Claud and I are suddenly empty nesters. Well, we feel as though we are and it is a bit too soon if I have anything to say about it. Daphne works most nights from five in the evening until midnight. She then sleeps until noon. She spends the afternoon getting caught up with her friends. So, we don't see much of her. Jack flew to England to visit our family for a few weeks over there. It was not easy for me to put him on that flight all alone. I tried so hard not to cry. I failed at the last second. It's really strange and quiet at our house without our teenagers around. I do not like it at all.
This weekend, we decided to throw a last minute dinner party. I think we were just a little bored and wanted to liven things up around here. Also, we had a few beautiful rib eye steaks in the refrigerator and since I don't eat steak, it was a good idea to invite over some people who do. My friend, Robert, was coming and told me that he was a vegan again. He goes back and forth between being vegan and being a meat eater. His exact words were, "I'm eating only vegan meals unless you are serving rib eye steak." I started laughing. He said, "What? Oh no, you are serving rib eye?" I told him we were. I told Robert that I was going to also serve a plant based meal for myself and he could have the option of either.
I decided that both versions of the dinner would have brown rice and broccoli. The meat version would have rib eye and the other would have marinated and sauted mini portabella mushrooms. I marinated the mushrooms in Worcestershire sauce, miso paste, wasabi paste, soy sauce, salt and pepper. I thought this would give them a meaty flavor. I was right. These mushrooms were so tasty.
Carrot and Red Pepper Sauce is a great complement to many dishes. Above, it is served with ribeye steak, brown rice and broccoli.
Juicers are a handy tool to have in the kitchen.
The hard part was coming up with a dairy free sauce, which would work for both the steak and the mushrooms. I usually make a red wine with mushrooms, cream and butter sauce. I thought of a dairy free pesto sauce but Claud wasn't interested in that. Earlier, that morning, I made my usual mixture of vegetable juice with my juicer. Claud made some pineapple, apple, and blackberry juice. This was the first time he has used the juicer. I think because the juicer was on his mind, he suggested I juice some carrots and make a sauce out of that. He thought I should throw in some curry powder and turmeric. He always wants to throw in curry powder. The other day, we made fajitas and he sprinkled curry powder on the chicken. I thought that was weird, but everyone loved it. I thought the carrot juice was a great idea but didn't think I would make it a curry. Then, I thought adding coconut milk would make it delicious and creamy too. So, that is exactly what I did.
I juiced a bunch of carrots and added in the juice of a red bell pepper just to make it more delicious. I mixed this juice in with sauted onions, garlic and red peppers. Then, I poured in some coconut milk and seasoned this with salt and pepper. It was all fairly easy and simple to make. Although the carrot juice was his idea, he didn't like the idea of using this sauce for the steak. He made a buttery and cheesy bchamel sauce. Whatever! I wasn't going to have that sauce. I tried to stay away from it, but I couldn't resist having a spoonful. Why does bchamel have to taste so heavenly?
Soon our guests arrived and we were dishing up the plates. Robert couldn't resist the rib eye. So, he filled his plate with Claud's sauce and steak on one half and my mushrooms and sauce on the other half. Everyone else followed suit and tried a bit of everything. I am pleased to say that almost everyone went back to ladle on more of my carrot sauce. They preferred it to the bchamel. Well, they at least thought it was a great complement to it. In the end all of the food was eaten, every last morsel. All of my sauce was gone.
Carrot and Red
Time: 20 minutes
2 red peppers, divided
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cloves of garlic
large yellow onion, diced
red onion, diced
can of coconut milk
salt and pepper to taste
Juice the carrots and one of the peppers into a bowl and set aside. In a large wok or pan, heat the oil over medium high heat. Saut the other pepper, the onions and the garlic for ten minutes. Pour in the carrot and pepper juice. Let this simmer over medium heat for another ten minutes. Add the coconut milk. Add salt and pepper to taste.
I will definitely make this sauce again. I think it would taste great with chicken or fish. I also think it would be delicious as a pasta sauce or over gnocchi with some fresh cilantro on top. It would even be tasty if you juiced some ginger and added in some curry powder and turmeric and served this over vegetables and rice as a curry dish. There are loads of possibilities. If you don't have a juicer, I highly recommend getting one. They are so much fun.