Sunday, November 20, 2011

Shells with Crispy Pancetta & Spinach

*This is a Giada recipe, hope you ladies like...

1 (12 oz) package of jumbo shell pasta
2 tblsp olive oil
1/2 lb thick-cut pancetta cut into 3/4 in cubes
2 boxes frozen spinach, thawed and drained
1 (15 oz) container whole milk ricotta
1 cp grated asiago cheese ((((I used parmesan))))
1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
1/4 tsp fresh grated nutmeg

1 tblsp butter
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cp cream
2 cps grated asiago cheese, plus 1/4 cp ((((again, used parmesan)))
1/4 cp chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper


preheat oven to 375

shells: bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat, add pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, about 8-10 minutes. Drain pasta.
Warm olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat, add pancetta and cook until lightly golden, about 5 minutes. Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon and transfer to a large bowl. Add (to the bowl) the spinach, ricotta, asiago, pepper and nutmeg. Stir to combine. Stuff the shells with about 2 tblsp of the spinach mixture each and place in a large buttered baking dish.

sauce: Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat to very low and add the 2 cps asiago, parsley and pepper. Stir until the cheese is dissolved. Pour over the shells, top with remaining asiago. Bake until golden on top, about 25 minutes. Serve immediately.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Dakota Smashed Pea and Barley Soup

This is from the CPK cookbook and apparently, Cari thinks it's amazing. I'll have to give it a try... which should be interesting since I don't like peas. :-)


1 pound dried split peas, sorted and rinsed
1/2 cup Pearl Barley
2 quarts water
2 bay leaves
1 tsp salt
1 tbls soy sauce
1 tbls chopped fresh thyme (or 1/2 tbls dried)
2 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp rubbed dried sage
Large pinch of ground cumin
1.5 cups diced carrots
2/3 cup minced onion
1/3 cup diced celery
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallion greens (green onions, just the green parts not the white parts)

In a large pot or saucepan, combine the first 10 ingredients. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a bare simmer. Cover and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
Stir in the carrots, celery, and onions. Simmer until veggies are tender, 20-30 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Ladle into bowls and garnish with scallion greens...enjoy!