I love a cheesy baked pasta loaded with greens. 🙂 This one was bursting with broccoli rabe (of which I am a huge fan) but it could have easily incorporated broccoli, baby broccolini, or other greens such as collards, spinach, and/or kale instead. We ate it with garlic bread and green salad. Great.
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Alison Roman. I was a little bit concerned about the spice level after adding an entire teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes, but the finished result was perfect. I baked the casserole in a Dutch oven and the cheesy bread crumb topping formed an incredible crispy crust over the entire top. I may consider adding garlic next time, but it was amazing without it!
Yield: Serves 6 to 8
- 1 lb rigatoni, ziti, or fusilli
- 8 T extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 3 large leeks, white and pale green parts only, halved lengthwise, sliced into 1/4-inch half-moons
- minced garlic, optional
- coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
- 2 bunches broccoli rabe or 3 bunches baby broccolini, trimmed, coarsely chopped (I cut the stems into 2-inch pieces and the leaves into 3-inch pieces)(see alternate green vegetable alternatives above)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 12 oz sharp white cheddar, coarsely grated (about 3 cups), divided (I used 10 oz extra-sharp white cheddar and 2 oz white Beecher’s Flagship Handmade Cheese)
- 1 bunch chives, chopped, divided (about 1 cup)
- 1 cup coarse fresh breadcrumbs or panko (I used a blend of the two)
- Preheat oven to 425°, preferably on convection.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add a generous amount of salt. Cook pasta, stirring occasionally to keep it from sticking together, until just barely al dente, about 2 minutes less than package directions. Drain pasta, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat 5 tablespoons of oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium. (I used a large enameled cast iron Dutch oven.)
- Add leeks and season with salt and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until leeks are softened (but not so much that they don’t have any texture left) and starting to brown, 5–10 minutes.
- Add red pepper flakes and garlic, if using, to leeks and stir to incorporate.
- Add broccoli rabe by the handful, stirring to combine and allowing each addition to wilt before adding more.
- Season with salt and black pepper.
- Once all of the broccoli rabe has been added, cook, stirring occasionally, until bright green and wilted, about 2 minutes. Remove pot from heat and set aside.
- Add pasta to reserved broccoli rabe mixture along with cream, three-quarters of the cheese, 2/3 of the chopped chives, and reserved pasta cooking liquid; mix well. Season with salt and black pepper and add more red pepper flakes if you prefer more heat (keep in mind that the saltiness and spiciness will increase as the pasta bakes).(I didn’t add any additional heat.)
- Transfer pasta to a 3-qt. baking dish (or, if your Dutch oven is ovenproof, just leave it in there). (I scraped down the sides of my Dutch oven and kept the mixture in it to bake- less dishes!)
- Toss breadcrumbs and remaining 3 tablespoons of oil in a medium bowl until coated; season with salt and black pepper.
- Scatter breadcrumbs over pasta, then sprinkle evenly with remaining cheese.
- Bake until pasta is bubbling across the entire surface and breadcrumbs are deep golden brown, 22 to 35 minutes. Let cool slightly.
- Scatter remaining chives over pasta just before serving.
Posted in Casserole, Greens, Pasta, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: baby broccolini, broccoli, broccoli rabe, casserole, cheddar, chives, collards, cream, dinner, fusilli, kale, leeks, panko, pasta, red pepper flakes, rigatoni, spinach, vegetarian, ziti
My daughter and I really enjoy watching Queer Eye on Netflix together. It is so positive and full of love. She is particularly a fan of Antoni, the chef. We were excited to check out his cookbook! 🙂
This fabulous chili recipe was adapted from Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski. I modified the proportions. It was rich, full-flavored, and hearty. We ate it with lots of toppings, cornbread muffins and green salad. I’m planning to make it again to serve on a really chilly evening. Everyone loved it.
Yield: Serves 6 to 8
For the Chili:
- 1/3 to 1/2 pound thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-wide strips (4-5 slices)
- 1 3/4 to 2 pounds ground turkey, preferably dark meat
- Kosher salt
- 2 T olive oil
- 2 medium or 1 1/2 large onions, coarsely chopped (about 3 cups)
- 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into small cubes
- 3 T tomato paste
- 5 to 8 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 canned chipotle chile in adobo, seeded (if desired), finely chopped, plus 1 to 2 T adobo sauce (I didn’t seed the chile)
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 (15-oz) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (14-oz) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 (12-oz) bottle dark beer (such as Guiness or Negra Modelo)
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 2 oz dark chocolate, coarsely chopped (scant 1/2 cup) (I used 72% cacao)
- 2 T apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp molasses or dark brown sugar
For the Toppings:
- sliced avocado
- chopped fresh cilantro
- grated cheddar
- diced red or white onion
- pickled jalapeños
- sour cream or Greek yogurt
- lime wedges
- In a large Dutch oven or other wide heavy pot with a lid, cook the bacon over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp and golden, 5 to 7 minutes. (I used a large enameled cast iron Dutch oven.) Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a large bowl.
- Cook the turkey in the remaining bacon fat over high heat, stirring frequently and breaking up the meat into small bits with a wooden spoon, until cooked through, about 5 minutes.
- Season turkey with 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, then transfer and any juices to the bowl with the bacon.
- Heat the oil in the same pot over medium to medium-high heat.
- Add the onions and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened and the onions are golden, about 8 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato paste and garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring, then stir in the chipotle and adobo sauce, oregano, cumin, and 2 teaspoons of salt. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
- Add the beans, crushed tomatoes, beer, stock, chocolate, and turkey-bacon mixture. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the chili is deeply flavorful, about 1 hour and 15 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the vinegar and molasses or brown sugar.
- Adjust the seasoning, to taste. Serve hot with toppings, as desired.
Posted in Chicken (Poultry), Pork, Recipes, Soups, Stews, & Chowders
Tags: apple cider vinegar, bacon, beer, black beans, cheddar, chili, chipotle, cilantro, dark chocolate, dinner, ground turkey, Guiness, molasses, Negra Modelo, turkey
My friend served delicious pimento cheese sandwiches recently- reminding me how much I enjoy them. 🙂 Eating them also reminded me that I wanted to try this version from Charleston, South Carolina.
The recipe is from The New York Times, contributed by the Lee Brothers. I used Cabot 3-year sharp cheddar cheese. I served it on the Fourth of July as a dip with crackers and pita chips. Alternatively, it could be used to fill about 4 sandwiches. Easy and fabulous.
Yield: about 1 1/2 cups
- 8 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated with a food processor or hand grater (not pre-grated)
- 1/4 cup softened cream cheese (2 ounces), pulled into several pieces
- scant 1/2 cup jarred pimento or other roasted red peppers (from a 7-ounce jar), finely diced
- 3 tablespoons Duke’s, Hellmann’s or other high-quality store-bought mayonnaise (I used Trader Joe’s)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried red chile flakes
- coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- In a large mixing bowl, place the cheddar cheese in an even layer.
- Scatter the cream cheese, pimentos, mayonnaise and chile flakes over the cheddar cheese.
- Using a spatula, mix the pimento cheese until it is smooth and spreadable, about 1 1/2 minutes.
- Transfer the pimento cheese to a plastic container or bowl, cover tightly, and store in the refrigerator.
- Serve as a sandwich spread or as a dip.
Note: Pimento cheese keeps in the refrigerator for 1 week.
Posted in Appetizers, Holiday, Quick, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: brunch, cheddar, cream cheese, easy, fast, Fourth of July, July 4th, mayonnaise, pimento, pimento cheese, quick, sandwich spread, sandwiches, Southern, spread, tea sandwiches
I do have a few more desserts to share, but I am interrupting those posts to share this amazing savory pie. It was ridiculously good. Worth every calorie in every indulgent bite. 🙂
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Melissa Clark. I incorporated whole wheat pastry flour in the cornmeal crust (delicious) and adapted the method.
I made it with fresh sweet corn but I can imagine it would also be wonderful with frozen corn. We ate it with roasted potatoes and a giant green salad- a very satisfying meal. Fluffy and fabulous!
Yield: Serves 6 to 8
For the Crust:
- 1/2 cup/65 grams all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
- 1/2 cup/65 grams whole wheat pastry flour (can substitute all-purpose)
- 1/4 cup/40 grams cornmeal or polenta/grits
- 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
- 1/2 cup/115 grams cold unsalted butter (1 stick), cubed
- 3 to 6 tablespoons ice water
For the Filling:
- 1/2 large or 1 small red onion
- 1 T fresh lime juice, plus more to taste (from 1/2 lime)
- 1/2 tsp fine sea salt, plus more as needed
- pinch of granulated sugar
- 4 ounces bacon (4 slices), diced
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (from 2 ears if fresh)
- 2 T chopped pickled jalapeño, plus more slices for topping (I used Trader Joe’s Fire Roasted Green Chilies)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup coarsely shredded sharp Cheddar (3 ounces)
- 3 T chopped parsley
To Prepare the Crust:
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, or in a large bowl, pulse or mix together flour(s), cornmeal and salt until combined.
- Add butter, and either pulse or use your finger to smoosh it in until butter is the size of lima beans.
- Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse or mix just until dough comes together. There should still be large flecks of butter left in dough.
- Shape dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. (At this point, I placed the disk in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes.)
- Between 2 layers of plastic wrap, or on a lightly floured surface, roll out dough into a 12-inch circle.
- Transfer dough to a 9-inch deep pie plate; trim and crimp edges. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before baking. (Dough can be made up to 5 days ahead.)(I made the dough the night before.)
To Make the Filling and Finish the Pie:
- Heat oven to 425 degrees, preferably on convection.
- Place the pie dish on a rimmed baking sheet. Prick the bottom of the pie crust with a fork. Line with foil or parchment paper and fill with pie weights, dried beans or rice. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove foil or paper and pie weights or beans. Bake until pale golden and dry to the touch, about 4 to 7 minutes more.
- Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees, preferably on convection.
- While crust is chilling and baking, prepare the filling: Cut red onion in half across the equator (not root to stem), then from the center, cut out two very thin, round slices. Separate onion slices into rings and put them in a bowl with lime juice and a pinch each of salt and sugar. Set aside while you assemble the rest of the tart. (I used half-moons because I used 1/2 of a red onion.)
- Coarsely chop remaining onion and set aside. (I used half-moons in the filling as well.)
- Scatter diced bacon in a cold 12-inch skillet. (I used a cast iron skillet.) Turn heat to medium, and cook until the bacon is golden and the fat has rendered, 8 to 14 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a paper-towel-lined plate. Leave fat in the skillet.
- Stir chopped onion into pan with bacon fat and place over medium heat. Sauté until golden-edged and translucent, about 6 minutes.
- Stir in corn, 1/2 teaspoon salt and chopped pickled jalapeño. Cook until corn is tender, 2 to 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and scoop 1/2 cup corn mixture into a blender. (I used a Vitamix.)
- Add cream, sour cream and eggs. Blend until you get a purée.
- Using a spatula, scrape corn purée back in pan with whole corn kernels.
- Stir in 1/2 cup Cheddar, the parsley and the cooked bacon.
- Scrape mixture into the baked pie shell.
- Top filling mixture with pickled red onion slices and jalapeño slices. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Cheddar.
- Cover the edge of the pie crust to prevent over-browning.
- Bake until puffed, golden and just set, 35 to 45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Posted in Quiches & Tarts, Recipes
Tags: bacon, brunch, cheddar, corn, cream, dinner, jalapeños, lunch, pickled jalapeno, pie, quiche, red onion, sharp cheddar, sharp cheddar cheese, summer, tart, whole wheat pastry flour
I have a couple family friendly comfort food pasta casseroles to share. In my house, this type of dish always seems to be the perfect meal in cold weather.
We recently enjoyed this one on a snowy evening- eating by candlelight. I thanked my lucky stars that it had finished baking before our power went out… hence the candlelight! 😉
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Chris Morocco. I used diced tomatoes and substituted fontina for provolone. I suppose half and half could be substituted for some (or all) of the heavy cream, but I went for the full indulgence on this (dark and cold) occasion.
1 pound pasta, such as medium shell or tube pasta (I used Capunti pasta)
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
8 ounces low-moisture whole-milk mozzarella, coarsely grated
4 ounces fontina, coarsely grated
2 ounces extra sharp cheddar, coarsely grated
2 ounces Parmesan, finely grated
1½ cups heavy cream
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ head of cauliflower, coarsely chopped
room-temperature butter or nonstick cooking oil spray (for pan)
- fresh herbs such as thyme, basil, or parsley, for garnish, optional
Preheat oven to 350°, preferably on convection.
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until about halfway cooked (it needs to be very firm at this stage so that it doesn’t overcook when baked). Drain, reserving ½ cup pasta cooking liquid, and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Drain well.
Combine mozzarella, fontina, cheddar, Parmesan, cream, diced tomatoes, and reserved ½ cup pasta cooking liquid in a large bowl; mix to combine. Season generously with salt and pepper.
Add cauliflower and cooked pasta and toss to coat.
Grease a 3-qt. or 13x9x2″ baking dish with butter or cooking oil spray.
Scrape in pasta mixture and spread out into an even layer.
Cover dish tightly with foil and bake pasta until hot throughout and steaming when foil is lifted, 20–25 minutes.
Remove foil and increase oven temperature to 425◦, preferably on convection.
Continue to bake pasta until sauce is bubbling and top is browned and crunchy in spots, 20–30 minutes.
Let cool slightly before serving. Garnish with fresh herbs, as desired.
Posted in Casserole, Pasta, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: basil, Capunti, casserole, cauliflower, cheddar, fontina, Italian, kid friendly, kid-friendly dinner, macaroni and cheese, mozzarella, parmesan, Parmigiano Reggiani, parsley, pasta, sharp cheddar cheese, thyme, tomatoes, vegetarian
I love a quick skillet dinner- especially on a weeknight. This delicious family friendly meal is from my friend Mollie @Frugal Hausfrau. I have made it a couple of times, most recently for our Super Bowl celebration. Our meal has to complement the mandatory Super Bowl guacamole. 🙂
Even though it could be served as is straight from the skillet, we ate it in both soft and hard shell tacos. (The hard shells won as the favorite, by the way.) I think that eating it as a pre-mixed taco filling made it even more of a crowd-pleaser. I modified the recipe by using ground turkey and by increasing the beans, onions, and garlic. Great!
Yield: Serves 8
- 1.25 pounds ground turkey or ground beef
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste
- 1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce, such as Sriracha
- 1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes (I used Trader Joe’s fire roasted diced tomatoes)
- 1/4 cup salsa (I used Trader Joe’s garlic chipotle salsa)
- 1 can (15.5 oz) black beans, rinsed
- 3/4 cup white Basmati rice
- 1 1/4 cup water
- 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack
- 1 cup shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
- hard or soft taco shells, for serving, if desired
- 1/4 cup sliced scallions, for garnish, as desired
- sliced avocado, for garnish, as desired
- chopped cilantro, for garnish, as desired
- In a large skillet with a lid, over medium high heat, add ground meat and cook, crumbling as it cooks.
- As soon as it starts to give up the juices, add in the onion and bell pepper, continuing to cook until the vegetables have softened and the meat is cooked through.
- Add the garlic, stirring for a minute or so until it becomes fragrant.
- Add the chili powder, cumin, cayenne, salt, and pepper; briefly stir.
- Stir in tomatoes with the juice, salsa, black beans, and hot sauce.
- Toss the rice on top and add the 1 1/4 cup of water. Gently stir together, bring to a boil.
- Cover with lid and reduce to a bare simmer. Cook for 25 minutes until rice is just done. If possible, don’t lift the lid or stir until rice is finished.
- Turn off the heat. Using a spatula, gently turn the mixture from top to bottom. Add cheese to the top. Cover with lid and let sit for five minutes, or until the cheese is melted.
- Serve in warm taco shells garnished with green onions, avocado, and/or minced cilantro, as desired.
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Posted in Casserole, Holiday, Recipes, Tacos
Tags: avocado, black beans, cheddar, cilantro, dinner, easy, ground beef, ground turkey, kid-friendly dinner, Mexican, Monterey Jack, one-pot, scallions, skillet, sriracha, Super Bowl, Tacos