Friday, January 21, 2011

Stuffing with Red Mustard Greens

Stuffing with Red Mustard Greens

After valiantly cooking our way through our leafy CSA box for a solid week, we had used up the bok choy, tatsoi, Siberian kale, broccolini, romaine, arugula, turnip, radishes, and cilantro, but one stubborn vegetable remained. With their shockingly intense horseradish-like flavor, red mustard greens are a fascinating item, but not one that I would want to put in my mouth on a regular basis. The Gastronomer and I couldn't imagine a dish that they wouldn't ruin. Nevertheless, we had come this far and didn't want to waste anything, so I scoured the internet and found this stuffing recipe.

I was rather terrified to taste it when I finished, but was pleasantly surprised when I did. It was truly an excellent stuffing, with plenty of satisfying flavor despite the omission of sausages or the like. The taste of the greens was significantly tempered by cooking, and the raisins (which I used instead of currants) added a nice sweet balance. If you ever find yourself in the possession of some red mustard greens and wasabi is your thing, then by all means use them in a salad--otherwise, this recipe will do quite nicely for a mild alternative.

Recipe by Bon Appetit, November 2009, courtesy of Epicurious.
  • 1 1-pound loaf pain rustique or other rustic country-style bread
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves; 1 pressed, 1 minced
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, divided
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 6 cups coarsely chopped stemmed red mustard greens
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 cups turkey stock or low-salt chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup dried currants
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 375°F. Cut bottom crust and short ends off bread and discard. Cut bread into 3/4- inch cubes; place in large bowl. Whisk oil and pressed garlic clove in small bowl. Add to bread cubes; toss to coat. Spread bread cubes in single layer on large rimmed baking sheet; sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper. Bake until slightly crunchy, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly, then return to same large bowl.

Generously butter 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat.

Add pine nuts; stir until golden, about 2 minutes. Add to bowl with bread cubes. Melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions; sauté until brown, about 10 minutes. Add mustard greens, thyme, and minced garlic; sauté until greens are wilted and tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to bowl with bread cubes. Add 2 cups stock to same skillet; boil until reduced to 1 cup, about 5 minutes. Pour stock over bread mixture and toss. Mix in currants and lemon peel. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer stuffing to prepared baking dish.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake stuffing uncovered until heated through and starting to brown on top, 20 to 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes and serve.

Yield: 6-8 servings
Estimated Start-to-Finish Time: Not Given
Actual Start-to-Finish Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Substitutions: I didn't have any lemons on hand and left out the lemon peel--I figured it wouldn't matter too much since 1/2 teaspoon is a pretty small amount of zest to start out with. I also used dried thyme instead of fresh thyme (1/3 the amount) and raisins instead of currants. I used 2/3 of a leftover French baguette we had for the bread and cut down the other proportions accordingly.

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