Chile One-Pot Pasta

I love this one pot meal! It is a life-saver to my new life as a full-time Mommy to a newborn! Not only is this easy (and less clean-up) but its delicious!

Chile One-Pot Pasta
 

Ingredients
1 pound penne pasta
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 cup grated pecorino
1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered
3 tablespoons Calabrian hot pepper paste (I used Harissa chile paste)*
1/3 cup chopped chives
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest, from 1 lemon
1 teaspoon lemon juice, from 1/2 lemon
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Directions
In a 10-inch high-sided saute pan, bring 1 inch of water (about 4 cups) to a boil over high heat. Add the penne and the salt. Cook, stirring often, until the pasta is al dente, about 9 minutes; there should be a little water left in the pan.

Sprinkle the pecorino over the pasta; toss to coat. Add the tomatoes, chile paste, chives, lemon zest, lemon juice and olive oil, and toss.

*Harissa comes in mild to hot varieties, so make sure to choose the level of spice depending on your preference.
Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/calabrian-chile-pasta.html

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Whitefish with Mint Salmoriglio Sauce

By far the best fish dish I’ve made so far! This amazing sauce was used on pasta but thought it would be amazing on fish. I like anything lemony so combining it with fresh mint just took it to a whole new level!

Whitefish with Mint Salmoriglio Sauce

whitefish with mint salmoriglio sauce

Ingredients

1 lb whitefish of your choice (I used Sole)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
2 lemons, zested
3 cloves garlic, smashed or finely minced
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes until the fish is cooked through.

In a small saucepan, bring the olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, and garlic to a simmer over medium-low heat. Cook for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the mint and parsley.

Once fish is done cooking, take it out of the oven, pour the sauce over the fish and let it marinate in the sauce for 2-3 minutes before serving.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/orzo-with-mint-salmoriglio-sauce-recipe.html

Baked Halibut with Arugula Salsa Verde

If you want a fresh fish recipe, this is as easy as it comes. This salsa verde and dry rub takes this fish to the next level of freshness. I couldn’t find Halibut in my local grocery store, so I used Rockfish instead. Really, any meaty whitefish will do.

Baked Halibut with Arugula Salsa Verde

baked halibut with arugula salsa verde

Ingredients
Fish Topping:
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives (I grow garlic chives so I used those)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Baked Halibut:
Four 6-ounce halibut fillets, each about 1 1/2 inches thick (I used Rockfish)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Arugula Salsa Verde, recipe follows
Lemon wedges for garnish, optional

Arugula Salsa Verde:
1 cup finely chopped arugula
2/3 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup capers, rinsed and drained (I omitted the capers just because I am not a fan, but I added a little more salt to balance it out)
Juice of 1/2 large lemon (about 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice)
Zest of 1 large lemon
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

Directions

Baked Halibut:
Position an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

For the fish topping: Mix the chives, parsley and lemon zest in a small bowl. Cover and chill. This can be prepared 4 hours ahead, but keep chilled.

For the baked halibut: Coat the halibut fillets all over with the olive oil. Place the fish on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with the salt, pepper and chive-lemon topping, pressing slightly to adhere. Bake the fish just until opaque in the center, 9 to 10 minutes. Transfer 1 fish fillet to each of 4 plates. Spoon the Arugula Salsa Verde alongside. Serve with the lemon wedges, if using.

Arugula Salsa Verde:
Stir the arugula, parsley, olive oil, capers, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and red pepper together in a small bowl. Cover and chill. The salsa can be prepared 4 hours ahead, but let it stand at room temperature 1 hour before serving.

*Since I made this the same night as I was planning on eating it, I didn’t use the recommended prep and stand at room temp times. I am sure if you let the flavors develop for longer periods of time it will be better, but this dish was just as tasty without it!

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/baked-halibut-with-arugula-salsa-verde-recipe.html

Baked Herb Lemon Chicken

This chicken dish is one of my all time favorites! It has that lemony fresh taste that I love but still enough garlic and zest from the herbs that my husband can enjoy as well. Best part is, it is so easy to make!

Baked Herb Lemon Chicken

Baked Herb Lemon Chicken

Ingredients

  • 4 Chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon sliced in wedges, 6-8 slices
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 9 cloves minced garlic- about 3 Tbs
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1 Tbs grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
  •  2 Tbs freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp minced fresh thyme leaves, plus 4 sprigs (or dried thyme)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Trim any excess fat from the breast and place in a 9 x 13 baking dish skin side up. Repeat with the remaining breasts. Sprinkle the breast with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Now slice one lemon lengthwise into 6-8 wedges and set among the chicken breasts in the dish.

Next add the extra virgin olive oil to a small sauté pan and heat over medium-low temperature, once warmed and the minced garlic and cook for just a minute and stirring constantly. Turn the heat off and add the dry white wine, lemon zest, lemon juice, dried oregano, and minced thyme. Pour the warm mixture into the dish to surround the seasoned chicken breasts. Add the 4 sprigs of thyme on top the chicken breasts.

Bake the dish uncovered for 30 to 45 minutes, until the breasts are cooked and reach 165 degrees F. Remove from the oven, cover with aluminum foil and allow resting for 10 minutes before serving.

Transfer the chicken to a serving platter and pour desired amount of cooking liquid onto the platter for service.

Recipe source: http://www.andicakes.com/2011/01/07/baked-herb-lemon-chicken/

Spicy Red Wine Spaghetti

Talk about an “adult” spaghetti. This takes a simple pasta dish and elevates to a level that is so elegant and yet so easy to make! This dish is bound to make a great impression on anyone you make it for!

Spicy Red Wine Spaghetti

spicy red wine spaghetti

Ingredients

Kosher salt
1 pound spaghetti (I recommend not using whole wheat to get that great purple color)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 large cloves garlic, chopped
1 large shallot, halved, thinly sliced into strips
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (add more for more of a kick)
One 750ml bottle zinfandel (I recommend using a red wine that you really enjoy to drink)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
4 ounces coarsely crumbled goat cheese

Directions

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add the pasta and cook for 6 minutes, stirring pasta occasionally, until par-cooked. Drain and reserve the pasta water.

In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, shallots, crushed red pepper flakes and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook until the garlic becomes fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the wine and tomato paste. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer gently for 3 minutes.

Add the pasta to the skillet. Cook, stirring frequently, until almost all of the wine is absorbed and the pasta is tender but still firm to the bite, about 5 minutes (if the pasta mixture is too dry, add pasta cooking water 1/4 cup at a time).

Stir in the butter and 1 teaspoon salt. Increase the heat, and toss until the wine sauce thickens enough to coat the pasta, about 1 minute. Toss to blend.

Add the parsley and goat cheese and serve.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/spicy-red-wine-spaghetti-recipe.html

Broiled Tilapia with Mustard-Chive Sauce

This is a great easy fish to make for a weeknight meal. It takes only about 15 minutes to prep and cook. The sauce is by far the star of this dish, it would also be great on chicken!

Broiled Tilapia with Mustard-Chive Sauce

broiled tilapia with mustard chive sauce

Ingredients

Fish:
Cooking spray
4 (5 to 6-ounce) tilapia fillets
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Sauce:
1/4 cup plain, full-fat Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons agave nectar or honey (I used agave)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup lemon juice (from 1 large lemon)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

For the fish: Preheat a broiler. Spray a small baking sheet or glass baking dish with  cooking spray. Set aside.

Drizzle the tilapia fillets on both sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the fillets in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet and broil until cooked through and the flesh flakes easily with a fork, about 6 to 8 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.

For the sauce: In a small bowl, mix together the yogurt, agave nectar, and mustard until smooth. Whisk in the lemon juice and chives. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Transfer the tilapia to a serving platter and drizzle with the sauce.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/broiled-tilapia-with-mustard-chive-sauce-recipe.html

Mascarpone and Lemon Gnocchi

My husband loves gnocchi so I was happy to find this recipe for an easy version. These gnocchi are so light and fluffy, and doesn’t use your typical potato base for the dumplings. You will be in awe on how deliciously light this meal is!

Mascarpone and Lemon Gnocchi

marscapone and lemon gnocchi

Ingredients

Gnocchi:
1 cup mascarpone, at room temperature (8 ounces)
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 large lemons, zested
1 lemon, juiced
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan (4 ounces)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra

Sauce:
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, for serving

Directions

For the gnocchi: In a large bowl, combine the mascarpone, egg, egg yolk, nutmeg, lemon zest, Parmesan, and salt. Using a hand mixer, beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Gradually beat in 3/4 cup flour until the mixture forms a soft dough.

Sprinkle a pie pan or rimmed baking sheet with flour. Using 2 small spoons, drop 1 teaspoon-sized pieces of dough into the pie pan. Shake the pan gently to cover the dough with flour. Gently roll the pieces of dough into oval shapes.

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a simmer. In batches, carefully add the gnocchi. The gnocchi should sink and then float to the top. As soon as the gnocchi begin to float, cook for 5 to 6 minutes. Drain and place in a large serving bowl.

For the sauce: In a small saucepan, warm the oil and salt over medium-high heat for 1 1/2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the basil. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.

Add the sauce, cheese, and lemon juice to the gnocchi and gently toss until coated.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/mascarpone-and-lemon-gnocchi-recipe.html

Red Snapper with Fava Bean Puree

This 20 minute dish is full of flavor and won’t break the bank with the minimal ingredients. Don’t let the fava beans get you, because this puree has mint and lemon juice to cut that “bean” flavor. It is a great and healthy dish you will want to make over and over again!

Red Snapper with Fava Bean Puree

red snapper with fava bean puree

Ingredients

4 cups low-sodium chicken stock (see Tip below)
3 pound fresh fava beans, shelled or 1 pound frozen lima beans, thawed (see Tip below)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves
1 lemon, juiced
Optional: 1 cup chicken stock (see Tip below)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 (6-ounce) center-cut red snapper fillets (I used Rockfish)
Olive oil, for light frying/poaching

Directions

In a medium saucepan, bring the stock to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the beans. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the beans are tender, about 5 to 8 minutes*. Drain the beans and reserve 1 cup of stock. Place the drained beans and reserved stock in a blender or food processor. Add the mint and lemon juice, and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

In a large skillet, heat enough oil to fill the pan 1/4-inch deep, over medium-high heat. Season the fish with salt and pepper on both sides. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes each side until brown and the center is just opaque.

Divide the fava bean puree between 4 serving plates. Place a filet of red snapper on top of the puree. Serve immediately.

*TIP-To save time, buy fava beans already cooked and shelled. Then simply microwave and put straight into the blender. Then use 1 cup of chicken stock in place of reserving the fava bean stock.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/red-snapper-with-fava-bean-puree-recipe.html

Creamy Avocado Pasta

I look forward to this dish every summer. It is my all-time favorite pasta! It combines my love for avocados and pasta into one fabulous dish. The summery freshness of this recipe gets me every time.

Creamy Avocado Pasta

creamy avocado pasta

Ingredients

  • 1 medium sized ripe Avocado, pitted
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced + lemon zest to garnish
  • 1-3 garlic cloves, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt, or to taste
  • ~1/4 cup Fresh Basil
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 servings/6 oz of your choice of pasta
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions

1. Bring several cups of water to a boil in a medium sized pot. Add in your pasta, reduce heat to medium, and cook until Al Dente, about 8-10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, make the sauce by placing the garlic cloves, lemon juice, and olive oil into a food processor. Process until smooth. Now add in the pitted avocado, basil, and salt. Process until smooth and creamy.

3. When pasta is done cooking, drain and rinse in a strainer and place pasta into a large bowl. Pour on sauce and toss until fully combined. Garnish with lemon zest and black pepper. Serve immediately.

TIP: This dish does not reheat well (due to the avocado) and it may brown after a day in the fridge. However, this is a great dish to eat cold the next day.

Recipe Source: http://ohsheglows.com/2011/01/31/15-minute-creamy-avocado-pasta/