Friday, March 12, 2010
A Single Tradition, Fridays
No matter what happens during the week, and what is scheduled for the weekend, Friday night is my night. It's Food Time. I'm a 31 year old single gal and I love to cook. My routine starts after work, at one of the numerous grocery stores. I see what's fresh, what's on sale, and what would make a good dinner, for myself.
Some Fridays it's steak & seafood. Some it's just seafood, and sometimes, the store is for the few things that my fridge doesn't have in it.
Take today for example. I'm doing the St. Paddy's Dash in Seattle on Sunday. Am I ready for it? Heck no. But I'm doing it. Why? I need some exercise and I'm 75% Irish. I did it last year, even trained for it, but this year I'm winging it. I'll take some aleve and walk most of the way, but I'll do it.
So for tonights menu, I knew I had thin cut boneless pork steaks. It was either cook or toss, so some salt, lemon juice, pepper, dried rosemary (from last year's crop), fresh thyme (this year's start), and a little shake of the Cajun Foreplay. I knew I wanted some pasta. I have many kinds of noodles, but then I saw the Farfalle. So I boiled up some water, heated the garlic in the pork pan, and started on my Pasta Fresca. Here's how it ended up:
Just sear the pork on each side, add some onions and water and let cook until the water evaporates! The pasta is just cooked farfalle, fresh cut raw veggies, and a little of my homemade alfredo sauce.
Here's my Friday receipe for Pasta Fresca with a touch of alfredo sauce
1 cup Farfalle Pasta (or any pasta of your choice)
1 small ripe tomatoe, chopped
3 1/2" slices avocado, chopped
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
3 cloves roasted garlic, sliced (from the pork pan - see pork receipe)
1/4 cup asparagus heads (Raw or aldente)
1/4 thinly sliced red onion
8 Basil leaves - Fresh and sliced
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp half n half
1 tbsp Parmesan cheese
1 tsp sea salt
While the pasta cooks in sea salted water, chop up the veggies and place them in a large glass bowl. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, a dash or two of sea salt (NEVER use regular table salt!), a few sprigs of parsley, and about 1 TBSP of olive oil to coat. Mix well. Toss in 1 TBSP of Parmesan cheese and let rest until pasta is cooked.
Once pasta is cooked - slightly al dente, rinse with cold water, and let sit for about 1 minute before tossing in with veggies.
While pasta is sitting, add the butter to pasta pan. Let cook until it just about turns brown, then add the half n half. Swish the half and half around and then dump the parmesan in the center, mix, and bring to a boil. Add a pinch of salt and if needed, a squeeze of lemon juice. Once it's coated well to the pan, remove from heat and pour over pasta mixture.
Toss to coat the pasta and serve.
Boneless cut of pork with fat trimmed off.
Coarse ground pepper
Cajun Foreplay (to add a little heat)
3 cloves garlic
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
Season pork chops with all but garlic and olive oil. Set on counter and heat pan to medium. Place whole peeled cloves of garlic in pan and let them sweat for about 3-4 minutes, or until browned.
Add 1 tbsp olive oil and once garlic "pops", remove from pan to cool and use in pasta.
Add Pork and sear both sides. Add red onion and 1/2 cup water. Cook until water evaporates. If using thick cuts of pork, add more water, cover and steam additional 10 minutes, or until pork is cooked to your liking.
I look forward to posting more Friday Dinners.
Enjoy your weekend!