Friday, December 18, 2009

Aerarbran Stew

Hello denizens of the internet! My post of a na latha (of the day anns a Ghaidhlig, which I am speaking in for no good reason) is a little bit dorky. Today, I bring you the best in regional foods of regions that don't exist!

Perhaps I should explain myself. Here at Yummies Kitchen, we do more than just cook. All three of us are also writers of fiction, and all of our works deal with fictional cultures. The other day, a thought struck us: what do they eat in these places? And then we decided to answer that question by cooking their food!

The culture I was exploring that created this dish is based in a forest with flora and fauna greatly resembling the North Woods. That means there were such things as edible roots, cherries, wild rice and mushrooms, which is exactly what I decided to make this dish out of. Exactly half of us were skeptical of combining these things (Emily and half of me) and the other half were really enthusiastic about it (Bozzie and the other half of me). It actually turned out better than I could have hoped, and the results caused Emily to say "I never would have thought it, but this turned out really well!"

Aerarbran Stew with Cherries and Wild Rice

3 cloves garlic
1 white onion
1 turnip
1 large potato
5 mushrooms
2/3 cup wild rice
1/2 cup rice
2/3 cup dried sour cherries
2 cups Veggie broth
1 tbs butter
salt and pepper

Knife and Cutting board
Medium-large skillet
Lid that fits over skillet
Wooden Spoon

Music Listened To
Amal and the Night Visitors was playing on MPR, I believe

1. Chop the onion and garlic. Peel the turnip and cube both the turnip and the potato. Slice the mushrooms.

2. Sautee the garlic and onions over low-med heat until translucent. They should taste generally sweet before proceeding.

3. Add turnip and potato. Add the broth, rice, wild rice, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer 5-10 minutes.

4. Add the cherries and mushrooms. Simmer 10-15 minutes, until the rice is soft enough to eat.

It's really quite a simple recipe, when it comes down to it, but it turned out delicious. It can work either as a main course, or you could have it alongside other dishes. Perhaps you may want to try it for your Christmas dinner, side by side with your favorite savories (or your fave saves as I have just decided I like to call them).

And, as is our philosophy at Yummies!, don't just do it by the book! Improvise a little! I was thinking that next time I'd try to get some wild mushrooms instead of button or crimini. Maybe you're more carnivorous than me, so try putting some white meat in it! Or maybe a splash or white wine? The choice is yours!

We now close with the prayer of thanks I came up with on the bus knowing one would be required:

We thank the forest
We thank the earth
for our food
and for our birth.

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