There are few things in this world as good as potatoes and vegetables covered in cheesy breadcrumbs. It’s a popular side dish that you’ve seen many variations of. I really enjoyed 4-36: Golden Potato Medley and the plating that Simply Delicious shows below looks so much better than how my dish came out. I go more for utility than aesthetics when I’m cooking, but it’s also true that you eat with your eyes before your stomach. 👀
This dish is the perfect side dish, but it is hearty enough to be eaten as an entree. It doesn’t look like much, but is perfect with hot sauce.
I’ve put this one off for a while due to not having port wine on hand. After a trip to the store and a rather haughty store clerk who carded me for it despite the clearly visible gray streaks in my hair, I have the wine–let’s make a weird mushroom omelette-casserole with cheese sauce.
Back with another Cooking School follow-up to 18-19: Pasta I from a few weeks ago. 18-10: Pasta II discusses proper pasta making techniques & cooking methods on its front face, as well as offering some tips on using fresh and dried varieties. On the back side, the deep dive into the myriad of pasta shapes that started with 18-9: Pasta I continues–this card covers smaller forms like penne, farfalle, and tortellini.
Most of this advice is pretty generic–here’s a basic pasta dough recipe, and pasta cooking methods are outlined pretty well here. I’ve made both plain dough as well as some with spinach and sun-dried tomato–it’s a lot of work, but the taste difference is pretty noticeable. I don’t currently have a pasta machine, but I’d love to add one to my already-too-large collection of kitchen appliances and tools.
After the jump, read about some more pasta shapes–there’s some links to a few additional pasta dishes we’ve already covered here as well.
18-9: Pasta I only begins to scratch the surface of different types of pasta–there are so many more out there. The important takeaways from this particular set of tips are the different kinds of sauce that go with the various shapes, as well as how to identify some common variances in the shapes. 18-10: Pasta II goes more into the cooking and serving of pasta, as well as listing a few more shape/sauce combinations if you’re looking for a bit more from Simply Delicious on the topic. 📚
I’ve been meaning to make this one for a while–spinach fettuccini was my favorite as a kid. I usually had it with Alfredo sauce, and the cheesy sauce in 12-10: Cheesy Tagliatelle is like a thinner, red pepper-ier version of that. 🍽
I’m not quite sure what the major difference between tagliatelle and fettuccini is–the TL;DR of a quick search indicates it has to do with fettuccini noodles being the same width as tagliatelle, but a bit thicker. The two come from different parts of Italy, but both roughly refer to the same concept.
As you’ve probably figured out, I don’t always write these immediately after I’ve cooked the dish. I usually remember a lot about them though, and I make a lot of mental notes as I go, especially now that I’ve done 80+ of these at this point.
I don’t remember a damned thing about 12-8: Penne with Broccoli. I’m pretty sure the only thing I remember was that it was pretty unmemorable.
My guess is it’s one of those one-pan-skillet-easy-weeknight-dinner kind of things that gets you to eat vegetables by covering them in cheese and noodles. Not that that’s bad, but it’s nothing new.
You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t had lasagna before. It’s not very difficult to make, but often very time-consuming. The first entry in the Pasta & Rice section is the old standby: 12-1:Lasagna.
This version is different than what I’m used to making: it uses a cheese sauce (similar to a béchamel) in place of a ricotta/egg mixture. It was good, but I think I’d choose the ricotta/egg mixture in terms of what I think of when I think of “lasagna”.
Fennel has been a challenge ever since we started receiving CSA boxes a year or two ago. I really never cooked with it before and even now, finding recipes to use with it (that I’ll eat) is difficult.
If you’ve never had fennel, it tastes like black licorice. You eat the bulb part, and usually cut off the stalks & feathery parts. I usually save those parts and put them in when I make chicken stock.
We ended up with two very large fennel bulbs, and so I decided to make 4-13: Fennel au Gratin, because you can’t go wrong when you cover things in cheese.
We paired this with some English cheddar tortilla/gluten-free something-or-other chips as well as put it on top of some veggie patties–both were pretty good. It worked well as a dip–it might be too cheesy as a side dish, unless you added more fennel.
The long-awaited 5-24: Meat-Filled Crêpes. I finally solved my ingredient issues and it was crêpe-time. The only thing is…I’ve never done this before.
Confession time: In all of my time cooking (which is most of my life), I have NEVER made crêpes. I have made many pancakes (as you could imagine), but never a crêpe. This was a first for me and as you will see, I learned many lessons from this attempt.