Thursday, July 24, 2014 Tammuz 26, 5774

Five Easy Ways to Get Sauced

January 23, 2014 By:
Rivka Tal
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Classic French cuisine is based around five “mother” sauces: Béchamel, Velouté, Espagnole, Hollan­daise and Tomate. I don’t know about you, but I’ve rarely ventured into this area.
 
Classics aside, I have found a number of easy recipes can top pasta, potatoes and rice, or even be used as sauces to bake chicken, turkey or fish.
 
The following Almond Pesto substitutes almonds for the usual pine nuts, and omits the Parmesan usually found in pesto. Feel free to add it if you wish. Argentinean Chimichurri Sauce goes well with practically anything: try it with hummus or skirt steak, dilute it for a salad dressing, or serve over green beans.
 
Harissa, hailing from North Africa, is not for the faint of heart, but its aficionados enjoy it with practically anything, including pita bread. Danish Dill Dip is of a different genre, but I really think you’ll like it and find it useful for potato salad, etc.
 
Almond Pesto
(Pareve)
3 large cloves garlic
3 and 1⁄2 oz. unsalted almonds
3 bunches basil (remove thick stems)
handful flat-leaf parsley
1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
 
Place garlic and almonds in the food processor bowl. Process until fine. Add basil and parsley and pulse a few times.
 
Add olive oil slowly in a constant stream while the food processor is working. Scrape down sides of food processor as needed. Add salt and pepper to taste.
 
Scrape out from processor and store in a tightly closed container in refrigerator.
 
Makes 1 and 1⁄2 cups.
 
Chimichurri Sauce
(Pareve)
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1⁄3 cup red wine vinegar
1⁄2 cup fresh cilantro
2 garlic cloves, peeled
3⁄4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper
1⁄2 tsp. ground cumin
1⁄2 tsp. salt
 
Pulse all the ingredients in food pro­cessor, scraping down sides as needed.
 
Scrape out from processor and store in a tightly closed container in refrigerator.
 
Makes 1 and 1⁄2 cups.
 
Harissa
(Pareve)
6 to 10 large red chili peppers (depending on degree of heat)
3 garlic cloves 
juice of 1⁄2 lemon
2 Tbsps. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. cumin seeds, roasted and ground
3 Tbsps. olive oil
1⁄4 tsp. salt
 
Carefully remove the seeds from the chili peppers. Keep fingers away from your eyes (best to wear gloves!) Cut the peppers roughly into fourths.
 
Place the peppers, garlic, lemon juice and vinegar in a food processor and process until combined, scraping sides as necessary. Add cumin, olive oil and salt. Taste to correct seasoning.
 
Store in a tightly closed container in refrigerator.
 
Makes 1 and 1⁄2 cups.
 
Danish Dill Dip
(Pareve)
8 Tbsps. yellow or brown mustard
2 Tbsps. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. honey
2 tsps. sugar
2 Tbsps. vinegar
2⁄3 cup canola oil
1⁄2 cup finely chopped fresh dill
salt to taste
 
Combine the mustards, honey, sugar and vinegar in a food processor. Add ca­nola oil slowly while machine is running. Process until smooth. Add dill and pro­cess once again. Add salt as necessary.
 
Store in a tightly closed container in refrigerator.
 
Makes 1 and 1⁄2 cups.
 
California Dip
(Dairy)
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
2 cups sour cream (substitute plain yogurt)
 
Mix together and let chill in a covered container in refrigerator. Serve with chips, pretzels or raw vegetables.
 
Makes 2 cups.
 
Rivka Tal is a former Minnesotan who has lived in Jerusalem for the past 47 years. She is a food writer and translator. Email her at: talriv@gmail.com.

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