I’ve come to love adding grapes, specifically, to a lot of my food now. The flavor compliments well with almost anything I’ve tried them with, so far.
This particular one is pure vegan fare that is refreshing and simple to make. As I’ve always said, I’m not, by any means, a vegetarian, let alone a vegan but hey… a good dish is a good dish, right?
And as usual, most of my ingredients here are organic. But… that’s just me!
Ingredients: Spinach Pasta, Grapes (Halved), Chopped Walnuts, Minced Garlic, Olive Oil, Chopped Parsley, Salt & Pepper
Directions: Cook pasta to al dente. In a medium-low heated pan, sweat minced garlic in olive oil for a few minutes. Add the halved grapes, season with salt & pepper and stir for a few more minutes until grapes are a little wilted. Then add the walnuts and cooked pasta and toss to combine. Serve on a plate and garnish with parsley and if you want, more walnuts and uncooked halved grapes.
Sometimes you get lucky you get to whip up something quick with whatever’s about to be thrown out from the fridge. Yes, I hate to waste anything. Luckily, the challenge of coming up with a killer dish from whatever’s left over from the week before intensifies my hunger even more. Makes me feel like a mini Iron Chef, even.
Except for the orzo, everything in here is leftover stuff. And they just happened to be the perfect combination for a delightful dish that I will definitely be making again and again, in the (near) future.
But for now… let’s savor the prototype, shall we?
The sun-dried tomatoes I used here are the dry ones. So, I needed to rehydrate them in hot water for about 20 minutes or so. If you have one in a bottle soaked in oil, you can skip this part.
Ingredients: Orzo, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Grapes, Garlic, Mâche, Olive Oil, Fresh Parsley, Red Pepper Flakes
Directions: Cook orzo to al dente, as directed in package. Meanwhile, in a medium-low heated pan, sweat a few pieces of julienned sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil (its own, if possible) along with some minced or chopped garlic and a dash of red pepper flakes. Stir until garlic starts to brown a little. Make sure not to burn the garlic. When orzo is cooked, drain using a strainer and transfer to the pan. Add chopped parsley and grapes and mix thoroughly. Serve on a plate and garnish with as much mâche as you want. This is one garnish you want to have more of, trust me.
Ever since I found out about mâche, I’ve been using it a lot. Seriously, I like this better than spinach. And mind you, I love love love spinach! But the mache’s flavor is so versatile and mild you can use it in pretty much everything from salads to soups to plain munching it by itself. Heck, it’s even pretty enough to use for garnish!
Here’s a salad I made for lunch today with simple ingredients like grapes, black walnuts and leftover sausage pieces. It’s very good with a fruit based dressing. I ran out of mango dressing so I used raspberry vinaigrette on this one.
Also, as you notice in the photo, I added some blackberries but found it to be unnecessary since it was hopelessly competing with the grapes whose flavor is overpowering. It looks pretty but I would omit the berries next time and simply let the grapes shine (and compliment the mache) on their own.
Ingredients: Mâche Rosettes (or baby spinach, if you can’t find any), Grapes, Black Walnuts, Diced Leftover Meat (optional), Fruit-Based Dressing, Fresh Ground Pepper
Directions: In a salad bowl, coat mache rosettes with dressing and a little ground pepper. Transfer to a serving plate and top with everything else.
If you haven’t noticed yet, I have been on a fruit binge lately. And not just for desserts but using fruits on savory dishes, in particular. I love how it gives a new dimension to an otherwise familiar flavor.
This recipe was inspired by watching an episode of Lidia’s Italy on PBS. When I saw this, I thought there was nothing to it, really. She just fries some links in a dutch oven and throws in a bunch of grapes along for the ride. So, I wanted to add a little more depth to the dish by making use of the grape’s juice and creating a rustic sauce out of it.
Well, here it is and all I can say is that… you have to try this! NOW!
Ingredients: Raw Spicy Italian Sausages, Grapes (any kind), Shallots, Garlic, White Wine, Fresh Parsley, Fresh Ground Pepper
Directions: In a medium-heated pot or dutch oven, pour a splash of wine and add sausages. Cook all sides until wine has evaporated. At this point, the oil from the sausages will begin to appear. Fry until golden brown! Transfer sausages on a plate and set aside. Meanwhile, mince the shallots and garlic and put them in the blender along with the grapes, a splash of wine and ground pepper. Blend until grapes are smashed but not pureed. Pour mixture and additional whole grapes into the pot to deglaze. Place sausages on a plate, smother with grape sauce and garnish with fresh parsley.