Tuesday, May 18, 2010

One From the Vaults

This is one of the very first recipes I ever wrote. I won't vouch for it at this point, because it's been more than 30 years since the last time I made it. The proportions sound about right, but since I don't bake like this anymore, who knows?

Punk's Impeachment Cake

2 c sugar
1 c butter or margarine, softened
2 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
1 1\2 c milk
4 c flour
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 c chopped walnuts, if desired

Cream together sugar and butter or margarine. Add vanilla and eggs one at a time. Combine dry ingredients and add to the butter/egg mixture alternately with milk.Stir in nuts. Pour batter into a greased and floured tube pan. Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Allow cake to rest in the pan at least 15 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack.

When completely cool, top with Chocolate Watergate Cover-up Sauce (alas, the recipe for the sauce has been lost to the sands of time. In its absence, top with ganache).

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Spaghetti with Salmon and Spinach

This is my variation on a recipe from Salon's recipe challenge The best recipes from your mothers.

Sueinaz wrote a charming story about cooking with her crotchety grandmother. I thought the recipe sounded fantastic, but my honey doesn't like shellfish of any stripe or spinach. I planned on using the spinach anyway, since I knew it would ne nothing like the spinach his (and my mother) used to make. It would be bright green and attractive. Unlike Sue's recipe, however, I used a bag of fresh baby spinach and therefore did not have to bother squeezing the water out. I just stemmed it and put it in the bottom of the colander. Worked like a charm.

This dish was easy, elegant, delicious and fairly healthy. It doesn't get any better than that, kids!

Spaghetti with Salmon and Spinach

8 oz spaghetti
1 lb skinned salmon fillet, cut into 4 portions
1 10 oz bag fresh baby spinach, stemmed (of course, if you love stems, leave 'em on. I don't)
1\2 c buttter (but realistically, you could get away with using half and I bet it would still be fantastic)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
juice and zest of 1 lemon
1\2 roasted red peppers, chopped
1\4 c white wine
1\4 chopped flat leaf parsley (basil would also work well)
salt and pepper

Heat a large port of salted water for pasta and add pasta when it boils. While the water heats, melt butter in a skillet. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add garlic and continue to cook another minute or so. Season salmon with salt and pepper on each side. Add salmon fillets to pan and cook 3 or so minutes on each side. Set aside. Place stemmed spinach in the bottom of a colander. When pasta is al dente drain over the spinach. Remove to a large serving dish and add lemon juice and zest and stir to combine. Add peppers.

To serve, place pasta mixture on a dish and place a fillet on top. Sprinkle a bit of the chopped parsley for garnish.