Pick of the Moment: Brown Bananas for Breakfast in “Brown Butter-Banana Barley Porridge”
Banana Barley Porridge from Marczyk's
Brown bananas are one of life’s inevitabilities. We buy too many bananas and watch them slowly wither on the kitchen counter, or whatever the reason, but how many of us end up simply throwing them away when they become overripe? Well, not only are there tons of uses for ripe bananas (and I’m not just talking about banana bread!) but when incorporated into a dish, they add a rich, ripe sweetness and a creamy consistency. If you can’t use them right away, just peel the banana, throw it in a plastic bag, and freeze it (they’ll last at least a month or two in the freezer before they start to brown even further). Here at Marczyk’s, we don’t like to see anything go to waste, so we offer up the overripe fruit at a really great discount. What’s not to love?
My tribute to the brown banana is this simple, wholesome and delicious breakfast recipe. This whole-grain porridge is a great thing to make in large quantities on a leisurely Sunday morning, since it takes more time to cook. You can easily double the recipe and have leftovers that make for a lightning-quick, filling and nutritious breakfast throughout the week. The bananas also act as a natural sweetener for the dish and give the barley a creamy, almost risotto-like texture. That’s what I call a great way to start the day!
Brown Butter Banana-Barley Porridge
1 T vegetable oil
1 T butter
1 1/2 cups banana puree, lightly mashed
1 cup water
2 cups lowfat milk (or milk substitute)
1 cup pearled barley
sea salt, to taste
1/2 cup walnuts halves
maple syrup (optional)
In a large pot over medium heat, add oil and butter. Cook until the oils sizzle and butter begins to brown (you may need to increase the heat level, slightly) and become toasty and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Lower heat to medium and add banana puree. Allow bananas to saute in oil until lightly caramelized, about 5 minutes.
Add water, milk and barley and bring mixture to a boil, mixing often. Reduce to a simmer and cook, occasionally stirring, until barley is cooked and much of the liquid is absorbed, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange walnut pieces on a baking sheet in a single layer and toast until fragrant, about 5-7 minutes.
Serve the porridge hot, with the walnuts sprinkled on top and a light drizzle of maple syrup, if desired.
Tags: denver, food, gluten free, Recipes | 5 Comments »
Whitney is the merchandising guru at Marczyk’s. She touches practically all the Marczyk products, so has lots of time to consider how to use them. Here is her November pick, with recipe! Enjoy.
Picks of the Month: Kabocha Squash and Niman Ranch Chipotle and Cheddar Sausages
Here in Colorado, the cold weather has arrived! Our Denver trees are dusted with snow, and the market is abundant with local squash of seemingly endless varieties. While I tend to like pretty much any kind of squash, I have to admit that Kabocha is my all-time favorite. If you’ve never tried Kabocha squash, you are really in for a treat. Also known as the Japanese Pumpkin, the Kabocha is more intense, sweet, and vibrant-colored than regular pumpkins. The skin of this squash is edible when cooked, but since this soup is pureed it is best to remove it and use for making pumpkin stock. I used “Sunshine Kabocha” for this recipe (the bright orange-skinned variety) but green Kabocha would work just as well.
Marczyk Fine Foods squash
What you’ll love about this soup is the wonderful flavor contrasts of spicy and sweet. If you remove the seeds from the chipotles before adding to the soup, you will get a milder, smoky heat. If you want some sinus-clearing spice, there’s no need to remove the seeds. It might just be the tastiest cold medicine you’ve ever sipped! The addition of Yukon gold potatoes gives the soup a more creamy texture and thick body.
This soup also has my new favorite sausage from Niman Ranch, the uncured chipotle cheddar flavor. There are so many reasons why Niman Ranch is one of our favorite suppliers here at Marczyk’s - from their humanely raised “never-ever” meats (as in, never ever treated with hormones or antibiotics) to their environmentally sustainable farming practices - but the best thing about their meats is really the taste. These juicy and flavorful chipotle cheddar sausages have little pockets of melted cheese and the wonderful, smoky, spicy taste of chipotle.
Spicy Chipotle-Kabocha Soup
1 large Kabocha Squash (about 5 pounds whole, any color)
1 large yellow onion, halved and sliced
3 T butter
1/4 cup white wine
4 cloves garlic, minced
about 3 (1/4 of a can) Chipotles in adobo sauce, seeds removed and chopped
2 cups Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced
6 cups of vegetable stock
Salt, to taste
4 Niman Ranch Chipotle Cheddar Sausages, sliced
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prep the squash: halve the Kabocha and scrape out the pulp and seeds. Fill a large, shallow pan with about 2 inches of water. Place squash halves cut-side down in the pan and place in the oven. Roast until squash is very soft, about 30 minutes.
In a large pot over medium-high heat, melt butter. Add onions and cook until golden-brown and caramelized, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute. Deglaze pan with wine and add chipotles and potatoes. Add stock and bring mixture to a boil, then lower the heat to allow the soup to simmer.
Once squash is cool enough to handle, peel away the skin, scraping any stubborn bits off with a spoon. Stir the Kabocha flesh into the soup and continue to simmer, covered, until potatoes are completely soft and the liquid thickens, about 30 minutes. Using an immersion blender (or a blender or food processor), puree soup until smooth. Season with salt. Add sliced sausages and cook another 8 minutes, or until sausage is nice and hot. Remove from heat and serve immediately.
Tags: Add new tag, all natural meats, denver, Marczyk Fine Foods, niman ranch, Recipes | 11 Comments »
Westword Newspaper has added a recipe section to their Cafe Society Blog, and we’re the recipe writers! Join Pete Marczyk and Barbara Macfarlane every week for an easy-to-follow recipe slideshow/video. Bacon candy, corn chowder, fried chicken, and what to do with all that zucchini.
Tags: 4th of July, fried chicken, marczyk, niman ranch, Recipes | 2 Comments »