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Archive for the ‘pasta’ Category

Thanks to The Crêpes of Wrath’s Roasted garlic and cherry tomato penne recipe I came up with my own version of easy pasta. I’m calling it everything goes pasta because it’s true! With a few common vegetables – the only musts are the onion, tomato and garlic – plus common kitchen staples – like pasta, duh – you can come up with an easy and filling meal. From me to you with love, specially on those days you’re too tired to cook but don’t want to eat something out of a jar.

Vegetables that had to be used up + other stuff

Vegetables that had to be used up + other stuff

Maybe it looks like a lot of stuff, but you don’t really need such a big variety of vegetables! I promise! Cross my heart and hope to die. The leeks, zucchini and mushrooms had to be eaten before a new shipment of veggies arrive on Wednesday, so they had to be CHOPPED.

I’m trying to avoid giving amounts or precise ingredients, not because I’m secretive or anything like that, but because you can really make this with anything. Well, maybe nto everything. Ok, fine, I’ll make a list. But not amounts! Play it by ear.

Ingredients

  • Tomatoes: a couple of big ones, or a bunch of cherry tomatoes.
  • Onion: yellow, purple, whatever.
  • Garlic: plain common cloves, or if you’re cool like me you’ll have previously made roasted garlic paste which tastes much better and is super convenient, not that there’s anything wrong with regular garlic … but you might just want to give this a shot. To keep you in suspense I won’t post about it till the next time I make it – look at what’s left in that Mason jar and make a guess as to in how much time that will be.
  • Oil: my preference is for cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, but you can shoot yourself in the foot and make it with some other oil if you want, I won’t complain if I don’t have to eat it.
  • Balsamic vinegar: try to get decent stuff, but don’t worry about shelling out the big bucks for this.
  • Salt and pepper, freshly ground, of course.

To this you can add any other veggies that will be good roasted, feta cheese (brined if you can find it – the salty tang it gives it goes really well with the sweetness of the vinegar which is the base for the sauce). Parmesan cheese – but don’t make the mistake I made today and get the shredded kind, instead go for the grated which will mix in but not melt a form a gooey mess.

Oven to 400 F and you’re ready to start!

Chop chop chop

Chop chop chop

Chop everything up, throw it in the pan.

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Keep your knife away from the oil bottle! No, no, no! Don’t chop up the cutting board either, it’s going to take too long and I’m not sure if it wil improve the flavor. There you go, put the knife down slowly and keep your hands where I can see them.

Sigh. Maybe I should have been more specific. Chop up the VEGGIES. No, cheese is not a vegetable last time I checked.

Shrooms

'Shrooms

And for the sake of argument, lets pretend that mushrooms, if you got’em, are vegetables. I really don’t want to play a game of animal – plant – mineral or go back to biology class.

I think the original recipe this was based on gave some reason for using a metal pan, but I can’t remember what it was. I use it because it’s convenient and not as heavy as a ceramic one. That’s a good enough reason for me. Shrug.

Dont they look a little bit dry?

Don't they look a little bit dry?

Now for the dressing, which is going to be the base of the pasta sauce. It’s pretty simple: oil and vinegar. I like to go heavier on the balsamic than the oil because it’s what’s going to ive it more flavour. How much? No idea. Enough to make a sauce (so don’t be stingy) but the veggies don’t need to be drowning in the stuff.

Much better now

Much better now

Now move them up and down and shake them all around.

And pop them in the oven while you’re at it.

Somewhere between 30 minutes and 1h, turning them around if the top ones look like they’re getting dry and starting to burn.

See, that wasn’t so difficult now was it? Now you go make yourself a nice cold cocktail and enjoy the new episode of How I met your mother followed by at least the first quarter of Heroes before you need to get your ass of the couch again.

When the veggies are almost done (or you’re tired of waiting), cook up some pasta, take the veggies out and mix them (getting the juices out of the tomato), add the feta and enjoy. Easy peasy.

What? You want something more challenging? You are able to multitask and follow the TV shows whilst still cooking? You’re my kind of person then, so read on.

More ingredients? Huh?

More ingredients? Huh?

Can you guess what else I decided to make?

Eggs, flour, what can it be?

Eggs, flour, what can it be?

How about now? No?

What am I going to roll out?

What am I going to roll out?

Seriously, how dense are you???!? No, I’m not making a fucking pie. It’s not a quiche or bread – mmhhhh, gaaaaarlic bread – either.

Ok, one last try:

Letting it all hang out

Letting it all hang out

If you still don’t get it, go and bash your head with a rock or something. Or maybe just try to hover your mouse over the image.

Yeah baby, I made my own pasta! First time doing it too. I was more than ready to write a humorous post about not being able to do, dough that just had a mind of its own, would not be rolled, stuck when cooking, was inedible…

It really wasn’t that bad.

Don’t get me wrong, I still need to get much better at this. And that whole volcano technique that looks so simple and cool in the YouTube videos? Not so simple. Also not something I’d make every single time I want pasta, as it takes a while to make and I need another pair of hands to follow orders – that or a pasta rack. No, not a pair of boobs with pasta on them. Geez, what are you guys thinking? A thingy to dry pasta.

200g of flour (half all purpose, half semolina – basically what I had), 2 eggs, couple of drops of oil.

200g of flour (half all purpose, half semolina – basically what I had), 2 eggs, couple of drops of oil.

That was not a typo.

200g of flour (half all purpose, half semolina – basically what I had), 2 eggs, couple of drops of oil.

I just can’t get enough of writing an amount in grams and not having to use stupid cups or ounces or pounds whose abbreviation has nothing to do with their name, absurd quarts, stones, goats, or any other absurd and utterly stupid measurement unit. METRIC UNITS FTW!!!

If you want to know how to make it, google it and look at some videos, it’s quite entertaining and it looks really easy. Then come back and report how not easy it was.

Can you smell them?

Can you smell them?

Lets get back to the dish. Once the pasta is cooking – or rather, [read with a snobbish and posh accent] once the dried pre-made store-bought pasta is almost done – take the veggies out of the oven. Don’t forget to turn it off. We don’t want any accidents happening. It would be such a waste of vegetables ….

Mix them some more, get aggressive with the tomato and force it to give up its juice. Now is the time to invite the feta to the party.

Drain pasta and mix.

Pst, the pot you just cooked the pasta in is idea for mixing it with the sauce.

Aaaaaand I giiiive you: EVERYTHING GOES PASTA!

Aaaaaand I giiiive you: EVERYTHING GOES PASTA!

….I think at some point I forgot to mention the salt and pepper, but y’all should be smart enough to figure it out.

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