Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Spaghetti a la Carbonara

Are you ready for the indulgence of all indulgences in the pasta world? Yep, it's carbonara and good Lord it's good! I sort of put off making this dish only because it's worthy of clogging the ol' arteries but after several requests for it I decided to make this little treat. It really is super easy and this recipe came pretty dang close to the carbonara we had in Rome. The only thing I would change is to not add any extra salt since the pancetta has plenty.

  • 1lb pancetta, diced into 1" cubes
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 6 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan 
  • 1lb dried pasta, I used spaghetti
  • 4 tbsp chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • Heat a large saute pan, until hot. Add pancetta and cook until golden brown and crispy, about 5 minutes. Season with black pepper and remove from pan from heat.
  • In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and cream together. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in parmesan, reserving 2 tbsp for garnish. Or just grate extra for garnish like I did. Set aside.
  • Heat a pot of water and cook pasta until al dente. Drain pasta in a colander. Do not rinse the pasta with water; you want to retain the natural starches so that the sauce will stick.
  • While the pasta is still hot, return it back to the pot. Add the pancetta and mix well. Add the egg and cream mixture and coat the pasta completely. It's important to work quickly while the pasta is still warm so that the cream mixture will cook, but not curdle. Add the remaining parmesan and parsley leaves to garnish. 
  • Ready to serve! 
I made this dish for a small dinner party so I didn't have time to take pictures so here's the picture from Giada 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Baked Doughnuts

Recently I have seen a few different posts on pinterest and other blogs about making your own doughnuts. My whole pregnancy I have really craved a dang doughnut but have successfully dodged them up until this point. These recipes are baked rather than fried and have a few substitutes that make them a little healthier. Here are 2 different recipes that caught my eye. I think my doughnut hiatus is over!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Pork Chops with Corn and Jalapeno Salad

Here's a dish to put you in the mood for summer! I needed that yesterday and this meal really hit the spot.

  • 4 bone in pork chops
  • 1 tbsp (or less if desired) salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 4 ears corn, remove kernels
  • 2 limes, zested and juiced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 pint sweet tomatoes, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, minced
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Combine the sugar, salt and coriander. Rub each of the pork chops on both sides with the mixture, and refrigerate overnight. I didn't buy them ahead of time so I just seasoned and waiting 30 minutes and then cooked them. If you do it this way, I would add less salt. 
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  • In a large bowl for the salad, add the lime zest, lime juice, cilantro, tomatoes, scallions and garlic and a drizzle of olive oil. 
  • Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat with olive oil. Once hot add the corn and jalapeno. I cooked for about 5 minutes. Toss in the salad bowl and mix everything together.
  • Add a little more olive oil to the pan and add the pork chops. Brown both sides. Once browned, throw in the oven for about 5 minutes or until completely cooked inside. I had my trusty meat thermometer to help me. You can cook the pork chops solely on the cook top if you want...I just decided to finish them off in the oven. 
  • The original recipe calls for a bbq but I had to improvise seeing as how we are still pretty rainy here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Ham & Cheese Danish

Anyone else always on the hunt for easy and filling breakfast ideas? I have the luxury of eating whenever I'm hungry, and trust me it's a lot these days, but Brian always eats in the car on the way to work or at his desk at work. So it's nice for him to have something in his stomach to fuel him for a few hours. I know I make a lot of things from The Chew but seriously, they make so many good things! Enter: the ham and cheese danish. This one is as easy as layering and assembling but feels a little extra fancy because it's in a puff pastry. Side note, I made these Monday night and refrigerated them overnight to serve each morning...trust me, you want to reheat. It's not that great cold. Lesson learned.

  • 1 sheet puff pastry
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup gruyere, shredded
  • 4 slices cooked ham, you can use deli meat
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup creme fraiche
  • chives, finely chopped for garnish
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  • In a medium saute pan over medium low heat, add 2 tbsp olive oil. Add sliced onions and cook until onions turn golden brown and release their natural sugar, about 30 minutes. Add a bit of water to the pan as necessary if brown bits begin to form on the bottom. Not too much though! Season with salt and pepper. Allow onions to cool.
  • To form the danish, on one half of the pastry, place half of the caramelized onions, half of the cheese and half of the ham, leaving a 1" border around the edges. Repeat with remaining ingredients, seasoning each layer. 
  • In a small bowl, beat 1 egg. Brush the 1" border with the beaten egg and then carefully fold the pastry over the ingredients, like you are closing a book. Crimp the edges all around the border to seal and transfer the pastry to a parchment lined sheet pan. Brush the entire pastry with the beaten egg. Using a sharp knife, cut a few slices on top of the pastry. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown. 
  • Top the danish with creme fraiche and chopped chives.