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Hometown Focus Recipes – Hometown Focus

 

I recently found this pasta cookbook at our local thrift store and instantly fell in love – as I do with soups, Mexican dishes, seafood, something spicy hot…anything really!

These recipes are from the step-by-step pasta cookbook, and if I hadn’t eaten pasta for the past three nights (pasta shells with white cheese topped with a lobster bisque sauce and added some chunks of imitation crab—real crab not so readily available in northern Minnesota), I’d be looking up one of these creations for dinner. However, you can only eat leftover pasta for so long, so I’ll put this book away for another day when the pasta craving strikes again.

Soup season is in the air given our cooler nights and the fall foliage starting to peek out. Game hunting seasons are soon to start, so I’ll be getting the pasta recipes in while I can – more will be out at some point!

Fettuccine With Zucchini

• 1 pound fettuccine
• 1/3 c. butter
• 2 cloves garlic, crushed
• 1 pound zucchini, grated
• 3/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
• 1 c. olive oil
• 16 medium basil leaves

Cook the pasta in a large pot of quickly boiling water until just tender. Drain and return to the pan. While the pasta is cooking, heat the butter in a deep, heavy-bottomed pan over low heat until the butter foams. Add garlic and fry for 1 minute. Add the zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 – 2 minutes or until tender. Add zucchini sauce to pasta. Add Parmesan cheese and toss well.

To crisp the basil leaves, heat the oil in a small pan, add 2 leaves at a time and cook for 1 minute or until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Repeat with the remaining basil leaves.

Divide the pasta between preheated bowls, garnish with crispy basil leaves and serve immediately. Basil leaves can be baked up to 2 hours in advance. Keep in an airtight container after cooling. (Yield: 4 to 6 servings)

Linguine With Red Pepper Sauce

• 3 medium red peppers
• 3 tbsp. olive oil
• 1 large onion, chopped
• 2 cloves garlic, crushed
• 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. chili flakes or powder
• 1/2 c. heavy cream
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 2 tablespoons. chopped fresh oregano
• 1 pound linguini or spaghetti, plain or
Spinach

Cut each pepper in half and use a sharp knife to remove all the skin and seeds. Place the peppers cut-side down under a hot grill and cook for 8 minutes or until blackened and blistered. Cover with a damp tea towel and let cool. Peel the skin and cut the bell pepper into thin strips.

Heat the oil in a large heavy bottomed pan. Add the chopped onion and cook, stirring, over low heat for 8 minutes or until the onions are soft. Add paprika, garlic, chili and cream, cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt, pepper and chopped oregano. You can substitute dried oregano if needed – use about a third the amount as dried herbs have a much stronger flavor.

Before the sauce is cooked, add the pasta to a large pot of rapidly boiling water and cook until just cooked through. Drain the pasta well and return it to the pan. Add the sauce to the hot pasta and toss well until well combined. Serve in preheated pasta bowls. (Yield: 4 to 6 servings)

Spirals with Green Sauce

• 1 pound spiral pasta
• 1 medium onion
• 2 medium courgettes
• 5 – 6 large Swiss chard leaves

• 2 anchovies
• 1 tbsp. capers
• 2 tablespoons. olive oil
• 1/4 c. butter
• 1/4 c. White wine
• Salt and pepper to taste

Add the pasta to a large pot of boiling water and cook until just tender. Drain and return to the pan. Finely chop the onion while the pasta is cooking. Grate the zucchini into fine pieces. Remove stems from Swiss shard and discard. Cut or cut the leaves into small pieces. Finely chop the anchovies and capers. Heat olive oil and butter in a large heavy bottomed pan. Add the prepared onion and zucchini, stir with a wooden spoon over medium heat for 3 minutes.

Add anchovies, capers, wine, salt and pepper to the pan and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add prepared chard to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes or until chard is tender. Add the green sauce to the warm pasta and stir until well distributed. Serve in warm pasta bowls. (Yield: 4 to 6 servings)

Pasta with Ricotta, Chili and Herbs

• 1 pound spiral paste or penne
• 1/4 c. olive oil
• 3 cloves garlic, crushed
• 2 tsp. very finely chopped fresh chili
• 1 c. fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves,
coarsely chopped
• 1/2 c. fresh basil leaves, shredded
• 1/2 c. fresh oregano leaves, about
minced meat
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 6 1/2 oz. fresh ricotta cheese, cut into pieces

small cubes

Add pasta to a large pot of rapidly boiling water and cook until just tender. Drain and return to the pan. When the pasta is almost cooked, heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed, non-stick frying pan. Add garlic and chili to the pan and stir over low heat for 1 minute. Add the oil mixture, spices, salt and pepper to the pasta. Toss well until the mixture coats the pasta well. Add cubes of ricotta and serve immediately. (Yield: 4 servings)

Spaghetti Tomato Salad

• 1 pound spaghettini or spaghetti
• 1 c. fresh basil leaves
• 8 oz. cherry tomato, halved
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 1/2 c. chopped black olives
• 1/4 c. olive oil
• 1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
• Salt and pepper to taste

Add pasta to a large pot of rapidly boiling water and cook until just tender. Drain pasta and rinse well under cold water. Pasta can be cooked up to 1 day in advance. If you do this, cool the paste and mix with a little oil.

Using a sharp knife, cut the basil leaves into fine strips. In a bowl, combine basil, tomatoes, garlic, olives, oil and vinegar. Let stand for 15 minutes. Place the drained pasta in a large salad bowl and add the tomato mixture. Add parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Toss well and serve immediately. (Yield: 4 to 6 servings)