minutes. Add: 2 19 oz. cans (3-1/2 to 4 c.) cooked, red kidney beans, drained and rinsed. Simmer for 15 minutes and serve.
   Roast Chicken In Cinnamon Scented Plum Sauce
   7 large purple plums or 12 Italian prune plums, pitted
   1/2 c. chicken stock or canned broth
   2 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. olive oil
   3-1/2 to 4 lb. roasting chicken, cut into eighths, wing tips and skin removed.
   9 garlic cloves, minced
   1-1/2 inch piece peeled fresh ginger, grated (1-1/2 to 2 tsp.)
   2 medium onions, finely chopped
   1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
   1/8 tsp. ground cloves
   2 tsp. ground cumin
   1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
   1 bunch watercress for garnish
   Combine 4 of the large plums, or 6 of the small ones, with the stock in a food processor and puree. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
   Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tsp. oil. Add the chicken pieces and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon place them in a baking dish large enough to hold all the pieces snugly in a single layer. In the same skillet, heat 2 Tbsp. of oil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and add garlic, ginger, and onion. Cook stirring, for about 4 minutes. Add the cinnamon, cloves, cumin and cayenne and cook to blend well, about 3 minutes. Stir in plum puree.
   Thinly slice the remaining plums and arrange over the chicken. Pour the plum sauce over the chicken pieces. Cover with foil and place it in the oven.
   Reduce the heat to 375 degrees and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover, baste with the pan juices, and bake uncovered until done, about 20 minutes.
   The chicken juices will run clear when a joint is pierced with a fork.
   Line a serving dish with watercress. Place the chicken pieces over it, spoon the plums and cooking juices over it. Makes 4 to 5 servings.
   New York Tofu Cheesecake
   Graham Cracker Crust:
   1 9" springform pan, non-stick
   1-1/4 c. (1 package) low-fat graham cracker crumbs
   6 Tbsp. soft, soy margarine
   1-1/2 lb. tofu, soft
   1 c. sugar or light granulated cane juice
   8 oz. soy cream cheese
   1 tsp. vanilla extract
   To make crust, process graham crackers in a food processor on high speed until they are finely ground. Add margarine and pulse until the mixture reaches the consistency of coarse crumbs. Pat the mixture into a thick layers in the bottom o the springform pan; set crust aside Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a blender or food processor, puree the tofu until smooth. Add sugar, soy cream cheese and vanilla, processing until smooth.
   Pour the tofu mixture into prepared crust and bake for 50 minutes. Turn the oven off, leaving the cake in the oven for one hour. Remove and cool. Refrigerate the cheesecake overnight. Serve at room temperature. Makes 12 slices.