Tuesday, December 10
Chickpea Cutlets with Mustard Sauce, Asparagus, and Herb-Roasted Potatoes
I think I’ve spoiled Seth. This dinner used to be one of his 4.75, knocked it out of the park dinners, but now, I guess it’s just not as impressive. Still, it’s one of our favorites. The chickpea cutlets recipe was one of the first ones I tried when I got a copy of Veganomicon, and they are awesome. They’re a lot easier to make than it seems like they should be, too. I don’t mean that this is a quick, 30-minute dinner, but you should be able to have it on the table in about an hour, including cooking time for the cutlets and potatoes. I made extra chickpeas when I cooked the ones for the stew on Monday, so those were in the fridge and ready to go. You can use canned, but you’ll have some leftover beans since the recipe for four cutlets calls for 1 cup of chickpeas (the recipe in the book makes 4, the one on the site makes 8). We’ve tried two different sauces for these, both recipes from Veganomicon the mustard sauce, and the red wine roux. The mustard was the definitive winner. I generally make it with white wine (I buy those little mini bottles for cooking since I don’t drink wine) instead of cooking sherry, but this time I was out of white wine and cooking sherry. I did not plan well. What I did have on hand was a bottle of regular sherry from when I made the White Beans in Sherry-Bread Crumb Gravy (It’s awesome), so I used that. It was good and what I take this to mean is that basically, probably any lighter wine will be fine here. I make a half batch of the sauce at a time. The recipe makes a lot, and while it freezes well, it really only reheats properly once, and after that the consistency gets too weird. The extra cutlets freeze really well, too, and can just be heated up by wrapping them in foil and putting them in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes or so. I wrap them so they don’t get too crispy. Oh, and by the way, for these cutlets, you’ll want to use your tofu-package-openers, also known as, if I remember correctly, steak knives. We always make asparagus with this because the mustard sauce is really good on it. I just toss it in the grill pan during the last 7 minutes or so of cooking time for the cutlets and sprinkle with salt & pepper. For the potatoes, I didn’t use a recipe, because they’re roasted potatoes and don’t really need one. I took some fingerlings and cut them in half, then tossed them with about a tablespoon of olive oil, some nooch (a trick I picked up from the Candle Café cookbook) and a heaping teaspoon of Herbs de Provence. And some salt. I roasted them at 450 for about 10-15 minutes so they would get crispy, then reduced the temperature to 375, added the cutlets and let it all cook for another 30 minutes. They came out a little dry, but were pretty good. I sometimes use the toaster oven for roasting the potatoes so they can cook at a higher heat, but they don’t always get as crispy as I’d like because they get crowded in the pan.