Friday, January 11, 2008


Whole wheat pasta with sausage, leeks, and fontina (recipe in the comments)
Endive, oak leaf lettuce, and orange salad with raspberry balsamic dressing

Hot cocoa
Almond biscotti
This recipe, inspired by a Lydia Bastinich dish, was our introduction to good whole wheat pasta. We had tried whole wheat pasta several times and found it to be grainy, dry, and overpowering for most sauces. As time has passed, however, whole wheat pastas have gotten better and better. We try to eat whole wheat pasta whenever our sauce is robust enough (or basic enough to be in need of a grainy kick). This is a perfect introduction for anyone who is skeptical about whole wheat. Lydia (as she is most commonly known - I had to google her last name!) has a restaurant in Kansas City that we have visited with M's mom. We're big fans of her food and food philosophy, so it isn't surprising that we like this dish. The salad (local hot house greens!) is a side that's more sustainable than last night's watermelon, so I'm more at peace with our choices!

Prep Notes
Difficulty: Easy.
Chopping: Leek, cabbage, shred fontina
Time: 35 minutes
Make ahead: I would probably do this last minute, but you could make the sauce ahead and then toss with fresh pasta last minute.

J: "I'm a whole wheat convert all over again!"
M: "Makes whole wheat sing."


J said...

Whole Wheat Pasta with Sausage, Leeks and Fontina – M and J (inspired by Lydia Bastinich)
“Excellent Italian comfort!” – 2/05
Serves 3-4

1 lb whole wheat pasta
1 T olive oil
2 links sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
1 large leek, trimmed, chopped and well washed
4 cups Savoy cabbage, shredded thin (Napa cabbage works well too)
½ t salt
1 cup chicken broth
¼ t pepper
1/5 cup fontina cheese, shredded

Heat a large pot of salted water to boiling.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and cook until lightly browned and crumbled. Add leek and sauté for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add cabbage and cook until wilted, stirring frequently (about 2 minutes).

Begin cooking pasta. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water. When pasta is cooked to your preference, drain well.

Add broth, salt, and pepper to sausage mixture. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes or until vegetables are VERY tender.

Stir pasta into vegetables and cook for 1 more minute or until almost at a boil. Remove from heat and stir in cheese. Add ½ cup water. Toss and taste for seasoning and moistness. Add remaining water, if desired. Toss well.

Satya said...


Cheese Plate (sharp non-bgh cheddar, Spanish manchego, jarlsberg)
Membrillo (quince paste)
Potter's onion and garlic crackers (made in Madison from organic ingredients)

Minestrone (loosely based on How to Cook Everything)
County white Bread
~15 yr old trader joe's pinot noir (from Dusty - we were skeptical at first, but it got better after we let it breathe)

My dad came to visit this weekend, thanks to this exhibit:
Soup was his idea. I used it as an excuse to clear out onions, potatoes, frozen peas, green beans, beet juice and tomatoes. We added fresh carrots and celery and a mishmash of Italianesque spices and let to cook for a long time. It came out great!

It's also, you'll notice, the first time since you started blogging that I've cooked something worth commenting about.... somehow "Annie's mac and cheese. Again." would just be embarrassing. You are an inspiration, it's just slow to sink in.


J said...

It sounds like a fantastic feast! We love several recipes loosely based on How to Cook Everything ;) I'm honored to be called inspiring :)