Archive for the Category » Pasta «

Muffuletta Pasta Salad

If you’re heading to a potluck this Fourth of July or at any time this summer, break away from boring with my Muffuletta Pasta Salad.  In this recipe, I’ve taken the full flavors of the iconic New Orleans muffuletta sandwich and tossed them with pasta.  Those include spicy cured meats, marinated olives and lightly pickled vegetables (both of which are represented in the one and only muffuletta condiment, Italian Olive Salad), smooth provolone cheese and even toasted sesame seeds–which mimic the bite and earthiness of the round Sicilian loaf on which the sandwich is traditionally served.  If you end up [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Pizza Bordelaise

In New Orleans, we have this sauce called bordelaise.  It bears the same name as, but is much different than the classic French sauce.  The French version is all about red wine and bone marrow.  Ours is garlic-centric.  We like to toss it with pasta, spoon it over sizzling seafood and steaks and splash it on steamed veggies.  Believe me when I say, this sauce is delicious on everything and anything … including pizza!  Yes, pizza.  I use it as both the sauce, in place of the traditional red gravy/marinara base, and to amp up the flavor of my mild [ ... ]

Jazzy Crawfish Pasta

In case you missed my tweets yesterday, the 2012 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival daily schedules have been posted.  The lineup is crazy good this year.  Almost as crazy good as this Jazzy Crawfish Pasta–my take on Crawfish Monica.  Crawfish Monica has been a festival-goer favorite for some 30 years now.  It consists of a mesmerizing bowl of rotini pasta drenched in a deliciously spicy crawfish cream sauce.  This dish became so popular at Jazz Fest that back in 2009, its creator Chef Pierre Hilzim (who named the seafood specialty after his wife Monica) trademarked the name and began [ ... ]

Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

Do you come from a meatballs and spaghetti family or a meat sauce family?  I’m from the meatballs side of the track.  Occasionally, my family traveled to the other side.  But the “grass was not greener” over there.  At least not for me. You see, in our house meatballs and spaghetti dinners were an all-day, family affair. Everything was made from scratch (except the pasta) then set on the stove to simmer until all the flavors came together. That low and slow cooking would always fill the house with familiar and comforting aromas that had us relaxing [ ... ]

Andouille Ratatouille Stuffed Shells

The first time I cooked ratatouille was on August 20, 2005.  Do you want to know how I remember that date?  Well, it was my son’s and brother’s birthdays. But that’s not how.  It’s not because of my sharp memory either–I lost that sometime between kid number two and kid number three.  I remembered that date because it was jotted down next to the recipe’s ingredient list.  I scribble all over the pages of my cookbooks and recipes.  My notes helps me remember if I liked a particular dish and if I made any changes to it. It’s [ ... ]

Meatballs and Spaghetti

It’s unseasonably and unwelcomely cold outside today, but that suits my mood just fine because I have no intentions of leaving the house.   All I want to do today is cook, in my own kitchen, all by myself.  I tend to get cranky like this when I’ve been away from home for too long.  Don’t get me wrong, I love the holidays and I’m very grateful that we were able to spend Thanksgiving week in New Orleans with our family.  But after eight days on the road and three days of laundry and other wifely chores, I simply need [ ... ]