From the Kitchen of barb0812

How to Make a Quick and Simple Pasta Dish for Two

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Fettuccine with Sun-Dried Tomato and Avocado

Quite a few years ago, a friend gave me a cookbook titled InterCourses: an aphrodisiac cookbook.  It’s actually a beautiful cookbook with many suggestive but tastefully styled images all highlighting various sensual foods such as chocolate, honey and figs. This book is special to me because of all its fabulous recipes–not because it necessarily led to, ahem, ‘dessert’.

One recipe in particular, the Sun Dried Tomato and Avocado Fettuccine, is a quick and simple pasta dish that has everything going for it in the flavor department.  Needing a date night dish? Two can participate in the prep work (which goes really fast) leaving plenty of time to enjoy the meal over a glass of wine and a little Sade or over a marathon of Law and Order? That works, too.   What happens after…well, according to authors Hopkins and Lockridge, we can blame it on the avocado!

I have adapted this recipe from the original, and it nicely serves 2.  The original recipe includes bacon crumbles, but I actually find it is just as tasty without as a vegetarian meal. The key to this amazing recipe is the fresh ingredients.  Use fresh herbs and lime and you won’t be sorry.

I think it is easiest to prep all the ingredients you will need for the dish.  Here is what you will need to get started:

ingredients for fettuccine with sun-dried tomatoes and avocado

Prep all your ingredients and just 1/2 of the cubed avocado and mix together in a medium bowl.

Prepped ingredients for fettucine dish

Adding lime juice to all ingredients for fettuccine dish

Add 6 ounces of dry fettuccine noodles to a large salted pot of water and cook according to package instructions.

dry fettuccine noodles in a pot of boiling salted water

Add hot fettuccine to the avocado mix and gently combine.

Combining hot fettuccine noodles with avocado mix

Plate and top with remainder of avocado and a bit of finely chopped fresh parsley.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Enjoy!

Fettucine with sun-dried tomatoes and avocado

fettuccine with sun-dried tomatoes and avocado

If you enjoyed this step by step recipe, check out our post on some great date night dishes.

Posted By: barb0812

My dogs consider me the "greatest chef of all time"...I am lover of all foods vegetarian and advocate for growing your own veggies--no matter the size! I am one of the Co-founders of Hey Good Cookin' and a believer in cooking for yourself because everyone deserves it!

See barb0812's Latest Posts

From the Kitchen of heygoodcookin

How to Make a Green Pea and Ricotta Pasta for One

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Green Pea and Ricotta Pasta

Ever wonder what you can do with those frozen green peas that just seem to sit in the freezer before finally getting freezer burnt and tossed out?  This great little recipe adapted from Sunset Magazine is just the perfect creamy indulgent pasta dish made to serve one. Ready to make this your meal tonight?  Here’s how:

Bring a medium pot filled 3/4 with water and 1/2 tsp. of salt to a boil. Add 1 cup of dry rigatoni pasta and cook according to directions. Set aside about 2-3 tablespoons of the pasta water.

Meantime, in a food processor or blender, add 1 garlic clove, 1 Tbsp. parsley and 2 tsp. of olive oil, then pulse to chop. Add 1/4 cup of the peas, 1/3 cup whole ricotta cheese, 1/2 tsp. lemon juice + a pinch of lemon zest, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper, pulsing again to create a creamy puree.

adding lemon juice to ricotta cheese and pea puree

Green Pea and Ricotta Puree

When pasta has finished, set aside 2 Tbsp. of the pasta water. Drain the pasta and return it right away to the hot pot. Add the pea and ricotta cheese puree and mix until combined.

Green Pea and Ricotta Puree added to cooked pasta

Add the pasta water you set aside to break up the sauce if too thick. Mix in remaining 1/4 cup of peas.

adding a little pasta water to break up puree before plating
Dish up the pasta or enjoy from the pot after drizzling remaining 1 tsp. of olive oil, 1Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese and 1 tsp. pine nuts on top. Enjoy!

Green Pea and Ricotta Pasta plated

Green Pea and Ricotta Pasta

 

Posted By: heygoodcookin

The Hey Good Cookin' Kitchen has become a place of food inspiration and savory discovery to share with our cookin' singles community. We search out new recipes or sometimes just adapt familiar ones to test, taste, photograph and share in the triumphs and mishaps of creating new dishes.

See heygoodcookin's Latest Posts

From the Kitchen of heygoodcookin

Prep Ahead Pasta

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Pasta-Week-001

When life gets busy it’s easy to make poor choices. At the end of a long, stressful day, it’s tempting to pull into the nearest drive thru and order something you may regret.  Although pasta is fairly simple, even the small amount of time or energy needed to make a dish can sometimes seem overwhelming. This tip will help when you want a quick GRAB N’ Go lunch or dinner.

Get ready for your week by prepping macaroni for upcoming dinners and lunches. Prepare a bag of macaroni according to the package directions.  Make sure you don’t overcook it as mushy pasta doesn’t store well.

Pasta-Week-002

While the macaroni is cooking, coat a cookie sheet with a generous portion of olive oil.

 Pasta-Week-003

Drain the macaroni and spread it in a thin, even later on the cookie sheet to cool.

Pasta-Week-004

When it’s cooling give it a stir now and then to keep it from clumping.  If it starts to stick add a bit more olive oil.

 Pasta-Week-005
When the macaroni is completely cool, bag it and throw it in the fridge.  Later in the week, heat some up in the microwave for a minute or two and add your favorite sauce or make a cold pasta salad for a GRAB N’ GO lunch.

Pasta-Week-006

Give this simple 6 Ingredient Pasta Dish a try!  Super simple–just dish up the pasta you want and add the ingredients.

Display of ingredients for a 6 Ingredient Pasta Salad

6 Ingredient Pasta Salad

6 Ingredient Pasta Salad

 

 

Posted By: heygoodcookin

The Hey Good Cookin' Kitchen has become a place of food inspiration and savory discovery to share with our cookin' singles community. We search out new recipes or sometimes just adapt familiar ones to test, taste, photograph and share in the triumphs and mishaps of creating new dishes.

See heygoodcookin's Latest Posts

From the Kitchen of barb0812

When Gardens Give You Squash…

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A spoonful of quinoa squash oatmeal form a blue bowl

My garden went crazy with butternut squash this year–like 15 of them from two plants!  I am pretty amazed but also aware of the many bags of cubed squash sitting in my freezer.  Unfortunately, I don’t have many recipes in my arsenal to use up all this squash so I decided I would be sharing some with my dogs and then on to hunt the internet. I came up with some great ideas in addition to this fabulous recipe from peanutbutterandpeppers.com.  OMG–this is really filling and gives you plenty of energy all morning. Love that!  The recipe makes enough for 4 meals (3/4 cup servings), so I store it in my fridge and eat it during the work week.  Adding a bit of almond milk and nuking on high for a minute is my kind of a quick breakfast!

So, check out the recipe and if you try it, let me know what you think!  I personally think this one is a keeper!

First things first…

Adding a cup of quinoa to boiling cider with 1/2 tsp of grated ginger

1 cup of frozen butternut squash cubes and 1/3 cup of water mashing cooked squash with a forkAdding milk and squash to cooked quinoamixing all together

Adding dried cranberries and pecan pieces

Adding cinnamon and a bit of maple syrup

Quinoa Squash Oatmeal

 

Posted By: barb0812

My dogs consider me the "greatest chef of all time"...I am lover of all foods vegetarian and advocate for growing your own veggies--no matter the size! I am one of the Co-founders of Hey Good Cookin' and a believer in cooking for yourself because everyone deserves it!

See barb0812's Latest Posts

From the Kitchen of barb0812

The Making of a Hand Pie

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A plate of vegetarian hand pies
Ugh!  The words from “The Chew” are still sitting in my head: cupcakes are out and hand pies are in!  Could it be?!  I am not a gal that loves change, but I found myself suddenly excited about pulling out that unopened Wilton mini hand press. Now, to decide what kind of a filling to make?

A Wilton Mini Pie Press

I love the Wilton Mini Pie Press! A fun must have!

When I make something new, my kitchen ends up a mess, and I am not alone on this!  Sorry Martha Stewart, but I am sure even your beautiful country kitchen sees a mess or two. Anyone who tells you otherwise is probably not telling you the-rest-of-the-story!

Check out my kitchen…post pie makin’…

a messy kitchen of dirty dishes and measuring cups
A quick survey of my fridge revealed leftover hash browns in need of being used up.  I also found that I had some mushrooms, onion and spinach….hmmm.  Now, for the sauce.  I figured a simple white sauce would work well, so I decided on an olive oil/yogurt bechamel sauce.  I was going for tasty here…at least, I was hoping so.

Here is how I put it all together:

Saute onion and bell pepper in olive oil for several minutes, until softened. Add potato and spinach, cooking until spinach has wilted, add minced garlic and cook another minute. Set aside in a bowl.

A saute of olive oilk, onion, mushroom and fresh spinach.
In the same saute pan, whisk the flour and oil over med-low heat for a minute, then add milk and yogurt. Whisk constantly allowing the mixture to come to a boil and thicken. It will look curdled but will smooth out a bit once it boils. Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese, salt and pepper. Combine with the veggie saute, just until veggie saute is covered with the sauce.
Bechamel sauce showing curdle
Roll out your pie crust on a lightly-dusted surface and gently use a rolling pin to shape square edges from your circle. Follow the instructions on your Wilton Mini Pie Press and cut 6 squares. You may need to roll out each square just a tad thinner to give you enough of an edge to fill in your press.
Cutting pie squares for mini pies
Shape a square inside your mini press (see photos in step by step: How to make veggie mini hand pies) and rub a bit of egg wash ( 1 egg yolk + 1 tablespoon milk or water mixed together) on the edges.
Pie square pressed in mini press
Add 2 tablespoons of the filling.
Mini pie press showing filling
Take a second pie square and place over the top, pressing the edges of the two pie crust squares together. Now, fold your press together and apply pressure.
pressed pie with mini press
Gently shake your pie loose. Place on a cookie sheet and lightly brush the top with your egg wash and pierce a couple of times with a fork. Repeat the same until you have made all 6 hand pies. You will use both rolls of pre-frozen pie dough.
brush + egg wash on each pie

Bake at 400 degrees for about 18 minutes or until golden brown. Refrigerate or freeze after cooling.

Posted By: barb0812

My dogs consider me the "greatest chef of all time"...I am lover of all foods vegetarian and advocate for growing your own veggies--no matter the size! I am one of the Co-founders of Hey Good Cookin' and a believer in cooking for yourself because everyone deserves it!

See barb0812's Latest Posts

From the Kitchen of barb0812

Mama Mia Marinara!

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Basil with roma tomatoes halved

Basil and Roma Tomatoes

If you were lucky enough to get a crop of tomatoes this year before the squirrels, you were lucky indeed!  I have had this secret fantasy of making my own marinara for some time, and so this year I did it! Yes, it takes some time to do, but it’s not hard and so worth it to try once.

I had originally thought I would try my hand at canning marinara this year, but I decided that was not to be in the cards–it’s not as easy as canning pickles.  So, I ran into my Trader Joe’s for a few items and right into my favorite employee at the checkout.  He saw I was purchasing some pasta and asked me where the marinara was, because he didn’t see any in my cart.  I exclaimed, “I am making it myself!” And in his thick Italian accent he said, “Well, aren’t you the Italian cook? I make mine, too, and freeze it in Ziplock bags.” I asked him how long it keeps, and he told me several months. Good to know, and what a great tip to pass along!

I make about 2 cups of marinara at a time because it’s less time consuming and I usually have plans for it. If all you need is a cup, I would recommend just freezing the second cup for use another time.

This recipe needs about 38-40 small roma tomatoes.  When I say small, I mean the garden variety which usually only gets about double or triple the size of a cherry tomato.  If you have fresh basil, pick yourself about 4-5 leaves.  Slice your tomatoes in half and place them face down on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or Silpat.

Roma tomatoes pictured halved and face down on a cookie sheet with Bruno the dog

Bruno is watching over my work!

Place your tray of tomatoes in a 400 degree oven for 10 minutes.  Allow to cool to the touch and begin taking off the skins.

Garden roma tomatoes, halved and baked at 400 degrees for 10 minutes to remove the skins

Roma tomatoes ready to be de-skinned

Slide your skinned tomatoes into a food processor or blender along with your 4-5 fresh basil leaves and get ready to pulse for your puree.

roma tomatoes and fresh basil leaves pictured in a food processor pureed

roma tomato and basil puree

In a one quart pot, add 2 Tbsp. olive oil over medium low heat.  Add onion and sauté for several minutes, then add the minced garlic and continue cooking another minute.  Add the wine and allow this to cook down for several minutes before adding the tomato puree and seasonings to the pot.

A pot with onion and garlic in a saute.

onion and garlic being sautéed.

Cover and simmer on lowest heat for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. If you own a food sieve and don’t like all the pulp and seeds, strain it before you enjoy in your dish

Homemade marinara from small garden roma tomatos with basil and garlic

Homemade Tomato Marinara

 

Posted By: barb0812

My dogs consider me the "greatest chef of all time"...I am lover of all foods vegetarian and advocate for growing your own veggies--no matter the size! I am one of the Co-founders of Hey Good Cookin' and a believer in cooking for yourself because everyone deserves it!

See barb0812's Latest Posts