Yup, back to food. Well we have to eat don’t we?
Do you live to eat, or eat to live?
A basic question, but it is not as light a question as it appears. Those that live to eat, enjoy food, and take pleasure in it. They tend to do so with other things as well. Life is to be enjoyed, how ever you do it.
On the weekend I took my Parmesan cheese to the cottage to make my noodles Alfredo, but never following a recipe it ended up probably not being noodles Alfredo.
First, I didn’t us Alfredo noodles, choosing Penne noodles instead. I like how they fill with the sauce.
now, for my pasta I had red bell peppers, portabella mushrooms, sweet onions (vidalia), chicken breast, garlic, white wine, the pasta, cream and the cheese. We used a table cream, whipping cream is good to, but it is very rich.
a bbq too.
I seasoned the chicken breast and heated the bbq, I also sliced the mushrooms into strips and seasoned them, tossing them in some olive oil, I did the same with the onion.
The red pepper I cut into larger pieces and also seasoned it and tossed it in olive oil.
The garlic I took two bulbs and cut the tips off, put them in foil and drizzled more olive oil on them, then wrapped them tight. I put them on the grill right away along with the peppers.. skin side down.
I sprayed the chicken breast with a veggie spray, to help keep it from sticking and when the grill was hot put them on. If the grill isn’t hot the chicken sticks. blech.
I have a little metal pan that is for the bbq, it has lots of holes in it, it is great for when you bbq smaller things, like meat balls, shrimp or mushrooms and other veggies.. in went the mushrooms.
mmm it was smelling wonderful.
When the peppers are blackened (on the skin side) a bit they come off, and I rinse them off and remove the skin. Cut them into strips and put them aside.
I dont want to dry out the mushrooms, just to caramelizes them a bit, so I don’t brown them, just cook until tender, I tossed the onion in then, I don’t want them to brown, just turn translucent. Then they all come off and are put aside for later. You don’t need a lot of pepper and mushrooms and onions, the sauce is the star, they are just to make it better.
Don’t over cook the chicken, It dries out fast. So watch it carefully. I use a temperature probe and when it hits 160 it comes off and I wrap it in foil, it will cook more in the foil and not dry out.
By then the garlic is probably roasted too. Squeeze a bulb to see if it is soft. They don’t take that long.
off goes the bbq and into the cottage. woo hoo, everyone was getting hungry now, all those smells.
The pasta is boiling now, It is handy to have an Amiee lying around, you should get one. *nods lots*
She also had a cream sauce simmering and the cheese was melting in it, she added some white wine but not an oaked one. She used a Pinot Grigio, I knew this because that is what we were drinking at the time.. *grins*
How much cream, and how much cheese? *shrugs* we don’t measure. The cheese is strong, so you don’t need gobs of it, so add some, maybe a half a cup ( it really depends on how many you are cooking for) and taste it after it melts in, you can keep adding some, but it may become too rich if you add too much. The same with the wine, in a cheese sauce, perhaps 1/2 a cup and be sure to simmer it so the alcohol cooks off.
I chopped up the red peppers, now without the skins and roasted tender, and the garlic, which is also roasted. The roasting changes the garlic a lot, it becomes richer, sweeter or less bitter and not overpowering. The peppers roasted really pop with flavour.
They get tossed into the sauce to allow their flavour to meld with the sauce.
Then the onion and mushrooms go in.
Now you can cook everything together, like a stew, and it is great, but cooking them like this and adding them at different times layers the flavours, you can taste each one.
presto, it is done
You can toss the pasta into the sauce and mix it, or serve them separately and let everyone choose how much of each they want. The chicken breast is sliced into thin strips, and placed on top. I like to sprinkle parsley on it, not just because it looks nice, but I really like parsley. Also I sprinkle on paprika. I don’t like to cook paprika as it cooks very fast and will become bitter, but on top when serving, it is great.
I am getting hungry again. drat.
I would tell you what Aimee made for desert… but drooling on the keyboard is bad. Perhaps tomorrow.