Bolognese sauce

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OK, who doesn’t have a soft spot in their hearts for spagetti bolognese? It was one of my favorite things to eat growing up and usually consisted of canned spagetti sauce, some ground beef and frozen (amazing!), greasy garlic bread. It was delicious. My roomate in college raved about her Mom’s famous spagetti. It was a big deal when I finally got to try it for myself during a weekend trip home with her. And now, guess what? I get to rave about my very own spagetti recipe. After years of trying to find a good canned sauce for bolognese and lasagne, I’ve learned to just use canned tomatoes, building flavors and seasoning myself to find the perfect salty/spicy/sweet/herby balance. This sauce also has red wine in it, which gives it tons of body and depth. It’s best when you take your time, but it can be made in a pinch and do the trick. Continue reading

Creamy carbonara

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One of the first things that I learned to cook upon arriving in France was something not whatsoever French: carbonara. I also learned how to make the Italian dish from a Colombian girl, so you can imagine that it was not necessarily the most traditional interpretation. Nonetheless, carbonara is great for so many reasons: I almost always have everything I need to make it on hand, it’s delicious, and it doesn’t cost much to make. Continue reading

Bruschetta pasta

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Bruschetta is my go-to party dish whenever I have guests in the summer. I usually tend to do three versions for a little variety: a classic tomato, roasted yellow bell pepper and crème de parmesan. It’s always a hit, and seems like more work than it actually is. Even when doing three different kinds, it comes together easily and effortlessly. Once the guests arrive, all I have to do is heat up my bread rounds and spoon on my different sauces.

The last time that I made bruschetta I ended up with some leftovers. While the sharp tomatoey goodness of my classic recipe is delicious enough to eat right out of the bowl with a spoon, I decided to see what it would be like if I added it to some pasta. I ate this particular dish luke-warm, but I have a feeling it would be even better as a cold vegetarian pasta salad. The capers and olives paired perfectly with the pasta with a little zest from the lemon juice. Some mild gruyère cheese topped it all off and helped the dish to find balance. Continue reading

Herbed spaetzle

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I just recently got around to posting a traditional recipe that I made months ago for chicken schnitzel, one of my all-time favorite simple dishes. I was inspired to finally make it when I found a package of spaetzle pasta at the grocery store. I wish I’d had this recipe at the time, as an all-around home-cooked meal would have been so much more satisfying. Unfortunately, Food Network Magazine didn’t think to publish it until their October issue as part of a menu for Oktoberfest. I’m not complaining too much though. The spaetzle were fun to make and went perfectly with the pancetta wrapped pork tenderloin with plum chutney that I served them with. Continue reading