Good Eating’s Creative Pasta by Chicago Tribune Staff [best books]


  • Full Title : Good Eating’s Creative Pasta: Healthy and Unique Recipes for Meals, Sides, and Sauces
  • Autor: Chicago Tribune Staff
  • Print Length: 134 pages
  • Publisher: Agate Digital
  • Publication Date: September 28, 2012
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: B009CHCXT8
  • ISBN-13: 
  • Download File Format: epub

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Good Eating’s Creative Pasta is a collection of delicious pasta recipes from the Chicago Tribune’s Good Eating section that will provide any home cook with a wide range of recipes for all occasions. Tested and proven dishes for entrees, side salads, and appetizers make up a terrific variety of pastas, from a quick and classic “Late Night Spaghetti” to a more innovative “Free-Form Lasagna with Zucchini Lemon-Thyme Cream.”

Each recipe offers a series of helpful tips, suggestions, and comments on dish adaptations, and the entries are grouped into six categories: All About the Sauce, Meatballs & Other Accessories, Hand Made Pasta, Keep It Simple, Classic Comforts, and With a Twist. Aside from pasta, recipes for sauces and meatballs are also featured, including “Homemade Ricotta,” “Meatballs in Tomato-Wine Sauce,” and “Uncooked Tomato Sauce.”

Originating as one of the gems of Italian cuisine, pasta has become a staple in American cooking. This book is the ultimate mix of hearty and healthy, creative and quick, as well as light and filling. Combining flavorful classics and nutritious new recipes, Good Eating’s Creative Pasta will extend any home cook’s noodle repertoire by providing tasty dishes that will surely be savored.

 

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CHILLI & LEMONGRASS CHICKEN

This is a wonderfully fragrant dish that is very easy to prepare. I use chicken thighs here as they have more flavour, but you can easily use chicken breasts instead. The paste made for the sauce can also be used with beef or pork.

SERVES 2

2 lemongrass stalks, finely chopped

1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

1 tbsp Thai fish sauce (Nam Pla)

350g chicken thigh meat, cut into bite-sized chunks

1 tbsp sunflower oil

1 tbsp curry powder

100ml chicken stock

1 tbsp caster sugar

Small handful of mint, basil and coriander leaves, to garnish

In a bowl, combine the lemongrass, chilli, garlic and fish sauce. Place the chicken meat into another bowl and add half the lemongrass mix, reserving the rest. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate for at least 20 minutes.

Heat the oil in a wok or a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Add the reserved lemongrass mixture, then add the curry powder and stir-fry for about 1 minute until fragrant. Then add the marinated chicken and stir-fry for 4–5 minutes until the pieces have a nice colour on all sides.

Pour the chicken stock into the pan and stir in the sugar. Simmer for a few minutes until the stock has reduced and you are left with a thick sauce. Serve with steamed rice and garnish with the herbs.

PROSCIUTTO-WRAPPED CHEESY CHICKEN WITH WILD MUSHROOM SAUCE

This is a warm and comforting supper that doesn’t take too much time to prepare. You can serve it with either steamed rice or a simply dressed salad, but the two key components are the crisp prosciutto-wrapped chicken oozing with cheese and rich and creamy mushroom sauce. You won’t be able to say no!

SERVES 4

100g Gruyère cheese, finely grated

100g frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed of excess liquid and finely chopped

4 chicken breasts

8 slices of prosciutto

1 tbsp olive oil

FOR THE MUSHROOM SAUCE

50g dried mushrooms

200ml chicken stock

1 tbsp butter

1 onion, peeled and finely sliced

100g mixed fresh mushrooms, sliced

1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped

75ml white wine

125ml single cream

Sea salt and ground black pepper

Small handful of flat-leaf parsley, to garnish

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F), Gas Mark 6. For the mushroom sauce, soak the dried mushrooms in a bowl with the chicken stock.

To stuff the chicken, mix together the grated cheese and chopped spinach in a bowl. Lay the chicken breasts on a chopping board and, using a sharp knife, slice horizontally to create a pocket. Stuff each pocket with the cheese and spinach mix. Wrap two slices of prosciutto around each chicken breast.

Heat the oil in a a large frying pan over a high heat. Add the chicken breasts and fry all over until they are crisp and golden. Transfer the breasts to a roasting tin and cook on the middle shelf in the oven for about 10 minutes until the prosciutto is crispy and the chicken is cooked through.

Meanwhile, make the mushroom sauce. Add the butter to the pan and place it back on a medium heat. Fry the onion and fresh mushrooms for about 6 minutes until tender. Then add the garlic and fry for another 2 minutes. Pour in the soaked dried mushrooms together with the chicken stock and add the white wine. Bring the sauce to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 2–3 minutes until slightly thickened. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cream. Season with sea salt and ground black pepper to taste.

Sprinkle the cooked chicken breast with parsley and serve with the mushroom sauce and some rice, pasta or salad leaves.

CHILLI & TOMATO CRAB PASTA

I love taking one ingredient and really making it the star of the dish. In this recipe, crab hits the big time! Paired with the heat of chilli and the freshness of lemon juice and zest, it makes a pretty incredible pasta dish. You can buy crab meat quite easily nowadays and for a speedy supper it does save you the hassle of buying a crab, cooking it and then tearing out its insides. Hey, I’m all for shortcuts if you can take them!

SERVES 4

Sea salt

300g spaghetti or linguine

3 tbsp olive oil

3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

1 tsp dried chilli flakes

2 × 400g tins of chopped tomatoes

75ml white wine

150g cooked white crab meat

3 tbsp single cream

Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

1 heaped tbsp capers, drained and rinsed

Good handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped, to garnish

Extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle

Bring a large pot of water to the boil over a high heat. Season with salt and pop in the pasta. Cook as instructed on the packet until al dente and then drain.

While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Add the garlic and chilli flakes and fry for about 2 minutes, then add the tomatoes and wine and bring to a steady simmer. Cook for 10 minutes and then stir through the crab meat, cream, lemon zest and juice and capers. Allow the sauce to bubble away for 2–3 minutes and then tumble in the pasta.

Mix through until the pasta is coated and serve in generous mounds on warmed plates, garnishing with the parsley and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

THAI RICE NOODLE SALAD

Anyone who has ever travelled to Thailand will remember the wonderful balance of flavours from sweet to salty and spicy to smoky. I like to think this salad captures all this. There are so many wonderful textures and flavours from the roasted nuts, fresh crunchiness from the vegetables and then super sweet heat from the chilli and ginger dressing. This makes a really exciting midweek dinner.

SERVES 4

250g rice vermicelli noodles

3 Baby Gem lettuce, leaves separated

2 large carrots, peeled and finely sliced

½ cucumber, peeled lengthways into ribbons

6 spring onions, trimmed and finely sliced

60g salted peanuts, roughly chopped

Large handful of coriander leaves

Large handful of mint leaves

Large handful of basil leaves

FOR THE CHILLI AND GINGER DRESSING

Juice of 1 lime

1 tbsp caster sugar

1 tbsp light soy sauce

2 tbsp Thai fish sauce (Nam Pla)

1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced

1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

Soak the noodles in a bowl of boiling water according to the packet’s instructions until they are tender. Drain the noodles, rinse under cold water and set aside.

For the dressing, whisk together the lime juice and caster sugar in a large mixing bowl until it has dissolved. Add the soy sauce, fish sauce, chilli and ginger and mix through. Then add the noodles, vegetables, peanuts and fresh herbs. Toss to combine and then serve.

BRAISED CRISPY CHICKEN THIGHS WITH SPRING ONIONS, BABY GEM & PEAS

True comfort food in a matter of minutes; that’s what this dish is all about. Crispy chicken in a white wine sauce with wonderful braised greens and a pop of zesty citrus freshness, it really doesn’t get better than that for a speedy midweek supper.

SERVES 4

1 tbsp olive oil

100g smoked streaky bacon, roughly chopped

6–8 boneless chicken thighs with skin on

1 tbsp butter

Grated zest of 1 lemon

75ml white wine

A few thyme sprigs

50ml chicken stock

200g frozen peas

6 spring onions, trimmed and sliced in half

4 Baby Gem lettuce, sliced in half

Heat the oil in a large high-sided frying pan over a high heat. Add the bacon and fry until crisp. Then add the chicken thighs and fry on each side until they are also golden and crisp. Add the butter and allow it to foam, then stir in the lemon zest and fry it in the butter.

Pour in the wine and allow to sizzle for about 30 seconds before adding the thyme sprigs and chicken stock. Add the peas to the liquid and then nuzzle in the spring onions and Baby Gem lettuce. Cover with a lid and cook for about 10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Serve straight away as it is or with a little rice to stretch the meal.

BEER BATTER FISH WITH PEA MASH & ROSTI POTATO CAKES

This has to be one of my absolute favourite dinners. It’s basically fish and chips, but with a great twist using crispy rosti potato cakes instead of the more laborious chip. I shallow fry my goujons rather than using a deep fat fryer, with oil I keep in a bottle specifically for this purpose. When you’re done and the oil is cold, just fill the bottle up to use again next time.

SERVES 4

Sunflower or rapeseed oil, for frying

500g skinless fish fillets, such as haddock, cod or hake, cut into goujon-sized pieces

3–4 tbsp plain flour, plus 75g for the batter

200ml cold beer

Lemon wedges, to serve

FOR THE ROSTI POTATO CAKES

600g waxy potatoes, peeled

1 tbsp rapeseed oil

Sea salt and ground black pepper

1 tbsp butter

FOR THE PEA MASH

1 tbsp butter

200g frozen peas

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Good handful of mint leaves

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), Gas Mark 4.

To make the rosti potato cakes, grate the potato into a clean dry tea towel. Gather the towel around the potato and form a small ball. Squeeze it over the sink to remove the starchy liquid. Heat the oil in a 20cm-diameter non-stick ovenproof frying pan over a medium heat. Season and press the grated potato into the pan so that it coats the base. Dot little lumps of butter over the top and cook in the oven for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the pea mash, melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat until it is foaming. Add the peas and cook for about 4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the oil and mint leaves and then mash with a potato masher until the peas are roughly smooth. Season with sea salt and ground black pepper to taste and keep warm. For the goujons, fill a high-sided frying pan with 2.5–5cm of oil and place it over a high heat. It needs to be very hot when you start to fry. Coat the fish in the 3–4 tablespoons of flour, shake off the excess and set aside.

Place the 75g flour in a large mixing bowl, make a well in the middle, pour in a little beer and mix through. Add the beer and mix until you have a smooth batter. Season with ground black pepper and then drop a little of the batter into the hot oil; if it floats and puffs up, it’s hot enough.

Working beside the pan, dip the fish goujons in the batter one at a time and then into the hot oil. Make sure not to overcrowd the pan as this will reduce the heat. Cook them for about 4 minutes until golden brown, turning halfway through the cooking time. Remove the goujons using a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper.

Season generously with sea salt and ground black pepper. Serve with lemon wedges and a good helping of mushy mint peas and a quarter of the rosti.

SOLE MEUNIÈRE

Fish is often forgotten as the ultimate fast food. It is an incredibly quick cooking ingredient and I would normally wax lyrically about just how healthy it is too, but not in this recipe. No, this recipe is all about the nutty golden brown butter that forms the sauce alongside the tang of lemon juice and the salty hit from the capers. It’s a bit of an all-in recipe and if you’re going to make it, serve it with some steamed veggies for a delicious dinner.

SERVES 4

4 sole or plaice fillets, skin on

5 tbsp plain flour

Sea salt and ground black pepper

2 tbsp olive oil

100g butter

Juice of 1 lemon

3 tbsp capers, drained and rinsed

A little flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped, to garnish (optional)

Remove any prominent bones from the fish fillets using tweezers. Season the flour with salt and pepper on a large plate and press the fillets into the mix to coat on either side. Shake off any excess and set aside on a clean plate.

Heat the oil in a frying pan, which is big enough to accommodate the fish fillets over a high heat. Add the fish fillets, skin-side down, and cook for 2 minutes and then turn over and cook for a further minute until golden. Using a fish slice, remove the fillets from the pan and set aside on a warmed plate.

Place the pan back over a high heat and melt the butter until it is foaming, then add the lemon juice and capers and continue to cook until the butter turns a nutty golden brown. Pour the butter, lemon and caper mix over the fish and serve straight away garnished with the parsley, if using.

FLAVOUR BOMB SALAD

If you ever needed proof that something incredibly delicious can be made in a very short amount of time, then this salad is just that! Packed with punchy heat from the chorizo and salty squidginess from the halloumi, this little dish is full of wonderful things to keep you interested, even if you have very little time to make dinner. Speed up this recipe by buying sunblushed tomatoes intstead of roasting them yourself.

SERVES 4

300g cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

100g chorizo sausage, cut into chunky discs

200g halloumi cheese, cut into 1cm thick slices

Juice of ½ lemon

1 tbsp cider vinegar

1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped

Sea salt and ground black pepper

1 Baby Gem lettuce, leaves separated

200g chickpeas, drained and rinsed

½ red onion, peeled and finely sliced

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F), Gas Mark 6. Toss the tomatoes in a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar and place in a roasting tin. Roast in the oven for about 35 minutes until they have shrunk and become caramelised.

Meanwhile, dry fry the chorizo in a frying pan over a high heat until the discs are sizzling and coloured. Remove them from the pan using a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper. Save the oil the chorizo has produced in the pan.

Place the frying pan back over the heat. Add a drop of olive oil if required and then fry the halloumi slices on both sides until they have a nice golden colour.

To make a dressing for the salad, pour the lemon juice into a bowl, then add the cider vinegar and garlic, season with sea salt and ground black pepper and whisk to combine.

In a large bowl, toss together the Baby Gem lettuce leaves with the dressing, chickpeas, chorizo and red onion and transfer to serving plates. Top with the halloumi slices and roasted cherry tomatoes and serve straight away.

SPICY SEAFOOD PAELLA

What I love most about this recipe is that a big steaming pan of food is served straight to the table and people just dig in. It also makes a great leftover lunchbox if you’re lucky enough to have any left.

SERVES 4–6

12 prawns, shell on

2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

Good pinch of paprika, plus 1 tsp

A good grinding of black pepper

3 tbsp olive oil

150g chorizo sausage, cut into chunky discs

1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped

200g Arborio or paella rice

A few thyme sprigs

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp cayenne pepper

125ml white wine

1 × 400g tin of cherry tomatoes

400ml fish stock

1 large squid, cut into rings

150g frozen peas

Good handful of flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped, to garnish

Lemon wedges, to serve

Put the prawns in a bowl and then add the garlic, paprika, black pepper and olive oil. Stir to coat the prawns and then set aside to marinate.

Meanwhile, dry fry the chorizo in a frying pan over a high heat until the discs are sizzling and coloured. Remove them from the pan using a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper. Save the oil the chorizo has produced in the pan.

Cook the onion in the chorizo oil for about 6 minutes until softened, then add the rice, thyme, turmeric, cayenne and the remaining 1 teaspoon of paprika. Cook for 3 minutes, then pour in the wine and cook for 1 minute before adding the tomatoes and stock. Simmer for about 15 minutes, without stirring, then add the prawns (with the marinade) together with the squid, peas and chorizo. Simmer for 5 minutes.

Before serving, sprinkle over the parsley and tuck lemon wedges in around the sides. Serve straight to the table.

PASTA ALLA NORMA

As sweet as it might sound, this dish is not named after the old lady who used to serve me lunch at school. It’s a classic Italian recipe from Sicily supposedly named after the opera La Norma by Vincenzo Bellini. Like most pasta dishes, it’s wonderfully simple to prepare and makes for a tasty weeknight supper. Use any pasta you like and try to get ricotta salata, a creamy cheese that makes a world of difference to the dish. If you can’t find ricotta salata, you could use mozzarella.

SERVES 4

1 large aubergine, cut into 3cm cubes

6 tbsp olive oil

Sea salt and ground black pepper

1 onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 tsp dried chilli flakes

6 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

2 × 400g tins of plum tomatoes

Good handful of basil leaves

400g linguine

75g ricotta salata cheese, finely grated

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F), Gas Mark 6. Toss the aubergine in a mixing bowl with 4 tablespoons of olive oil and season with sea salt and ground black pepper. Transfer to a roasting tin and place in the oven to cook for 25 minutes.

While the aubergine is cooking, prepare the sauce. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and fry gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add the chilli flakes and garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes. Pour in the tomatoes and use the back of a fork to mash them down. Mix through half the basil and season with sea salt and ground black pepper. Allow to simmer for 6 minutes.

Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water following the packet’s instructions until al dente. Drain the pasta leaving a little water behind and place back into the pot along with the sauce and cooked aubergine. Mix through using a tongs. Serve straight away in warmed bowls garnished with the remaining basil and the ricotta salata.

FAST

&

HEALTHY

Turkey Noodle Lettuce Cups with Ginger Dipping Sauce

Pad Thai

Asian Shiitake Mushroom & Chicken Steam-Baked Bags

Tomato Basil Tray Roast Fish Fillets with Gremolata

Harissa Fish with Carrot & Mint Salad

Za’Atar Pork Fillet with Jewelled Herby Pomegranate Couscous

Lime & Coconut Chicken

Margarita Chicken with Smoky Avocado Corn Salsa

Griddled Beef & Mint Salad with Toasted Rice & Peanuts

Blackened Salmon with Green Goddess Avocado Salad

Butterflied Rosemary Chicken with Romesco Sauce & Simple Steamed Greens

TURKEY NOODLE LETTUCE CUPS WITH GINGER DIPPING SAUCE

I love the wonderful pure tastes and textures in this recipe. It’s a light and healthy supper that can be made in a matter of minutes.

MAKES 15 CUPS

100g rice vermicelli noodles

1 tbsp sunflower oil

500g turkey mince

3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

2 tbsp dark soy sauce

2 tbsp mirin

2 tbsp honey

Good handful of mint leaves, finely chopped

Good handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped

1 head of iceberg lettuce, leaves separated

75g roasted cashew nuts, roughly chopped

FOR THE DIPPING SAUCE

1 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tbsp mirin

2 tsp sesame oil

1 small thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

Soak the noodles in warm water until they are tender, then drain and set aside.

Mix the ingredients for the dipping sauce together in a bowl.

Heat the oil in a wok or a large high-sided frying pan over a high heat. Stir-fry the mince, breaking it up while you work, for about 3 minutes until it begins to get colour. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for 1 minute. Then stir in the soy sauce, mirin and honey. Tur

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