Saturday, July 27, 2013

On Cooking... after living 23 years and saying I hate cooking for many of turns out that I may actually like it. I was craving some good food last week and decided to make a dish that my roommate used to make a lot in college, and I was so proud of myself when I was actually able to make it. It felt like such an accomplishment, and it was delicious to boot! So later in the week I made another pasta, and I have more recipes waiting for me to try :)

I was so excited about cooking that I made my own recipe books with an old binder, tape, and calligraphy.
So here are the recipes in case you're in the mood for delicious food. The first one is by Giada de Laurentiis of the Food Network.

Ignore the ugly, green counter
Creamy Orzo

1 pound orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large shallot, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, juices drained
1 1/4 cups whipping cream
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Bring a heavy large saucepan of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the orzo and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic, and saute until tender, about 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook until they are tender, about 8 minutes. Stir in the cream and peas. Add the orzo and toss to coat. Remove the skillet from the heat. Add the Parmesan to the pasta mixture and toss to coat. Stir the pasta mixture until the sauce coats the pasta thickly, adding enough reserved cooking liquid to maintain a creamy consistency. Season the orzo with salt and pepper, and serve.

Garlic Parmesan Cream Sauce Over Pasta

1 lb pasta
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon chopped garlic (or minced)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1 cup chicken broth
1 -1 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese (grated will not work well, shredded works best!)
salt and pepper
4 -5 scallions (green onions, diced with scissors)

Cook pasta according to directions.
When pasta is half way done, start with cream sauce in separate pot.
Add butter, olive oil and garlic and saute on med-low heat until butter is melted, then add red pepper flakes and saute.
Mix in flour until combined.
Add milk and chicken broth, bring to a boil, lower heat and stir until thickened.
Add parmesan and stir until melted.
Serve over pasta, and top with green onions.
Option: Add cooked, diced chicken.

On this one, I decided to not to add the scallions and added peas instead, which were delicious! I think I'll make a pea pesto pasta later in the week! And I might just have to get myself a good cookbook soon.