Posts Tagged ‘parmesan’

Farmer’s Market Pasta

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Is it just me, or do the veggies at the farmer’s market look just a little bit brighter and just a little more enticing as the weather gets hotter? In my heat-induced delirium I choose to believe that it is nature’s way of drawing me in as the heat intensifies and my resolve to cook wanes…

Because my resolve to cook is waning… Can’t use the oven, too hot to grill, tired of salads, what’s a cook to do??? With a counter covered in produce and the air filled with the smell of basil, this quick pasta recipe is a lovely way to get dinner on the table!

Gather Up:
3 pounds garden tomatoes, mixed varieties if you wish, peeled and quartered
3 large cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
1/3 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ pound penne pasta, cooked al dente
2 teaspoons sugar
½ pound loose Italian turkey sausage
3 zucchini, or summer squash of your choice, sliced and halved
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan
Large handful fresh basil leaves

In a large heavy sauté pan put the garlic and the tomatoes. Drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook slowly over medium low heat until the tomatoes are falling apart and their juices have mixed with the olive oil to form a nice sauce, about 30 minutes. Stir in the sugar and taste for seasoning.

In a separate sauté pan, heat a few splashes of olive oil and sauté the sausage until brown and caramelized. Remove. Add another splash of olive oil if needed and sauté the zucchini until caramelized around the edges.

Add the sausage and zucchini to the tomato sauce. Toss in the cooked pasta.

Remove from heat, and gently work in the Parmesan with tongs. Top with torn basil leaves and serve.

Adapted from Tyler Florence: Quick Farmer’s Market Pasta

Spaghetti Bolognese

Monday, March 21st, 2011

I have to tell you that the combination of beef and pork gives richness to this sauce that cannot be beat. And with two kinds of pork – please…

I had a houseful of people at the end of spring break, so I went to my stack of crowd-tastic recipes and pulled this one out. Across the top I had written one word – “Amazing”, (and I had underlined it!)

Everyone loved it, everyone ate a huge bowlful and everyone was almost too full for chocolate cake…almost. This sauce reduces down to a thick heavenly pot of deliciousness, and is worth every second of effort, (and the rather long ingredient list).

Just wishing I could fix the way my cake rounds always sink in the middle after they cool… Then I could have snapped a picture of that too!!!

Gather Up:
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 strips thick cut bacon, chopped
1 ½ cups chopped yellow onion
¾ cup diced carrots
¾ cup diced celery
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 bay leaves
½ teaspoon thyme
¼ teaspoon oregano
Pinch of cinnamon
Pinch of nutmeg
1 pound ground beef
¾ pound ground pork
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup dry red wine
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
14 ounce can tomato sauce
1 cup beef stock
2 teaspoons sugar
¼ cup cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 pounds spaghetti
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan

In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring, until browned and fat rendered.

Add the onions, carrots and celery, and cook, stirring, until soft, about 5 minutes.

Add the garlic, salt, pepper, bay leaves, thyme, oregano, cinnamon and nutmeg, and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds.

Increase heat to high; add the ground beef and the ground pork and cook, stirring, until no longer pink.

Reduce heat and add the tomato paste and stir for 2 minutes.

Add the wine and stir to deglaze the pan until half the liquid is evaporated, about 2 minutes.

Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, beef stock, and sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until thick and flavorful, about 1 ½ hours.

Add the cream, butter and parsley and simmer for 2 more minutes. Discard the bay leaves and taste for seasoning. Remove from heat to rest. Cover.

Bring a huge pot of salted water to a boil. Cook noodles, drain and transfer to a very large serving dish. Add the sauce, tossing with tongs to coat. Work ½ cup of the cheese in with tongs and toss to blend. Serve, with extra cheese for topping.  

Recipe adapted from Emeril Lagasse.

Spinach Manicotti

Friday, November 26th, 2010

All my turkey dreams have come true. For the first time we brined the bird, and the method delivered everything it promised – crispy skin, juicy meat, sublime seasoning… The rest of the menu I kept the same – mashed potatoes and gravy, cornbread dressing, roasted carrots, turnips and beets, cranberry streusel and apple pie!

Today I am craving something easy, something comforting, something healthy and something that still feeds LOTS of people. So I’m feeding them manicotti! In this yummy dish no one ever misses the meat, and using uncooked shells makes assembly fast and uncomplicated. Thank heavens!

So we will have our Black Friday fun. Some of us left the house at 4:30 AM to go shopping. Some of us will sleep all day. Some of us will goad others of us to start the holiday lights. I personally will work on indoor decorations, nibble on leftovers, “guard” the remaining pie and greet them all with dinner when the time comes. And today it will not be fancy, but it will be delicious!

Gather Up:
2 cups shredded white cheese, mix of mozzarella, provolone, parmesan, or your choice
1 ¼ cups fat-free cottage cheese
4 cups chopped spinach, or 1 10-oz. package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
1 ½ teaspoons oregano
Small pinch nutmeg
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 8-ounce package manicotti shells
1 26-ounce jar organic pasta sauce
1 cup water

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.

Combine 1 ½ cups of the cheese, the cottage cheese, the spinach, parmesan cheese, oregano, nutmeg, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.

Using a small spoon, fill each uncooked manicotti shell.

Pour half of the pasta sauce into the baking dish. Arrange the shells in a single layer.

Top with the remaining sauce.

Pour 1 cup water into the dish. Sprinkle the remaining ½ cup cheese over the top.

Cover tightly with foil. Bake for 50 minutes until shells are tender. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe from Cooking Light magazine, a long time ago…
“Fall Leaves” from DGMiller777

Ribollita, a Tuscan Stew

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

I wanted to make this on Sunday afternoon… It’s the perfect time for the amount of chopping and primping and attention a big pot demands… I can take my time, nibble a few snacks… (Possibly find some helpers…)

But I was blindsided by hungry college-age meat-eaters who happened to spot several big steaks in my freezer! (These are the same offspring who have new perspective on the phrase, “there is never anything to eat around here”, because at their houses there really isn’t!) Did I capitulate? Of course I did!

So I soaked my beans and prepared for battle on a weekday! This dish is a thick and warming stew, made with lots of greens, lots of beans and lots of vegetables. It is thickened with chunks of crusty bread and is EVEN BETTER the next day, hence the name “ribollita,” meaning “reboiled.”

And hence my desire to make it on a Sunday afternoon and send quarts of it out the door with my children… It smells absolutely wonderful, and approaches pure heaven sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and given a swirl of olive oil!

Gather Up:
½ pound dried cannellini beans
Kosher salt
¼ cup olive oil, plus extra for serving
¼ pound smoked bacon, chopped
2 cups chopped onion
2 cups chopped carrots
1 cup chopped celery
3 tablespoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 28-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes in puree, chopped
4 cups coarsely chopped savoy cabbage
4 cups coarsely chopped kale
1 teaspoon dried basil
6 cups organic low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
4 cups sourdough bread cubes, crust removed
½ cup grated Parmesan, for serving

In a large bowl, cover the beans with cold water by 1 inch and cover. Soak overnight in the refrigerator. Drain the beans and place them in a large saucepan with 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Simmer uncovered for 45 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and continue to simmer for about 15 more minutes until the beans are tender. Set them aside to cool in their liquid.

Over medium heat, heat the oil in a large stockpot. Add the bacon and onions and cook 7-10 minutes until the onions are translucent.

Add the carrots, celery, garlic, 1 tablespoon of salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper. Cook 7-10 minutes until the vegetables are tender.

Add the tomatoes and their puree, the cabbage, the kale and the basil. Cook, stirring occasionally another 7-10 minutes.

Drain the beans, reserving the cooking liquid. In a food processor puree half of the beans with some of their liquid. Add to the pot, along with the remaining whole beans.

Pour the bean liquid into a large measuring cup and add enough broth to make 8 cups. Add to the soup and bring to a boil. Simmer over low heat for 20 minutes.

Add the bread. Simmer 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Serve immediately in bowls sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and drizzled with olive oil.

Cool and refrigerate. Serve reheated, or “ribollita” the next day!

Ur Mom’s Ubiquitous Red Sauce

Monday, June 14th, 2010

One of the first dishes prepared by all red-blooded American cooks is spaghetti sauce! Whether you are a new bride, a college student or the host of your first dinner party, spaghetti with sauce is universally welcomed!

Over the years, ahem… Ur Mom has powered through numerous versions of spaghetti sauce, a dish which Mario Batali has taught her to label Red Sauce. It feels so very Italian to say it, so very competent to make it…

The beauty of the evolution is that once one arrives at a sauce, it becomes a valid base for all dishes utilizing tomato sauce! Left a little thicker it is a dreamy companion for béchamel in lasagna… Made a little spicier it bakes into a lovely vodka penne… A little chunkier it blankets a weeknight spaghetti pie…  But the favorite incantation at my house includes sausage and shows up on a big cheesy swirl of parmed-out pasta! (More on that later…)

And my family eats it! Eyes-rolled-back-in-the-head big heaping piles of it! We have served it to celebrate and we have served it to comfort. We have served it when there just wasn’t time to figure anything else out! It is a recipe overwhelmingly worth making Urself! It will forever ruin you for the stuff in a jar… I apologize… It is my calling…

Gather Up:
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups diced onions
3/4 cup diced celery
3/4 cup diced carrot
2 1/2 tablespoons crushed garlic
2 28-ounce cans organic crushed tomatoes with basil
1 6-ounce can organic tomato paste
3-4 cups water
1 teaspoon thyme
2-3 bay leaves, depending on size
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon basil
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 pound mild Italian turkey or pork sausage
1 pound hot Italian turkey or pork sausage
1 pound spaghetti noodles
2 tablespoons butter
1 – 1 1/2 cups freshly grated parmesan cheese

Heat a large pot over medium to medium high heat. Add 4 tablespoons of oil and heat for a minute or so. If you are using sausage, remove the sausage from the casing, if necessary, and add to the pot. Break apart and season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper. Cook until browned and no pink remains.

Prepare the onions, celery, carrot and garlic. (If you are not adding meat, heat 3 tablespoons of oil and proceed from here.)

Add the onions, celery and carrot. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook about 5 minutes until vegetables are tender.

Add the garlic and sauté just until its fragrance is released, about 1 minute. Then add tomatoes, tomato paste and 3 cups of water. Blend well.

Add the thyme, bay leaves, oregano, basil and crushed red pepper. Mix well.

Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover loosely with lid and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Stir occasionally, adding more water if needed to maintain desired consistency. When close to finish, heat a large deep pot of water for the noodles.

Stir in 1/2 cup of the cheese. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Remove from heat, discard bay leaves and let sit while you finish preparing the noodles.

Return to your large deep pot of boiling water. Carefully add a few generous shakes of salt and a splash of olive oil. Stir gently – mixture will bubble and sputter a little.

Add pasta and cook to desired doneness, remembering to begin tasting 2 minutes before stated done time.

Drain well and return noodles to pasta pot placed off the heat. Add a few pats of butter. Toss well with tongs. Work in 1/2 to 1 cup Parmesan cheese to taste. Use tongs to swirl mounds of Parm-laced pasta on plates or in large bowls.

Ladle on several scoops of red sauce. Add additional Parmesan if desired. Enjoy the ridiculousness…

Adapted from and inspired by recipes from Mario Batali, Emeril Lagasse, Cook’s Illustrated, Southern Living and others I no longer remember but am still extremely grateful to…

Welcome to Like Mother Like gal, stay at home mom, college student. Just 3 girls who love to eat and are dedicated to doing it the old-fashioned way! Plan, shop, cook, bake, clean, sleep, repeat. Hope you enjoy - we are so glad you are here!
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