Friday, June 24, 2011

Linguine with Clam Sauce

I steal recipes sometimes.  This recipe wasn't meant for me but when I saw it on my news feed I knew I'd wanna try it.  It comes from my lovely friend Jessica who gave me permission to post it.  I used raw peeled shrimp instead of clams because I'm lazy, but I'm very confident that the clam version is delicious!

Thanks Jess!  Can't wait to see you in August!

Jessica's Linguine with Clam Sauce (in her words)

1 box linguine (I like de cecco or barilla linguine fini)
1/2 cup ev olive oil
...6 or more garlic cloves
...1/2 t red pepper flakes (spicy!)
2 lbs littleneck clams, scrubbed (or be lazy and buy geisha brand canned)
1 cup dry white wine (Pinot grigio)
1 lemon plus additional slices for garnish
3 T butter
flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Parmesan optional.. Some people frown on cheese with seafood... Not me! :)

Boil noodles in salt water (as salty as ocean water) Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a deep saute pan with a lid. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, saute but don't let garlic turn color. Add the clams, wine, parsley and lemon juice. Cover and cook until all the clams are opened. Throw away ones that don't open...
Add hot drained linguine to the pan, finish with butter and salt and pepper to your liking. Toss the pasta with the clams and sprinkle parsley, serve with lemon slices on side and drizzle of olive oil... You can also sprinkle with parm and breadcrumbs next day and put under broiler... Yum! (remove clam meat from shell before broiling) :).

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Chinese Beef, Tomato and Egg dish

Back in Boston we had this Beef, Tomato, and Egg dish at Taiwan Cafe in Chinatown that was the ultimate comfort food.  Eggs and tomatoes was entirely new to me even though W had grown up eating it, but adding beef completed it as a meal.  It's perfect for a winter day...or just a day when you have tomatoes that need to be eaten like we had yesterday. 

I've tried to make this dish at least three times and after some research I finally figured out the secret ingredient: ketchup.  It adds the right texture, it's just sweet enough, and it helps contribute to the tomato-ness of it all.  Feel free to add more if you love ketchup.

Here's the recipe that I used as a template (Thanks, ehow!  Who'd have thought?): Beef Tomato Egg

And here's my version- good luck!

1 lb. beef sirloin, cut into thin pieces
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp cornstarch
3 tomatoes (I used tomatoes on the vine)
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons ketchup
3 eggs, beaten

1. Combine the sugar, soy sauce, oyster sauce and cornstarch, then add beef slices.  Allow to marinate for at least 15 minutes.  If you're eating this with rice (highly suggested!) then I'd start making rice now, too.
2. Cut the tomatoes and beat the eggs while you're waiting for the meat to be ready.  Keep them separate.
3. Cook the beef until just about done.  Set aside.
4. Saute the tomatoes in a tbsp of vegetable oil on medium heat.  The tomatoes should start to lose their shape.  Make sure to stir them so they don't burn.
5. Add water and ketchup to the tomatoes.  Let the mixture come to a simmer.  There should be enough liquid to cover the bottom of the pan and maybe get a third of the way up to the height of the tomatoes.
6. Add the beaten eggs and stir gently so the eggs cook with the tomato mixture.  If you like your eggs more firm then I'd leave them alone for a few minutes before stirring.  If you like a soft scramble then you can stir more often.
7. Add the beef back into the tomato and egg mixture.  Stir to combine and bring to a simmer.
8. Scoop over rice and enjoy! 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Asian Pasta Salad

Happy June!  It's not officially summer yet, but it definitely feels like it here in CT.

I'm a huge fan of noodles in any form: stir-fried, in soup, with creamy sauces, with name it, I will most likely eat it.  Yesterday we had a potluck at work and I brought this cold noodle salad.  I wasn't sure what my co-workers would think of it since it's not your everyday pasta salad, but they really liked it!

I used linguine instead of bowtie pasta because that's all I had on hand- I just cut the linguine after cooking it.  In retrospect I would have broken the linguine before cooking.  I also included a little bit of minced garlic in the sauce cuz I had some on hand.  I chilled the noodles overnight and tossed in some spinach and field greens right before serving.  Also, I didn't add chicken, green onions or cilantro- as you can tell I was not well prepared for this recipe.  Luckily I had most of the ingredients on hand, but it's so versatile that you could probably make a lot of modifications with good results.

Thanks to Week of Menus!  It almost seems redundant for me to archive her recipes since I'm on her site so much.

Asian Bowtie Pasta
Serves 6-8

1 lb farfalle (bowtie) pasta (I used the mini farfalle)

1/3 cup canola, safflower or other mild tasting oil
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 cup sesame oil
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

2 red, yellow or orange bell peppers, cut julienne
1 cup of scallions, diced
2-3 cups of rotisserie chicken, cut into bite sized pieces (put more chicken if you want it meatier)
3 tablespoons roasted sesame seed
Pepper to taste
3 cups washed baby spinach
1/4 cup cilantro, OPTIONAL
2 tablespoons red pepper flakes, OPTIONAL

Boil and cook pasta according to directions. Make sure to salt the cooking water. Drain pasta and set aside. Return the pasta pot back to the stove. (You don't need to wash it.) Add the canola oil, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, and rice wine vinegar. Heat over low heat until the honey is dissolved. Remove from heat and toss in the pasta. Add the bell peppers, chicken, scallions, pepper, sesame seeds, cilantro (optional) and red pepper flakes (optional). Toss well to coat all the ingredients. Before serving, toss the pasta with the spinach, to keep the vibrant green as much as possible.

This can be chilled or served warm at room temperature.