Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Pasta Wars


I really, really wanted a pasta dish this week. At first, I was afraid to suggest it because I know SP is not a fan of pasta meals. Don't get me wrong - he really likes pasta but as a type 1 diabetic since the age of 3, he prefers to avoid lots of pasta meals, and if he does eat a pasta meal, he prefers multi-grain pasta to regular pasta, plus a big salad on the side (we had some arugula & tomato on the side with this pasta meal). I think multi-grain pasta is an abomination and refuse to eat it. If I am going to eat pasta, it's going to be the real deal.
I suppose this is better than when he was mis-diagnosed with celiac disease and I wanted pasta. We had to make two entirely different meals or two versions of the same dish, one with a gluten free pasta and a gluten free sauce. I am not sure which I am less a fan of, gluten free versions of foods I dearly love or multi-grain versions of foods I dearly love. And by foods I dearly love I mean pasta, pizza, baguette - white, carby foods!
It gets even uglier if I want beef in my pasta dish. My mom makes a red sauce with ground beef. I love that sauce, but we never make it. SP has changed a bit, he's gone from no beef at all to, OK, I'll eat happy beef, but... This sauce has prosciutto.
If I want a creamy sauce on top of all that, or a pasta with oodles of cheese... well then he sighs and rolls his eyes and looks like he wants to kill me. White carbs! Beef! Cream! Tons of cheese! I'm getting all excited right now thinking about it while he is probably going to read this and wince in pain at my preferred meal.
So. A compromise of sorts. Because I really wanted pasta and I found a recipe for Pasta with Creamy Tomato Sauce in The Science of Good Cooking. "I know it's pasta and it has some cream but look it has prosciutto not beef and it has sun dried tomatoes and some red pepper flakes and I'll let you put the pepper flakes in and I'll let you dirty up two pots and two colanders so you can make that yucky pasta while I eat the good stuff and I'll wash all the dishes."
And that's how I got pasta. It helped that we didn't get to have a Valentine Day dinner because of him being on call - we couldn't go out and we didn't have the time on a week night to cook a special meal. I think he felt bad. It also helped that this recipe makes enough for 2 meals for each of us (4 servings total) so we are only eating pasta 2 nights out of 6 nights.

This pasta dish is delicious. This is better than the tomato-eggplant-red pepper pesto that I adore. This is - gasp! - better than my mom's red sauce. Salty from the prosciutto and tomato filled and creamy and just so good that we both couldn't stop 'mmmmmmming' during dinner. Plus it's easy and doesn't involve a long simmer time and there was enough leftover for another meal during the week.

The best part about cooking at home with your dearest hubby - he's right there with you, literally licking the sauce out of the bowl because this sauce is that good.


*I don't usually like typing in a recipe from a cookbook, but I searched online and others have shared this recipe. So instead of me re-typing it all, I'll post some links, but I do recommend the Cooks Illustrated cookbooks (and magazine) - we have tried many recipes and never been disappointed. This recipe is in The Science of Good Cooking and apparently also in an issue of Cook's Illustrated from May/June 2008

From The Bitten Word here
From Sweet Life here
From Honey Dearest here
From Big Oven here

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