Archive for ‘Pasta’

December 2, 2011

Vegetarian Lasagna Soup

WARNING: Incredibly healthy and delicious! So if you’re a skeptic and think all things healthy should taste like crap, go away. I’ll keep this secret to myself.

Makes a huge portion. Great for sharing. And giving to friends. Which I had to do because I ate it for 3 days straight, lunch and dinner, and still had plenty left over.

That’s ok. I’ll still make it again. It was that good.

Adapted from this recipe: http://www.afarmgirlsdabbles.com/2011/03/24/lasagna-soup/

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8-12 oz package of italian sausage seitan/vegetarian sausage
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 1 cup egg plants, diced
  • 1+ cup yellow squash, diced
  • 1+ cup green squash, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbs tomato paste
  • 1 28oz can crushed tomatoes, w/ basil
  • 5- 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbs oregano
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tbs white sugar
  • fusilli pasta, cooked
  • low fat ricotta
  • mozzarella
  • shredded parmesan
  • cooking oil of your choice
INSTRUCTIONS:
  1. Heat oil in a 5qt dutch oven or pot. Brown sausage and break it up into small pieces with your spatula. Remove and set aside.
  2. In remaining oil (adding more if necessary), saute onions until just soft. Add garlic, eggplant, and squash and saute another ~3 min.
  3. Then add sausage back in along with all the spices, sugar, tomato paste, canned tomatoes, and chicken stock. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Stir, cover, and let it simmer for ~1 hour.
  4. Spoon cooked pasta into a bowl, fill and cover with the soup, top with a big spoonful of ricotta, slices of mozzarella, and a generous sprinkle of parmesan. Set under broiler until cheese melts and browns. Serve.
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October 2, 2011

Sobe Noodle Salad w/ Asparagus and Salmon

Super healthy dinner. Not sure how I feel about asian fusion dishes. It tasted a little strange to me. Asparagus and sobe? Not sure what to make of it.

Adapted from Bon Appetit:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 tbs sesame oil
  • 1/2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 tbs light soy sauce
  • 2 tbs rice vinegar
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 2 servings japanese soba noodles
  • 12 ounces fresh salmon
  • 1 handful of thick asparagus spears, trimmed, cut on diagonal into 1-inch pieces
  • several handfuls of baby spinach leaves
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, coarsely chopped (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • Mix first 6 ingredients for the dressing in small bowl. Set aside.
  • Cook soba noodles in large saucepan of boiling salted water, al dente. Drain into colander and toss in ice cubes to cool. Set in bowl and mix with some dressing. Toss to coat.
  • Salt/pepper salmon. Pan sear or bake in oven on 375F, tented in aluminum foil, until cooked through. Set aside to cool.
  • Blanch asparagus: boil water in medium sized pot. Add asparagus and boil for 3 minutes. Remove and place in ice bath. Drain.
  • Add spinach and asparagus to noodles; toss to incorporate evenly. Season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Divide noodle salad among plates.
  • Break salmon into bite-size pieces. Tuck salmon and avocado into noodles on plates. Sprinkle sesame seeds over and serve.
April 24, 2011

Conchiglie w/ Mushrooms and Peas in a Parmesan Cream Sauce

It’s finals time. And what does that mean?

A) embarrassingly high levels of frozen goods consumption
B) similarly high levels of pb sandwich consumption
C) haphazard, recipe-less concoctions in my kitchen. aka procrastination.
D) all of the above.

come on. you saw that coming. (damn you for making me doubt LIFE, all of the above!)

anyway. i dont have a recipe. but this turned out pretty good. or as angeline said as she smacked her lips over my pot of sauce “mmmMM.. like RESTAURANT pasta!”

smart kid. this is why i continue to feed her.

Pasta+ Sauce: 

  • pasta, Conchiglie or the like
  • half and half
  • parmesan, grated
  • corn starch
  • shallots, minced
  • fresh mushrooms, diced
  • frozen peas
  • bacon, diced (freeze the rest. it’s ok.)
  • roasted garlic (optional. baked in toaster oven on 400F until soft and fragrant)
  1. Cook bacon. remove into small bowl and set aside.
  2. In remaining bacon fat, saute shallots until just soft. ~3 min.
  3. add mushrooms and cook until soft. ~5 min.
  4. add a dash of chicken stock if pan getting too dry. deglaze while you’re at it.
  5. add butter then flour to make a roux, or be lazy like me and in a separate small bowl, add corn starch into a bit of cold half&half, dissolve, then add to mushroom mixture. (steph “borrowed” my butter. had to work with what i had.)
  6. return bacon into mixture.  add peas and mashed up roasted garlic if you made some.
  7. continue adding half&half or corn starch until you reach a chunky stew-like consistency. (remember you’ll be adding pasta in later, so you want enough liquid to coat pasta, but you want it thick and not runny so it’ll stick.)
  8. simmer until thickens. (there is always a delay with corn starch..)
  9. mix in grated parmesan.
  10. serve over pasta.

Baked Salmon:
  • lemon juice
  • pepper
  • dill
  • dijon mustard
  • garlic salt
Squeeze fresh lemon juice over fish. Thinly coat in dijon.  Sprinkle a bit of garlic salt, pepper (or lemon pepper if you like the extra acidity), and lots of dill. Place in aluminum foil lined pan and pour a dash of chicken broth into the pan. Just enough to cover bottom of pan. Bake @ 375F ~ 10min.
January 20, 2011

Sweet Potato Gnocchi + Gouda Cheese Sauce

Adapted from theNoshery! lovely site. beautiful pictures.

I honestly  dont remember what i did/didn’t follow on this recipe. but i do know i used store bought gnocchi ):

it was a weekday lunch! didn’t have time.

AND ran out of pretty green parsley.

oh well. despite all these set backs, it was still tasty enough for me to post on here for future reference.

notes:

  • easy with the flour and milk incorporation. i had a hard time with lumpies.
  • i used Old Dutch Masters gouda-like cheese. nutty, a bit sharp, and very rich flavor.
  • must learn how to pan fry the gnocchi after boiling. i want that toasty crisp exterior you get at restaurants. i could manage a satisfactory ‘crust,’ but upon moving it would just shed right off the gnocchi and stick to my pan. >:| will try again.

anyway, here it is:

October 23, 2010

Pumpkin and Spinach Pasta

yea. this is me putting off studying for pharmacology.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 small kabocha squash (japanese pumpkin)
  • 1 shallot
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • ~1 tsp cinnamon
  • ~1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 handful of baby spinach
  • 1 serving spinach linguini
  • 1 tbs goat cheese
  • salt, pepper
  • fresh sage
  • 1/4 cup of milk or cream

INSTRUCTIONS

  • preheat oven 400F
  • cut squash in half, scoop out seeds (roast these in the toaster oven with some cinnamon, salt, pepper, and nutmeg! mmmm…makes the house smell reeeally good). halve again lengthwise, then once more to form 8 wedges. then halve the wedges width-wise (?) into triangles. i used 8 wedges for this recipe and found it more than enough for a one person serving.
  • bake squash in oven for 20-30 min.
  • mince and saute shallots in butter. season with cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, pepper. remove from heat and set aside.
  • in a small pot, boil water, cook linguini.
  • while linguini cooks, remove squash from oven (a fork should pierce wedges easily, but not sink into a mushy mass.) cut flesh off of skins (i used a paring knife), cut into cubes, and add to blender. add a dash of milk/cream, sautéed shallots, a couple leaves of fresh sage, and pulse until blended smooth. add more cream if you prefer a thinner consistency sauce. salt to taste. (but not too salty because goat cheese will add another layer of saltiness.)
  • reboil hot pasta water (yea i’m lazy) and cook a handful of spinach. remove when just wilting and plate on top of pasta.
  • spoon pumpkin puree over spinach.
  • add a tbs of goat cheese on top of puree (you can use any other type of cheese. mascarpone blended into the puree. grated hard cheese. be creative. i just always happen to have goat cheese in my fridge).
  • sprinkle on some toasted pine nuts and/or toasted pumpkin seeds.
  • i had a couple of extra wedges of roasted pumpkin so i added that to the plate too. you can also dump them into the blender with the rest of the pureed pumpkin, pulse a couple times, and have some nice chunks in the sauce.

now back to my drug list…

September 29, 2010

Tomato Seitan Ragu with Rapini and Basil Gnocchi

i am not a spontaneous person.

90% of the time when i set out to make a dish, i do mental preparation. at the least, i research existing recipes. at the most, i research technique, ingredient pairings, make and remake shopping lists. then spend way too much time at the grocery store buying shit i don’t need. but that’s another story.

70% of the time out of that 90%, the dish never turns out how i imagined.

i inTENDED to do a baked broccoli rabe and italian sausage casserole-like dish. in a basil-y tomato sauce. mmm.. perhaps with some ricotta and melted mozzarella on top. then i realized i don’t have a casserole dish and my le creuset doens’t come in until next week (and a week is so sO long when waiting for a le creuset…). so i decided perhaps i’ll do a cavetelli or ricotta gnocchi and screw the whole low carb business. but sadly enough whole foods HAD no ricotta gnocchi. or cavetelli. OR basil (wtf man.). so i got basil gnocchi. ok. fine. good compromise. but thEN i remembered i don’t even LIKE italian sausage. so i got me some seitan with italian seasoning. (if i’m gonna be eating carbs tonight, might as well cut back somewhere else, right?)

ANYway.

this was the result.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pack frozen gnocchi *
  • large batch of broccoli rabe/chinese broccoli**
  • 1 pack (8 0z) of italian seasoned seitan.
  • 1 can tomato sauce (pre-seasoned)
  • 2 roma tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup of milk
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tbs sugar
  • thyme, parsley (optional)
  • comte cheese* **
  • salt

*shelf kind is powdery and gross.

**6 inch diameter, or roughly 25 small individual stalks. keep in mind, less flowering = less bitter. so says Mother Chen. i hack off the stems. leaves have more nutrition anyway.

***or whatever cheese floats your boat. but i find parmesan does not melt very well…i like comte because the nutty, slightly sweet flavor offsets the bitterness of broccoli rabe and the acidity of the tomatoes.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • dice tomatoes and mince garlic
  • if using sausage, remove from casing
  • pan fry sausage in some olive oil, making sure to break up the pieces evenly.
  • add tomatoes, sauce, garlic, stir and simmer until tomatoes disintegrate.
  • wash broccoli. cut off stems and chop leaves so no piece is larger than ~ 3 inch
  • blanch for 1 – 2 min until just wilting. remove into ice bath.
  • check on sauce. add milk and sugar. stir and continue simmering.
  • re-boil the water and cook gnocchi as per package instructions.
  • drain broccoli and stir into sauce.
  • salt to taste. add more milk/chicken stock if sauce is too thick. add any other seasonings you like. (i added thyme and parsley)
  • plate sauce and grate on a generous topping of cheese. i mean like melting all over the place. this is not a garnish, folks.
  • top with gnocchi.
  • serve and EAT.

the gnocchi is kinda grey and ugly, but it tasted nice and basil-y! i think i would’ve been happier with a lighter, fluffier ricotta gnocchi. guess i’ll have to make some from scratch next time. you knoW… i DID find a rather promising recipe… perhaps i’ll start planning take II.

July 22, 2010

Sesame Peanut Pasta 涼麵

no pics today. sleepy. just jotting down recipe so i remember it. not copied from any one source. this is from much research and compiling many recipes to suit own tastes.

INGREDIENTS:

sauce:

  • 1/3-1/2 cup extra crunchy PB
  • 3 tbs soy sauce (or about one part soy sauce, 3 parts PB)
  • 2 tbs tahini paste
  • 2 -3 tbs agave nectar (thinner, blends better than honey)
  • 1 tbs chinese vinegar (or other vinegar. not balsamic)
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, roasted in toaster oven and minced (raw = too sharp)
  • 1 chili pepper (seeds)

other:

  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 lb chicken thigh
  • 1 batch (3 cm diameter?) linguini (i like spinach!)
  • 1/2 small cucumber, sliced thin
  • equal amounts of carrots (4 baby carrots), julienne
  • 1 green onion stalk, sliced thin
  • other option for toppings: eggs, beaten, pan fried as thin omelet, then slice into strips

DIRECTIONS:

  1. cut chicken into strips (easier if still slightly frozen)
  2. boil 1 inch of stock in pot, put chicken in, simmer.
  3. set aside when cooked.
  4. mix all ingredients for sauce
  5. add 1-2 tbs hot stock to melt/blend ingredients.
  6. cook pasta in salted water. drain, toss in ice cubes to cool to room temp.
  7. add chicken pieces and sliced cucumber + carrots, etc
  8. mix with sauce
  9. top with handful of green onions.
  10. serve room temp.
March 24, 2010

i am rather proud of how tonight’s dinner turned out

spinach linguini with yellow squash, crumbled goat cheese, and toasted almonds.
this was the result of my little trip to Central Market yesterday. (:

rather inconvenient that your average food item is not packaged for one. i suppose i will just have to find people to feed. (i have lots of basil goat cheese in my fridge right now and i am not entirely sure how i will use it all…)

next week i shall try the salmon + sweet potato brazilian fish stew recipe i found today. hoorah for having a big kitchen!

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