Friday, December 27, 2013

Noodles for Good Luck in the New Year

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I found this recipe in Nika Hazelton's cookbook American Home Cooking. Ms. Hazelton was an expatriate from England who married an American. She was a prolific cookbook author who traveled over the world. She died in 1992. This cookbook of hers is not just an exercise in ego. Ms. Hazelton selected the quintessential American family dishes from every region in the United States. Every recipe works perfectly
As cooking became trendy and precious in the United States, she seemed to raise a speculative eyebrow. Facing a group of wine writers in New York several years ago, Mrs. Hazelton waved aside questions about white truffles and little-known family vineyards. "I'm here to show you a meal from Tuscany that has the virtue of not being too expensive and not taking much genius or fuss to prepare," she informed her audience and proceeded to demonstrate the proper way to make escarole and rice soup. - Molly O'Neill, New York Times 
Eddie Hertzberg's Noodle Pudding - from New York

1/2 pound medium Noodles, homemade or store bought
6 tablespoons Butter
Salt & freshly ground Pepper
2 cups creamed Cottage Cheese
2 cups Sour Cream

Cook the Noodles in plenty of rapidly boiling salted water until almost but not quite tender. Drain. Turn Noodles into generously buttered 1 1/2 quart baking dish. Toss with 4 tablespoons of Butter, Salt, and plenty of Pepper. Stir in the Cottage Cheese and Sour Cream and mix well. Dot with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Butter. Cook in a preheated moderate oven (350 degrees) for about 30 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. 4-6 servings.

Note: Mr. Hertzberg must have been a great cook. Although made of simple ingredients, this noodle pudding or kugel is elegant enough to serve to company. In order to get the fabulous texture and taste, you must follow directions precisely. If you do so, this recipe is simple, inexpensive and sublime. I made one alteration. I top the pudding with panko bread crumbs. If you also do that, you must watch carefully as a bread crumb topping burns easily. And this dish is easy even if you "can't cook."

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