Monday, April 30, 2012

Thyme Bok Choy & Bacon Wrapped Red Kale

Yesterday was a great day for a lot of reasons. I planted myself firmly in the kitchen in the afternoon. After making a short trip down to Provenance Food & Wine to pick up some eggs I settled in around 3pm to make some dinner (That I didn't finish till 9, great food takes time). 

I had a little bit of an idea of what I wanted to make having made some great pork filled tortolini pasta things a few weeks ago. Looking at what was in the fridge and knowing I really didn't know what to do in order to preserve all the greens from CSA week 2, I decided to wing it. My dinner list looked a little bit like this:
  • Pork Filled Pasta Shapes, figure out filling
  • Use Bok Choy & Russian Red Kale some how
  • Make bread for the week
  • What the heck do I do with Vitamin Green?
And so the journey began. I whipped out some pasta dough for it to rest while I made some bread dough. The bread turned out great although I didn't kneed it enough this week so it's a bit dense. However the great trade off was the crust is about perfect. I'm really thankful for the work put into The River Cottage Bread Book, the steam technique is making for a wonderful crust.

Once the bread was set and I was waiting for it to rise I set to the main courses. I've been really enjoying some different flavors and rediscovering several others in my kitchen the last few weeks. Tonight I opted to modify the pork version I did a few weeks ago resulting in this.

Pork Filling:

1 lb. Ground Pork
4 oz. Bell pepper - Red
2 oz. Garlic
4 oz. Ginger Root
4 oz. Scallions
Red Pepper Flake
Kosher Salt

Once that was made, I wrapped them up into little pork filled pasta things. I find this fold works pretty well for this kind of content although you still need to be gentle with a pasta that is too thin.

Bacon Wrapped - Russian Red Kale (Picture Above)

After those had been made, side dishes. I had made a bacon wrapped lettuce a few years ago and the size of the Russian Red Kale I got was about perfect for this, it immediately came to mind. It's simple to make and a tasty treat, kind of like a warm salad with bacon.

1 Head of Kale - Halved or Quartered (depending on size)
1-2 pieces of bacon (depending on your love for bacon)
Handful of fresh thyme
Oil Oil
Balsamic Vinegar

What I did: I halved one Kale. In a mortar I mashed up the oil and thyme, drizzled it on the leafs then wrapped it in bacon. Drizzled the balsamic and put it in the oven at 375 for, I don't know, 25-30 minutes or so.

Thyme Bok Choy

I was hell bent on using some Bok Choy tonight, given that the pork filling above had a healthy dose of ginger in it, I winged this and made this up. It takes hardly no time at all, I was getting tired and this was a wonderful surprise.

2 Small Bok Choy's
Handful of Fresh Thyme
Seasame Oil
Sea salt

What I did: Heated up the pan till it was at the right temp, med-low heat. Added the oil and let it warm up. (Waited till the oil got those wavy lines in it) then added the thyme and let the flavors cook together a little. Lastly, sauteed the Bok Choy till done. Added sea salt to taste.

At the end of the evening, the end result was this tasty plate of food, paired with some wine and butter from Nordic Creamery. Damn good I must say... Although I didn't use any vitamin green, that's a puzzler.

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