Another weeknight pasta dish- another rigatoni dish! 🙂 Adding greens to this classic dish is a healthy upgrade.
This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart Living. I used a combination of beet greens and spinach and kept the crispy prosciutto pieces intact instead of crumbling them. Nice.
Yield: Serves 4
- 1 T extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 oz prosciutto, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch wide strips (I used 7-8 slices)
- 2 large eggs, plus 2 yolks
- 1 oz Pecorino Romano, grated (about 1/4 cup), plus more for serving
- 12 oz rigatoni
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6 oz baby spinach or other tender greens (I incorporated sliced beet greens)
- In a large skillet, heat oil and half of prosciutto over medium; cook, stirring occasionally, until prosciutto is crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
- In a bowl or (2-cup) glass measuring cup, whisk together whole eggs, yolks, and grated cheese.
- Cook pasta in a pot of salted boiling water 1 minute less than package instructions. Reserve 1 cup pasta water, then drain.
- Slowly whisk 1/4 cup pasta water into egg mixture.
- Add pasta and spinach to skillet, then slowly add egg mixture to pasta.
- Stir constantly over low heat until sauce thickens and clings evenly to pasta and greens wilts slightly, 3 to 5 minutes; add more pasta water as needed to create a silky sauce.
- Stir in all prosciutto. Serve with more cheese and pepper, as desired.
Posted in Greens, Pasta, Quick, Recipes
Tags: beet greens, carbonara, dinner, easy, eggs, fast, Italian, pasta, pecorino romano, prosciutto, rigatoni, spinach
Pasta is definitely my go-to for quick weeknight dishes. Maybe too often! Vodka sauce is one of our absolute favorites, so this vegetarian, quick version was irresistible. I’ve already made it twice. 😉
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Claire Saffitz. On one occasion, I added mushrooms to mimic the amazing version served at Tony’s Di Napoli in NYC. I added more garlic and used mezzi rigatoni as well. Great.
Yield: Serves 4
- Kosher salt
- 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, smashed
- 5 oz white mushrooms, sliced, optional
- 4 oz Parmesan cheese, about 1/2 cup, finely grated
- 2 T extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1 4.5-oz tube double-concentrated tomato paste
- 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 oz vodka
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 lb rigatoni or mezzi rigatoni
- basil leaves, for serving
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium. (I used a large, shallow, enameled cast iron pan.)
- Add the onion and garlic, stirring constantly, just until the onion is starting to brown around the edges, 5 to 7 minutes. *If incorporating the mushrooms, add after the onions have cooked for 2 minutes.*
- Add tomato paste and red pepper flakes and stir to coat onion. Cook, stirring often, until paste is deep red and starting to brown and stick to the bottom of the pot, about 4 to 7 minutes.
- Add vodka to deglaze the pan, scraping up browned bits; reduce the heat to low.
- Using a heatproof measuring glass, scoop out about 1/4 cup boiling pasta water from the pot. Add heavy cream to the water. (This brings up the temperature of the cream so it won’t break when you add it to the pot.)
- Stirring constantly, gradually pour cream mixture into the onion mixture and cook, stirring, until a smooth sauce forms. Remove from heat.
- Cook pasta in the pot of boiling water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. About 1 minute before pasta is done, scoop out 1 cup of pasta cooking liquid.
- Return the pot with sauce to low heat.
- Using a slotted spoon or spider, transfer the pasta to the sauce pot.
- Stir in 1/2 cup of pasta cooking liquid, then gradually add half of the Parmesan, stirring constantly to melt. The pasta should be coated with a smooth, glossy sauce.
- Season with salt; add more pasta cooking liquid if sauce is too thick.
- Top with basil and remaining Parmesan and drizzle with a little oil, as desired.
Posted in Pasta, Quick, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: basil, cream, dinner, easy, Italian, mushrooms, parmesan, Parmigiano Reggiano, pasta, quick, sauce, tomato paste, vegetarian, vodka
More eggplant! This dish is a great vegetarian alternative to a traditional baked ziti. A crowd-pleasing weeknight comfort-food pasta casserole. 🙂
This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Jonathan Waxman of Barbuto in NYC. I used San Marzano tomatoes instead of beefsteak and modified the proportions and method. I loved that it incorporated pesto.
To make the dish more healthy, Waxman replaces the traditional béchamel sauce with eggplant. The original recipe even suggests using whole-wheat pasta, if desired. Don’t worry… it is still an indulgent baked pasta dish with butter and plenty of cheese. 😉
Yield: Serves 8
- Preheat the oven to 375°, preferably on convection.
- Butter a 9-by-13-inch ovenproof baking dish. (I used cooking oil spray.)
- In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the rigatoni until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain, then transfer to a large bowl.
- Toss the pasta with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
- Meanwhile, in a large non-stick skillet or sauté pan, heat 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Add half of the eggplant and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the eggplant to the pasta. Repeat with another 1/4 cup of olive oil and the remaining eggplant.
- Add the onion, garlic and remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is lightly golden, about 5 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have broken down and thickened to a sauce consistency, 7 to 8 minutes.
- Stir in the 4 tablespoons of butter.
- Add the tomato sauce to the pasta and eggplant along with the pesto and ricotta; season with salt and pepper and toss well.
- Transfer the rigatoni to the prepared baking dish. Top with the mozzarella and Parmigiano-Reggiano and bake for about 20 minutes, until bubbling and golden on top.
- Let the pasta stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Posted in Casserole, Pasta, Quick, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: baked, baked ziti, casserole, comfort food, eggplant, Italian, Jonathan Waxman, parmesan, Parmigiano Reggiano, pasta, pesto, ricotta, rigatoni, tomatoes, vegetarian, weeknight, ziti
This summery version of shrimp scampi is an amazing upgrade of this classic dish. Best of all, it is prepared in one pan. 🙂
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Ali Slagle; I modified the proportions. I served it over pasta, but it could also be served with crusty bread. Delicious.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
- 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used 21 to 25 shrimp per pound)
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- 2 (or more) cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (from 4 to 5 ears)
- 7 large garlic cloves, minced (I used my special CSA hard neck garlic)
- 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon), plus wedges for serving (optional)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces
- 3 tablespoons chopped parsley or chives, or torn basil leaves
- 12 to 16 oz linguini fini, spaghetti or bucatini, for serving, if desired
- crusty bread, for serving, if desired
- If serving over pasta, prepare per the package directions while the rest of the dish is being prepared.
- Pat the shrimp very dry and season with salt and pepper.
- In a large (12-inch) skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high. Add the shrimp and cook until pink and lightly golden in spots, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the shrimp to a plate.
- Add the tomatoes to the skillet, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring just once or twice, until they start to blister in spots, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the corn, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring just once or twice, until the tomatoes burst and the corn is golden in spots, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the garlic and red-pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until you smell garlic, about 1 minute.
- Reduce heat to medium, and add the wine and lemon juice, scraping any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook until nearly evaporated, then add the butter and stir until melted.
- Add the shrimp and its juices and stir until warmed through. (If the sauce breaks and looks greasy, add 1 or 2 teaspoons of water and stir until emulsified.)
- Remove from heat, add the herbs, season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve with extra lemon for squeezing over, if you like.
- Serve over pasta or with crusty bread, if desired.
Posted in Pasta, Quick, Recipes, Shrimp
Tags: bucatini, cherry tomatoes, chives, corn, dinner, garlic, grape tomatoes, lemon, linguini fini, parsley, pasta, scampi, shrimp, summer, tomatoes, white wine
As in my last post, this wonderful dish is also part of Bon Appétit’s Most Popular Recipes of 2019. I made this and several other dishes on the list before it was compiled- apparently I was not alone! 😉
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Andy Baraghani. I added garlic and white wine. Yummy comfort food.
Yield: Serves 4
4 T extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 lb mixed mushrooms (such as maitake, oyster, crimini, and/or shiitake), torn into bite-size pieces (I used 10oz quartered cremini and 8oz torn shiitake)
2 medium shallots, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 lb spaghetti or 12 oz bucatini
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 cup reserved pasta water
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup finely chopped parsley
zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
2 T unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 oz Parmesan, finely grated (about 1/2 cup), plus more for serving (I used Parmigiano-Reggiano)
freshly ground black pepper
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large pot over medium-high. Cook half of mushrooms in a single layer, undisturbed, until edges are brown and starting to crisp, about 3 minutes. Give mushrooms a toss and continue to cook, tossing occasionally, until all sides are brown and crisp, about 5 minutes more.
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer mushrooms to a plate; season with salt.
- Repeat with remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and mushrooms and more salt.
- Finely chop the shallots and garlic in a mini-food processor, if desired.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and return all of the mushrooms to the pot. Add shallots and garlic; cook, stirring often, until shallots are translucent and softened, about 2 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until very al dente, about 2 minutes less than package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
- Using tongs, transfer pasta to pot with mushrooms and add cream, white wine, and 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid.
- Increase heat to medium, bring to a simmer, and cook, tossing constantly, until pasta is al dente and liquid is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.
- Remove pot from heat. Add lemon zest and juice, parsley, butter, 1/2 oz Parmesan, and lots of pepper and toss to combine.
- Taste and season with more salt if needed. Adjust consistency with additional pasta water, if needed.
- Divide pasta among bowls and top with more Parmesan and parsley, as desired.
Posted in Pasta, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: bucatini, cremini, dinner, heavy cream, lemon, mushrooms, Parmigiano Reggiano, pasta, shallots, shiitake, spaghetti, vegetarian, white wine, wild mushrooms
I made this baked pasta dish to serve on Thanksgiving Eve. My Mother-in-Law asked that I post the recipe so that she could make it to serve to vegetarian guests. It was such a compliment! This post is quite belated- oops.
This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart Living’s Everyday Food. I used manicotti noodles instead of lasagna and modified the proportions. I boiled the squash in the salted pasta water but may roast it instead next time to enhance its flavor. It was cheesy, creamy, and rich comfort food.
Yield: Serves 8 to 10
- 6 T olive oil, plus more for baking dish
- coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 (8 oz each) packages manicotti (there will be leftover noodles)
- 1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch chunks
- 4 large shallots, chopped
- 3/4 cup milk (I used whole milk)
- 2 tsp finely chopped fresh sage leaves, plus 16 to 20 whole leaves
- 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 (15 oz each) containers of whole milk ricotta cheese
- 1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees, preferably on convection.
- Lightly oil a 9×13-inch baking dish. (I used cooking oil spray.)
- In a large pot of boiling, generously salted water, cook pasta until al dente. Using tongs, transfer pasta to a rimmed baking sheet.
- Add squash to boiling water and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain squash and transfer to a bowl. (Alternatively, the squash can be roasted at 425 degrees, preferably on convection roast, until lightly browned and tender, about 25 to 35 minutes.)
- In a small skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium. Add shallots, season with salt and pepper, and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Transfer sautéed shallots to the bowl with the squash and add 4 tablespoons milk, chopped sage, and nutmeg; season with salt and pepper. Mash with a fork until a rough puree forms.
- Fill a gallon ziplock bag with the squash mixture. Cut an opening in one bottom corner of the bag, large enough to fit the opening of the manicotti noodles.
- Pipe the squash mixture into the manicotti noodles, about 1/4 cup each. Place each filled noodle into the prepared baking dish. (I had 8 cooked noodles leftover.)
- In a bowl, combine ricotta, 1 cup Parmesan, and 1/2 cup milk and season with salt and pepper.
- Spread ricotta mixture over cannelloni and top with remaining 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan.
- Bake until warmed through, about 25 minutes.
- Broil until top is browned, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium to medium-high. Fry whole sage leaves until crispy, 15 to 20 seconds. Drain on paper towels.
- Serve the casserole topped with fried sage.
Posted in Casserole, Pasta, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tags: butternut squash, cannelloni, casserole, comfort food, fried sage, Italian, lasagna, manicotti, parmesan, Parmigiano Reggiano, pasta, ricotta, sage, shallots, squash, Thanksgiving, vegetarian