Sunday, September 12, 2010

Is this thing on?

I'm wondering if this still works since I have abandoned it so completely over the last month or so. I would like to say that, even though I haven't been posting, we've still been cooking up a storm but, sadly, it is not true. We have ground to a halt. I'm not sure when I've eaten so much pizza or so many hot dogs.

We did manage two new recipes recently that I will label "from the ridiculous to the sublime".

First the ridiculous. This is from a small Taste of Home cookbook that I picked up as a joke. You see, it's the BACON recipe card edition. And while most of the recipes look like coronary artery disease on a plate, we did actually make one and it was really quite tasty! I give you the

BLT Salad

1 pound sliced bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
¼ cup butter, cubed
4 slices white bread, crusts removed and cut into 1-inch cubes
½ cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons minced fresh basil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon minced garlic
6 cups torn romaine
1½ cups grape tomatoes

1. In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings. Set bacon and drippings aside.

2. In another large skillet, melt butter. Add bread cubes, cook over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove to paper towels; cool.

3. For dressing, in a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, basil, vinegar, pepper, garlic and reserved drippings. In a large bowl, combine the romaine, tomatoes and bacon. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat. Top with croutons.


We've made this twice and it's really delicious! The ingredients listed reflect the modifications that we made to the original recipe and we like it better this way. It's a nice summer dinner. And it's quick and easy, which is a definite plus these days!

And now the sublime. This is from Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics cookbook. This is another really fast and delicious meal that's great for the summer, especially how we paired it.

Tagliarelle with Truffle Butter

Kosher salt
½ cup heavy cream
3 ounces white truffle butter
Freshly ground black pepper
1 (8.82-ounce) package Cipriani tagliarelle dried pasta or other egg fettuccine
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
3 ounces Parmesan, shaved thin with a vegetable peeler

Add 1 tablespoon salt to a large pot of water and bring to a boil.
Meanwhile, in a large (12-inch) sauté pan, heat the cream over medium heat until it comes to a simmer. Add the truffle butter, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper; lower the heat to very low, and swirl the butter until it melts. Keep warm over very low heat.
Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes, exactly. (If you're not using Cipriani pasta, follow the directions on the package.) When the pasta is cooked, reserve ½ cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta. Add the drained pasta to the sauté pan and toss it with the truffle-cream mixture. As the pasta absorbs the sauce, add as much of the reserved cooking water as necessary to keep the pasta very creamy.
Serve the pasta in shallow bowls and garnish each serving with a generous sprinkling of chives and shaved Parmesan.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve at once.


Ina's description of this dish starts with "OMG", which busts me up, but it's, in fact, the right reaction. This meal is unbelievable! And it's ridiculously easy to make. Perfect for those rushed nights when you're home late from work and you just can't face another pizza! We did not find Cipriani pasta but we did find premium tagliatelle egg pasta that is simply amazing. We also have difficulty finding the truffle butter on a regular basis. We've only actually found it once but we check in the store every single time we go because we will buy this tiny pot of butter for $12 every time we see it. Yes, we will.

As an alternative, we did try a 3-ounce container of garlic finishing butter and it wasn't the same by far (and not close to $12) but it was still quite tasty.

And now the surprise for me with this dish. We served it with a plain baby arugula mix from the grocery store and some freshly made Good Seasons Italian dressing. That's it. I cannot tell you how fantastic this pairing was! And served with a good Italian wine - it's other-worldly!

I'm going to count these two since they were new recipes for us and we actually did cook, so in the newly designed Our Own Julie/Julia Project, these are the latest two entries.

Days 155 and 164/365:Recipes 42 and 43/175

2 comments:

nura said...

Hooray good article
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