Archive for the 'Pasta' Category



Skillet-Baked Ziti

Click here for a PDF of this recipe without photos.

Like a number of the items on this blog, my friend Virginia turned me on to this.  The great thing about this recipe is the versatility.  It can be cooked quickly (30 minutes from start to finish) and in a single pan, making it a great weeknight dinner.  It can also be cooked in advance and finished much later in a hot oven.  You can also double or triple the recipe, using a pot instead of a skillet and transferring it to a baking dish before sprinkling with the Mozzarella and finishing in the oven.

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Butter-Poached Lobster with Mascarpone Orzo

Click here for a PDF of this recipe without photos.

This was the main course for this weekend’s seafood-focused dinner.  It takes some time, but almost everything can be done in advance, making it easy to prepare for guests.  The lobster-cream sauce for the orzo was fantastic, and it should go without saying that butter-poached lobster isn’t going to be too bad.

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Pappardelle with Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatballs and Oven-Roasted Tomato Sauce

Click here for a PDF of this recipe without photos.

There are a couple of ways you can make this (or any) pasta: by hand on your counter or in a food processor.  My mom has told me stories about her grandmother (Grandpa Julio’s mother) making it on the dining room table, starting with a mountain of flour and a little salt and gradually incorporating the eggs by hand.  I used a food processor which saves a significant amount of time, but means this post lacks the requisite iconic photo of a mountain of flour on my dining room table.  This is a great meal to make in advance, as all elements can be done well before mealtime.  The sauce will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week, and the meatballs can be assembled and then frozen for much longer than that without sacrificing any quality.

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Bucatini all’Amatriciana

Click here for a PDF of this recipe without photos.

Traditionally this dish is made with Guanciale, a cured jowl bacon from Italy.  Pancetta is certainly close enough, and infinitely easier to find.  There were 5 kids eating this dinner, so I went a little easy on the crushed red.  If I were to make it again for adults, I’d use 2 tsp for sure.  Finally, while any tomato-based pasta sauce will do, I made a batch of my Grandma Joanne’s  famous sauce.  (Browned pork, garlic, onion, olive oil, oregano, basil, italian seasonings, black pepper, salt, and canned tomatoes and/or sauce, browned pork.  You said pork twice.  I like pork!)

Evelyn seems to like it.

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