Saturday, July 23, 2011

Feast of St. Mary Magdalen

My patron saint is St. Mary Magdalen, I chose Madeleine for my Confirmation name and Magdalena is among my top picks for a daughter if we ever have one. July always seems so busy, but when I remember I like to honor her. Cooking With the Saints has several recipes attributed to her. However the savory main dish just seems like such an odd match for a summer feast day. Who wants to cook a roast in late July? It certainly doesn't seem to fit with the Slow Food movement of eating things in season. But with incredibly rain. cool weather around here I decided this would be the year to make the Rindsbraten St. Magdalena mit Kartoffelndeln, or Braised Beef with Potato Noodles.
The more I looked into this recipe I learned that the wine that is used for the beef is called St. Magdalena thus the odd pairing for the time of year. The recipe calls for "beef, topside, boneless" neither Mr. W nor the butcher at Fred Meyers knew what this was so in the end I decided to just buy a pot roast. Not surprisingly Freddy's also didn't carry this Austrian wine. I really liked this recipe though! I certainly couldn't make it most years, but I might try it in the autumn of winter. The sauce was really good and we had so much left over that I'm saving it to top some steaks later in the week perhaps.
I knew that the 3 of us wouldn't be able to consume a roast on our own so I invited the F's over for dinner. Mr. F asked if we could extend the invitation to Mr. P, who is moving away. I was certainly happy to have him for one last meal. I had seen him briefly the night before at his going away party, I just popped in and then took the children home to bed so Mr. W could stay out.
I wasn't able to make the potato noodles completely because I didn't check to make sure I had enough eggs before I went to the store. So stupid! Withe roast in the oven I couldn't run back out so I had to wait for Mrs. F to come over and she ran out for them and by the time she returned the baby was awake and I had to nurse so Mr. W had to finish up for me. These types of noodles, like spatzel are challenging for him, but I think most of the batches turned out well. The crummy, butter sauce was nice and covered any sogginess.
They guys all liked the roast and the sauce too and went back for several helpings of it and the potatoes with that butter sauce. Everything was a little frantic at the end there so I didn't take any pictures but we had one last meal on the deck with Mr. P.
I had planned to make the Magdalenenkuchen, or Magdalen cake but ran out of time. Nursing and a non napping baby can do that to a plan.

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