Category Archives: Pasta

Leah’s Goat Cheese Pesto Pasta

All pasta recipes are welcome at Nummynumnum but even better if they involve goat cheese.  Below is a recipe from good friend Chef Leah.  I have a feeling this will be a lot more people’s go to pasta recipe after first try. – ts

Chef Leah says: This is my go-to recipe for when I have someone over for dinner but don’t have a lot of time to prep or cook OR if I am cooking for a picky eater! You can make the sauce while the pasta and meatballs cook and then just toss and serve!

One 4 oz package goat cheese
2 oz fat free cream cheese (about 1/4 of the block)
3 garlic cloves
2-3 fresh basil leaves
1 package baby spinach, de-stemmed and coarsely chopped
1 package fresh pasta (i use fettuccine but you can use anything)
1 package frozen meatballs or turkey meatballs (you can obv make these, but SO much faster not to)
1/2 package cherry tomatoes

  1. Combine garlic cloves, goat cheese, cream cheese and 3-4 large handfuls of spinach and basil leaves in food processor and blend until creamy and bright green. set aside.
  2. Cook pasta, heat up meatballs in microwave or skillet, whatever is easier.
  3. While those are cooking, cut cherry tomatoes in half and put in large serving bowl with remaining spinach. Add cooked meatballs to bowl (i cut mine in 1/4’s), pasta and creamy pesto sauce. Mix, add Parmesan cheese and serve!

Chef Leah’s note: you can also add a cubed block of fresh mozzarella cheese at the end to make even more amazing. The sauce is also delicious on other meats, as a sandwich spread and as a dipping sauce.

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Filed under Comfort food, Main Course, Party food, Pasta, Sauces, Uncategorized

Horseradish Cheddar Mac ‘n Cheese

If you have never had the pleasure of anything Boar’s Head, I must suggest you get your butt up to (preferably the new awesome) Kroger (by the Racquet Club) and purchase something immediately. All of their stuff is good, but their Horseradish Cheddar is simply to die.

It makes a great sandwich, but the Thanksgiving I decided to unnecessarily carbo-load my family with 3 different kinds of mac n cheese, it also made for a great cheese sauce. You could actually even add bacon to this and make it the main attraction. Nobody’d be mad. Just sayin’.

1 box spiral pasta, cooked and drained
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups cream
1.5 cups milk
salt and pepper to taste
1 block Boar’s Head Horseradish Cheddar, shredded
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
parmesan
Cavendar’s to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. In a saute pan, melt butter. Whisk in flour and stir constantly until it makes a blonde roux.
  3. Add cream. Cook until it reaches a simmer, whisking constantly.
  4. Add milk. Bring to a simmer.
  5. Add cheddar cheese and mix until melted.
  6. Toss pasta in sauce, add tomatoes and place in a baking dish.
  7. Sprinkle with parmesan and bake for 25 minutes.

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Filed under Comfort food, Pasta, Side dishes

Tomato Sauce

I know that RipleyPickles has already posted Batali’s tomato sauce, but it is always nice to have options.  Here is my quick tomato sauce recipe.  I use this with all types of pasta dishes and when making a pizza pie.  I think it is very important to use “crushed tomatoes” for this recipe.  I avoid cans that include seasonings (sick), diced tomatoes, pureed or whole tomatoes.  My favorite brand is the San Marazano because I always find it and well honesty happen to like the clean look of their label.  Cento is another good brand.  You can keep this sauce for up to 3 or 4 days refrigerated. -ts 

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes (or more if you like the spice)
1 – 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 medium cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 28-ounce can crushed red tomatoes
zest of one lemon

  1.  Combine the olive oil, red pepper flakes, sea salt, and garlic in a cold saucepan. Stir while you heat the saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté just 45 seconds or until everything is fragrant; you don’t want the garlic to brown.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes and heat to a gentle simmer, this takes just a couple minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and taste.  If the sauce needs more salt add it now. Stir in the lemon zest reserving a bit to sprinkle on top of your pasta.

 Makes about a quart of tomato sauce.

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Filed under Comfort food, Italian food, Party food, Pasta, Sauces, Veggies

Batali’s Basic Marinara Sauce

This sauce was easy. And it was also easily the best marinara I’ve had in a while. I think the carrot really brings something to the texture and taste. And you get to use an immersion blender which always makes me feel very chef-like and professional. 2 good things in my book.

Furthermore, anything that could make me forgive Mario Batali for wearing those hideous Crocs is something to take note of. I hate those things. I mean, my pajamas are comfortable, but I don’t wear them to the office. Put real clothes on. You’re a grown-ass man.

6 tbsp virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion, diced to 1/4-inch
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
4 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves (or 1 tsp dried)
1/2 medium carrot, finely shredded
2 28-ounce cans of tomatoes, crushed by hand and mixed well with their juices
1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
salt to taste
  1. Add oil to a sauce pan with onions and garlic. Cook over medium heat until translucent but not brown (about 10 minutes).
  2. Add the thyme and carrot. Cook 5 minutes more.
  3. Add the tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to just bubbling, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes. Add these fantastic meatballs and serve over angel hair pasta. Molto bene! (That’s Italian y’all. Don’t say we never taught you anything.)

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Filed under Comfort food, Italian food, Pasta, Sauces, Veggies

Meatballs in Marinara

There’s nothing better than a good meatball. The problem is most meatballs are passable at best and downright TASTELESS at worst. These are anything but. They have a great flavor on their own and are even better seared off and then dropped into the yummiest of sauces to simmer til they sop up all the tomatoey goodness.

1 1/2 lbs of ground beef
10 oz (one tube) of mild country sausage
5 garlic cloves, minced
half of bunch of Italian parsley, minced
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup of Italian breadcrumbs
2 eggs
sprinkle of nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Make a mini meatball and cook it in a hot saute pan in a little olive oil. Taste for seasoning before making the rest of the meatballs.
    (Tasting and browning are the key steps to this recipe. Most people who suck at cooking suck because they don’t taste at every step. Don’t be one of them. Also, The Chef almost went postal having to make all these balls by himself, so draft someone for help or do them in advance.)
  2. Roll into balls, brown on all sides, and then simmer in tomato sauce for 30-45 minutes, adding parsley when you add the meatballs. Serve over angel hair pasta. De Cecco is the best brand I’ve ever found and it literally takes 2-3 minutes tops to be ready.

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Filed under Beef, Comfort food, Italian food, Main Course, Meat, Pasta, Pork

Prosciutto, Peppers & Shrimp Pasta

I usually always go for angel hair when I make pasta, but this really is better with the bowtie. It’s the perfect mix of sweet, spicy and seafood. Plus bowtie pasta is just adorable, so it’s got that going for it too.

1 teaspoon of olive oil
2 ounces of thinly sliced proscuitto
1 pound peeled and deveined 21-25 count shrimp
2 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled, and chopped
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
handful of chopped green onions
1 teaspoon chopped parsley
1/4 cup of feta cheese
2 tablespoons of butter
4 ounces shrimp stock
2 ounces of vodka
salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste
1 package of bowtie pasta, cooked

  1. In a medium saute pan heat olive oil. Add prosciutto and cook until crisp. Once crisp, remove from pan.
  2. Season shrimp with salt and pepper and cook briefly (until about halfway done).
  3. Add vodka to pan, stand back and set vodka aflame to deglaze pan.
  4. After flames dies down, add chopped bell peppers, garlic, green onions, parsley and feta cheese. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add shrimp stock, bring to a simmer and reduce for 3-4 minutes. Add salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper.  Stir in butter.
  6. Add bowtie pasta and cook until just until pasta is heated through. Plate and top with crisp prosciutto.

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Filed under Comfort food, Main Course, Pasta, Pork, Seafood, Veggies

Mushroom and Onion Pasta

Last night’s dinner…I decided it was time to clean out the fridge and pantry, so the easiest option was pasta.  Amazingly I had all of these ingredients and did not have to purchase anything, and it turned out really well.  Most of the ingredients can be swapped out for whatever you have on hand that day.  This probably took about 20 minutes to make. -ts

Pasta (any kind- dried, fresh)
1 large onion chopped
1 package of mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 small shallot (optional, I happened to have one)
2-3 cloves garlic minced
¼ cup sage chopped and divided
Red pepper flakes
Lemon- juice and zest
Butter
Olive oil
Salt & pepper

  1. Heat olive oil in large pan on medium heat- enough oil to sauté mushrooms and onion
  2. Boil salted water in large pot
  3. Add shallots, garlic, red pepper flakes, lemon zest, half of sage and cook until fragrant (less then a minute); add mushrooms, onions, salt and pepper; cook until soft; while cooking squeeze some lemon juice
  4. Cook pasta- length of time depends on pasta, but transfer to large pan just before al dente as it will continue cooking with other ingredients.  Add about a cup of pasta water to large pan.
  5. Adjust heat to low, and let all ingredients cook together and absorb all the pasta water
  6. Taste for seasoning, I like to add more lemon juice at this point
  7. Grate lots of fresh parm, and add about 1 tablespoon of butter and mix together, making sure cheese and butter are melted

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Filed under Main Course, Pasta, Veggies