Thursday, July 17, 2008

Walk to the store for what else...cheese & sausage!

OK, here's some pictures of some of the sights we see along the way to one of the four grocery stores we've been frequenting.

Here's an example of some of the window boxes that proliferate on the row houses...we like the tumbling effect of the bright green leaves against the red door.

This is another sight you'll see walking the streets of Society Hill...gated church yards dating back from the 19th century. This one is particularly striking, as the garden has the 9 foot tall statues of some early church leaders I'm guessing.

Crossing Lombard St., you approach South St...think Virginia Beach boardwalk meets Granby Street. It kind of reminds me of a mall without walls.

Tonight we went to Chef's Market to pick up some good melting cheese like an Aged Provolone and some sweet Italian sausage...the menu is a broccoli rabe and sweet Italian risotto served with a zucchini & sausage tuille.

Before we got started, we needed to finish up some mozzarella and fresh tomato we had laying around the fridge. Elizabeth's knife skills are on display here...taking inspiration from our little walk down South St., she gave this salad a Philly twist...check out the picture!

Let's see...94 degrees's time to stand over a steaming pan for half an hour stirring risotto right? While Elizabeth went to work on her signature risotto, I started working on the zucchini & sausage vision that came to me last night when looking into the veg crisper of our fridge.

I used a mandolin slicer with a julienne attachment to make teeny matchsticks of one large zucchini. While I did this, I had a skillet of sweet & hot sausage browning in a pan over medium.

I salted the zucchini hash with about a half teaspoon of salt, then I went to work squeezing the moisture out of the hash. Going one handful at a time, I squeezed as much liquid as I could out of the zucchini hash.

With the hash dried out, I shredded some aged provolone over the hash, then doled in out in six equal piles on a baking sheet. I pressed the "tuille" down ( this is quickly turning into a minicakes) then topped it with some crumbled sausage, which I'd pulled off the heat and allowed to drain on a paper towel. Next into the oven 350 degrees for about 15 minutes.

Peeking in I noticed the cakes just weren't forming up as I'd hoped. I upped the temp. to 400 to try and crisp it up some. It didn't help, so I pulled it out of the oven and threw it in a skillet to crisp up the base.

The final result was so-so...good for a substitute hash-brown using zucchini instead of potato. It just didn't have the crispiness that I'd imagined like a parmesan tuille would be. Next time I think I'll not only mix in the cheese with the hash, but also lay down a base of cheese on the baking mat and then spread less hash atop that...maybe eight cakes instead of six.

Of course, Elizabeth's hard labor paid off...sweating over the stove for nearly 45 minutes, she added the sweet sausage and steamed broccoli rabe to her risotto; it was creamy & flavorful...the rabe giving a bitter hint and the sausage providing a meaty bite to the creamy rice grains.

Served with an affordable Cote D' Rhone we were loving it. Normally Thursday is Taco Night, but I'm thinking Risotto 'Rhursday (said in Scooby Doo voice) may be in order.

C & E

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