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Category Archives: Italian Cuisine

Cauliflower and Sausage Pasta with Pesto

June 9, 2019
  • 1 cauliflower head, cut into florets
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • 2 to 3 sausage, crumbled
  • 1 medium yellow onion, sliced
  • ½ pound cooked pasta with 1 cup pasta water spared

Transfer the cauliflower florets to a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle salt and olive oil. Roast under a hot broiler till all sides are golden brown- about 10 minutes on each side. Take out and keep aside.

Pesto

  • 1 full cup fresh basil
  • 1 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup pistachios
  • 2 anchovy fillets
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Salt

Add the garlic and pistachios to a food processor. Pulse till chopped. Add the basil, anchovy fillets, start pulsing and drizzle the olive oil and proxess till a smooth sauce is formed. Take out of the processor, add the cheese, lemon juice and salt to taste. Keep aside.

Heat a wide frying pan and add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the crumbled sausage and sauté on medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the onion and ½ teaspoon salt and sauté for another 4 to 5 minutes. Add the cooked pasta and ½ cup of the pasta water. Add the pesto, mix well and check for seasonings. Add more pasta water if necessary. Serve warm.

 

 

Roasted Pesto Chicken Pizza

April 30, 2019

Roast Pesto Chicken Pizza What do you do with leftover roast chicken and cauliflower??? Well, you make individual, homemade pizzas, of course!

  • One large pizza dough from a pizzeria cut into four pieces
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour

Preheat convection oven (preferred) to 450 degrees F.

Take one piece and form into a round ball and using some of the all-purpose flour roll into a 9-inch circle. Keep aside. Repeat with the other three pieces.

  • 1 cup fresh tomato sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella

Spread the tomato sauce on each rolled out pizza dough. Sprinkle the shredded cheese evenly and keep aside.

  • 1 cup leftover roast chicken, potatoes and cauliflower- cut into small pieces
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Add a quarter cup of the roast chicken mixture on top of each pizza and bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve hot.

Roasted Pesto Chicken with Potatoes and Cauliflower

April 28, 2019

Baked Pesto Chicken1

  • 4 full chicken legs (skin off)
  • 1 pound small yellow potatoes (skin off)
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • ½ cup fresh or store bought pesto
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preheat a 350 degrees F.

Line a large baking pan with aluminum foil.

Place the cauliflower florets and potatoes to the bottom of the pan. Add half of the pesto, salt, pepper and one tablespoon of the olive oil. Mix well with your fingers. Place the chicken pieces on top of the vegetables. Add the rest of the pesto and olive oil. Rub all over the chicken. Add salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for an hour. Change the setting to high broil and brown for 5 to 10 minutes till the chicken and the potatoes turn golden brown. Serve with crusty bread.

Fettuccine with Scallops and Garlic

April 9, 2019

I served this delicious pasta dish with some yummy asparagus, simply cooked with some olive oil and salt… very springy!!

  • ½ pound fresh fettuccine
  • Salt
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 10 large scallops, cleaned
  • ½ cup clam juice
  • Juice and zest of one lemon
  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley

 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package label and reserve ½ cup cooking water, then drain and keep aside.

In the meantime, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Brown the scallops on both sides about 30 seconds each. Take out and keep aside, let cool and slice each scallop into 3 to 4 slices. Reheat the pan on medium heat and add the garlic, red pepper flakes and ½ teaspoon salt. Cook for about a minute. Add the clam juice, lemon zest and juice. Add the pasta and the pasta water. Add the scallops and parsley, toss to coat and cook for another minute or two until the scallops have warmed through. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil before serving.

Pasta with Roasted Tomatoes, Asparagus & Broccolini with Toasted Breadcrumbs

April 8, 2019

Another pasta dish but completely different from yesterday… this has spring vegetables and is topped with the most delicious toasted breadcrumbs…

  • 1 lb plum tomatoes, cut in half and seeds scooped out
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.

Place the tomatoes face down on a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle the oil and sprinkle salt and pepper. Roast them for 3 hours until soft. Let cool and scrape off any lose skin. Chop the tomatoes and set aside.

  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed
  • 1 bunch broccolini, trimmed and sliced in half
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Transfer the vegetables to a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper and roast for about 30 minutes. Take out and keep aside.

  • ½ pound cooked pasta plus 1 cup of pasta water, penne or any kind
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated

Heat a large frying pan with the olive oil and butter. Add the shallot and garlic. Saute on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and pasta water. Bring to a boil and simmer for a minute. Add the pasta and the vegetables. Mix well and season accordingly.

Toasted Breadcrumbs

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

Heat a medium frying pan with the olive oil. Add the breadcrumbs and garlic with the salt. Saute on medium heat, stirring constantly, making sure the breadcrumbs don’t burn. Saute for 3 to 4 minutes and keep aside and let cool. Once cool, add the parsley and cheese. Mix well and top the pasta before serving.

Parsley Pesto Pasta with Roasted Asparagus

April 7, 2019

When I think of spring, I think of asparagus and I think fresh green pesto. This pasta dish is a combination of both. I made a delicious parsley pesto which is very easy to make. I paired it with delicious roasted or grilled asparagus. It is a great side dish or a meal!

  • 2 cups fresh parsley
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/3 cup pistachios
  • Juice of half lemon
  • ¼ to ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ½ cup grated Pecorino Romano

Transfer the parsley, garlic, pistachios and lemon juice to a food processor. Process till a smooth paste begins to form. With the top open, drizzle the oil till the pesto begins to form. Transfer to a small bowl and add the salt and cheese. Check for seasonings.

  • 2 bunches asparagus
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut the ends off the asparagus and cut the tops into 2 inch pieces. Transfer to a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt. Mix well and roast in oven for 30 minutes for till golden brown. Take out and keep aside.

  • ½ pound pasta, cooked al dente with 1 cup pasta water saved

Transfer pasta to a large frying pan. Add the pesto and the saved pasta water and stir over low heat till all the ingredients have come together. Fold in the roasted asparagus and check for seasonings. Serve with grated cheese.

Chicken Parm with Broccoli Rabe Pesto

March 25, 2019

Chicken Parm with Broccoli Rabe Pesto1

  • 6-8 chicken tenders

Marinade

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon salt and pepper

Mix the ingredients in a small bowl and marinate the chicken tenders for 4-5 hours.

Breading

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/4 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus extra for serving
  • 2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup homemade tomato sauce
  • 1 cup shredded low moisture part skim mozzarella cheese

Combine the flour, salt, and pepper on a dinner plate. On a second plate, beat the eggs with 1 tablespoon of water and a pinch of salt. On a third plate, combine the breadcrumbs and 1/2 cup grated Parmesan. Coat the chicken tenders on both sides with the flour mixture, then dip both sides into the egg mixture and dredge both sides in the bread-crumb mixture, pressing lightly. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan and cook 2 or 3 chicken tenders on medium-low heat for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until cooked through. Add more butter and oil and cook the rest of the chicken tenders.
Lay the cooked chicken pieces in an ovenproof casserole. Ladle spoons of marinara sauce over all the chicken pieces. Add the shredded mozzarella on top and bake for 5-10 minutes in a 350 degrees oven until cheese is melted. Add some more sauce and keep aside.

Pesto

  • 2 cups broccoli rabe leaves only, roughly chopped
  • 3 cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Process the broccoli rabe and spinach leaves till smooth. While the processor is on, drizzle the olive oil into the pesto. Add the salt and keep aside.

1 pound pappardelle, cooked al dente with some pasta water saved.

Once the pasta is cooked, return it to the same pot with ½ cup pasta water. Add ½ cup broccoli rabe pesto and mix well. Adjust seasonings and serve with chicken tenders on top.

Chicken Parm with Broccoli Rabe Pesto