Friday, October 31, 2008
cherry tomato spaghetti all'amatriciana.
i tore this recipe out from rachael ray's 'every day' magazine a few months back. i finally came accross it again this week and decided to try it out. pasta dishes of any kind are welcome in our house, as my tall baller can always make use of those carbs. this recipe called for small chunks of pancetta (italian bacon), but i used chopped pieces of parma ham instead (much easier to find in spain). i started out by cooking the ham in a little bit of EVOO until it started to get a little crisp to it. then i added 1 chopped red onion, 4 cloves crushed garlic (YUM!) and a dash or two of cayenne pepper. i didn't have the crushed red pepper on hand that the recipe called for. cayenne did the trick. after about a minute, i added 1/2 cup of vegetable broth (i didn't have white wine or chicken broth), 3 medium sized chopped tomatoes (the cherry tomatoes at our little corner market were ungodly!) and a 'generous' amount of salt and pepper (as the recipe suggested). i omitted the parsley (i only had cilantro in the fridge) and let this amazing mixture of goodness simmer while the pasta had just a few minutes left to go. when i drained the pasta, i reserved 1 cup of the hot water and tossed it back in the pasta pot, along with the pasta and tomato mixture. i gave this all a few big swirls and served it with freshly chopped basil and parmesan on top! now, i'm no meat eater, but the flavor of the ham sure makes a difference. the chunks are big enough to eat around and still enjoy the overall essence of the dish :) fred was in heaven, he had two bowls full! i just found out today that his friend will be visiting us from sweden in a few weeks. this dish is on the menu!