Thursday, January 19, 2006

Something out of nothing.. Ragout

I wouldn't dare call it a real "recipe", but the poor man's ragout is a clever way of serving two meals at minimum cost.

When making a vegetable soup with meat balls, sometimes I pluck the soupbones and reserve the meat to make a ragout.

2 tbs butter
2 ts currypowder
2 medium onions, chopped
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
2 firm eating apples (granny smith, golden delicious) in cubes
3 tbs flour
broth, wine, milk or a combination

Add to taste: leek, corn, bell peppers finely chopped

Shred the meat so you'll end up with small "threads". Set aside.
In a large frying pan, heat some butter and sautee curry powder, onions, mushrooms, add the apple cubes a bit later.
Make a roux by adding the flour, stir carefully but thoroughly. You don't want lumps but you don't want to destroy your applecubes either. We're not looking for applesauce here!
Thin by using the liquid you prefer, usually I make a combination of vegetable or beef broth with a splash of wine (or maybe cognac or sherry). Add the shredded meat and let cook for a couple of minutes.
Now it's time to search your fridge or pantry and use whatever seems fit, a variety of vegetables can be added (there might be a bit of creme fraiche left to enrich your sauce?). Flavour the ragout with parsley, coriander and pepper and salt. Adding a bit of kurkuma and/or gingerroot in addition to the currypowder would be nice.

Serve with rice, pastry shells, vol au vent, or add a can of beans and use it for a wrap. With a little more effort you could even make croquettes or "bitterballen".

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