Archive for November, 2011

St. Francis Borgia, October 10th
November 19, 2011

Post by Daniel

(Note from Haley…due to the busyness of having our baby girl last month, I’ve been totally behind in posting our feasts! And I can’t for the life of me find pictures of the Spanish Eggplant Spread or the Potato Aioli, even though I’m convinced we took some. Forgive me? The baby is super cute.)

St. Francis Borgia was born to a wealthy, noble family in Valencia,
Spain. He was the 4th Duke of Grandía. He and his wife Eleanor had
eight children. Despite his wealth and power, St. Francis and his
family lived a pious life devoted to Christ and his church. After the
death of his wife, he renounced his titles in favor of his son and
decided to become a Jesuit priest. Although special treatment was
often offered to him because of his high birth, he always refused it.
Instead he became renowned for his humility and powerful preaching.
Eventually he was appointed the Superior General of the Society of
Jesus. He sent missionaries all over the world and advised kings and
popes, all while remaining humble and pious. He is a model of servant
leadership that is especially important to contemporary society.

We’re nearing the end of our summer garden season but we’ve still got
a few eggplants, tomatoes, and peppers. Simple Spanish Tapas are a
delightful way to celebrate the last of the summer harvest. The
Spanish, like the Italians, appreciate the pleasure of fresh and
unadulterated ingredients. So the first thing you’re going to want to
do is slice some fresh, local tomatoes, drizzle a little olive oil on
top and serve them with bread and a Spanish cheese like Manchego. Do
this first! That way you can eat while you’re making everything else.

Spanish Eggplant spread-
2 medium sized eggplants
2 cloves of garlic (roughly chopped)
A few green onions (roughly chopped)
A couple of sprigs of parsley
Olive oil
Salt and Pepper

Peel the eggplant and slice into 1/3 inch thick. Heat the olive oil
(enough to coat the bottom of your large skillet) and sauté the
eggplant until the slices are soft and starting to brown. Put the
eggplant into a blender or food processor and then sauté the onion and
garlic for a few minutes, then toss into the blender. Add the parsley
and about a tablespoon of vinegar. Blend, season with salt and pepper.
If you have trouble blending, add a little bit of olive oil or water.
Serve with warm bread.

Potatoes Aioli-
2 or 3 medium potatoes
2 banana peppers
Safflower oil (or similar vegetable oil, I wouldn’t recommend olive
oil but it can work if it’s all you’ve got)
Salt and pepper

Chop the potatoes into small chunks. Heat the oil in a large skillet
until it’s real hot and then toss in the potatoes. You want them to be
spread evenly across the skillet, not piled up on top of each other.
Stir frequently. Dice the peppers and toss them in after a couple of
minutes, once the potatoes are softening. If your potatoes are
sticking, add more oil. Season with salt and pepper. Once the potatoes
are starting to brown, place them on a plate. Top with Aioli sauce and
diced parsley.

Aioli sauce-
So, aioli is basically garlic mayonnaise. The ratio is different but
it’s the same idea. So, you can find a trustworthy recipe and spend a
long time whisking egg yolks and mixing everything just right or you
can do this:

½ cup mayo
Olive oil
Lemon juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
Chili powder

Add a little oil, lemon juice, chili powder, and garlic to the mayo
and whisk together. You want it to have more of a liquid consistency
so that you can pour it on top of the potatoes. Add more oil and lemon
juice if you need to.

All of this will go great with a nice pale ale.