Tag Archives: American

Romanesco Broccoli and Rigatoni

28 Nov

Salt & Pepper

1 pound rigatoni pasta

3 tablespoons butter

1 large onion, chopped

2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 cup chicken or vegetable stock

1 head romanesco broccoli or broccolini, cut into florets

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

2 sprigs rosemary, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

2/3 cup grated pecorino-romano cheese, plus more to pass around

1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add pasta and cook until al dente.  Drain reserving a couple ladles full of pasta cooking water.

2. While the pasta is working, in a large heavy saucepan or Dutch over, melt the butter over medium-high heat.  Add the onion and garlic and cook until golden, 6-7 minutes.  Stir in wine for 1 minute, then the chicken stock.  Add the broccoli, lemon peel, rosemary and crushed red pepper.  Season with black pepper.  Cover and cook for 10 minutes.

3. In serving bowl, toss pasta, reserved pasta cooking water, cooked vegetables, cheese and nuts for a minute.  Season with salt and black pepper and serve, passing extra cheese at the table.

Everyday with Rachel Ray, December 2009

This recipe is incredibly fast and easy.  There is an interesting interaction between flavors, from the florals of the cheese to the walnuts and earthy broccoli.  That said, there are certainly more fun and flavorful pastas out there.  The sauce is either non-existent or a little watery, but the broccoli and nuts add a nice texture and the passing cheese thickens the sauce.  This is not the most exciting recipe, but it’s a nice option for a quick meal.  The ease  of preparation balances the lack of any powerful flavor.

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Smoked Mozzarella and Chicken Sandwiches with Italian Barbecue Sauce

27 Nov

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 red onion, finely chopped

2 large cloves garlic, chopped or grated

1 14.5 oz. can diced fire-roasted tomatoes

1/2 cup chicken stock

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Salt & Pepper

4 pieces skinless boneless chicken breast, halved horizontally

12 thin slices smoked mozzarella (1 pound ball)

2 cups loosely packed baby arugula

1/2 cup basil leaves shredded or torn

1 loaf ciabatta bread, split lengthwise and cut into 4 pieces

1. Preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat.  In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil, 2 turns of the pan.  Add onion and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add tomatoes and chicken stock and heat through, about 5 minutes.  Stir in vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce and lots of pepper.  Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 7-8 minutes.

2. Drizzle chicken with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Cook on the grill pan, turning once, for 6 minutes.  Remove from the pan and layer 1 chicken piece with 2 mozzarella slices, another chicken piece and another mozzarella slice.  Repeat 3 more times to make 4 double-decker chicken stacks.  Tenant with foil for 1 minute to soften the mozzarella cheese.

3. Combine the arugula and basil.  Pile one quarter of the greens on each of the 4 bottom pieces of ciabatta.  Pile the chicken stacks on top, then cover with the barbecue sauce and bread tops.

Everyday with Rachel Ray, December 2009

This recipe is great for a quick, hearty dinner.  The size of the sandwich and abundance of sauce makes for a messy meal, but it’s definitely worth the napkin consumption.  I made this last night for my boyfriend and me so I only used two chicken breasts. I skipped the stacking of the chicken and cheese under Step 2 and simply melted the cheese on top of the chicken during the last few minutes of cooking.  The sandwich is messy enough with a single  layer – I’m not sure how one could eat a double-decker version.  I also used the fire-roasted tomatoes with green chiles from Trader Joe’s because they are always out of plain fire-roasted tomatoes, but I thought the chiles added a nice hint of spice to the peppery sauce.  I wouldn’t actually call this meal Italian or barbecue, more a mix of both with a dash of sloppy-joe American, but it certainly satisfies the best of both worlds.