Decluttering uncovers an old favorite recipe

To start off the new year right, I’ve been cleaning up and decluttering. I’ve pulled old pictures out from under beds, found lost notebooks behind dressers, and thrown out clothes that no longer fit.

All of it is gone and out the door and inside we can all breathe a little easier with less stuff.

As I was in my decluttering frenzy, I ran across an article that talked about paring down cookbooks. Books are my weakness. It is very difficult for me to get rid of them, even the bad ones. And it never occurred to me to cull my cookbooks.

The article said that all cooks use really only one or two cookbooks with any regularity and the rest are either given to them as a gift or bought on a whim because of pictures or one or two good recipes. It said to go through all the cookbooks and find out which ones you use and get rid of the rest. But before giving the others away scan them and figure out which recipes you use and write those down in the back pages of the cookbooks you are keeping.

I did it. It was painless. I had 28 and I’m down to six cookbooks. Oddly enough, the culling of cookbooks gave me the strength to toss some of my fiction. I got rid of three books.

Here’s one of the culled recipes I wrote in the back of my “4 Alarm Cooking” Rockdale Vol. Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary cookbook.

Bowties and Broccoli

1 lb. box of bowtie pasta (or any shapes of your choice)

1 1 .2 cups olive oil, divided

2 bunches of broccoli, broken into florets

8 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese

Garlic salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta in a large kettle in a generous amount of salted water, to which 1 tablespoon of olive oil has been added

While pasta cooks, steam broccoli until just tender; drain and set aside.

Saute garlic in 1 .2 cup olive oil until fragrant but no browned; remove from heat and set aside

When pasta is done, drain and return to soup pot. Stir in garlic and oil from sauté pan, parsley, grated cheese, broccoli and remaining olive oil until well mixed. Add garlic salt and pepper to taste. If mixture seems too dry, add a bit more olive oil.

Sprinkle additional cheese on top, if desired, and serve.

Contact Christine Granados at 446- 5838 or

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2010-01-21 digital edition

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