Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Plain Jane COTM - February 2015

Fennel, cherry tomato, and crumble gratin
Image source & recipe HERE

I did it, I had my first try at cookbook of the month.  I had class on Groundhog Day and so my family tradition of watching the classic movie named after the not so celebrated holiday had to be put on hold.  We celebrated with dinner and a movie on Wednesday night and I said I would cook.

I narrowed down my choices and decided to cook from two cookbooks from my Plain Jane COTM series.  The first was the main course from "The Cast Iron Skillet Cookbook, 2nd Edition: Recipes for the Best Pan in Your Kitchen" by Sharon Kramis and Julie Kramis Hearne.  I decided to cook something that I never eat, pork.  The dish was the fennel-seared pork tenderloin with blackberry sauce.  The vegetable side dish was from "Ottolenghi" by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi.  I wanted to make sure that the main dish and side dish had adjacent flavors and so I decided on making the fennel, cherry tomato, and crumble gratin.

Sorry for the lack of pictures, but the lighting was awful and the pictures did not turn out unlike the food.  The flavors were amazing and I ended up eating more than I thought I would as did everyone else as there were no leftovers.

The pork, although it took much longer to cook than the recipe said it would, was delicious, but it was really the blackberry sauce that was the star.  The flavors were like a rich wine and really added succulence to the pork.

The fennel, cherry tomato, and crumble gratin was a lighter dish than I expected.  Lighter in terms of flavor not calories.  The roasted fennel had a really soft and mellow flavor in which the cherry tomatoes added in the last stage of cooking really helped to brighten the dish and add a contrast of texture and color.  Ottolenghi and Tamimi have yet to let me down with there once again flavorful, simple, and delicious recipes.

These two dishes will be hitting my table again soon.  It is too early to tell if they will be part of my "signature dish/meal" but only time will tell.

Enjoy!

To see a list of the Plain Jane Cookbook of the month for 2015, click HERE.

To check out the books I cooked from, see below.


"The Cast Iron Skillet Cookbook, 2nd Edition: Recipes for the Best Pan in Your Kitchen" by Sharon Kramis and Julie Kramis Hearne {HERE}


"Ottolenghi" by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi {HERE}



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