The lovely and amazing Isa posted a Chopped challenge and I couldn't resist the throw down.
The Challenge: Make a vegan entree using Blackberries, Fresh Mint, canned Black-Eyed Peas, and Bittersweet Chocolate
I thought this up at work on Friday, and I am shocked and amazed at how delicious and interesting this turned out. I'll try not to hurt myself patting myself on the back. I was seriously worried about the chocolate pasta. I'm delighted with the results.
|Black Celebration pasta garnished with challenge ingredients: Blackberries, black-eyed peas, mint chiffonade, and chocolate shavings.|
Black linguine is usually made with squid ink and used to be a big favorite of mine. I took out the seafood element and whipped up a dark fresh pasta with meaty balls and a fresh homemade sauce.
1 Cup all purpose flour
2 oz Bittersweet chocolate (melted)
1/4 cup water (approx)
1/2 tsp salt
6 cloves garlic
1 small sweet onion
Fresh herbs - Mint, Basil, Oregano
Large Can Tomatoes with juice (28-35oz)*
1 Pint fresh blackberries
Black-Eyed Pea Balls**
1 Cup canned black-eyed Peas rinsed
1 TBS olive Oil
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup water
Fresh herbs - Mint, Basil, Oregano, Thyme
1 Heaping TBS dried Italian Herbes (or combo of Italian herbs like basil, oregano, etc)
1/2 cup vital wheat gluten
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (panko)
Boil water for pasta (salt when ready)
|Trio of components with authentic splatter|
Linguini part 1: Mix together flour, melted chocolate***, and water. Add additional water/flour as needed to form smooth ball. Knead for a few minutes or throw into bread machine/mixer/food processor for a quick knead. Wrap in wax paper or plastic and set aside.
The mint is more subtle and blends well with the other fresh herbs. You get an occasional distinct minty bite from the garnish and it's not weird.
|Black Linguini ready to cook|
I made the rest of the pasta and shared with my neighbor who I "forced" to judge.
Yay, she loved it! Definitely digging the bean balls. Seriously, she wanted to lick the bowl. What better compliment is there?
Declan the cat also looked quite envious.