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Quick Pasta with Tomatoes

I needed dinner and I needed it fast. I had some lovely pancetta and some grape tomatoes and magic happened.

Quick Pasta with Tomatoes

3-4 oz pancetta, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pt grape tomatoes, quartered
handful of basil
salt/pepper
1lb pasta
water from pasta

While pasta is cooking, place pancetta in a large skillet and heat until slightly browned. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add tomatoes and basil. Cook until tomatoes start to soften. Drain pasta and reserve some of the pasta water. Add pasta and about 1c of water to pancetta/tomato mixture. Add pepper and salt to taste (be sure to taste the pancetta might be salty). Add additional water until reaches desired consistency.


I wouldn't even call this a recipe. It's more like throwing together a few ingredients that you probably have on hand into a skillet and serving. Feel free to add some Parmesan Cheese.  I had to skimp a bit on the basil as I didn't have that much, but it was still delicious.
Recent posts

Chocolate Idiot Cake

I recently bought David Lebovitz's Ready for Dessert and have been itching to make something from it for a while. He explains that he needed to create cake to an idiot proof cake but used a nicer name and decided to called it Chocolate Orbit Cake. I much prefer the former than the latter since I was feeling rather stupid today due to a head cold.

Chocolate Idiot Cake (Adapted from David Lebovitz)

12 oz chocolate (bittersweet or semisweet) chopped
1 c butter (2 sticks)
6 eggs
1 c sugar
1t vanilla

Grease a 9" springform pan and cover the outside with foil. Set aside. Heat chocolate and butter in 10-second bursts in the microwave or over a double boiler. Set aside. Whisk eggs, sugar, and vanilla in a separate bowl. Whisk in chocolate. Pour into springform pan. Cover with foil. Place in a roasting pan. Pour warm water into roasting pan until it reaches half-way up the springform pan. Bake at 350 1hr 15 min or until just set. (When you touch the center, your finger should come aw…

Sunken Again

As you can see I still haven't given up on this recipe. It still tastes good but still sinks. I tried to use buttermilk instead of sour cream. Remember, I did try it in the mini-pans and they worked better. I forgot to try it this time using chilled egg and butter. Oh well, chocolate cake again it is.

Vodka Grasshopper

Thank you, Mr. Boston, for yet another inspirational cocktail.

Vodka Grasshopper (adapted from Mr. Boston)

1oz creme de menthe
1oz creme de cocoa
1oz vodka
2T heavy cream
dash of mint bitters (optional)

Shake well over ice and strain.

This appears in both the old and newer versions of Mr. Boston. It is such an old-timey drink. The dash of mint bitters gives it the slight green color. The bitters are purely optional. The Sous Chef is a bit bitters mad so we have many different flavors hanging around and thought this might be a nice addition to this drink.

This was tasty but I think I prefer a mudslide with a splash of creme de menthe (recipe forthcoming). But then again chocolate is my thing! I do like mint so this does make a refreshing change.

It's a Boy!

Maybe it's not a boy? Either way my knife has a great new addition. A paring knife. I did not think that I needed a new paring knife but then Misen sent a survey about how I liked the chef's knife. They gave me 20% off any purchase just for answering a few questions about a knife I love. So why not? This baby is sharp, efficient, and comfortable to use.

FYI: I still have not made any decisions about sharpening. I've just been honing the chef's knife and so far so good.

Date & Walnut in Bacon

Sorry there are no pictures for this recipe. I was very delinquent. They're really easy to make. They actually don't look so impressive anyway but they have that savory/sweet thing going on - yum!

Date & Walnut in Bacon

24 dates, pitted
24 walnuts
24 slices of bacon
toothpicks

Insert walnut into date. Wrap with slice of bacon and secure with toothpicks. Place on baking sheet. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until bacon is crisp. You might need to pour off some of the fat. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Note: that these are very loose quantities. I usually go by how many dates come in the package and go from there (or until the bacon is used up).

You might be tempted to go with less than a full slice of bacon. DO NOT! The bacon shrinks and it will be skimpy - trust me.

These are great made ahead and reheated.

Easter 2017

OK - so I'm a bit late with this post. House guests and all that...

Now that I have your attention, here's what was on the menu this year:

Kielbasi & Sauerkraut *
Oatmeal Clafoutis
French Toast **
Potato Kugel
Irish Oatmeal Salad
Roasted Vegetable Galette
Savory Bread Pudding
Leek & Ricotta Frittata
Date & Walnuts in bacon***
Chocolate Mousse Cake


By the way I have received 3 Michelin Stars for Easter Dinner. I'm not quite sure that this is official but...

*This time juniper berries and caraway seeds were included in the ferment
**I was daring and used Brioche instead of potato bread - it was excellent
***No pics and no postings. I will have to post the recipe without the pics.