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Posts Tagged ‘orecchiette’

by Sarah Steimer

Mac and cheese with cauliflower, tomatoes and mustard breadcrumbs

It’s mac and cheese season! But that doesn’t mean it has to be all heavy. Swapping out some of the pasta with cauliflower helps to lighten the dish, along with folding in greens and using skim milk.

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by Sarah Steimer

Some days I really crave a good Mediterranean-style meal with really bold flavors. This meal accomplished just that, and I happened to have everything in the fridge I needed (including the surprise of goat cheese that Bill happened to pick up the other day).

Some days I really crave a good Mediterranean-style meal with really bold, simple flavors. This meal accomplished just that, and I happened to have everything in the fridge I needed (including the surprise of goat cheese that Bill happened to pick up the other day).


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by Caitlin Saniga

How cute is orecchiette pasta?! It's not the easiest to find in stores (I found Delallo brand at Kroger, if that helps), but I love how it cups the chickpeas and mozzarella cubes here.

  • 1/2 pound orecchiette
  • vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 cup drained canned chickpeas, patted dry (If you don’t make sure their at least pretty much dry, they cause quiet a stir when you add them to the hot oil. Water and hot oil don’t mix.)
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 pound Swiss chard, stemmed and leaves coarsely chopped
  • 4 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 8 basil leaves, torn

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the orecchiette until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking water.

Meanwhile, in a medium, deep skillet, heat 1/4 inch of vegetable oil until simmering. Add the chickpeas and cook over high heat until crisp, 4 minutes. Transfer them to a paper towel-lined plate, sprinkle with the cumin and coriander and season with salt and pepper. Discard the oil, and wipe out the skillet.

Add the olive oil, garlic and crushed red pepper to the skillet. Cook over moderately high heat until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and cook until softened, 3 minutes. Add the chard and cook, stirring, until wilted, 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the pasta and reserved cooking water to the skillet and cook over moderate heat, stirring until incorporated. Add the mozzarella and basil and toss. Spoon the pasta into bowls, sprinkle with the chickpeas and serve.

Makes 4 servings.

Recipe: Food & Wine

Photo: Caitlin Saniga

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by Caitlin Saniga

One day, I noticed my eggplant was starting to soften, so I chopped up the whole thing and roasted it. I kept adding simple ingredients until the combination tasted totally divine. I've made this dish several times since then and haven't needed to tweak it. Success.

  • 1 medium eggplant, cubed
  • 4 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divide
  • 8 ounces orecchiette pasta
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 chicken breasts, cubed
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan and Romano cheeses (I grated these separately and mixed them so there was about 1/8 cup of each.)

In a 9-by-13 baking dish, toss eggplant pieces and garlic cloves in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Roast at 450 degrees for 4 minutes. Remove garlic cloves and set aside. Continue cooking eggplant for 18 minutes.

Meanwhile, boil salted water and cook orecchiette according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Pinch garlic cloves from their peels and mince. Set aside.

Melt butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add chicken. About 1 minute before chicken is finished cooking through, add minced garlic and eggplant cubes. Remove chicken mixture from heat.

In a large bowl or pot, combine pasta, chicken mixture, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Sprinkle cheeses over, and toss to combine all ingredients. Serve warm.

Makes 4 servings.

Recipe: Caitlin Saniga

Photo: Caitlin Saniga

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