Happy Thanksgiving! We're one day away from the first big food holiday of the season. If you're like me and plan to be cooking up a storm, I wish you the best of luck and as much sanity as you can possibly muster. I think I've already slightly lost mine to be honest. This week's Cooking With Stanley is relatively well-rounded. I had originally planned to include a salad recipe as well but that fell through last minute. It might show up in next week's menu. We do, however, have an appetizer, main and even dessert recipe today. Desserts are rare because I have a very limited amount of patience for them. This one in particular didn't take as much of my patience as the homemade noodle recipe did. That had me throwing in the towel a time or two but more on that in a bit. Here is this week's menu...
Manicotti using Stanley's Homemade Noodle Recipe with Meat Filling
Warm Individual Chocolate Souffle
Let's start with the Marinated Olives. Funny story about these guys. This is my third time making them. The first, I forgot to serve them and take photos. They sat on the counter, where I continued to forget about them, until they grew mold. Into the garbage they went. The second round, I remembered them but in my efforts to prevent mold I put them in the fridge and hardened the olive oil. I don't know what I was thinking because of course olive oil hardens when chilled. Third time is the charm! I even put the leftovers in a mason jar to keep them from going bad. Hello, success! This is a great mini appetizer. I love olives so it's hard to go wrong with them for me but I loved the toasted spices. I found that to be an interesting touch.
The manicotti was delicious. It was a very stressful process to get the end result. The meat filling was pretty simple. You cook the mixture on the stove till the liquid is gone, let it cool and then puree in a food processor. Simple enough. The dough. Kill me, please. The homemade pasta recipe in Stanley's book is a whole world different from my family's recipe. Both are from Italy, I have no idea what regions but ours works way better. Maybe it's because I'm used to making the dough completely by hand and Stanley uses a food processor and dough machine, but his dough was incredibly hard to deal with. I had to play with the ingredients to find the right ratio for me because what he has written just wasn't working. One recipe was additionally supposed to get me 40 noodles or so and I got somewhere around 17. It was enough for what I needed but if I were making both manicotti fillings, I would have been screwed. The end result was absolutely delicious though. Next time I make homemade pasta, I'm using my family's recipe instead to make my life easier.
The Warm Individual Chocolate Souffle's will be featured in my next newsletter as a part of the Behind the Scenes section so make sure to sign up! These were delicious but incredibly rich. I would recommend serving them with vanilla ice cream to counter the richness of the chocolate. That combination is heaven.
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!