Pasta

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Pasta Primavera

What a delightful spring pasta recipe, courtesy of The New York Times.
¼ pound sugar snap peas, stems trimmed
½ pound asparagus, ends snapped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
¾ cup fresh English peas
¼ cup thinly sliced spring onion, white part only (or use shallot)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
½ teaspoon fine sea salt, more as needed
Black pepper, more as needed
12 ounces fettuccine or tagliatelle, preferably fresh (see recipe)
⅔ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, at room temperature

Pasta Primavera.jpeg
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Crispy Gnocchi with Cherry Tomatoes and Cheese

Courtesy of The New York Times

Serves 4

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
2 (12- to 18-ounce) packages shelf-stable or refrigerated potato gnocchi
¼ cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
¼ teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more for serving
Kosher salt and black pepper
2 pints small tomatoes, such as cherry, grape or Sungold
¼ cup thinly sliced or torn basil leaves (optional), plus more for serving

Crispy Gnocchi.jpeg
4
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Pumpkin Lasagna

I wouldn't necessarily make this again if I didn't have pumpkin puree in need of a home. But it was a great use for a bag of frozen pumpkin puree! Mildly adapted from Food and Wine.

1 pound lasagna noodles
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for tossing
1 onion, finely chopped
2 pounds Swiss chard, stems discarded and leaves chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Three 15-ounce cans pumpkin puree (or whatever is lying around in your freezer!)

Pumpkin Lasagna.jpg
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Creamy Macaroni and Cheese (w/ Ham)

This is a delightfully easy and delicious rendition of a creamy (vice baked casserole style) macaroni and cheese. I will admit that it is reminiscent of boxed mac n' cheese, but it is one of the few hot dishes our toddler will share with us. And although I have included ham here, it is entirely optional (and frankly just a great way to use up leftover Christmas ham). A tweaked version of this Southern Living recipe.

MacNCheese.jpeg
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Creamy Corn Pasta

A tasty summer pasta recipe, courtesy of The New York Times.

Fine sea salt
12 ounces dry orecchiette or farfalle
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 bunch scallions (about 8), trimmed and thinly sliced (keep the whites and greens separate)
2 large ears corn, shucked and kernels removed (2 cups kernels)
½ teaspoon ground black pepper, more for serving
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, more to taste
⅓ cup torn basil or mint, more for garnish

Creamy Corn Pasta.jpg
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Summer Squash and Basil Pasta

A tasty and easy (if somewhat time-consuming) Bon Appetit recipe. Bonus - our toddler loved it!

¼ cup olive oil
8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 pounds assorted summer squashes and zucchini, quartered lengthwise, sliced
Kosher salt
1 teaspoon Aleppo-style pepper, plus more for serving
8 ounces paccheri, fusili, or other non-noodle pasta
2 ounces Parmesan, grated (about ½ cup), plus more for serving
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
½ cup basil leaves, divided

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium.

Summer Squash Pasta
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Spaghetti al Limone

Courtesy of Cook's Illustrated.

Serves 2

1/2 lb spaghetti
Olive Oil
1 small shallot, minced (about 1.5 Tbsp)
1/8 cup heavy cream
1/8 cup lemon juice
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
1 Tbsp shredded fresh basil leaves
Salt and pepper

Bring 2 quarts of water to boil in a saucier pan.
Add 1/2 Tbsp salt and pasta to boiling water.
Cook, stirring frequently, until al dente.
Reserving 1 cup cooking water, drain pasta into a colander and set aside

Spaghetti Al Limone
3
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Cold Sesame Noodles with Summer Vegetables

We made a really great cold noodle salad, courtesy of Bon Appetit. It was made extra-delicious and protein-rich by topping it with leftover cold sliced grilled Malaysian steak skewers. Grill the skewers on the weekend and you have an easy weeknight meal almost ready to go!

1/3 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon Sriracha
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

Cold Sesame Noodle Salad
3.5
Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (2 votes)

Pappardelle with Arugula and Prosciutto

1/2 pound pappardelle or fettuccine
Kosher salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 leeks, white and pale greens only, halved lengthwise, thinly sliced crosswise
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest plus more for serving
1 bunch arugula, thick stems trimmed, leaves torn (about 4 cups)
1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan plus more for serving
Freshly ground black pepper
3 ounces prosciutto, torn into 1-inch pieces

This makes 4 servings

Pappardelle with Arugula and Prosciutto
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Pasta al Funghi

Another meal from our farmers market expedition in Venice.

  • 1/4 lb mushrooms
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • Fresh Rosemary, Sage, basil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • salt to taste
  • Fresh pasta

Sautee onion, garlic and herbs until tender

Add 1/3 of mushrooms, sautee, add 1/2 cup water and salt, reduce.

Add 1/3 more of mushrooms, soften.

Add 1/2 cup white wine, reduce, add 1/3 of best mushrooms and 1/2 cup cream, reduce

Serve with pasta

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Collezione di Paolo Chianti 2011

Trader Joe's: 
No

Dry, full bodied and smooth, 13% ABV

Butternut Squash Mascarpone Agnolotti

We had a butternut squash and some mascarpone in the fridge, and I was feeling like pasta. We've done ravioli before, so I thought we should try something new.  So I googled "butternut squash and mascarpone agnolotti" and came up with this recipe. We shamelessly copied it, and it turned out great. You absolutely must go to their site to watch the videos showing how to create the agnolotti.

Agnolotti
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Meat Lasagna

This recipe is a hybrid of Sharon's recipe and and a very intense online recipe. My guess is that both are derived from the Betty Crocker Cookbook.

Serves 6. Bakes in a 9x9 pan.

Meat sauce:

Cook and stir together until meat is brown and onion is tender:

  • 3 Italian sausages (approx 0.5 lbs, mixed between mild and spicy; can substitute ground beef for all or part)
  • ½ cup chopped onions
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup sliced mushrooms
Meat Lasagna
3.5
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Cuvee do Clos Baileyana

Trader Joe's: 
No

 

 

Strong, full-bodied Pinot Noir, cherry notes with a strong oak backing.

http://www.baileyana.com/firepeak_vineyard.php

Pasta Salad with Melon, Pancetta, and Ricotta Salata

Not really hearty enough for a meal, but a nice (non-vegetarian) pasta salad to bring to a party or have as a side dish. Courtsey of Bon Appetit, but slightly modified.

Ingredients

2 ounces thinly sliced pancetta (Italian bacon)
4 ounces orecchiette (ear-shaped pasta)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons Champagne vinegar, white wine vinegar, or rice vinegar
1 1/2 cups 3/4" square diced pieces peeled cantaloupe
1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint

Pasta Salad with melon, ricotta, pancetta and mint
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Olivier Ravoire Cotes du Rhone

Trader Joe's: 
No

Medium-bodied cotes-du-rhone, both earthy and a bit jammy

Grenache 80 Syrah 10 Mourvedre 10

http://www.ravoire-fils.com

Cold Soba Noodle Salad

A great side dish that could, with the addition of a protein, take center stage. Goes great as a side to Japanese grilling.

1/2 packet (~4.5 oz) soba noodles
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Asian sesame oil
1 tablespoon wasabi paste

1/4 cup minced green onions

In a large bowl, mix rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, and wasabi. Pour about half the dressing into a small bowl and reserve, keeping the rest in the bowl.

Cold Soba Noodles
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(Spicy) Pimiento Mac and Cheese

I made a tweaked version of this Bon Appetit recipe. It was good, especially from a mac and cheese perspective - gooey and all the rest of that. I'm not sure how I actually felt about the spicy pimiento cheese aspect of it. Perhaps next time I will downplay the spicy pimiento and just use the basic recipe as a base for a more traditional mac and cheese dish.

Ingredients
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)

Spicy Mac and Cheese
3.5
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Party Pasta Salad

I was inspired by a few online recipes, but pretty much made this up as I went along. It turned out delicious and was a big hit!

1 lb pasta (orecchiette or some other smallish one preferred)
1 medium-sized jar of sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained, chopped and olive oil reserved
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1 small tomato, finely diced
~1/2 lb feta, crumbled.

Pasta Salad
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Tilia Cab Sav (2010)

Trader Joe's: 
Yes

Smooth, fruit-forward, medium-bodied (lighter than most CabSavs), easy to drink

http://tiliawines.com.ar/en/ourwines ; http://www.bodegasesmeralda.com.ar/eng/estiba/cabernet.html

Three Knights Pinot Noir

Trader Joe's: 
Yes

Very light, borderline dry rose Pinot. Can't stand up to much, but a light pasta or poultry would pair well.

Great review here: http://www.cheapwinefinder.com/2011/09/2009-three-knights-los-ca...

Falernia Pedro Ximenez

Trader Joe's: 
Yes

Tart, light, dry white, very similar to the Picopoul. Great for pasta and fish dishes.

http://www.falernia.com/index_eng.html

Trinidadian Macaroni Pie

Throughout college, I had several Trinidadian friends (including a great freshman year roommate). One of the easiest (and most delicious and most fattening) dishes we would eat was macaroni pie. I stole this recipe from CaribbeanPot.com and it was quite tasty.

14 oz "macaroni" (we used bucattini pasta)
1/2 medium onion diced finely
1 habanero or scotch bonnet diced finely (optional)
2 large eggs
1 can evaporated milk (~12 oz)
2 tbsp butter, melted
1/3 tsp dry mustard
2 1/4 cups grated cheddar cheese, divided

Trini Macaroni Pie
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Valreas Cuvee Prestige Cotes du Rhone

Trader Joe's: 
Yes

A great, cheap Cotes du Rhone with a lavish mouthfeel. Strong tannins and black pepper, really needs a food pairing. Opens up well.

http://www.firstpourwine.com/2011/08/06/2009-valreas-cuvee-prest...

Panilonco Merlot Malbec Reserve

Trader Joe's: 
Yes

Fruit-forward (maybe too much?), medium bodied wine. Not too tannic, not too sweet. Good table wine.

Udon Soup with Prawns and Poached Egg

So, there's this Japanese movie, Tampopo, all about a woman's quest to serve the perfect noodle soup in her small roadside soup shop. If nothing else, its an interesting look at Japanese food culture.

Anyway, inspired by that and memories of walking by this (Japanese, I think) soup shop ever day we were in Paris last year, I decided we should try and make Japanese. soup. Our local bodega, P&C Market, sells Japanese noodles (both soba and udon), so we gave it a whirl. It actually turned out pretty good for the first shot.

Udon Soup Before Broth
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Pumpkin Ravioli

With the arrival of the fall gourds, we decided to make a pumpkin ravioli. We really enjoyed this recipe. The first time, we didn't have enough ricotta cheese, so we added some creme fraiche as a substitute (seemed to work fine...). We used egg pasta sheets (available from the Eastern Market Grocery), though wonton wrappers are a good substitute. We put the dollops of batter evenly spaced on the pasta sheet (4x6 = 24 ravioli), laid a second sheet on top, and then cut into individual raviolis using a pasta cutter. A little water on the fingertips and squeezing the edges seemed to seal them just fine. This recipe yielded 144 ravioli and used 12 pasta sheets.

We used a marina di chioggia pumpkin the first time (greenish color, oval shape) and a peanut pumpkin the second time (orangish color with white "peanuts" all over the outside.

The original recipe came from http://theunemployedcook.blogspot.com/2006/03/pumpkin-ravioli-with-sage-...

ravioli.
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Potato Gnocchi

The gnocchi are surprisingly easy (if messy) to make; and freeze well. This goes great with almost any creamy pasta sauce, but especially will with a truffle cream sauce, makes ~100 gnocchi

2 lbs whole baking potatoes
2 beaten egg yolks
1 1/2 cups flour
Pinch of salt

Making Gnocchi
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