Lemon Pasta

This lusciously creamy lemon pasta recipe is the ideal balance of richness and acidity! It’s a comforting meal or stellar…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

This lusciously creamy lemon pasta recipe is the ideal balance of richness and acidity! It’s a comforting meal or stellar side dish.

Lemon pasta

Here’s a lusciously creamy pasta that will become the meal of your dreams. Try this Lemon Pasta! It’s rich and silky, with just the right balance of sharp citrus from loads of lemon zest. Don’t consider this a health food or even a healthy spin: it’s here for when you need a properly indulgent bit of pasta. This one is modeled off of a favorite of ours at a fantastic local restaurant and let’s just say: it’ll be tough to put down your fork.

Ingredients in this lemon pasta recipe

This lemon pasta recipe is a mess of citrusy, creamy long noodles smothered in cream, Parmesan and lemon zest. While most of the recipes on this website fit under the umbrella of healthy, this one is all about being just plain amazing. If you prefer a healthy spin, go to Vegan Fettucine Alfredo! For this lemon pasta you’ll need:

  • Pasta: spaghetti or bucatini
  • Milk
  • Heavy cream
  • Butter
  • Garlic
  • Lemon zest
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper
Lemon Pasta Recipe

Use any long noodle (bucatini is best)

You can use any type of long noodle for this lemon pasta recipe. If you have fresh pasta, this would be a great sauce for using it! Of course, it’s much more accessible to use dried long noodles. Here are some options:

  • Bucatini: It’s spaghetti with a hole in it! It lends a deliciously chewy texture to the pasta.
  • Spaghetti: The classic!
  • Linguine: A slightly wider noodle.
  • Fettucine: A flatter and wider noodle.

Of course, this sauce works well with a short noodle as well, if you’re looking for a short pasta! Some ideas: Rigatoni, Penne, Orecchiette and Cavatappi would be great contenders.

How to make lemon pasta: a few tips

This lemon pasta takes just a few minutes to whip up. Here are a few tips to keep in mind during the cooking process:

  • Consider cutting it in half! The recipe below makes 6 to 8 servings, so cut in half if you don’t want leftovers (though they do save well!).
  • Zest the lemons first. You’ll need zest from two lemons, which can take a while. We like using a microplane grater to make quick work.
  • Loosen the sauce with pasta water. Like with many Italian pasta recipes, save a bit of the pasta water after you’ve boiled it: you may need a few splashes to get the sauce to a creamy consistency.
Lemon pasta

Serves a crowd, or works as leftovers

This lemon pasta makes quite a big pot of noodles! You’ll use 1 pound of pasta here, which in our book makes enough for 6 to 8 servings. This might be less than you’re used to when it comes to pasta, but this one is so rich we recommend having smaller servings.

You may want to halve this recipe, or it works great as leftovers! The flavor is still fantastic after 3 days refrigerated. We even ate it cold! You can also reheat it in a skillet with a splash of milk to get it creamy again.

What to serve with lemon pasta

Here’s an important thing about this lemon pasta recipe: how to make it into a meal! The serving size is smaller than you might be used to, because it’s such a rich and fatty pasta. You’ll want to accessorize it with a crisp green salad or some vegetable sides. Here are some ideas:

Lemon pasta

Or, serve it as a simple side dish

Another great way to serve lemon pasta? As a side dish! It works very well with fish or chicken for an elegant meal. Here are a few mains we’d serve it with:

This lemon pasta recipe is…

Vegetarian. For gluten-free, use gluten-free or legume pasta.

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Lemon pasta

Lemon Pasta


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This lusciously creamy lemon pasta recipe is the ideal balance of richness and acidity! It’s a comforting meal or stellar side dish.


Ingredients

  • 1 pound spaghetti or bucatini pasta*
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, grated
  • Zest from 2 lemons
  • 5 tablespoons salted butter, sliced
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Cook the pasta (and save the pasta water!): Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Set the timer for a few minutes less than the package instructions and then taste: the pasta should be just done, still with some firmness. The pasta should also taste salty from the salted water. Save out ½ cup pasta water using a glass measuring cup for the sauce, then quickly drain the pasta.
  2. Make the sauce: In saucepan, add the milk and cream and bring to a simmer over medium heat. As it comes to a simmer, grate in the garlic. Add ½ teaspoon kosher salt, zest of 1 lemon, and 4 tablespoons butter and stir for 1 minute. Slowly sprinkle in the Parmesan cheese, stirring constantly until fully incorporated and the sauce thickens.
  3. Serve: Add the drained pasta to the sauce and toss to combine. Allow to sit 3 minutes. Add the remaining zest of 1 lemon, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and 1 tablespoon butter. Add a few drizzles of pasta water as necessary until nicely coated. Serve with fresh ground black pepper. Store leftovers refrigerated for up to 3 days (reheats nicely in a skillet with a splash of milk).

Notes

*This quantity serves 6 to 8: make sure to cut in half if you’re serving less eaters! Pair with a green salad or veggie side to round it out as a meal.

  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Pasta
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Lemon pasta

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Chicken Cacciatore

This chicken cacciatore recipe is easy to make with your choice of veggies and simmered in a flavorful garlic-herb tomato sauce. Easy to make in either the Instant Pot, Crock-Pot or on the stovetop and delicious served over pasta or polenta. On busy weeknights when you’re craving a flavorful, simple and comforting chicken dinner… …chicken […]

This chicken cacciatore recipe is easy to make with your choice of veggies and simmered in a flavorful garlic-herb tomato sauce. Easy to make in either the Instant Pot, Crock-Pot or on the stovetop and delicious served over pasta or polenta.

Chicken Cacciatore

On busy weeknights when you’re craving a flavorful, simple and comforting chicken dinner…

…chicken cacciatore is here for you. ♡

This classic Italian “hunter-style” braised chicken dish, said to date all the way back to the Renaissance period, is one of those brilliantly flexible clean-out-the-crisper-drawer meals that somehow always turns out amazing. It can be made with whatever cut of chicken and selection of veggies that you happen to have on hand, all of which are braised together in a cozy tomato sauce seasoned with lots of red wine, garlic, and herbs. And I also recently tried adding some bacon to my cacciatore after seeing it recommended by the NYTimes and am now officially sold on the smoky depth of flavor that it adds to this dish. Highly recommend!

The good news for all of us is that chicken cacciatore is easy to toss in the Instant Pot, simmer all day in the Crock-Pot, or quickly simmer on the stovetop. And it can be served with pasta, polenta, rice, quinoa, grains, or with a big hunk of crusty bread to mop up that irresistible sauce — up to you! I’m also partial to adding in a jar of olives or capers for an extra briny touch. And I highly recommend topping each serving with a generous sprinkle of fresh basil and Parmesan too.

To be sure, I wouldn’t claim that this recipe is authentic Italian pollo alla cacciatora — it’s more inspired by the Italian-American version I grew up with in the Midwest. But from what I’ve read, cacciatore has historically always been a dish that celebrates making the most of ingredients you happen to have on hand. So roundup whatever veggies happen to be hanging out in your fridge today, and let’s make a big batch of chicken cacciatore together for the week ahead!

(more…)

Easy Tortelloni

Tortelloni could not be tastier paired with tomato cream sauce! The rich, tangy sauce pairs perfectly with chewy pasta pillows.…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Tortelloni could not be tastier paired with tomato cream sauce! The rich, tangy sauce pairs perfectly with chewy pasta pillows.

Tortelloni

Got tortelloni? This delicious pasta is often mistaken for tortellini, but it’s easily the better of the cousin pasta shapes. The larger of the two is delightfully tender, with a generous gooey filling. Here’s our favorite way to serve them: with a tangy, garlicky tomato sauce, with a touch of richness from a hint of cream. It’s a great way to make them into a tasty vegetarian dinner or easy side dish. This one has been a huge hit with any friends and family we serve it to!

What is tortelloni?

What is tortelloni, anyway? It’s easy to grab a package and mistake it for the smaller pasta shape. What is tortelloni vs tortellini?

  • Tortelloni is a pasta shape that is larger than tortellini with a filled center. Tortellini has smaller and is ring shaped, with a hole in the middle. In traditional Italian cooking, tortelloni filling is vegetarian whereas tortellini often has meat. Tortellini is also often served in broth, whereas tortelloni is served with creamy sauces.
  • Where to find it? Tortelloni is easy to find the refrigerated section at your local grocery. It’s usually not available dried or frozen (though you can find tortellini dried and frozen).
  • How to tell the difference quickly? Tortellini has a hole in the middle, tortelloni has a solid center that encloses the filling.
Tortelloni

Ways to serve tortelloni

Tortelloni is our preference over tortellini because it’s larger and more substantial. It’s great for serving with creamy sauces, whereas the smaller pasta shape can get lost. Here are some of the top ways to eat tortelloni:

Tomato cream sauce

Making tomato cream sauce: some tips!

This tomato cream sauce is our favorite way to serve tortelloni. It’s similar to a Vodka Sauce, but instead of slow cooking it for hours you can whip it up in just 30 minutes. Here are a few notes on the process:

  • Find best quality canned tomatoes. The quality of tomatoes makes the sauce. Our top choice is fire roasted, if you can find them: the flavor is sweet and developed right out of the can. Or look for San Marzano, an Italian variety of tomato with a sweet flavor. If you can’t find either, just find the best quality canned tomatoes you can find.
  • The secret ingredient? Fennel seeds. The fennel adds add hearty, meaty flavor that can’t be replicated. Don’t leave it out!
  • Simmer until thickened. This should take between 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the brand of tomatoes. Longer is always better, if you have the time!

Make it a meal: sides for tortelloni

Whip up a pan of this tortelloni, and you’re on your way to a delicious meal! You can serve it as a meatless main, or a side dish in part of a larger spread. We’ve served it as a side dish for salmon in a meal al fresco, and all our guests raved! Here are some ideas for making it into a meal:

Tortelloni

Try it in these tortellini recipes

Can you use tortellini in this tortelloni recipe? Absolutely! These pasta types are easy to swap. You can also use tortelloni in these tasty tortellini recipes:

This tortelloni recipe is…

Vegetarian. For gluten-free, use gluten free tortelloni.

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Tortelloni

Easy Tortelloni


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 0 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Tortelloni could not be tastier paired with tomato cream sauce! The rich, tangy sauce pairs perfectly with chewy pasta pillows.


Ingredients

  • 18 ounces refrigerated cheese tortelloni*
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 28 ounce crushed tomatoes (fire roasted if possible)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons (double concentrated) tomato paste or 3 tablespoons normal tomato paste
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/2 yellow onion, peeled
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • To serve: Parmesan cheese, fresh basil (optional)

Instructions

  1. Make the sauce: Mince the garlic. Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and fennel seeds and cook for about 1 minute until fragrant and the garlic is golden (do not allow to brown). Turn the heat to medium low. Add the canned tomatoes, tomato paste, ¼ cup of the heavy cream, the half onion, and the salt. Simmer 20 to 30 minutes until the sauce is thickened. When thickened, remove the half onion and stir in remaining 2 tablespoons heavy cream.
  2. Cook the pasta: Start a large pot of well-salted water to boil. Boil the pasta until al dente according to the package instructions (usually around 2 minutes).
  3. Serve: When the sauce is done, add the pasta to the skillet. Top with Parmesan shavings and fresh basil, if desired.
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian inspired

Keywords: Tortelloni

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

How to Grill Pizza

Grilled pizza is so fun to make! I love grilling pizzas on hot days because I don’t have to crank up the oven to high heat. Grilled…

The post How to Grill Pizza appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

grilled pizza recipe

Grilled pizza is so fun to make! I love grilling pizzas on hot days because I don’t have to crank up the oven to high heat. Grilled pizza makes dinnertime feel like an event, and it’s simple enough to manage on a weeknight.

Grilled pizza is especially doable when you start with my Easy Whole Wheat Pizza Dough, which comes together in a flash—no rising time required—and grills beautifully.

pizza dough for grilling

Today, I’m sharing a full tutorial on how to grill pizza. As you’ll see, grilled pizzas differ a bit in technique from oven-baked pizzas.

Choose your toppings wisely (you’ll find suggestions below) and follow my recipe until you get the hang of it. Then, you’ll be a grilled pizza champion!

Continue to the recipe...

The post How to Grill Pizza appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

Roasted Tomatoes

Have you ever tried roasted tomatoes? Specifically slow-roasted cherry tomatoes, the best of all roasted tomatoes? If not, you have really been missing out! Last summer, our…

The post Roasted Tomatoes appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

roasted cherry tomatoes close-up

Have you ever tried roasted tomatoes? Specifically slow-roasted cherry tomatoes, the best of all roasted tomatoes? If not, you have really been missing out! Last summer, our garden produced more cherry tomatoes than we could eat fresh, so I roasted several batches over the weekends.

You might be thinking that it’s hard to beat fresh cherry tomatoes (and I agree), but roasted cherry tomatoes are even nicer. The flavors and textures condense in the oven, yielding spectacularly sweet-tart, rich tomato flavor. Once roasted, they keep in the refrigerator for over a week, so this is a great way to preserve tomatoes a little longer.

cherry tomatoes

Honestly, I eat these tomatoes like candy. I have to stop myself from eating them all straight off the pan. Unlike most other roasted veggies, which I typically serve as a side dish, these roasted tomatoes are the perfect addition to many summer meals. They’ll turn a simple pasta with basil into a highly memorable dinner.

You’ll be happy to hear that roasting these cherry tomatoes require a much lower temperature than normal (just 250 degrees Fahrenheit). While they do require a couple of hours in the oven, you can throw these in the oven on a hot day without overheating your kitchen.

Tomato lovers, gardeners and weekend meal preppers, this roasted tomato recipe is for you!

Continue to the recipe...

The post Roasted Tomatoes appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

Creamy Tuna Mushroom Pasta

This creamy tuna mushroom pasta recipe is super-easy to make in just 30 minutes and tossed with the coziest lemon garlic cream sauce.  Raise your hand if you grew up loving classic baked tuna casserole! ♡ Well for those of you who share my affection for a good retro-style creamy tuna pasta bake, today I […]

This creamy tuna mushroom pasta recipe is super-easy to make in just 30 minutes and tossed with the coziest lemon garlic cream sauce. 

Creamy Tuna Mushroom Pasta

Raise your hand if you grew up loving classic baked tuna casserole! ♡

Well for those of you who share my affection for a good retro-style creamy tuna pasta bake, today I thought I would introduce you to my modernized spin on this classic that we absolutely love here in our house. As you can see, there’s no baking, box mixes, or casserole dishes involved here. Instead, perfectly al dente pasta is tossed with a simple blend of sautéed mushrooms, fresh spinach, tender flakes of tuna, and a deliciously silky, garlicky, lemony, rosemary creamy sauce, then served a generous sprinkle of Parm and freshly-cracked black pepper on top.

It’s an easy breezy weeknight-friendly pasta recipe that comes together in just 30 minutes or less (basically, the amount of time it takes to prep and cook the pasta). And together, all of the ingredients combine to make each bite taste super fresh and flavorful and deliciously nostalgic. Especially that tuna, which I’m convinced is highly underrated as a pasta protein!

My husband has requested we make this recipe no less than three times this month, and asked me to be sure and mention that it makes for fantastic leftovers as well. So grab some cans of tuna from your pantry and let’s make some pasta for dinner tonight!

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Shannon Sarna Refers to Herself As A Pizza Bagel

I’m a pizza bagel (or a “matzo-rella” stick, depending on your preference), by which I mean I am Italian and Jewish—specifically, Sicilian and Eastern European Ashkenazi—which heavily influences everything I do in the kitchen. Italian- and Jewish-Ameri…

I’m a pizza bagel (or a “matzo-rella” stick, depending on your preference), by which I mean I am Italian and Jewish—specifically, Sicilian and Eastern European Ashkenazi—which heavily influences everything I do in the kitchen. Italian- and Jewish-Americans (and especially those of us from New York) have much in common: guilt, family, tradition, and of course, a passion for food.

While no food writer speaks for an entire culture, it’s important to note that “Jewish food” in particular is not a monolith. My family hails from Poland and Ukraine, which influences my palate and cooking style. And while many Americans are most familiar with Eastern European-inspired Jewish food, the Jewish people have lived in or been exiled to wide-ranging lands all over the world, including Syria, Tunisia, Lithuania, Yemen, Ethiopia, Uzbekistan, Iraq, Iran, and Mexico—just to name a few. Much as I love matzo ball soup, pastrami sandwiches, and babka, there are so many other uniquely Jewish-American dishes, and stories, to tell.

Read More >>

Affogato

Affogato is an Italian dessert that drowns vanilla ice cream or gelato with a shot of espresso. It couldn’t be…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Affogato is an Italian dessert that drowns vanilla ice cream or gelato with a shot of espresso. It couldn’t be easier or more divine!

Affogato

Here’s a dessert that’s pure perfection in its simplicity: the classic Italian affogato! Two ingredients come together in the most exciting flavor pairing: sweet, creamy vanilla gelato and bitter, rich espresso. Poured at the table, you get to see the ingredients transform right before your eyes. Like you’d expect from Italian cuisine, it’s essentialism at its finest. This trick is one of our favorites for entertaining: especially to end a summer meal.

What is affogato?

Affogato, aka affogato al cafe, is an Italian dessert that drowns vanilla gelato or ice cream with a hot espresso shot. (Affogato means “drowned” in Italian.) Some recipes add a hint of amaretto or hazelnut liqueur, or serve the dessert with a cookie or biscotti. The dessert is traditionally served in Italian restaurants and cafes, and it’s become popular in Europe and around the world.

The affogato is our ideal dessert around here. Each spoonful of melty ice cream makes you want to burst out with an Italian chef’s kiss. It’s showy and impressive, but barely requires any time or effort. Ready to try this Italian masterpiece?

Affogato

Affogato ingredients

Affogato is such a simple concept that you’ll need the best ingredients to pull it off. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Vanilla gelato or high quality ice cream: Find the highest quality product you can. Vanilla is classic, though you can mix it up with other flavors like hazelnut.
  • Espresso: The best homemade espresso is with an espresso machine, but there are lots of other methods you can try (see below). Or, simply make double-strength coffee.
  • Amaretto: It’s totally optional, but if you have a bottle of amaretto on hand it adds a nice almond nuance.
  • Chocolate shavings: Another optional ingredient, but it’s nice to have a little garnish and texture to the top of the affogato.

The type of coffee to use

The type of coffee is everything in an affogato. Here’s what to note:

  • Use espresso roast coffee beans, or simply as dark roast coffee as possible. Light or medium roast simply will not do.
  • Use decaf if you’re worried about the caffeine. Worried about a jolt of caffeine in the evening? Use decaf coffee: it’s still absolutely delicious.
Affogato

How to make the espresso (or strong coffee)

  • Espresso machine: The top method for how to make espresso is with a machine: here’s how we do it.
  • Portable espresso maker: If you make lots of espresso drinks, this portable espresso maker is perfect: it approximates the flavor of the machine at a fraction of the price.
  • French press: French press espresso is a decent approximation of espresso for a coffee maker you might already have on hand.
  • Moka Pot: The Moka Pot (aka Bialetti) makes just the right strong coffee for an affogato.
  • Aeropress: You can make Aeropress espresso: but the flavor is more bitter and flat than the other methods.
  • Strong coffee: Or, simply use your favorite coffee making method but use half the amount of water to get double strength coffee.

The only part of affogato that requires any effort? Making the coffee. Espresso can be tricky at home. Here are all the best methods for how to make espresso at home, or you can simply make double strength coffee.

Tips for serving affogato

Once you’ve chosen your espresso making method, making affogato is a breeze! Here are a few tips for serving this easy dessert:

  • Serve in a small clear glass with a spoon. It’s best for watching the ice cream melt. Guests can scoop it up with long spoons.
  • Freeze the ice cream in the glass while you make the coffee. This prevents premature melting, though it’s not required.
  • If you’re serving for 4, make 2 doubleshots of espresso. That’s ½ cup strong coffee.
  • Place the coffee in a pitcher, or small individual pitchers. If you’re serving with amaretto, you can add it to the espresso. Then watch as the hot coffee melts the ice cream!
Affogato

Other topping ideas

You can get creative with your affogato recipe and add creative toppings that are outside of the traditional Italian method. Here are some ideas:

  • Crushed cookies or biscotti
  • Toasted nuts like almonds or pecans
  • Candied nuts
  • Chopped pistachios
  • Chocolate candies
  • Chocolate-covered espresso beans

You can also vary the ice cream or gelato flavors. Go wild! Let us know how you make your affogato in the comments below.

Coffee drinks that work as dessert

We solidly think of affogato as a dessert, but some people think of it as coffee drink. But sometimes there’s a blurred line! Here are a few related coffee drinks that also work as a dessert:

This affogato recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free. For vegan, dairy-free and plant-based, use dairy-free ice cream.

Print
Affogato

Classic Affogato Recipe


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 serving
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Affogato is an Italian dessert that drowns vanilla ice cream or gelato with a shot of espresso. It couldn’t be easier or more divine!


Ingredients

  • 2 small scoops vanilla gelato or ice cream (or vegan ice cream of choice)
  • 1 shot espresso (or 2 tablespoons strong coffee), decaf if desired
  • 1 teaspoon amaretto, optional
  • Dark chocolate shavings, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Add the gelato or ice cream to a serving glass. Chill it in the freezer while preparing the coffee.
  2. Make the espresso, following the instructions in How to Make Espresso: 5 Ways. Or, make strong coffee with espresso (dark) roast beans using your normal method and half of the standard amount of water.
  3. To serve, remove the glass with the ice cream from the freezer and top with the chocolate shavings. If using the amaretto, add it to the espresso. At the table, pour the espresso over the ice cream and enjoy immediately.
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Poured
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: Affogato, affogato recipe, what is affogato

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Bruschetta

All of the best tips we learned in Italy about how to make bruschetta! It’s peak tomato season which means…it’s bruschetta time! ♡ I’ve long been a big fan of this classic Italian appetizer. But a few years ago during our trip to Rome, my husband and I had the opportunity to take a mini-cooking class […]

All of the best tips we learned in Italy about how to make bruschetta!

Tomato Bruschetta Recipe on Sheet Pan

It’s peak tomato season which means…it’s bruschetta time! ♡

I’ve long been a big fan of this classic Italian appetizer. But a few years ago during our trip to Rome, my husband and I had the opportunity to take a mini-cooking class specifically on the art of making classic tomato bruschetta, during which we learned a few key facts and techniques that take this simple dish to the next level. So I figured that tomato season would be a good time to pop in here and share a bit of what we learned!

First off, it’s important to note the dish’s name is commonly mispronounced abroad and the Italian “ch” sound is actually pronounced like an English “k” — broo-skeh-tah. (Also, the plural of bruschetta is bruschette — broo-skeh-teh.) Its name is derived from the Roman verb meaning “to toast” or “to roast over coals,” and accordingly, the dish is commonly regarded as one of the best uses for leftover bread. While there are countless regional variations of bruschetta recipes that can be found nowadays around Italy, it is believed that tomato bruschetta in general dates all the way back to the 16th century, back when tomatoes first arrived on the scene in Europe. (Yes, believe it or not, tomatoes are a relatively new addition to the long history of Italian cuisine!)

As with most classic Italian dishes, the ingredient list for tomato bruschetta is intentionally kept minimal so that those vibrant, fresh flavors can each really shine through. All you need are ripe tomatoes, good-quality olive oil, fresh basil, garlic, oregano, sea salt and crusty bread to make an excellent batch of bruschette al pomodoro. And by contrast to the bruschetta that I used to make simply by toasting bread and scooping a tomato mixture on top, we learned that there is in fact a specific Italian method for how to assemble the ingredients in such a way that promises to bring out the best of their flavors and textures. It’s all very quick and easy to prepare. And, if you’d like, you can even prep the crostini and tomato topping hours in advance and then assemble just before serving, making bruschetta a fabulous option for easy entertaining.

All of that said, the most important thing that our instructor repeated again and again is that amazing tomatoes make for amazing bruschetta. So while ripe tomatoes are overflowing in gardens and farmers markets galore right now, let’s make the most of them and make some bruschetta!

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Lemon Basil Gnocchi with Zucchini

This lemon basil gnocchi with zucchini recipe is made with a cozy garlic butter sauce and comes together in just 20 minutes. Feel free to add in some chicken or shrimp too, if you’d like. Meet the super-simple summertime meal we’ve been loving lately. ♡ Fresh zucchini is sautéed in a garlicky butter sauce, then […]

This lemon basil gnocchi with zucchini recipe is made with a cozy garlic butter sauce and comes together in just 20 minutes. Feel free to add in some chicken or shrimp too, if you’d like.

Lemon Basil Gnocchi with Zucchini

Meet the super-simple summertime meal we’ve been loving lately. ♡

Fresh zucchini is sautéed in a garlicky butter sauce, then tossed with pillowy soft gnocchi and lots of fresh basil, and finished with a generous sprinkle of Parmesan and freshly-cracked black pepper. It’s nothing fancy and takes all of 20 minutes to whip up. But it’s light and fresh and seasonal and SO delicious. We’ve made it a half dozen times these past few weeks while zucchini has been in peak season here in Barcelona and we can’t get enough of it!

Feel free, of course, to customize your sauté with any other ingredients you happen to have on hand that might sound good too. For example, sautéed chicken, sausage, or shrimp? Delicious, if you’d like to add some extra protein. A handful of extra greens or veggies? For sure, clean out that crisper drawer! A sprinkle of toasted pine nuts or almonds on top? Always lovely for a bit of crunch. A dollop of ricotta or some melty burrata? Hello, yum.

This is one of those basic flexible recipes that you can take in just about any direction you’d like. But however you make it, I’m certain you’re going to enjoy this one!

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