Falling for Autumn and Pumpkins October 13 2017
As the crimson and golden leaves jump from their branches and the smell of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove dance in the brisk autumn air, fall into the season with a bowl of delicious, nutty, roasted pumpkin pasta. There is something so simplistic, yet decadently warming about roasted pumpkin, and paired with pasta, garlic, olive oil, and toasted walnuts, you are sure to have a quintessential fall dish.
I, as I'm sure many of you do, love everything about the fall season. From the taste of all things pumpkin spice, to hot apple cider, to oversized sweaters, to the smell of toasted nuts and vanilla, there is something so internally warming about this time of the year. I vividly remember my childhood home being flooded with the scents of baked apples, cinnamon, and caramel -- a symphony of scents that I try to replicate every autumn.
As I sit here sipping a hot toddy -- the weather in New York is finally getting cool enough to do so -- I am reminded of the impending fall season, and the nostalgic memories of pumpkin picking, pie baking, and jack-o-lantern carving that it evokes. So, if you feel inclined, mix yourself a lovely hot toddy using BeeLocal honey, and jump into the fall season with the beautiful pumpkin pasta mentioned above. I hope you enjoy!
1/2lb (half package) Semolina Artisanal Pasta's Strozzapreti Pasta
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 cup spinach, packed
½ teaspoon chili flakes, more or less to taste
1 teaspoon lemon zest, more or less to taste
Juice of half the zested lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
1/4 cup dried cranberries
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees
-Toss butternut squash with 2 tablespoons oil, salt and pepper, and transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet. Roast until tender and caramelized, roughly 40 to 50 minutes
-Bring large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions, but stop cooking a minute or two before al dente, as the pasta will finish cooking in the sauté pan with the remaining ingredients
-In a large sauté pan, heat 2tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Once the oil begins to shimmer, add minced garlic and chili flakes, careful not to burn the garlic
-Mash 1/5 of the roasted butternut squash with a fork, then add both mashed and cubed butternut squash to the sauté pan with the garlic and chili flakes
-Drain pasta, reserving 1/4 cup of cooking water, and add to sauté pan. Add cooking liquid to thin sauce as needed
-Add spinach and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
-Season with salt, pepper, lemon juice, and lemon zest to taste
-Garnish with chopped walnuts and dried cranberries
New to the Marketplace - Semolina Artisanal Pasta March 03 2017
By now you probably know we have an amazing new pasta as part of the marketplace, Strozzapreti Pasta from Semolina Artisanal Pasta. Strozzapreti is an elongated version of of cavatelli and is not something you’ll typically find on the shelves at your local supermarket. This is a pasta that needs a lot of attention when it is made and you’ll often find hand-rolled versions on restaurant menus. When the ‘new’ Union Square Café opened recently in New York City, they had Strozzapreti on their menu. You’ll also find it on the menu at Marea in New York City prepared with jumbo lump crab, sea urchin and basil.
Strozzapreti translates to priest-strangler and there are a couple of legends to explain the name. One is that gluttonous priests were so enthralled with the savory pasta that they ate too fast and choked on it. Hopefully, you’ll show a little more restraint when eating this amazing pasta. It is perfect paired with a simple tomato sauce like the ones from Due Cellucci Tomato Sauces. Strozzapreti also makes an amazing ‘mac’ and cheese.
At Semolina Artisanal Pasta, founder Leah and her team, use the finest Durum Flour available in the United States to make their organic pasta. Then they cut the pasta with bronze dies. This creates a rough texture on the outside of the pasta which makes is perfect for ‘sticking’ to sauce. I recommend keeping a bag of this pasta in your pantry. You will impress all your guests with the flavor of the pasta even if you are only able to cook it in boiling water and toss it with a little olive oil.
Leave a comment below and let me know your favorite way to cook Strozzapreti.
The Ultimate Baked Pasta February 24 2017
My youngest son turned one yesterday and boy was it a day! I’ve been busy getting ready for his party this weekend but wanted to share this amazing recipe for The Ultimate Baked Pasta. I used Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce and our newest product Strozzapreti Pasta from Semolina Artisanal Pasta(more on this soon!). This dish is perfect for the chilly weather and is easy enough to throw together for a delicious weeknight meal.
The Ultimate Baked Pasta
Makes 6 servings
16 oz Semolina Strozzpreti Pasta
1 – 24 oz Jar Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce
1 ½ cups Fresh Ricotta
½ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
-Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook Semolina Strozzpreti Pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until very al dente, drain.
-In a large bowl combine the cooked Semolina Strozzpreti Pasta and Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce. Fold in Ricotta leaving large clumps. Spread about half of the past mixture in the bottom of a casserole dish. Sprinkle half of the Parmesan and Mozzarella over the pasta. Top with the rest of the pasta mixture and sprinkle with the remaining cheeses.
-Cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling.
-Garnish with fresh basil, if desired, before serving.