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Pasta with Sausage and Vegetable Sauce
Aug 31st, 2004

I haven't been cooking much the past few weeks, we've been crazy busy and much eating out has ensued. But last night I actually broke out the pots and pans and made a very quick delicious recipe from Jaques Pepins' cookbook "Jacques Pepin's Table: The Complete Today's Gourmet." The original recipe contains just pasta and veggies, but we had some sausage in the freezer and I knew it would make a few members of our household very happy, so in it went. To make the original vegetarian recipe, just eliminate the sausage and add 1/4 cup olive oil for sauteing the eggplant and onions.

Pasta with Sausage and Vegetable Sauce

This recipe is really good and a nice way to introduce eggplant to those who might be a bit wary of it. Jim even ate his. Six ounces is indeed a very small eggplant, it turned out to be only half of my fairly petite specimen. So I cut the remaining half in two, placed it cut side down on an oiled, foil-covered baking sheet and roasted it in the oven at 450 or so while we ate dinner. Eventually Jim found it in the oven and pulled it out. The eggplant then can be scooped out of the shell and mixed in with the leftovers for lunch the next day. It adds a nice roasted taste to the dish and ups the vegetable content.


Pasta with Sausage & Vegetable Sauce

1 large red onion, sliced thinly
1 small eggplant (6 ounces), chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
3 to 4 cloves garlic, smashed, peeled and minced
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tbsp grated parmesan
1/2 pound pasta (I used linguini)
a package of sausage from your freezer


Get everything chopped up and then put the water on for the pasta and heat up a big pan on medium high heat. Brown the sausage. Add the eggplant and onion to the pan using the oil from the sausage to saute. If the sausage is lean or you have ommitted it, add some olive oil. Saute for about 6 minutes, until the veggies are browned and soft. (Be sure to put the pasta in the pot of now boiling water sometime during all this).

Then remove your pan from the heat and add the tomatoes and garlic. Give it a good stir. Add 1/3 cup of the pasta cooking water to your pan, then drain the pasta and add it to your sauce. Stir everything around in your pan then put it all in a bit bowl and top with the chopped parsley and garlic.

-adapted from Jacques Pepin's Table: The Complete Today's Gourmet
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Comments

I thought I had the perfect little eater. Ate vegetables by the armload (seriously I thought for a while she would turn orange given how many carrots she ate). Loved fruit. Loved whole grains. Thought milk was so-so but was still nursing so it didn't matter. Hadn't seen a lick of sugar. Ate heartily at every meal. Tried a bite of everything. Liked all of it so had many more bites...

Then another day dawned. Humility arrived. Vegetables were abandoned overnight. Toast with jelly was frequently requested and occasionally eaten. Often consumed nothing but fruit and one pea. Then removed the pea and refused to eat anything else. Even toast with jelly, which had, apparently, gone out of style while I was asleep. Completely gave up on anything resembling protein. Momentarily fell in love with cheese and bean quesadillas. Fell out of love. Always wants to try what we are eating. Never likes it. It's sort of like trying to cook for royalty except you have to cut everything into very, very small bits...

Anyway, it's a familiar, humbing story... The serious question I have has to do with eggs. We have discovered that Sadie is, at least for the moment, allergic to eggs. After Sadie's original allergies, I got used to cooking without all sorts of things, but eggless baking, I have yet to figure out. And the egg substitutes I've found out there are totally crazy and the end products have terrible texture or end up like bricks--this might be exacerbated by the altitude here, which throws lots of baking recipes wildly out of kilter, but I don't know how to adjust without the damn eggs... At any rate, if you have any eggless baking sorts of recipes that you've made and that were on the edible side of things, I'd be grateful. (Don't bother with yeast breads, I have lots of those sorts of recipes, it's the quick bread, muffin sort of zone that I'm looking for).

-posted by Lisa on Mar 13th, 2006
Hee, I feel your pain Lisa. I had so many ideals and big plans about cooking for and with my kids when I was pregnant with Jay. And although it's hard to remember it now, there was a time when he was a pretty unfussy eater. But kids seem to hit this magic age and wham - they turn into picky, fickle little sugar-hounds.

I have never tried much no-egg baking myself, but I would be happy to do some research and test drive some recipes. Sounds like fun. I have heard that both bananas and prunes can be substituted for eggs in quickbread type scenarios.

Anyway, check out The Post Punk Kitchen's (http://www.theppk.com/veganbaking.html) guide to vegan baking with an emphasis on replacing the eggs. There are recipes too - the pumpkin muffins look like they might be up your alley. It's a great site.

-posted by Kymm on Mar 13th, 2006
Hey Lisa, I was just reading a She Who Eats and came across a post about a microwave cake recipe that doesn't use eggs. She lists several variations of the recipe - the peanut butter and jam one looks like a very kid friendly one, well they'd probably like the chocolate too, but the pb&j has less sugar and some protein. The cake is cooked in a smallish container in the microwave, so it makes just enough for one or two. Anyway, I thought you might like to check it out and see the proportions she uses - she substitutes soy milk for the eggs.

http://shewhoeats.blogspot.com/2004/07/recipe-thought-into-cheaters-cake.html

-posted by Kymm on Mar 13th, 2006
Kymm, thanks for all the eggless suggestions. I'm off to track them down. I've been craving baked goods for the past few weeks, but can't bear to make them and eat them in front of Sadie when she can't share. We'll have to skip the peanut butter and chocolate for now, since we're waiting to feed her those things until she's older in the hopes of preventing any further allergies.

I also wanted to belatedly add another quick dinner suggestions--calzones. When we make pizza on the weekend, I always chop extra vegetables and make extra dough for sometime that week. Then it's just a fifteen minute dough-rolling, vegetable sprinkling party to get dinner ready. The stored dough is a little bit different and seems, for whatever reason, to do a bit better as a calzone wrapper than as a pizza crust.

-posted by Lisa on Mar 13th, 2006
© 2006, Kimberly Cooperrider | kymmco@excite.com