Don’t cry over too much milk

Sunday afternoon. It has been a long week, and they say that walking is good for your chakras and stuff, so why not? I did my steps, felt less guilty about that banoffee pie, ready to go home. I am on my way, thinking about the usual: my life choices, which one was my favourite Spice Girl, what I am going to have for dinner. Then all of a sudden, like a bolt from the blue, something occurred to me, something that made me forget about Ginger spice (yes, she is my favourite)and made me realise that something way more important than my stupid worries was at stake: my breakfast. I did my groceries shopping on Saturday, but did I get the milk? What about my cheerios waiting for me in the naughty food drawer?

I needed to think, and needed to do it quickly. I tried to go through my steps in the supermarket the day before: fruit aisle, pasta aisle, ran across the dessert aisle to not get tempted, frozen aisle, dessert aisle because I am weak, meat aisle. Not recalling any dairy or milk. I definitely forgot the milk, but good on me that I remembered while going home – Mondays are already tough, the last thing I need is a dull breakfast.

All full of pride and self contentedness I head home, nothing can come between me and my bowl of cheerios, Monday and probably the rest of the week are safe! Such a happy ending.

But, there is always a but in this stories, my brain likes to play these little games with me sometimes, and it simply gives up on me when I need it most. So I can remember the names of the 7 kings of Rome (753 BC, subject studied when I was 8 years old), but I don’t remember what I have done yesterday. So I open my fridge, holding my milk as if it was the Holy Grail, only to discover that not only I had bought mozzarella and goat cheese, but I obviously had milk. Thanks brain, nice one!

Obviously the milk was going to expire in 2 days time, and by now I think we all know how much I hate to waste food (here you can read all about my drama on wasting the sourdough discard: https://theparmigianawhisperer.blog/2020/06/23/love-your-discard/)

So I had to use up my milk. To be honest with you, I think that sometimes milk is given for granted, its full potential is not always seen. But not this time and not on my watch! So I made something delicious that I am sure you will love: besciamella sauce! Here is the recipe for the besciamella, and how I used it for a lovely meal.

Ingredients to make 500ml of besciamella:

-milk, 500ml

-butter, 50g

-flour, 50g

-a pinch of salt, pepper and nutmeg

Steps:

1.Put the milk in a pan and warm it up

2.In the meantime, melt the butter in a pan at low temperature

3. Add the flour all in one go and keep stirring until you get a lovely golden colour – this mixture is called roux

4. Add the nutmeg, salt and pepper to the hot milk

5. Gradually add the milk to the roux, whisking constantly to avoid clumps

6. Let it boil for 6/7 minutes until reasonably thick, add nutmeg and pepper if necessary. If you prefer it thicker than the sauce in the photo below, I suggest to add more flour and butter and let is boil for longer

So I made my besciamella sauce, and I decided that the best way to use it was to make stuffed shells pasta! Recipe below

Ingredients for 8 people:

-pasta shells, 400g

-mince meat, 300g

-carrot,1

-celery,1

-white onion, 1

-olive oil, 3 tablespoons

-tomato passata, 500ml

-red wine, half a glass

-mozzarella,450g

-besciamella sauce, 500ml

-Ham, 5 slices

-salt and pepper as you like

Steps:

  1. Chop the onion finely
  2. Put the oil in a pan and add the onion, let it cook at medium temperature until soft
  3. In the meantime, chop finely the carrots and the celery, and add them to the onion
  4. Add the meat and let it cook
  5. Add the wine and keep stirring until it evaporates
  6. Add the tomato sauce
  7. Let it cook for 90 minutes at low temperature
  8. In the meantime prepare your besciamella sauce following the steps above. Cover the besciamella with cling film that touches the surface of the sauce, so it doesn’t form that little skin on top
  9. Turn off the heat of the mince sauce and let it cool
  10. Boil water and cook the pasta al dente
  11. Drain the pasta once done and leave it in a pan to cool
  12. If everything has cooled down, take some of the tomato sauce and spread it on a tray
  13. Preheat the oven to 200° fan assisted
  14. Mix the rest of the mince sauce with the besciamella sauce
  15. Stuff the shells with this mixture, leave some space for the mozzarella and the ham
  16. Cut the mozzarella in cubes about 1/2cm per side
  17. Cut the ham in squares of about 1cm per side
  18. Add the mozzarella and the ham in the shells, and place them in the tray
  19. Top with more mozzarella if you have any left
  20. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes
This is before the oven…it doesn’t look too pretty at this stage
And here is the final result!

#cooking #food Pasta

32 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Enjoyed reading don’t cry over too much milk!. You have a great way with words, and your recipes sound interesting. Some of them remind me of the way my husband’s mother followed Polish recipes and my husband still does to this day. I myself am not that great a cook.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thank you so much for reading! I am sure you are great, you only need to find the recipe that will make you shine! your comment about your husband mum teaching him how to cook made me smile, some mums just love to share their cooking secrets with their kids!

      Like

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