Thursday, August 13, 2009

In a preGood Italian Food!

Last night, The Pedant and I cooked a really great dish from Lidia's Italy. It was really, very good. And not too complicated! The dish was Pasta alla Norma, a Sicilian specialty. We did modify things a bit but it still turned out to be amazing.

The recipe called for about a pound of eggplant fried in a cup of oil. We probably had well over a pound - maybe closer to 2 pounds - and we so didn't fry. (Sorry Lidia. I love you and your shows, but frying is just too hard for me and my waistline!) We sauteed in about 1/4 of a cup (a thin layer - but next time, maybe even a thinner layer) and it was good. Then we set a pound of whole wheat penne to boil (apparently, we couldn't find whole wheat ziti at the Teet) and made a simple sauce with canned crushed tomatoes, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. After adding in the pasta to let it finish cooking in the sauce, we added some fresh basil (from my mini-garden, i.e., 2 small pots on the balcony with basil, parsley and chives from our CSA), about 1 cup of ricotta salata (which, I really have to say is an amazing cheese - I really love it and need to find many more ways to use it!) and then layer on the eggplant and 1 more cup of ricotta salata. And it was amazing!

TP and I had a lovely evening eating (too much, but so worth it!) Pasta alla Norma and watching Cranford - a mini series recommended by my cousins and very entertaining.

We also made another Lidia dish for dinner Tuesday, but this time from Lidia's Family Table: Cauliflower and egg salad. We liked the recipe so much we actually copied it from the TV show before we got the book (although this was the first time we made it). Very simple, very good: steamed cauliflower, hard boiled eggs, EVOO, white wine vinegar. Toss, enjoy. And we did.

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