Trying to work my way through more of the Cooking School entries–here’s 19-12: A Variety of Vegetables for you. This one comes courtesy of the NEW BOOK, and features 4 vegetables you may or may not be familiar with.
As usual, I’ll give you a little blurb after the jump about each one and then links to a few Simply Delicious recipes that I’ve already covered that use those vegetables. Hey, it’s important to eat your veggies!
First of all (before we even get into the actual recipe for 12-35: Fettucini with Scallops) I need to take umbrage with the spelling of “fettucini”–Simply Delicious spells it with one “c” and an “i” at the end instead of an “e”. I spell it “fettuccine” (so does Wikipedia AND Olive Garden), so this is going to be a challenging entry to write.
Spinach fettuccine with Alfredo sauce (this one specifically) was one of my FAVORITE meals as a kid (I could definitely still knock out a big bowl of it today), and so I can see this as more of a “grown-up” version of it.
Real Alfredo sauce is closer to what you get with cacio e pepe than what you get at the Olive Garden (notably it doesn’t feature heavy cream and garlic like the OG version), and this version (even though it’s not calling itself “fettuccine Alfredo”) probably falls somewhere in between–lighter than OG’s but heavier than the original.
I’ve been eating a diet that’s easiest to classify as pescetarian for about 4 years now, and one of the biggest trends I’ve noticed in “vegetarian” dishes and cooking is to take a vegetable, smother it in cream and cheese, and call it a meal. Don’t get me wrong–I lovecheese (more so than most–I chalk it up to being half Swedish/French), but it’s not exactly the healthiest thing for you. 13-1: Broccoli with Cheese Sauce is indeed vegetarian, but it is NOT healthy.
Sure, you could have stopped at steaming the broccoli (actually blanching, if you read the recipe after the jump)–maybe even sprinkle a little cheese on top to keep it interesting. But this feels more like, “would you like some broccoli with your cheese?” more so than “would you like some cheese with your broccoli?”
Man, I never thought I’d be complaining about there being TOO much cheese and not enough vegetables. That’s how you KNOW you’re getting old, kids.
Meal-prepping is trendy now, but it’s always been a good idea if you want to save money and calories. 12-24: Cannelloni with Chicken works well if you want to make it on a Sunday, split it up into a few containers, and reheat it throughout the week. At least, that’s how we ate it.
Even Simply Delicious advises you can make this meal ahead of time, although their suggestion is for entertaining guests. This recipe/concept is pretty versatile–it’s good fresh or as leftovers.
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 fettuccine was my favorite as a kid (and is SUPER hard to find these days). 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.