[Smashy the Hammer] [An Aspiring Luddite]
I carry no phone
An aspiring Luddite
In a wired world.
[Jeff Berry]
Jeff Berry is an early adopter of the Internet and the Web, a late adopter of Twitter, and declines to adopt Facebook. With the death of Google+, he's experimenting with federated platforms. He admins a medievalist Mastodon instance, and can found on the PlusPora diaspora pod. He hates cell-phones.

Cop-Out Double-Header
1 November 2013

So this week, in addition to doubling up on hyphenated nouns, I'm also giving you all a couple of rough sketches for things rather than completed culinary masterpieces.

The first 'recipe' might be viewed as an addendum to Some Things To Do With Chickpeas, since it's another thing to do with chickpeas. The second is simply a quick and cheaty way to make a pretty decent rice pudding.

Let us begin. [Lots of pictures]

Brussels Sprouts and Chickpeas

Take your sprouts off the stalk, if, in fact, they are on a stalk. Cut the biggest ones in half, so as to have a bit more uniformity of size. Rinse and trim as needed.

Heat a bit of butter in a large, heavy pan. Add the sprouts and sauté over medium high heat, until the sprouts begin to look done. At that point add the chickpeas and continue to cook, stirring as needed. Add a pinch or two of salt, and if you want to add some other spices, go right ahead. When the sprouts are tender enough for you - test the big ones - plate and serve.

The sprouts and chickpeas play well together, and don't really require anything else but salt, in my opinion. That said, there is one variation that leaps immediately to mind. Rather than butter, some bacon or something similar could go in the pan - sprouts cooked with bacon is a fairly common recipe. That does, of course, turn it from a vegetarian dish into one that is most certainly not.

Easy Rice Pudding

Put the rice in the bottom of a dish, or split it between a couple of ramekins. Lightly beat the egg and then add everything else to the egg and mix thoroughly. Alternatively, mix the rice and currants together and put them in the dish or dishes before mixing the rest of the ingredients. In either case, pour the egg and milk mix over the rice and stick it in a steamer for about 35 minutes. That's it.

Now, this presumes you have a steamer available. If you don't, you could probably put into a low oven instead, but if I'm making rice pudding in oven I usually start by making the rice first. The steamer method has two main advantages. The first is that it's fire-and-forget - put stuff in ramekin and go. The second is that, by cooking it in a steamer, it becomes practically impossible to overcook it or burn it. For that reason you can set your cooking time longer than you think you might need, secure in the knowledge that it will do no harm.

The main variables which might require tweaking are the liquid-to-rice ratio, and the cooking time. Part of what makes this a cheat is that the egg covers up a multitude of liquid-to-rice ratio sins. Without it, if your balance is off, your rice can be soupy or dry out. With it, you can go a bit heavy on the milk, since the egg will hold it all together.

© 2013 Jeff Berry
The Aspiring Luddite