So this isn’t a cookbook based post, but I thought you might be interested in hearing what happens with my leftovers (if there are any!).
Well, the top rib from my last post was a pretty big hit. Even though the meat was slightly tougher than it should have been, it was still pretty darn delicious, and went a long way. The dish as a whole, in my opinion, was a little missing, but people seemed to enjoy it. I just felt like it wasnt the superstar that it could have been.
Amazingly, the meat wasn’t polished off, so I thought I should show you how it turned into a delicious, simple weeknight meal. Since the meat was so tasty by itself, all it really needed were some great sides to go with.
I am a huge lover of all things pasta. If you caught the quip from my older brother in one of the comments on an earlier post, you may remember something about us eating lots and lots of linguine as kids. It’s true. My father cooked for us a lot (shocker!), and one of his go-to dishes was linguine with tomatoes and garlic. Even though sometimes we’d eat this pretty much all week, with a rotation of either broiled chicken or salmon, I really enjoyed it. My brother, on the other hand, can’t look at a piece of broiled chicken with BBQ sauce without some traumatic flashbacks. To be very clear, with thanks to my wonderful parents, we never were hungry, and not once did I ever feel deprived of something I needed. But there were some interesting (I didn’t say bad, Ima!) recurring foods on our menu. And by no means were the giant, army size pots of linguine the oddest of them.
So I guess you could say that the following dish is inspired by my father, as is much of what I accomplish with my life.
I like to use angel hair pasta for this. It’s very important, IMHO, to know which shaped pasta goes best with different sauces. There is a reason why Mac and cheese is made with elbows, and meatballs are served with spaghetti. So while I was waiting for the large pot of salted (very important!) water to boil, I smashed most of a head of garlic, and then gave it a nice rough chopping. This went into my Calphalon Unison nonstick pan, while it was still cold.
I then added roughly 3/4 olive oil, or enough to cover the garlic, and coat the pan.
I turned my stove on low, and waited for the garlic to start simmering in the oil.
The goal with this technique is not to sautée the garlic, rather to infuse the flavor of garlic into the olive oil. Therefore, you want this to cook on the lowest heat possible, for the longest time possible without the garlic browning and becoming crispy.
I mentioned the type of pan I use because I’m incredibly happy with it. The set of pans we got off of our wedding registry are terrible. They heat up too quickly and unevenly, so doing precise frying/sautéing is a difficult task. We chose them mainly because they looked cool, and we were a couple of kids running around Bed Bath and Beyond with one of those cool scanner-guns.
I bought a set of two Calphalon Unison nonstick pans from Williams-Sonoma about a year ago at a deeply discounted price. If you’re in the market for new cooking utensils, it pays to be on their waiting list. I would LOVE to have a set of AllClad pots and pans. They’re beautiful, precise, ergonomically correct, and all come with a lifetime warranty. They are also exorbitantly priced, as well. If you can afford to shell out the money, they will definitely pay for themselves over time, what with that warranty and all. But I do love the Calphalons. They hold heat well, clean easily, and are very comfortable. A good choice if you can find them.
Anyhoo, once the garlic was most of the way done, I julienned roughly 3/4 of a jar of sun dried tomatoes,
and tossed them in with the garlic.
I let those cook too during the 3-4 minutes it takes to make angel hair pasta al dente. Boy, do I hate mushy pasta. I also hate watery pasta, so please, if you’re ever considering inviting me over for spaghetti and meatballs, heed my warning now and don’t rinse your pasta after cooking. Boy, don’t I sound like a fun and grateful dinner guest?
After tossing a quick salad of romaine, olive oil, white wine vinegar, salt and fresh black pepper, I sat down to a delicious, simple, and balanced dinner.
What did you eat this week?