Monday, May 2, 2011

Trader Joe's Strikes Again

I like to think I am too grass-fed, seasonal, locavore, food snob to be seduced by Trader Joe's. But I am not. Okay, we buy our meat on-line, get our fruits and vegetables either from our garden or the farmer's market, and cheese is now a regular gourmet affair (except for fresh mozzarella and the occasional tub of shredded parmesan I grab from Trader Joe's). It hardly confirms my food pedigree but I kinda love TJ's. It helps to stock the kitchen with -- dare I say it, convenience foods. Ingredients perfect for dinner in a hurry.
I had a class to dash out to a class and so I needed something quick cooking for James' dinner. I turned to a package of arugula and parmesan ravioli (cooks in four minutes) I found in the TJ's cold case. I topped it with a make-ahead ragĂș of mixed mushrooms. First I soaked some dry morels I happened to have in hot water for about 30 minutes. Next I sauteed sliced mushrooms (a mix of cremini and oyster I found at the farmer's market) and chopped rosemary in olive oil. After about five minutes I added a chopped onion and minced garlic and continued to cook for about three minutes more. When the onion was soft and the mushrooms were just getting a bit brown, I added in the drained and chopped morels, 1 cup of red wine, and 1 cup of the mushroom soaking liquid along with S&P and let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes until the mushrooms were soft and flavorful. I finished the sauce with a knob of butter.
Once I drained the ravioli I added them to the pan with the sauce along with about 1/2 cup of pasta cooking water and a handful of parmesan cheese. I gave everything a couple gentle turns over very low heat and dinner was ready to serve.

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