4.22.2008

Cooking Mojo is Back (I Hope)


I had to go to the grocery store for some odds and ends and was inspired to make something fresh for dinner (as predicted, the leftover pasta lasted a week and a half). I had some leftover celery, so I bought some whole milk mozzarella to make some braised celery, broiled with cheese (also had some leftover Emmenthaler Swiss). This is a variation on one of my favorites, Braised Fennel with Mozzarella. I also picked up two small piece of sirloin, which I grilled on the deck. I managed rare on the smallest piece (should have left it on a bit longer) and a perfect medium rare on the less small piece.

It was delicious!

13 comments:

vince said...

Now I must clean the drool off my keyboard. That looks great!

Tom said...

A tatooed architect who visits Las Vegas, rides a motorcycle, organizes her garage, and cooks steak medium-rare (with cheesy celery)? OMG, Anne is a Mary Sue!

Michelle K said...

Braised celery 'eh?

Hmmm....

Nathan said...

Damn, that steak looks good.

Anne C. said...

Heh, not a Mary Sue, Tom. Anne of All Trades: Expert Dilettant. That, by the way, will be the title and tag line for the next iteration of my blog. I am hereforth copyrighting it.

Michelle -- the braising softens the celery quite a bit. (I braised it in 1 can chicken broth with 1 can water.) However, I do believe the key is the cheese. Isn't it always?

:)

Jeri said...

So can you give rough directions for the braised fennel version? I love fennel and have a big bulb sitting in my veg drawer. The only recipe I could find via google had it boiled 45 min, then sauteed, then baked in a cream sauce with mozzarella on top. Seemed a little unecessarily fussy, plus, just cheese, not cream sauce, sounds better.

The steak does look great. ;) Glad you're back in the kitchen! My family laughs at me if I try to take a picture of anything I've cooked. Finks.

Anne C. said...

Sure, Jeri.
The braising liquid, as described above, is 1 can chicken broth and 1.5 cups of water (I just estimate by filling the can and putting most of it in). The fennel is simmered for 35 minutes (I believe that's the right time, but you can be sure by piercing it with a fork to test for doneness). The celery, by the way, is only for 20 minutes. Then, take the fennel or celery from the liquid and put it in a baking dish, laid out evenly. Then put the grated cheese on top. I think the recipe has 4 oz. of mozzarella (gruyere or swiss for the celery) + some tablespoons of parmesan for three medium sized fennel bulbs, but that's something you can eyeball really easily. As usual, I err on the side of more cheese, 'cause I want every bite to have some. Sprinkle on some dried (or fresh, I suppose) parsley and then broil on the top rack until the cheese is golden and bubbly.

It's extremely easy, and you're right that the cream sauce is unnecessary.

belsum said...

Erring on the side of more cheese is an important part of the process. Hee! That looks amazing!

Hilary said...

Anne I arrived here via bacon cat central. The braising of said stalk veggies sounds delightful, will try shortly. Jeri, I also shave fennel into a slaw with cabbage as the main player along with chopped arugala, basil and a light vinaigrette with garlic and chile pepper paste.

Also Anne is your deck sounds fascinating is it gas or electric? I usually use a grill but you architects are so resourceful these days.

Jeri said...

Thanks, Anne, I'll try it this weekend. Sounds really yummy.

Hilary, I've done a slaw with finely sliced fennel, red peppers and orange vinaigrette. It's really good that way - I'll have to try your combo too.

Anne C. said...

Welcome, Hilary. Two-thirds of the characters that post here are from Whatever (through Whateveresque, aka the 'e'). They are a fun bunch to have around. :)
A handy resource is my list of links there on the right.

I have an old (second-hand) gas (propane) grill on the deck. My dad used to cook on charcoal, but I have gas, 'cause it's great for a quick grill (which is generally what I'm doing).

Tania said...

Braised celery, eh? I'll have to give that a try. I have celery and leeks in the fridge right now, as I'm getting ready to make Matzo ball soup, a little late for Pesach, but still seasonally appropriate.

Nathan's right, that steak looks divine.

PS - Hi Hilary!!

Nathan said...

Tania, Passover is eight days. You've still got time.

Uncle Gudolf would be proud.