Sunday, October 2, 2011

Easy, Delicious And… Vegetarian

These recipes are so simple and as a bonus - all of them vegetarian. 
With fresh ingredients like tomatoes, herbs and good extra virgin olive oil (yes,I can now taste the difference) it’ no wonder that we can all make it through a meatless Monday meal.
I trust my ingredients from the farmers market and from Caputos at 231 E Wisconsin Ave in Lake Forest.
This market opens at 6:00 AM (love my AM fix) and you don’t have to buy a huge portion of anything.Get 2 slices of Prosciutto or a half a cup of Ricotta and you check out at under $5.00…and I don’t have a huge block of cheese sitting in my refrigerator. This is a huge plus since I am a household of one.
I make my own pasta. Amazing how quick and easy it is to put together from scratch.. Unbleached flour, eggs and salt are the only ingredients. Run it through an Atlas Pasta Machine - my trusted partner since I made it fresh for the first time over 30 years ago – and you will crank out amazing pasta… and never buy it again.
Bon Appetit!
Spaghetti Con Pomodori al Forno
Fine sea salt
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
1/3 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
21/2 pounds mixed tomatoes cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus more for serving
1 pound spaghetti
1/2 cup basil leaves, large leaves torn

Heat oven to 400º with rack in middle. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Spread onion and parsley onto prepared baking sheet; season with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Arrange tomato pieces in a single layer over onion mixture. Season with oregano and 1/4 teaspoon salt, then drizzle with oil. Bake until tomatoes are tender, 20 to 25 minutes.

When tomatoes are 5 minutes from being done, cook pasta in the boiling water until al dente (remove tomatoes from oven when done, and transfer pan to wire rack to cool slightly). Drain and transfer pasta to a large serving bowl. Add tomato mixture and

1/2 of the basil; gently toss to combine, then adjust seasoning to taste. Serve immediately, garnished with remaining basil and an extra drizzle of oil.

Linguine Con Polpa Fresca In Dadolata

Fine sea salt
2 3/4 pounds tomatoes on the vine or heirloom tomatoes
9 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 fresh basil leaves, torn if large
1 small garlic clove, gently smashed and peeled
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound linguine

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Add tomatoes to the boiling water and cook 30 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer tomatoes to a bowl (reserve pot of water, covered and removed from heat), then peel and cut in half lengthwise; cut out and discard cores. Seed tomato halves; discard seeds. Cut tomatoes into 1/4-inch pieces. In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, 2 tablespoons oil and basil. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes.

Return salted water to a boil.

In a large skillet combine remaining 7 tablespoons oil, garlic and thyme; heat over medium heat until oil begins to bubble, then add tomato mixture, 1/2 teaspoon salt and generous pinch pepper. Increase heat to medium-high and bring mixture to a simmer; cook 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Remove and discard garlic.

Cook pasta in the boiling water until al dente, then drain and transfer to a large serving bowl. Add sauce and toss to combine well. Adjust seasoning to taste. Serve immediately.
Spaghetti Aglio, Olio e Peperoncino
Extra virgin olive oil
1 or 2 cloves of garlic ( I am a garlic addict)
Red hot pepper

Cook your pasta al dente in salted water. Keep about a cup of the hot, salted water to use later.

Crush the garlic with the heal of your hand (to keep the flavor).

In a saucepan, cook the garlic and olive oil on low heat. Add diced red hot pepper.

When the pasta is ready, add it to the olive oil mixture.

Spaghetti Con Acciughe, Erbe e Limone
Fine Sea Salt
½ C finely chopped parsley
3 T fine chopped basil
1 T finely chopped marjoram
1 T finely chopped flat anchovy fillets
Fresh chili pepper
¼ C plus 3 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Lemon
1 pound spaghetti

Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta. Reserve ¼ C pasta cooking liquid. Drain pasta.

In a large boil, add all ingredients and stir to combine.

Add pasta cooking liquid, pasta and herb mixture.

And speaking of fresh tomatoes, buy them to use in this delicious soup which get’s it texture from a rustic, country bread.
Tuscan Soup

Fine Sea Salt
½ C Finely chopped Basil
¼ C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 large garlic cloves
Fresh ground pepper
1 1/4 C hot water
7 ounces sliced rustic country bread cut in small pieces

Bring pot of water to a boil. Add tomatoes and cook 30 seconds. Drain, peel, quarter and seed. Chop coarsely.
In a large saucepan, combine basil, oil and garlic and hest over medium until oil starts to bubble. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Simmer 20 minutes.
Bring 1 ¾ C water to a boil. Add bread and water to tomato mixture, stir once and cook 2 minutes, Remove pot from heat, cover soup and let stand 1 hour.
Stir together soup to break up bread. Reheat. Adjust seasoning to taste.