Monthly Archives: February 2014

  • Penne Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese Sauce

Penne Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese Sauce

Posted on February 25, 2014
Category:

It’s been pretty gloomy around here these past few weeks. It seems like the drizzle and grey skies will never end. A tropical vacation would be pretty gosh darn nice right about now. So if anyone would like to invite me to go away somewhere, I’m game. I’ll just wait here patiently for my invitation…

But until then, I’ll take some exquisitely colored foods to help elevate my mood. Like this Penne Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese Sauce. It’s vivid red color and subtle zippy-ness is enough to pull anyone out of their winter slump! And you can have it on the table in under 30 minutes. Yahoo!

A few quick notes on the recipe. Obviously, you can use any type of pasta you like. But something with ridges or tubes with do a better job at capturing the sauce.  Also, I would recommend using the kind of goat cheese that comes in a log verses goat cheese crumbles, which I find don’t melt as smoothly. And you could certainly substitute bacon for the pancetta, if you prefer.

Cheers,

Liz

Recipe adapted from Gimme Some Oven

Penne Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese Sauce

Serves 4-6

Penne Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese Sauce

Ingredients

  • For the Pasta
  • 1 lb (16 ounces) penne pasta
  • 24 ounces roasted red peppers (the kind in the jars)
  • 5 ounces pancetta, diced
  • 1 large shallot, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes, depending on your preferred spice level
  • 3/4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 4 ounces goat cheese

  • For Serving
  • Fresh basil leaves, torn if large
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the penne pasta and cook according to the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare your sauce. Add the roasted red peppers and their juices to your blender. Blend on high until smooth. Set aside. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and cook until it’s just starting to get crisp, about 3-5 minutes. Remove the pancetta with a slotted spoon and transfer it to a paper towel-lined plate. Place your skillet back over medium heat and add the diced shallots. Sauté until they are softened, about 2-3 minutes. If your skillet is getting dry, you can add a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil. Add the minced garlic and the red pepper flakes and sauté for another minute. Add the pureed roasted red peppers, chicken stock and the balsamic vinegar. Simmer for about 5 minute, stirring occasionally. Add the goat cheese and stir until it’s melted into the sauce. Taste and add additional salt and pepper, if desired.
  3. Add the cooked pancetta and pasta to your skillet, tossing gently to coat the pasta with the sauce. Serve immediately with fresh basil leaves and a sprinkling of grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.
  4. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
http://www.floatingkitchen.net/roasted-red-pepper-pasta-sauce-with-goat-cheese-and-pancetta/
  • Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake

Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake

Posted on February 22, 2014
Category:

This may be the best dessert I’ve made so far this year.

Bold statement. I know. Although not that bold, because it’s only February and we’ve got a ways to go before we finish out the year.

But until then, this Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake takes top billing.

I was a bit surprised by how much I loved this dessert. Because generally, if a dessert isn’t chocolatey, I feel sort of underwhelmed by it. I’m a chocoholic to the core. But this Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake doesn’t have a drop of chocolate in it. And yet, here I am, professing my undying devotion to it.

Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake | www.floatingkitchen.net

What’s special about this dessert is that it’s like having two desserts in one (which is never a bad thing, in my humble opinion). During the baking process something magical happens and two distinct layers are formed: a top layer that is light, airy and sweet (the cake part), and a bottom layer that is silky, smooth and tangy (the pudding part). The end result is a dessert in which every single bite provides you with the perfect mixture of textures and flavors.

I love the use of Meyer lemons here. Their flavor is really unique and beautiful and less “in-your-face” than regular lemons. I highly recommend seeking them out. But if you can’t find Meyer lemons, you can certainly use regular lemons in this recipe, but the results may be a little more pucker-inducing.

Cheers,

Liz

Recipe from Bijouxs

Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake

Serves 6-8

Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake

Ingredients

  • For the Pudding Cake
  • 4 eggs, whites and yolks separated
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed Meyer lemon juice (from about 3-4 lemons)
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • Finely grated zest from 2 Meyer lemons
  • For Serving
  • Powdered sugar
  • Fresh blueberries

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease a baking dish with a 6-cup capacity and set it aside (see my notes below about baking dishes).
  2. In the bowl of your mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium-low speed until they turn foamy. Then increase the speed to medium-high and beat until glossy peaks form, about 1-2 minutes. Gently transfer the egg whites from the bowl of your mixer into a second bowl and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of your mixer (no need to clean it out from above), combine the sugar, butter and flour. Add the egg yolks, lemon juice, milk and lemon zest. Mix until well combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. With a rubber spatula gently fold in the beaten egg whites, folding in about one-third at a time, until they are just incorporated.
  4. Pour the batter into your greased baking dish. Transfer to your pre-heated oven and bake until the cake is set and the top is golden brown. Depending on the size and depth of your dish, this could take anywhere from 30-40 minutes (see my notes below for suggestions on baking times). You can also take the temperature of the pudding layer to determine doneness, which should be 172-175 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow the pudding cake to cool slightly. Dust with powdered sugar and top with fresh blueberries before serving. This cake can be enjoyed slightly warm, room temperature (my personal preference) or cold.

Notes

1. I've made this recipe in a 9 X 9-inch square baking dish, which results in a relatively thin cake, and takes approximately 30 minutes to bake. The photo you see above uses an 8-inch round casserole dish, resulting in a thicker cake that takes approximately 40 minutes to bake.

2. If you use regular lemons, I recommend using the zest from just a single lemon.

http://www.floatingkitchen.net/meyer-lemon-pudding-cake/

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