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Category Archives: Pasta

Vegetable Lasagna

January 11, 2017

This is a great way to get some veggies into your kids. They may not notice all the greens while they enjoy the yummy noodles, cheese and sauce. Eliminate the pancetta if you want to keep it vegetarian. If not then it is great way to infuse some great flavor without adding a lot of meat.

  • 9 to 12 lasagna noodles
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup pancetta, chopped (eliminate if making vegetarian)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 10 ounces Cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 10 ounces Shiitaki mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cups mixed greens (I used a combination of kale, green cabbage, red cabbage & Brussels sprouts), shredded
  • 1 cup ricotta
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • ½ cup parsley, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, divided
  • ½ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 3 cups fresh tomato sauce, preferable homemade

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Boil the lasagna noodles until they are soft and pliable, about 6 to 7 minutes. Remove the pasta and lay flat on a sheet tray to cool.

Add olive oil and pancetta to a large frying pan. Saute on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the onion and garlic and continue to sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and sauté on high heat for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the greens and cook for another 5 minutes until they are wilted. Check for seasonings and turn heat off and let cool.

In a small bowl, add the ricotta, garlic, parsley, salt, egg, and ½ cup of cheese. Mix well and keep aside.

In the bottom of a 8 by 8 baking dish, add a half cup of sauce. Spread evenly. Arrange three to four noodles to completely cover the sauce. Spread ½ of the ricotta mixture over the pasta. Add ½ of the mushroom mixture and spread evenly. Repeat with noodles, sauce, ricotta and mixture. Finally add the last batch of noodles and cover with sauce. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmigiano and all of mozzarella on top. Cover with foil. Place the lasagna on a baking sheet and bake in oven for an hour 15 minutes, removing the foil for the last 15 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes before slicing.

 

 

 

 

Pasta Arrabbiata with Herbed Breadcrumbs

January 10, 2017

Just a simple plate of pasta can be so delicious- you don’t need a whole lot of ingredients… just really good ones!!

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 to 3 medium shallots, chopped
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 to 2 jalapeno peppers, chopped (seeded depending on how spicy you want)
  • 3 cups fresh tomato sauce or canned tomatoes
  • ½ pound penne, cooked al dente with 1 cup pasta water
  • ½ cup fresh basil, chopped

Heat a saucepan with butter and oil. Add the shallots, garlic and jalapenos. Saute on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomato sauce and bring to a boil. Simmer with lid off for 30 minutes. Add basil and pasta. Mix well and check for seasonings and add salt. Adjust consistency of sauce by adding pasta water if needed. Serve warm with a garnish of herbed breadcrumbs.

Breadcrumbs

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • Zest of one lemon

Mix all the ingredients and serve on top of pasta.

 

Pasta Cinghiale- My Version

January 9, 2017

Our favorite dish to order at our favorite Italian restaurant (Arturo’s) is pasta cinghiale… it is really, really delicious and if I close my eyes, I am transported to Umbria where wild boar dishes are in abundance. I have tried to make this dish at home before but this time I found wild boar sausages and decided to use them to replicate my favorite dish…

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ pound wild boar sausage, casings off, crumbled
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 10 ounces Cremini mushrooms, chopped
  • 3 to 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • Salt
  • ½ to 1 cup pasta water
  • ½ pound penne, cooked al dente

Heat a large frying pan with the olive oil. Add the crumbled sausage and sauté over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes or till golden brown. Take the sausage out with a slotted spoon and add the mushrooms and more olive oil if needed. Saute on high heat for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the garlic and thyme and continue to sauté for another 2 minutes on medium heat. Add cooked pasta, cream, pasta water and salt to taste. Bring to a gently boil and turn heat off and serve.

Spaghetti with Fried Egg and Pangritata

January 8, 2017

What is pangritata, you ask? Well it is some bread crumbs cooked in olive oil with some herbs.. I added some lemon zest for good measure… It creates an amazing texture in any dish. This recipe is simple with pasta and eggs topped with breadcrumbs… so, so simple and so good! Perfect for meatless Mondays…

Pangritata

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
  • Zest of a small lemon

Heat a large frying pan with the oil. Add the bread crumbs and sauté on medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes till golden brown. Add the rosemary, stir and turn heat off. Take out in a small bowl and add the lemon zest and mix well and keep aside.

  • ½ pound spaghetti, cooked al dente with 1 cup of pasta water spare
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
  • ½ cup grated grana padano cheese

Heat the same frying pan with the oil and butter. Add the garlic and cook for a minute on low heat. Add the eggs and cook on medium heat till the whites are cooked just barely through and the yolks are still runny. Add the cooked spaghetti and mix well, incorporating the eggs well. Add the chives and cheese. Mix well and check for seasonings. Add salt if necessary. Garnish with the Pangritata and serve immediately.

 

Mushroom Pasta with Marsala Sauce

January 2, 2017

I’ll start off the New Year with a delicious mushroom pasta- my daughter loves, loves mushrooms- she sneaks away some as I am slicing them to prepare the dish… she loved this one…

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 10 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
  • 10 ounces Cremini mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup Marsala wine
  • 1 cup chicken/mushroom or vegetable broth
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • ½ pound farfalle, cooked al dente with ½ cup pasta water spared
  • ½ cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
  • ½ cup parsley, chopped

Heat a large frying pan with butter and olive oil. Add the onion and sauté on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the shiitake mushrooms and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the Cremini mushrooms and sauté on medium heat for 6 to 7 minutes. Add thyme, garlic, salt and pepper. Saute for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the mushrooms to a bowl. Add the Marsala wine and scrape off the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Take off heat and add the cream and mix well. Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper. Add the cooked pasta, cheese, mushrooms and parsley and cook over medium heat until pasta absorbs most of the liquid, about a minute or two. Adjust consistency with spare pasta water. Taste for seasonings and serve.

Mushroom Penne with Pesto

December 4, 2016

A quick weeknight meal- ready in minutes and delicious!!

  • 20 ounces mushrooms, a mix of white and cremini, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 ounces pancetta, chopped
  • 1 large shallot, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • ½ pound penne pasta
  • ½ cup pesto, store bought
  • Salt to taste

In a medium pan, bring salty water to a roaring boil and add the pasta. Cook according to the box directions.
In the meantime, in a large frying pan, heat the olive oil and add the pancetta. Saute till light brown on medium heat, for about 5 minutes. Add the shallot and garlic. Saute for another 3-4 minutes. Next, add the mushrooms and cook on high heat stirring constantly. They will wilt down to almost half their size. Add the cooked pasta and the pesto. Turn the heat off, stir and check for salt.

Baked Sausage and Mushroom Pasta

October 31, 2016

Another one pot meal one can whip up in no time. I played around with marsala wine in this dish to give an extra yummy flavor… really good!

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 to 5 sausage links, casings removed and crumbled (I used with roasted garlic)
  • 1 10 ounce pack Cremini mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • Salt
  • ¼ cup Marsala wine
  • 2 cups fresh tomato sauce, homemade or store bought
  • ½ pound penne, cooked a bit less than al dente
  • ½ cup fresh full fat ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese, divided in half
  • ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Heat a wide frying pan with the olive oil. Add the crumbled sausage and cook on a medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue to sauté for another 4 to 5 minutes. Add a teaspoon of salt and Marsala wine. Stir well and add the tomato sauce. Bring to a boil and add the cooked pasta, ricotta cheese and ½ cup mozzarella cheese. Mix well, turn heat off and check for seasonings. Add parsley, mix well and transfer to an oven-proof dish. Top with the remaining grated cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and turn the broil function on and brown for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes and serve.