MTChallenge May: Giant Penne with Cherry Tomatoes, Licorice and Orange Toast Crumbles / MTChallenge Maggio: Penne giganti al sugo di pomodorini, liquirizia e pane tostato all’arancia

Pasta pomodoro mtc 1

Another month, another challenge. This month’s MTChallenge Paola Sabino from the blog Fairies’ Kitchen challenged us with a “simple” tomato sauce pasta. Nothing more difficult than an “easy” dish. The challenge lies in being able to enhance the dish in all its components, first of all of course the tomato that should not be overwhelmed by other flavours and blend well with the pasta with its creamy texture. Another considerable detail is the degree of doneness of the pasta (it is known that overcooked pasta in addition to being sticky and unpleasant to taste is difficult to digest) for which Paola specifically requested a photograph that proves the perfect “al dente” cooking. Paola also called for a brief cooking of the sauce, even though not of its individual ingredients, and forbid us the use of onion. She tied our hands a little, something I particularly like when confronted with a challenge. More limitations and more the challenge gets interesting! For my dish I chose to stick to simplicity, but with the eccentric touch which distinguishes my cooking. To enhance the natural sweetness of tomatoes I used licorice powder and orange as pairings and added a bit of crunchiness with toasted bread. The result is very fresh, with notes of orange paving the way first to the tomato, blending with the licorice at the end of the bite. To make my life easier for the photograph of the doneness of the pasta I chose giant penne, although I personally recommend to pair this sauce with linguine.

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Of favourite dishes and comfort food: Pasta ccu li brocculi / Piatto del cuore e comfort food: Pasta ccu li brocculi

Pasta avec choux-fleur copia

Forgotten in a dusty folder in the darkest recesses of my “limbo” folder, yet another recipe part of the project that never came to light of which I wrote about in my previous post. A saviouor to me, being this one a tough moment where I am finding it very hard to have control on both blogs, switching from macro to bread and non-macro recipes, feeling a bit drained and uninspired. This dish became a staple at my parents place in the past few years, and my father cooks it divinely. I worked on the basic recipe from the book Le migliori ricette della cucina regionale Italiana which I used as an inspiration for my sweet rice cakes, too. Sicilian traditional food never disappoints. A light salty note is given by sardines, counterbalanced by a slightly sweet touch confered by raisins and fennel seeds. The texture of blanched cauliflower and pine nuts add an irresistible crunchy touch to a dish which I never get bored with. Savour it bite after bite, chew religiously. The aromas and textures will blend, caressing your taste buds and you will inevitably fall in love. Simple ingredients, minimum time of preparation, the ultimare comfort food…you couldn’t ask for more! Continue reading / Continua a leggere…