This is just about the time of year when I begin to freak out about the utter intensity of New England winter. So I've made a the-sun-will-come-out-tomorrow survival guide:
1. Invite friends over for dinner, a lot. Drink red wine, light the fire, and play fun music. Keep it simple (pasta dinner, big stew) and casual.
2. Go play outside everyday. No matter what. I just bought Dylan a huge down snowsuit and am determined to run it into the ground. I'm also planning on buying really ugly winter boots for myself.
3. Read good books.
4. Watch good movies.
5. Walk on the beach often. We live in the ocean state so lets do it.
6. Bake cheesy casseroles.
Wild Rice Casserole
with cremini mushrooms, mustard, tarragon
from super natural every day
2 large eggs
1 cup whole milk cottage cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon dijon-style or whole grain mustard
Fine-grain sea salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or unsalted butter
8 ounces cremini mushrooms, chopped
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 cups cooked wild rice, at room temperature
1/3 cup grated Gruyere cheese
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon or thyme
Preheat the oven to 350 with a rack in the top third of the oven. Rub a medium-large baking dish with a bit of butter or olive oil.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, cottage cheese, sour cream, mustard, and a scant 1/2 teaspoon salt.
In a large skillet over high heat, combine the olive oil with a couple pinches of salt. Stir in the mushrooms. After the initial stirring, leave the mushrooms alone until they release their water and the water evaporates, about 5 minutes. Continue to cook and stir every couple minutes. Continue to cook and stir every couple minutes until the mushrooms are browned. Add the onion and cook until the onion is translucent, another 2 or 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cook for another minute, and remove from the heat. Add the rice to the skillet and stir until combined.
Add the rice mixture to the cottage cheese mixture, stir until well combined, and turn into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with two-thirds of the grated cheese and cover with aluminum foil.
Bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 20 to 30 minutes, until the casserole takes on a lot of color. If you are in a rush, you can finish it under a broiler for a couple of minutes, but watch carefully so the top of your casserole doesn't burn; it can happen quickly. The finished casserole should be hot throughout and golden along the edges. Serve sprinkled with the chopped tarragon and the remaining grated cheese.