I cooked again. Walking from the supermarket with an over-flowing bag of shopping over my shoulder plus two other bags of bits (including a mat I bought from Trade Aid - grown up shopping!) in my new boots nearly killed me (but I stand by my assertion that secondhand boots are still better than new ones in that they don't require breaking in) and made me want to throw everything out the window, but I didn't. Since Brazil's heart-breaking loss to France in the 1998 FIFA World Cup, which saw me, overcome by emotion and sleep-deprivation, trash my bedroom at five or six in the morning (concurrently breaking my new, fake Baby G watch - more heartbreak), and then sheepishly clean it up later when I woke up, I haven't been much of a smasher or breaker of things that I will have to fix up later. It just seems a bit lame (especially if the cleaning up part has to be done in front of an audience, or involves scraping bits of hamburger off a wall and then throwing up in the bucket you're carrying around with you). Instead, I sat, and recovered, and drank this weird coconut water drink I bought that is supposed to have more potassium than a banana/be 99.9% fat free/give you x-ray vision, and then I calmly made dinner for my family. This isn't going to become a regular Thursday thing, but I quite like making what I cooked, and it's yum and healthy (as long as you don't count cream or carbs as unhealthy), so I'm going to share the recipe with you, just like it's 1950 and this is my radio show. The recipe is one I ripped out from a magazine at my Mum's house (a bit Tony Soprano - sorry Mutter) but I added the broccoli and chilli powder because I am such a whizz in the kitchen and just love feeling my way around food. [Insert retching here.]
500g shell pasta
an onion, finely chopped
400g can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup vege stock
300mL cream (does anyone else still write mL like we learnt in chemistry instead of ml?)
1/3 cup mint leaves, plus extra to serve
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 heads broccoli
1/2 cup shaved parmesan
Music match: Bon Iver - Bon Iver
Cook pasta, drain well, and return to pot. Then boil or steam broccoli until just cooked.
(I have to do this last since we only have two elements and if I do it first, everything goes cold. Hopefully you are dealing with a fully-grown kitchen that will let you do all of this at the same time).
Heat oil in pan on medium. Saute onion and garlic until tender. Stir in beans and stock, reduce heat to low and simmer gently for a few minutes. Add cream and return to simmer (I can't remember how long the recipe said, but the longer I can be bothered doing it, the better it seems to taste). Transfer to blender/food processor, add mint, chilli and lemon juice, and process until smooth. Season to taste, and then toss through pasta with the broccoli and parmesan. Serve hot with more parmesan and extra mint leaves.