The Christmas and festive period has finished and I've been back at work three days. All the chocolates have been eaten and the Port has been drunk.
But there's still a fairly good-sized piece of Stilton lurking in the fridge and I neither want to throw it away nor eat it on yet more biscuits (or on celery of course which is actually my favourite cheese carrier. Is carrier the right word?).
So, stilton and spinach pasta it is and it's very good and super simple too.
It's also quite rich - as it would be - so I made a quick and easy salad of just fresh little gem lettuce leaves and a mustardy dressing to go with it. I have salad at most meals and this is my favourite dressing.
I make it one day then pop it in the fridge and just add to it the next day - it keeps going for about a week before I tip the last bits away, wash out the glass and start again. In the summer this never-ending dressing goes beautifully with tomato and onion salad.
For the dressing just put a couple of sloshes of olive oil in a glass, jar or mug and a good slosh of white or wine or rice vinegar. Peel and squash a garlic clove and throw that in and then stir in a teaspoon of Dijon mustard. Taste and see if you need more oil or more vinegar to get the balance right for you.
Put the lettuce leaves in a bowl, spoon on some dressing, add black pepper and a very little salt and that's the salad done.
Cook as much pasta as you like and while it's cooking, you can start the sauce. You will need the pasta cooked and drained to add to the sauce near the end of cooking.
For two, I had:
light olive oil for frying
1/2 a white onion, sliced very finely
creme fraiche (I used half fat), a couple of tablespoons
the piece of Stilton (it weighed about 80g)
2 big handfuls of spinach (about 100g)
black pepper to taste
I fried the onion in the olive oil for about five or six minutes until soft and golden - and I added a spoonful of boiling water from the pasta pan when it looked like it was about to stick and maybe burn.
When soft, add the creme fraiche and stir in then crumble in the Stilton and cook on a low heat until the cheese melts.
Add the cooked, drained pasta and the spinach and stir in for a few minutes until the spinach wilts.
Tip into a serving dish and add some black pepper to taste.
Let me know if you make this and please do share your own recipes and ideas for using up that Christmas cheeseboard ...