Sunday, September 14, 2014

Summer Clam Pasta

Summer Clam Pasta 

It is tomato season. Oh how I love tomato season. I have some beautiful assorted tomatoes from my garden and the CSA. I halved the tomatoes and used them. If you want to use full size tomatoes, I suggest skinning them and dicing them. Also I have some beautiful herbs. I decided to use a combination of herbs in this recipe and it was wonderful. You can use whatever you have on hand or think would be a good mixture.  I only had one can of clams (this recipe really needs two). I really liked the addition of the lemon juice but you don't have to add it.  I used a combination of hard white cheeses from our CSA (a combination of goat and cow milk cheeses) so don't feel that you are limited to only using Parmesan cheese. I have a winter version of this pasta that uses canned tomatoes. It is good but lacks that fresh summer tomato and herb taste.

Summer Clam Pasta

2 Tbsp Oil
1 Tbsp Butter
3 Garlic Cloves, Thinly Sliced
1 Medium Onion, Diced
1/2 to 1 lb ( kg) of Cherry Tomatoes, Halved
Juice of One Lemon
Dash of Red Pepper Flakes (Optional)
2 6.5 oz (184 g) Cans of Clams, Divided
A Sprig or Two of Fresh Basil
A Couple of Shoots of Fresh Chives, Chopped
A Sprig of Fresh Rosemary, Chopped
A Couple of Sprigs of Fresh Parsley, Chopped
A Sprig of Fresh Oregano, Chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 to 1/2 Cup of Cheese, Grated
16 oz (454 g) Pasta, Cooked

Place oil and butter in a skillet over medium low heat. Add garlic, onions, salt, and pepper and sauté until caramelized.

Add the cherry tomatoes, the juice from two cans of clams and lemon juice. Raise the heat to medium and add the pepper flakes. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

Simmer about 5 minutes. Add the clams and fresh herbs and heat for 5 minutes. Add pasta and combine. Grate cheese on the top.

The bottom line: will I make this again? Yes, I love this pasta. I really liked the bite from the lemon.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Sweet Summer Tomato Sauce

The finished dish- Spaghetti and Meatballs
This has been a great year for tomatoes and cucumbers. I am swimming in them.  It makes me so happy.  I have already made my roasted tomato sauce and so I decided to convert my sweet tomato sauce into fresh tomato sauce. I worked out the recipe and my daughter made it.  It was lovely. She made spaghetti and meatballs (she used my favorite meatball recipe).  She did a great job. It is absolutely amazing to watch your child on the road to adulthood. Cooking and baking is one of those big milestones. I don't really want her leaving our house without knowing how to cook for herself. 

Sweet Summer Tomato Sauce

2 Tbsp of Olive Oil
1 Small Onion, Finely Chopped
3 Cloves of Garlic, Minced
2 lbs (.9 kg) of Fresh Tomatoes 
1 1/2 Tsp of Fresh Basil 
1 1/2 Tsp of Fresh Oregano 
1 1/2 Tsp of Fresh Parsley 
1 Tsp of Fresh Thyme  
1/4 Tsp of Crushed Red Peppers (Optional) 
1/4 Tsp of Salt
A Couple Turns of the Pepper Mill 
1-2 Tbsp of Brown Sugar

Peel the tomatoes-- seed them and strain the seeds. Roughly chop tomatoes and set aside tomatoes and juice.
Straining the seeds
Pour oil into large sauce pan and add the onion. Heat on medium until translucent (about 5 minutes). Add garlic. Heat over medium heat for a couple of minutes until starting to brown (you do not want the garlic to brown).

I prefer sliced garlic
Add the remaining ingredients and heat uncovered over low heat for about 45 minutes. The sauce should not come to a full boil.

Simmering the sauce
Serve over pasta (with lots of grated Parmesan cheese) or use as a pizza sauce or add meatballs to the sauce and have a wonderful meal. 

Add meatballs to the sauce.
The bottom line: will I make this again? Yes. I am making as much as I can and freezing it for the winter.