Pastas/Noodles · Seafood

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
Pasta is my kryptonite.

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
It’s not just devouring it — I also love cooking pasta dishes, too!

My vice is way too accessible.

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
So you can see the predicament I am constantly in.

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
But not all pastas need to be heavy or sauce laden.

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
In fact, one of my favorites is Linguine alle Vongole – long strands of pasta with clams in a white wine sauce.

YES PLEASE!

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
It’s really quite simple with just a handful of ingredients that are probably (besides the clams) are already hanging out in your pantry.

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
As for those clams:

  • Triple check with your fish dude/dudette that they are fresh.
  • Take the time to ensure that you soak and clean them. Biting into sandy clams is NO BUENO!
  • Toss away any clams that do not open after you’ve cooked them because that means they’re D-E-D!  (Nope, not a typo. “DED” is “DEAD”…but wayyyyyy more.)

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
After you’ve done that, just infuse some olive oil with lots of garlic and red pepper flakes…..

throw in some white wine and your cleaned clams….

pop a lid on and wait until those molluscs open up!

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
Then it’s just a matter of tossing in the cooked linguine, butter (for a bit of added lusciousness), lemon and parsley.

Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
And then get ready to do a Happy Dance in your kitchen because your tummy will be so appreciative of you!

Buon Appetito!

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Linguine alle Vongole {Linguine with Clams}
Serves 2

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 pound clams (Manila clams, cockles, littlenecks), scrubbed and cleaned*
1/3 cup white wine
kosher salt
5 ounces dried linguine, or other long strand pasta
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
½ cup chopped parsley

Heat the olive oil over low heat in a large skillet. Add the garlic and cook for 5-6 minutes to infuse the oil. Swirl the skillet often to ensure that the garlic does not burn. Add the red pepper flakes and infuse for another minute.

Raise the heat to medium and allow the garlic and pepper flakes to cook for an additional 15-20 seconds. Add the clams to the skillet and pour in the wine. Once the liquids begin to bubble, place a cover over the skillet and allow the clams to steam open – approximately 5-8 minutes depending on their size.

While the clams cook, add salt to a pot of boiling water. Add the dried linguine and cook to just shy of al dente. (Note: If your pasta is not done by the time your clams have cooked through, turn off the heat on the skillet and keep it covered until the pasta is ready. Turn the heat back up to medium once you add the pasta.)

When your pasta is done check your clams and discard any that have not opened yet. Add the pasta directly into the skillet with the clams, tossing to coat. Add the butter and continue stirring/tossing until it has fully incorporated. If the pasta appears slightly dry, add ½ – 1 ladle of the pasta cooking water, continuously stirring to emulsify the sauce. Toss in the lemon juice, zest and chopped parsley. Plate the pasta and serve immediately.

*Rinse and scrub the clam shells with a small brush. Place the scrubbed clams in a dish and submerge with cool water. Place the dish in the refrigerator for 20 minutes. Rinse the clams and change out the cool water every 20 minutes for an hour. If you still see sand/grit at the bottom of the dish at the end of an hour, repeat the soaking process for another 20-40 minutes.

 

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Pastas/Noodles

Browned Butter Linguine with Mizithra {Myzithra}

Browned Butter Linguine with Mizithra

Okay.

Y’all are in trouble.

Why have you been hiding Mizithra from me my whole life??

Browned Butter Linguine with Mizithra

Mizithra…the wonderful Greek sheep’s milk cheese. Dry, salty, with a very distinct floral and nutty flavor.

And do you know where I finally discovered Mizithra? The Old Spaghetti Factory of all places!

I know, what the heck was I doing at The Old Spaghetti Factory?! But that’s an entirely different story for another time.

Browned Butter Linguine with Mizithra

They toss Mizithra with pasta and browned butter which is so perfect and simple. I mean, c’mon now, throw some nutty flavored browned butter in anything and I’ll gobble it up. So when Mizithra joins the party, I’m totally there.

Browned Butter Linguine with Mizithra

I found a little wedge of the cheese at my neighborhood market and swooped it right up. I, too, browned up some butter to coat linguine noodles in but added lots of fresh parsley and lemon zest. The combination of the browned butter and Mizithra can be a bit rich so the fresh herbs and citrus really helped to brighten it all.

A rad little dish that takes less than 10 minutes to make with only a handful of ingredients.

And yes, I forgive you now ❤

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Browned Butter Linguine with Mizithra
Serves 2

Ingredients:

kosher salt
4 ounces dried linguine noodles
¼ cup salted butter
¼ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
¼ cup grated Mizithra (Myzithra) cheese, more to plate
¼ teaspoon fresh lemon zest
1 tablespoon minced parsley

Bring a pot of salted water to boil. Add linguine noodles and boil for 6-7 minutes or until al dente.

While the pasta boils, prepare the browned butter. Place the butter in a saucepan and melt over medium-low heat. Swirl the pan and allow the butter to bubble and foam slightly. Continue browning the butter until it begins to smell nutty and it turns a dark golden brown. Remove from heat.

Once the pasta becomes al dente, drain well and add it back to the pot. Toss the noodles with the browned butter, red pepper flakes and cheese. Plate the pasta between two dishes. Sprinkle each serving with lemon zest, parsley and grate additional Mizithra over each plate. Enjoy!

Pastas/Noodles · Seafood

Celebrating our Blogoversary with Uni (Sea Urchin) Pasta!

Uni (Sea Urchin) Pasta

I still can hardly believe it…..

Today, is our 2 year Blogoversary! And on 11.11.11 to boot!

Uni (Sea Urchin)

Over the past two years, I have loved this space that has allowed me to share my voice and Foodventures with you. But above all, I am so thankful for the overwhelming encouragement and support I have received from my family, friends, and the fabulous food community. Awww shucks gang….y’all are awesome.

By the way….stay tuned next week for a pretty neato giveaway I’ll be hosting to show my appreciation 🙂

Uni (Sea Urchin) Pasta

In honor of our 2 year Blogoversary, I wanted to indulge and use one my favorite things in a decadent pasta—UNI!  And what better way to celebrate, right?

The super unctuous texture of the uni with its fresh sea flavor is the perfect pairing with linguine. Of course you could use any long strand pasta you choose but I like the slightly thick noodle so that it can hold more of the rich sauce. Sooo good! And you know what’s even better? This delicious pasta can be done in 15 minutes! Perfect if you need to make an impressive dish but not have a lot of time.

But be warned…this pasta is not for the faint of the heart. It’s the real–super rich–super decadent deal!

And with that Dear Friends….here’s to many, MANY more years of Foodventures together!

xoxo….

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Uni (Sea Urchin) Pasta
Serves 2

Ingredients:

¼ pound dried linguine, or pasta of your choice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
¼ cup heavy cream
5 ounces fresh uni (or one tray)
1 tablespoon fresh chives, finely diced
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
seasoned Nori (seaweed), chiffonade
kosher salt and white ppper

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook the pasta to al dente.

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the olive oil and butter together. Add garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Add in chili flakes and heavy cream. Bring to a slight slimmer and add all but 4 pieces of the uni.

Remove from heat and whisk items together until the uni has broken down into the sauce. Toss in the cooked pasta until the noodles have been evenly coated. Season with salt and pepper.

Plate the pasta and place the remaining whole uni segments on top.  Sprinkle the tops with chives, sesame seeds, and nori. Serve immediately.

Pastas/Noodles · Pork

Linguine alla Carbonara

Linguine alla Carbonara

I’d like to think that I was Italian in one of my former lives.

Truly, it would help explain my love and addiction for Italian foods and all pastas.

In fact, most people make sandwiches–or even quick stir frys when they want something fast or need to empty out their fridges. Nope–not me. I make pastas.

Linguine alla Carbonara

And when something is as quick and yummy as this Linguine alla Carbonara, how can you blame me? Rich, simple, delicious—and there’s BACON!

Oh those Italians. Just Brilliant.

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Linguine alla Carbonara
Serves approximately 2

Ingredients:

1/3 Pound Linguine (or other long pasta)
4 Strips Thick Cut Bacon, diced
3 Tablespoons Shallots, chopped finely
2 Garlic Cloves, diced finely
¼ Teaspoon Dried Chili Flakes
2 Fresh Eggs, room temperature
1/3 Cup Parmesan Cheese, finely grated
2 Tablespoons Fresh Italian Parsley, chopped
Kosher Salt and Pepper
Additional Parsley and Parmesan Cheese for Garnish

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and parmesan cheese. Once combined, mix in parsley. Set bowl aside.

Add bacon to a large pan and turn burner to medium heat. Slowly sauté the bacon until it becomes crispy and the fat has rendered down—about 10 minutes.  While the bacon is browning, begin boiling the linguine in a large pot of salted water. Once bacon is finished, use a slotted spoon and transfer it to a plate covered with paper towels. Reserve one tablespoon of bacon drippings in the pan and discard the rest. Sauté shallots in the bacon drippings until translucent. Add garlic and cook for an additional two minutes. Add chili flakes and cook for an additional minute. Transfer shallots/garlic mixture to a bowl.

Once cooked, drain the hot pasta and quickly toss it in the eggs/cheese mixture until the “sauce” has thickened. Add all but two tablespoons of the crispy bacon and shallots/garlic mixture. Continue to mix until all items have been thoroughly incorporated. Check for seasonings and adjust with salt and pepper accordingly. Plate the pasta and sprinkle with extra cheese, parsley, and remaining bacon.  Serve immediately.

Note: It is important to use the freshest eggs possible when making Carbonara. The heat from the hot pasta will warm the eggs but not thoroughly cook it. If you are wary of eggs that are not fully cooked, then Carbonara may not be the dish for you.

Pastas/Noodles · Seafood

Quick and Easy Shrimp Scampi

Quick and Easy Shrimp Scampi

 

There are days that I will happily labor for hours in the kitchen for a mere component to one dish. And then there are days that I can’t even look at the kitchen, let alone want to cook a meal.

But does that mean I should settle for something mediocre in taste?

HECK NO!

This delicious and full flavored Shrimp Scampi will have you in and out of the kitchen in 15 minutes. True Story.

With its bright citrus notes (from the lemon and parsley) to the succulent-garlicky shrimp, you’ll never need take out again.

ps. And if you’re still feeling a little indulgent from the Holidays….throw in some sweet halved grape tomatoes, use whole wheat pasta and replace the butter with olive oil. 🙂

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Quick and Easy Shrimp Scampi
Serves 2

Ingredients:

½ Pound Linguine
½ Pound Large Shrimp, cleaned and peeled
2 Tablespoon Fresh Garlic, minced finely
1 Teaspoon Lemon Zest
½ Teaspoon Dried Chili Flakes
¼ Cup Fresh Lemon Juice
¼ Cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
2 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter
3 Tablespoon Olive Oil
Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste
*½ Cup White Wine (optional)
Lemon Slices or Parsley Springs for Garnish (optional)

Cook linguine according to the directions on the package, reserving a few tablespoons of the starchy pasta water.

Season shrimp with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, melt butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and chili flakes and sauté for 2 minutes. Add shrimp and lemon zest. Cook shrimp on both sides until they turn pink—approximately 1-2 minutes on each side. Add lemon juice and parsley. Toss in cooked linguine, adding a tablespoon at a time of the pasta water until you reach desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with additional lemon slices or parsley springs.

**If you would like a more saucy pasta dish, remove shrimp from skillet once they have turned pink. Add in ½ cup white wine and turn the heat to medium-high. Reduce the liquids for 4-5 minutes. Return shrimp to the pan and follow the rest of the recipe.