Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Greek sauce from childhood and more...

We try to eat healthy, yet from time to time, usually related to daring bakers, we splurge on the not-so healthy. Earlier this week, I'd been thinking about what to do with some ground chuck I thawed out the other day and got an idea from childhood - Hot dogs with Greek Sauce.

Now I'm not so enterprising that I would make my own hot dogs... I took help from the supermarket there :). What I did make, was the Greek Sauce. Growing up in northwestern PA, Greek Sauce was one of those things that was part of life. I remember going to the hotdog shop somewhere on the west side of Erie with my grandparents, sitting in the booth, and marvelling at the tabletop juke box that was at the end of the booth. Greek sauce isn't one of those things that is easily found. It's not the same as coney sauce, and doesn't have beans in it like a chili sauce.

I decided to make this, since the hubs is a big fan of hotdogs and likes meat sauces on them, if he could he'd eat at Skyline, or our local drive up joint - The Corral, everyday. I followed the general recipe that my mom uses for greek sauce:

1 lb ground beef
1 small onion, diced
1 tsp cayenne pepper
3 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano (greek oregano - if you have it in your garden!)
S & P to taste
1 1/2 cups water

Brown the beef, breaking up as fine as possible during cooking. When most of the water has cooked of, push the meat aside, tilt the pan and sop up the grease as much as possible with a paper towel. Add the onion and cook with the beef until transparent, then add the remaining spices and water. Simmer until the sauce thickens - serve on top of a hotdog, preferrably garnished with mustard and topped with chopped onion!

I was also prepping the scapes to make some pesto. I used the recipe provided by Marion in last week's CSA newsletter (adjusted for my quantities, but easily scales):

4 oz garlic scapes chopped
1/4 cup EVOO
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 tsp lemon juice
1/4 cup pine nuts

Her recipe didn't call for pine nuts, but I had them on hand, and usually put them in basil pesto, so figured it couldn't hurt! Process the scapes to a fine grind with a food processor, then add the cheese and nuts. Continue processing until a coarse paste forms, then slowly add the EVOO until just combined. I mixed in the lemon juice after i pulled it out of the processor bowl then placed in an air tight container and refrigerated.

Used a few tablespoons the next night tossing it in with hot pasta and grilled chicken. It was very delicious!

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