Pasta




Melanie’s Pasta

Mix ingredients to make pasta dough and place through pasta maker attachment for KitchenAid mixer. Hang pasta to dry for 1 hour. Boil the pasta in a large pot of very salty water. While cooking, occasionally taste a piece of the pasta to determine when it is done. The consistency should be “al dente” – a bit chewy but not tough. When the pasta has reached the correct consistency, pour contents of pot into a colander and allow the water to drain from the pasta.



Steve's Garlic Cilantro Pasta

Finely chop the garlic and set aside. Remove most of the stems from the cilantro. Some cilantro stem is okay. Chop the cilantro. Fill a sink with tap water. Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan on a high heat. Just as the oil begins to smoke, add the garlic. As the garlic cooks, occasionally stir with a spatula to assure even browning. When the garlic starts to turn light brown, immediately remove from heat and dip bottom of the pan in the sink filled with water to stop the cooking.

Boil the pasta in a large pot of very salty water. While cooking, occasionally taste a piece of the pasta to determine when it is done. The consistency should be “al dente” – a bit chewy but not tough. When the pasta has reached the correct consistency, pour contents of pot into a colander and allow the water to drain from the pasta. Transfer the pasta to a large bowl. Toss with the cooked garlic and oil, red pepper flakes, and the cilantro.

Serve with grated Reggiano parmesan cheese on the side. This pasta can be served with the port reduction tomato sauce on the side.



Steve's Port Reduction Tomato Sauce

Blanch the tomatoes by placing them in a large pot of water which has been brought to a rolling boil. Don't place more tomatoes in the pot at one time than can float to the top. Remove each tomato when its skin splits by about ¼ inch. Let each tomato cool enough to handle and then remove and discard the skin. When all the tomatoes have been blanched, discard the water.

Tie all the branches of thyme together with a string and place in a large pot along with the tomatoes and one bottle of the port. Bring to a steady simmer. Chop onions into medium pieces (about 1 inch square) and dice shallots and garlic. Place onions, shallots and garlic in a large sauté pan with the butter and olive oil and sauté on medium heat until well browned (about 30 minutes). Add to the tomatoes. As the liquid continues to reduce from the tomatoes and the sauce thickens, continue to add port a little at a time until both bottles have been added to the sauce.

Remove tarragon, oregano, and basil leaves from stems, chop, and add to the sauce. Add the black pepper. Add brown sugar and red pepper flakes to achieve the desired level of sweetness and spiciness. Continue to simmer until enough liquid has evaporated to achieve the desired thickness. The liquid reduction process will take several hours.



Steve's Pasta in Alfredo Sauce

Make a cheese sauce (see “Sauces”). It is best to not make the sauce too thick because the pasta will soak up water and will cause the sauce to become thicker after it is served.

Boil the pasta in a large deep pot of very salted water. A thick pasta such as fettuccini should be used because fine pasta such as angle-hair or spaghetti will become “gloppy” once the sauce is added.

While cooking, occasionally taste a piece of the pasta to determine when it is done. The consistency should be “al dente” – a bit chewy but not tough. When the pasta has cooked enough, pour contents of pot into a colander and allow all the water to drain from the pasta. Immediately serve while the pasta is still hot. A little pasta cooking water can be added to the sauce if it becomes too thick.



Enzo's Penne Vodka

Marinate crushed red pepper flakes in vodka overnight and filter.

Sauté onions in olive oil and butter until transparent. Add tomato, cook over medium heat for 20-25 minutes, until water evaporates. Add whipping cream and bring to boil. Add salt and white pepper to taste. Put sauce aside. Reheat the sauce - bringing it to a boil. Immediately add he pepper vodka and stir, then add the penne. Remove from the heat and toss the pasta well. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and serve immediately.



Jeff Rupert's Spaetzel

Stir ingredients thoroughly and beat with a cooking spoon until dough is malleable and forms bubbles. Make sure that dough does not become to solid. To make spaetzel lighter, use mineral water instead of tap water. Another variation is to use milk instead of water or add a little oil to the mixture. Fill pan ¾ with water. Add salt and cooking oil and bring to boil. Press dough gently through spaetzel grater pushing the dough pan backwards and forward across grater plate. Briefly boil spaetzel and then remove from water using slotted spoon.



Fig Couscous

In a heatproof bowl, add 1½ cups boiling water to couscous. Cover and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes. Chop figs, scallions, mint, and cilantro and place in separate mixing bowl. To this mixture, add lemon juice, lemon zest, and garlic and mix well. Once couscous has absorbed all the water, fluff with fork, add all the ingredients, and mix well. Yields 4 servings.