Posts Tagged ‘pasta’

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

Parmesan Pasta with Chard

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Before I lived in Boston, all I knew about Italian food was lasagna and spaghetti with meat sauce and variations thereof…which I ate then, and still eat now…

But, after being surrounded by all manner and method of Italian cooking for those short 2 years in Boston (seriously – if you’re ever in Boston, head to the North End), I came away with just the slightest bit of talent for what my family fondly remembers as “East Coast Italian.”

This recipe may not be perfectly authentic (it’s been 15 years since Boston!), but it is weeknight wonderful, fast, and my family always devours every bit. AND, it delivers a healthy punch. (You know how we LOVE our chard over here!)

Gather Up:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, thinly sliced (any kind you like)
1 large bunch Swiss chard, trimmed and chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 (14 1/2 ounce) can diced fire-roasted tomatoes with juices
1/4 cup dry white wine
Pinch dried crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper
16 ounces spaghetti
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts

Wash the chard, and remove the thick rib.

Chop the onion and the garlic.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy frying pan over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until tender. Then add the garlic and saute until it releases its fragrance.

Add the chard and saute until it wilts, about 2 minutes.

Stir in the tomatoes with their juice, the wine, and the red pepper flakes. Bring to a simmer.

Cover and simmer until the tomatoes begin to break down and the chard is very tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Season the chard, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt and a splash of olive oil. Stir carefully. Add spaghetti, and cook until al dente, stirring frequently, about 8-10 minutes depending on your pasta. Drain. Add to the chard mixture, and toss to combine.

Add Parmesan, and toss to combine.

Sprinkle the pine nuts, and serve!

Adapted from a recipe by Giada De Laurentiis.

Ur Mom’s Best Pesto Pasta

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

When basil beckons, (and it will…), answer the call with this crazy fragrant pesto that takes you straight out to a summer field and makes you jump for joy! Served over pasta, it is a sublime combination – the fresh pesto coats the warm pasta and it melds together in a marriage made in heaven, accented in this rendition with crumbled feta and sweet cherry tomatoes. Later in the summer, only garden tomatoes will do, but for now we improvise…

So follow along farmer wannabes, because this is so easy and so worth ur time!!! (and it is a sure-fire way for me to get college girl to come running home for dinner…because you can no doubt smell it from here…)

Gather Up:
1 bunch fresh basil
¼ cup pine nuts, toasted
¼ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
Juice of ½ of a lemon
1 clove garlic, peeled
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pound farfalle pasta
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved, or sliced garden tomatoes if available
½ cup crumbled feta cheese

Wash the basil, drain and pluck the leaves off the stems. Takes a few minutes, but ur hands will smell so good when you are done…

Lay leaves aside to dry a little while you assemble the rest of the pesto ingredients. If you need to toast the pine nuts, put them in a 350 degree oven for 4-5 minutes, just until their fragrance is released and they have turned slightly golden. In a food processor or blender put in the basil, the toasted pine nuts, the parmesan cheese, the lemon juice, the clove of garlic, a dash of kosher salt, a few grinds of black pepper and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.

Give the processor a few initial pulses, and take a look for consistency and to scrape down the sides.

Add 1-2 additional tablespoons of olive oil, depending on how things look – you are going for a nice green smooth consistency. Don’t pulverize beyond recognition. The finished product should have a rustic yumminess.

Taste by eating some with a spoon… Set aside covered while pasta cooks.

Prepare the tomatoes and the feta.

Drain pasta when done, pour into a large serving bowl and add pesto. You should have about 2/3 of a cup.

Stir pesto in until pasta is coated.

Toss in tomatoes and feta cheese and fold in. Taste and adjust with salt and pepper if desired.

Dish will hold covered for about 1 hour, and can be served warm or at room temperature. If it looks a little dry before serving add a touch of olive oil and stir through.

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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