Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Burrata with Asparagus, Pine Nuts, and Golden Raisins

One of the best parts of working from home is the flexibility it offers in cooking. For some reason, the boy wasn't nearly as excited as I was about the start of asparagus season. I decided to keep all the deliciousness to myself not subject him to the horror of asparagus by eating it for lunch instead. Some leftover mozzarella (purchased for a start of tomato season salad) was lurking in the fridge, so this seemed like a perfect option. The crispy bread crumbs add a nice crunch to the dish, so I would recommend not skipping them. The golden raisins (I used currants) added a touch of much needed sweetness, so I also wouldn't skip those. Who in their right mind with skip pine nuts? So I don't need to defend those. I think the dish would be helped by adding some prosciutto or you could do what I did and add a bit of vinegar to give it a little something extra as well.

One year ago: Grilled Cumin and Chile Veal Meatballs
Two years ago: Potato Latkes
Three years ago: Tex-Mex Comfort Food

Burrata with Asparagus, Pine Nuts, and Golden Raisins (from The Cheesemonger's Kitchen)

9 ounces/255g asparagus
2 tbsp golden raisins/sultanas
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
6 threads saffron
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1/4 cup/30g bread crumbs
2 balls fresh Burrata cheese, 6 ounces/170g each

1. Cut woody ends off asparagus. Blanch in salted boiling water for 2 - 4 minutes or until tender. Shock in icewater, drain, and dry. Cut on angle into pieces resembling penne pasta.
2. Soak golden raisins in warm water for 5 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
3. In large bowl, combine asparagus, pine nuts, raisins, saffron, and 2 tbsp olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Heat 1/4 cup oil over medium heat and add bread crumbs. Fry for 1 minute or until crisp and golden. Remove from heat and set aside.
5. Cut Burrata balls in half and place on plates skin-side down. Divide asparagus mixture among plates and sprinkle fried bread crumbs on top.
6. Drizzle with remaining olive oil and serve cold or at room temperature.

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