It's a difficult thing to watch when someone you love is being treated so poorly by people she is better than. And there can be a feeling of helplessness knowing there is not much you can do about it. On this specific Friday, however, I took it upon myself to do what I could within my power to make sure this difficult day didn't get any worse than it already was--I arrived home after work on that Friday with a bag full of culinary delights and flowers.
In the grocery bag were a few of her favorite things: there was cheesecake, there was lemon ice cream and the ingredients for a delicious home cooked meal too. Chicken, lemons, cream, butter, potatoes and cheese--there are just a few of her favorite things. Do you see a theme here? We got cooking and had gnocchi and chicken with a lemon cream sauce! Oh and a "Kelly Riley Salad" made of iceberg lettuce, red bell peppers and cucumber with a light, homemade vinaigrette. It turned out to be a wonderful evening. We hung-out in our kitchen, worked together to create a meal and for a few brief hours Kelly forgot her woes.
Just because you get some release doesn't mean the difficult things in life go away. That's how things work, though, and we all learn to work through every day in our own way. As you can see, our household focuses on food--and here we come to the following night's meal and the recipe of this post: Pasta with Chestnuts, Pancetta and Sage via Epicurious.
We happened--don't shun us because this might sound pretentious--to have a jar of chestnuts in the pantry and pancetta in the freezer. Though we didn't have the called-for tagliatelle, we did have some angle hair pasta on hand. So, Saturday being Saturday, we opened a bottle of wine and began that evening's work. Mise-en-place is common phrase at our place. While Kelly watched, talked and listened we had Girl Talk on in the background and the preparations began.
The recipe called for 'crumbling' the chestnuts. When you see a jar of nuts, you don't usually associate that word with the limitations of what you can do with the ingredient. The things crumbled with ease however, since they are already roasted and ready to go. Very convenient!
From there it was easy--chop, dice, grate and you're ready.