You visited on a Monday and we went meatless. Or mostly meatless. There was the beef broth, but that had been made on a Wednesday and had been in my freezer for months. Of course, if that’s permissible, can I eat the beef stew that has been in my freezer for months? Probably not. What if the broth were made with a carcass, something that would otherwise have been discarded, will that get it a pass?
This whole meatless Monday thing isn’t as easy as it sounds. WWMBD? (what would Mark Bittman do)
For our meatless Monday we had to decide between curried vegetable swamp and mushroom ragu over polenta. We settled on the mushroom ragu because it was a different sort of vegetable swamp. And I’m easing out of the Paleo lifestyle so polenta sounded good to me.
Armed with two pounds of mushrooms, we commenced.
Sweat some onions and garlic
Add the mushrooms and sauté until most of their liquid has cooked off
At this point we diverged from the recipe. Instead of layering the mushroom ragu with the polenta and some mozzarella cheese, three layers of each, we just served the ragu over the polenta, one layer each, and eschewed the mozzarella altogether.
Under other circumstances, it would have been disappointing. We probably should have cooked it a little longer and allowed the sauce to concentrate and become syrupy. We probably should have followed the recipe.
Meatless Monday concluded with a unambiguously meatless French Apple cake. This dessert is made up of three parts apples to one part cake. Really the cake is only there to seep into the few small spaces between all those chopped apples. I liked it. We had it with whipped cream, which covers a multitude of sins from the mortal—too much fruit to be called a cake—to the venal—bland.
I guess the dessert was also a little disappointing. I didn’t really notice. Having you here made everything shine like the top of the Chrysler building.