Sunday, October 7, 2007

Sunday Dinner

Prosciutto wrapped Game Hen with a Raspberry Balsamic Glaze
Roasted Beets and Romano Beans
Isreali Couscous with Zucchini and Hazelnuts

One of my favorite things is making a nice sit down dinner once a week. I would like to do this on Sunday evenings but our weekly trivia game interferes with the timing. I made this menu for friends about a month ago and everything was so delicious.

Yesterday's trip to Sauvie's Island produced an amazing bundle of beets and I am tempted to make this meal again tomorrow night.

And maybe a pie.


Prosciutto wrapped Game Hen with a Raspberry Balsamic Glaze

1/2 pint fresh raspberry's*
2 tbsp sugar*
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
8 slices of prosciutto
4 (1 1/2- to 1 3/4-lb) Cornish hens
*if raspberries are not in season substitute 1/2 cup of jam for berries and sugar.

Briskly raspberries, sugar and vinegar in a small saucepan, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until glaze is reduced to about 1/2 cup, about 8 minutes. Cool to room temperature (glaze will thicken slightly as it cools).

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Cut out and discard backbone from each hen with kitchen shears, then halve each hen lengthwise. Pat hens dry and season with salt and pepper, then arrange, cut sides down, in a large roasting pan. Brush hens liberally with glaze, reserving remainder, and wrap a slice of prosciutto around each half hen, tucking ends under. Roast in middle of oven, brushing with pan juices and reserved glaze twice (every 10 minutes), until juices run clear when a thigh is pierced, 30 to 35 minutes.

Roasted Beets and Romano Beans

6 beets, trimmed
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
2 red onions, each cut into 6 wedges
1 pound romano or green beans, trimmed, cut into 3-inch lengths
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 400°F. Wrap beets tightly in foil. Place directly on oven rack. Roast until tender when pierced with knife, about 1 hour. Cool beets. Peel and quarter beets. Transfer to large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, tbsp thyme, salt, and pepper; toss to coat.

Divide onion wedges between prepared baking sheets drizzle with olive oil; sprinkle with 1 tbsp thyme, salt, and pepper. Roast until golden brown and tender flipping once, about 15 minutes. Add to beets.

Divide green beans between same baking sheets. Drizzle beans with olive oil and 1/4 cup water. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover tightly with foil and roast until almost crisp-tender, about 15 minutes. Uncover and continue to roast until water evaporates and beans are crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer to bowl with onions and beets.

Drizzle the balsamic vinegar; toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Isreali Couscous with Zucchini and Hazelnuts

1 cup isreali couscous
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup finely chopped shallot (6 1/2 oz)
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/3-inch dice
1 medium yellow squash, cut into 1/3-inch dice
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup toasted, chopped hazelnuts
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lemon zest

Cook couscous in 1 1/4 cups water, covered, until all liquid is absorbed. About 10 minutes.

While couscous is cooking, heat oil in a saute pan over moderately high, then sauté shallot, stirring, until golden, about 5 minutes. Add zucchini, yellow squash, salt, and pepper and sauté, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are just tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in nuts, parsley, basil, and zest.

Add cooked couscous to skillet and stir gently. Season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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