Sep 25th, 2006
The latest cookbook I've been perusing is Get Saucy, by Grace Parisi. I believe I've mentioned here before that I tend to make a lot of sauces, salsas, and other taste enhancers that can b served on the side - that way the kids can have their food plain and Jim and I can still partake of a spice or two occasionally. So this book is right up my alley. I already own Sauces, by James Peterson, which is probably the definitive book on the subject of saucemaking, but I never use it. It's a very large, authoritative, hardback book and I think I find it intimidating.
My favorite thing about Parisi's book is the index in the back where you can look up a type of food (in this case pork) and see a list of the sauces in the book that would pair well with that item. So when my dad unexpectedly stayed for dinner on Sunday, I looked to the index to see what would liven up a plain pork roast. Since we also had a bucket of apples sitting on the counter from our backyard apple tree, my eye immediately stopped on Curried Applesauce. An hour later my hand was cramped from peeling and coring pounds of ridiculously tiny little wormhole-filled apples, but the house was filled with the tempting smell of warm sweet apples and Indian spices. The applesauce is sweet and savory and goes really well with pork roast - for the vegetarians I'm already salivating over what it might taste like piled on roasted winter squash with maybe a scattering of pungent cheese. I threw in a spoonful or so of Major Grey's Mango Chutney near the end of cooking time, basically just because the opened jar of chutney has been languishing in my fridge, but it added a little vinegary tang to the sauce that I enjoyed.
So when you've finally packed away your summer sandals and come to terms with the presence of fall, take advantage of apple season and try this sauce. It might make the passing of summer just a little bit sweeter. And if that doesn't work, here's Ian this morning all ready for his first day of preschool. Both boys are in school, huzzah for fall!
Curried Applesaucemakes about 2 cups2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 large shallot, minced
1 1/2 tsp mild Madras curry powder
1 1/2 lbs apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown or Turbinado sugar
1/4 cup water
1 to 2 tbsp fresh lime juice, to taste
1 to 2 tbsp mango chutney (optional)
Melt the butter over medium heat in a medium-size heavy saucepan. Add the shallots and cook until softened, stirring occasionally. Add the curry powder and stir for a minute. Then add the apples, sugar, and water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat until softened, about 20 minutes.
Increase the heat to medium-high, remove the cover, and cook, stirring a few times, until the liquid is nearly evaporated and the apples completely broken down, about 5 minutes longer. Stir in the lime juice, mango chutney (if using), and season with salt and cayenne. Will keep in the fridge for a week or in the freezer for one month.
-Grace Parisi, Get Saucy