Real Food for Real Life

Saturday, March 6, 2010

A new toy...

Okay, it's not  a toy, it's a plastic colander.  I picked this up at our local  Dollar Tree for a buck and asked the dear hubby to drill the holes to make them larger.  That monotonous chore done, and with the addition of a hard plastic spatula, I had a "spatzle maker."  Whenever I have made spatzle in the past, I used an old Tupperware colander I got from my mother forever ago (I think she had had it since sometime in the 70's- it's avocado green), but it was made for the sink, not holding in the hand, and its rectangular holes made funny shaped spatzle. 

I wanted to test drive the new "toy," so I made spatzle again last night, despite the fact we had had it so recently.  I had a head of cabbage so I decided to make cabbage and noodles, but use the spatzle instead of the usual purchased dry egg noodles.  Cabbage and noodles is not something I ever ate growing up; I was introduced to this dish by Ben, whose grandmother used to make it as a Lenten meal,  but it is sooo good (and so simple).  Adding a little browned kielbasa or smoked sausage makes it a complete meal (for you NON-vegetarian types).  Wanting more veg, I also steamed some carrots with a bit of rosemary and tossed with a little butter.  The spatzle was so easy to make with the new hand held colander, and so good, that there will be many more of these tasty little bites in our future.

Cabbage and Noodles

1 head of cabbage, cored & thinly sliced
1 recipe of spatzle, or cooked egg noodles, tossed w/2 tbs. butter
12 to 16 oz. pkg kielbasa or smoked sausage, sliced in thin half rounds (optional)
olive or canola oil, as needed
coarse salt & fresh ground black pepper

Brown the sausage in a large non-stick skillet over med-high heat about 5 minutes; remove to a bowl and keep warm (I put it on the back of the stove).  Reduce the heat to a tad above medium and add about 2 tablespoons oil to the pan.  Add 1/3 of the cabbage and toss with the oil.  As the cabbage wilts, add handfuls of cabbage until it is all in the pan (it is amazing how much it shrinks); a little more oil if necessary and season well with the salt and pepper.  Cook, tossing occasionally, until nicely brown, about 20-25 minutes.  Toss the cabbage, sausage and buttered spatzle or noodles together and serve.


Rosemary Carrots

1 lb. bag baby carrots
1/2 tsp.dry  rosemary, crushed, or 1 & 1/2 tsp. fresh rosemary, minced
1 tbs. butter

Rinse the carrots and placed in a covered microwave dish.  Toss with the crushed/minced rosemary, cover, and cook on high for 6 minutes, or until tender, but retaining a firm bite.  Drain off any water in the dish, toss with the butter and serve.

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