12/9/07

A Tale of Two Pastas

" Hey Mom, what's for dinner?" Will asked.

" Comfort Food." I told him.

" But I thought you only had comfort food when you are depressed." Will said.

" Or you can have it when you have had a bad day or when your sick or cold or just because." I said.

" Okay" he said, " but what kind of comfort food are we having?"

"Since Dad's at work, Katie is at theatre, and Nancy is at the U.O.P. basketball game. I thought since it was only you, me, and Drew we'd have pasta and bread."

This pasta is my go to dish. It only has a few ingredients and takes about 20 minutes to make. The dish actually has a name ( spaghetti with garlic and oil) and it could be cooked a million different ways. But use the best ingredients you can afford because this dish is so simple you can't hide cheap ingredients or a mistake.


Evil Chef Mom's Pasta: (Can be doubled. More often than not, it is.)

1/2 cup of good olive oil (if you like food, please treat yourself to some good olive oil!)

1 shallot, finely chopped (normally I use 3-7 cloves of garlic but I wanted to try something a little more subtle last night.)

salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste

red chili pepper flakes to taste

a handful of Italian flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

a good squeeze a lemon juice

1 package of pasta (whatever kind you have on hand)

Put the olive oil in a pan over medium heat. The add shallots or garlic into the pan let cook until translucent. Don't burn them because your pasta will taste nasty! Take pan off of the heat and add everything else.

Hopefully while you're cooking, you have put a pot of water with lots of salt on the stove to boil. *Remember the water should taste like the ocean* Cook the pasta al dente. Drain, then transfer to a warmed serving bowl. Add sauce, if you can call it that. Toss, and if you want, add a little more olive oil and some freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

My kids like grating the cheese. We have a Zyliss rotary cheese grater, that my daughter Katie, weaseled, charmed (They mean the same thing, right?) a waiter into giving the grater to her.

Later that evening my sister Robin, my niece Hannah, and her friend Rob (yippee Rob's back!) came home from shopping in San Fransisco all day with my Dad. Needless to say they looked pooped, so I took pity on them and cooked them some more but this time I remember I had some leftover sauce from dinner the other night. I did the same thing as above but once the shallots were cooked, I added a cup of the roasted tomato parsley sauce and 1 cup of half and half. Then I added salt, pepper, chili flakes and lemon. I thought it turned out really well.

For the bread, I get a loaf of sourdough and split it in half. Then I spread butter on both sides and sprinkle a touch of salt on the bread. Then I place it under the broiler until it is golden.
After dinner Robin, Hannah, and Rob looked a lot better and as you all know that's the power of comfort food.


2 comments:

sous chef numero uno said...

i made this at catherine with penne buttter regular parseley parmeasean and sundried tomatoes it turned out good and i dont usuallly like sundried tomatoes
oooo and i was wondering i tried catherines butter and it tasted like goats milk.. they make butter with goat?
it was good though

sous chef numero uno said...

i meant catherines'