Skip to main content

pasta

Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Twenty minute dinner: Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

I get a little itchy if I don’t get to cook.

The way musicians get when you keep them away from a stage, or an athlete when you take the ball away or how a runner will start to chew on the curtains if he can’t get out on the road. Even on the tail end of writing recipes for my second cookbook, like this one, I spend most days cooking in my kitchen surrounded by dirty dishes and half empty bottles of beer. And even though I should be writing recipes for my cookbook, I just wanted to make something that I wanted to make because I wanted to make it. It just happened to turn out photogenic, and so delicious that I wanted to share it with you. It’s an amalgamation of stuff in my fridge as well as half started recipes in my brain, and it also helped me use up one of those half empty bottles of beer I had laying around. And in the midst of cooking three other recipes, this one just took twenty minutes, which is good given the amount of cooking I need to do on a daily basis.

After six hours of cooking, and three rounds of dishes, I feel a little less itchy. But I do need a beer, a full one.

Twenty minute dinner: Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • ½ lbs raw Italian sausage (removed from casings)
  • 2 tbs pale ale, plus ½ cup pale ale, divided
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 lbs asparagus
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 wt oz fresh shredded parmesan cheese (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tsp honey
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups orzo
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ½ cup grape tomatoes (optional)

Directions

  1. In a small bowl stir together the sausage, 2 tbs pale ale, and 1 tsp red pepper flakes with your hands. Form into small balls, about half the size of golf balls.
  2. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium high heat. Add the meatballs, cook until browned on all sides and cooked through, remove from pan.
  3. Add the asparagus to the hot pan, cook until softened and starting to blister, about 5 minutes, remove from pan.
  4. Add the remaining ½ cup pale ale, scraping to deglaze the pan. Lower heat to medium, stir in the cream. Simmer until reduced and thickened, about 6 minutes. Stir in the parmesan, honey, and black pepper
  5. Cook the orzo in lightly salted boiling water for 6 minutes or until just before al dente. Drain and add the orzo to the sauce, stirring until cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the meatballs and asparagus back into the pan, simmer until meatballs are warmed through. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with parsley and tomatoes.
https://domesticfits.com/asparagus-sausage-meatball-orzo-parmesan-beer-cream-sauce/

Twenty minute dinner: Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Spaghetti Squash Alfredo: 125 Calories

Spaghetti Squash Alfredo 125 Calories

I eat a lot of food.

A lot of high calorie food and beer that can leave me feeling like I want to take a nap in some kale. I tend to pendulum swing between wanting really bad for me food and really good for me food but I want it all to taste good.

So I’ve developed a fixation with produce. And how to manipulate it into tasting like that other side of the coin that leads me down a path far away from my skinny jeans.

So here you have my version of a pasta dish, made up mostly of vegetables, and a hefty serving weighs in at only 125 calories.

In fact, if you ate the entire batch it would only be 500 calories.

And you would be very full.

Spaghetti Squash Alfredo 125 Calories2

Pumpkin Ale Muffins with Graham Cracker Streusel Topping

Ingredients

    For The Muffins
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • ¾ cup pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin ale
  • 2 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • For the Topping:
  • 5 standard sized graham cracker sheets
  • 2 tbs all purpose flour
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 3 tbs melted butter

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a large bowl sort together the flour, brown sugar, white sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger.
  3. In a small bowl stir together the pumpkin puree, pumpkin ale, eggs, vanilla extract, melted butter and canola oil.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
  5. Spray 12 muffin tins with cooking spray.
  6. Scoop the batter into the well of a muffin tin to about 2/3 full.
  7. In a food processor, add the graham crackers and process until reduced to just crumbs.
  8. Add the flour, brown sugar and salt, pulse to combine.
  9. Add the melted butter and process until well combines.
  10. Scoop about 1-2 tbs graham cracker mixture on top of the muffin batter.
  11. Bake at 350 for 18-22 minutes or until top spring back when lightly touched.

Notes

Optional add in's (stir in the batter just before pouring into the muffin tins): 2/3 cup raisins, 2/3 cup chocolate chips, 2/3 cup dried cranberries or cherries, 1/2 cup chopped pecans

https://domesticfits.com/spaghetti-squash-alfredo-125-calories/

Spaghetti Squash Alfredo 125 Calories3

Beer Brat Carbonara Pasta: An Oktoberfest Recipe

Beer Brat Carbonara Pasta: An Oktoberfest Recipe

Although it seems like most of America sees Oktoberfest as The Festival of Barely Contained Breasts And Bad Beer In October, it really isn’t meant to be any of those things.  Oktoberfest began more than 200 years ago as a wedding celebration, it’s morphed into a celebration of local food and drink.

In Germany, they take that local notion seriously. Only beer brewed within the Munich city limits is allowed to be served at the festivities, and last year nearly 7 million liters were served up. Which may explain why 37  kids were reported missing, as well as a live rabbit, during last years event (all children and furry creatures were found safe and sound).

Beer Brat Carbonara Pasta: An Oktoberfest Recipe

The authentic Oktoberfest festivities take place in Munich Germany, starting around mid-September and ending the first Sunday in October, making this year’s event well underway. To celebrate in my own house, far, far from the Bavarian epicenter of the German Beer Lovers Fest, I made a hearty pasta, full of beer brats and brown ale.

The bratwurst began as a peasants dish, using all the scraps left over once the more expensive cuts were taken, which makes it a perfect addition to carbonara pasta, which has its own humble beginnings on a peasants table in Europe.

To sum it up, my friends, celebrate in an authentic fashion: strap on some lederhosen, drink local beer, cook some sausages in beer, but just don’t forget where you put your kids or woodland creatures.

O’zapft is!

Beer Brat Carbonara Pasta: An Oktoberfest Recipe

Beer Brat Carbonara Pasta

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces gaunciale or 6 strips thick sliced bacon
  • 1 sweet white onion, sliced into rings
  • 1 tbs olive oil, plus 2 tbs, divided
  • 6 bratwurst (raw)
  • 12 ounces brown ale
  • 1 lb spaghetti
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh grated Pecornio or Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 4 large eggs

Directions

  1. In a large pot over medium high heat, cook the gaunciale (or bacon). Remove from pan, chop. Pour off about half the pork fat, leaving about 2 tbs still in the pan. Add 1 tbs olive oil and onions, cook over medium heat until the onions start to caramelize, about 8-10 minutes. Remove onions from pan, set aside.
  2. Increase heat to medium high, add the bratwurst, cooking until browned on both sides. Add the beer and reduce heat to medium low, simmering until the bratwurst are cooked through, 10-12 minutes. Slice into rings.
  3. While the bratwurst are cooking, cook the spaghetti in lightly salted boiling water until al dente, drain and return to pot.
  4. Add sliced brats, chopped gauncaile (or bacon), caramelized onions, tomatoes, cheese, salt, pepper and remaining 2 tbs olive oil to the spaghetti, toss to combine.
  5. One at a time poach the eggs in simmering water until the whites have set but the yolks are still runny.
  6. Divide the pasta between 4 bowls, top with poached eggs. Serve immediately.
https://domesticfits.com/beer-brat-carbonara-pasta-oktoberfest-recipe/

Greek Pasta Salad

 

 

Greek Pasta Salad4

 

I can’t sit here and tell you that I have no idea why I love to Greek-ify things. I’ve already told you about my midnight boat experience between Italy and Greece, and the indelible moment that created in my life. More than that, it was Igoumenitsa, a port in Greece, where I realized how important food was to me.

I was broke, I’d worked three jobs for two semesters of my senior year of college to save enough money to send myself on a poorly researched trip through Europe, and I was short on cash. But even with the dwindling funds I decided to spend a the last bit of cash I had on a small piece of Baklava because I figured it was the last time I would ever have the chance to eat such an iconic Greek dessert in Greece.

It’s these little stories you collect over your life that give me no regrets of being firmly inside my thirties. I’ve done well, I suppose, on collecting stories over the past decade. If there is nothing else you do with your life, collect stories you’re proud to dazzle a crowd with over a glass of wine. It makes growing up so worth it.

 

Greek Pasta Salad2

 

Chocolate Cranberry Spent Grain Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3 cups spent grain (aromatic Victory, Caramel, Caravienne or other light sweet malt preferred)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg (for vegan option, use 2/3 cup coconut oil in total)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (or dried cherries)
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour (plus additional, as needed)
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Directions

  1. preheat oven to 375.
  2. Add the spent grain to a food processor, process until about 1/3 as course as before.
  3. Add spent grain to a large bowl, stir in remaining ingredients. If the dough is too moist to stick together, add additional flour.
  4. Using your hands, make 2 inch wide by 1/2 inch high disks.
  5. Place on a cookie sheet that has been covered with parchment paper.
  6. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes. Immediately pull the parchment paper and the cookies off the hot cookie sheet onto a flat surface, allow to cool.
https://domesticfits.com/greek-pasta-salad/

 

Greek Pasta Salad5

Goat Cheese Raviolis with Blistered Sugar Plum Tomatoes and Hefeweizen Marinara & How to Make Homemade Raviolis

Beer Raviolis

Homemade raviolis are a food lovers endeavor. It’s time consuming, physically trying, and a bit tedious. There are plenty of places that can sell you beautiful hand made raviolis, but you do it because you want to be there. In the kitchen, shoulders aching from kneading, hands covered with yolk and flour, feeling a connection to the Sicilian grandmothers who stood barefoot on unfinished wooden floors teaching the art to their eager but bored grandchildren.

It’s as much about the journey as it is about the cheese filled destination. I love homemade pasta, there is something meditative about the repetition of the process. I’m always glad for the time I spent, pushing myself closer to mastering the craft of pasta making. And the end product is a handsome reward for the labor.

I used the KitchenAid pasta rollers. I love these, and even though they are more than most people want to spend on what will probably be an occasional use item, it’s a worth while investment. I don’t use these often, but when I do, I’m so glad I have them. The set comes with three rollers: a pasta dough roller (to make sheets), a  fettuccine cutter and a spaghetti cutter. Because they’re automatic (meaning you don’t have to use one hand to crank the roller) it makes feeding the pasta into the roller fantastically easy. The KitchenAid pasta roller and cutters are also very well made and should last a life time, long enough for you to pass down to your future eager but bored grandchildren.

How To Make Raviolis

On a flat surface add the flour. Make a well with walls that are about 1 inch thick, make sure the well is large enough to hold the eggs, milk and oil.

How to make Raviolis 1

Add the yolks, egg, milk and oil. Break the yolks.

How to make Raviolis 2

Using your fingers, or a fork, stir quickly. The motion will allow the liquid to pick up flour from the walls and will gradually become thicker. This will take about 10 minutes.

How to make Raviolis 3

As the liquid becomes thicker, close to a paste consistency, start to push the flour walls up over and into the liquid pool. Continue to stir until the flour and liquid is mostly incorporated.

How to make Raviolis 4

Pull the dough into a ball, it will be shaggy and seem a bit dry.

How to make Raviolis 5

Knead on a flat surface with the heel of your hand, this will take a ten to fifteen minutes. Knead until the dough is smooth and slightly elastic. If you aren’t sure if the dough is done, keep kneading. This isn’t a dough that can be over worked, but too little kneading is a problem.

How to make Raviolis 6

Put dough into a small bowl and cover tightly and allow to rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.
How to make Raviolis 7

Cut into 4 sections. Place any dough sections you are not working with back in the bowl and cover.

How to make Raviolis 8

One at a time, roll out the dough sections to about ¼ to ½ inch rectangle.

How to make Raviolis 10

Attach the KitchenAid Pasta Roller attachment to your stand mixer.

How to make Raviolis 9

Set the thickness to 1 (the thickest setting). Turn the KitchenAid stand mixer to a speed of 2.Feed the dough rectangle into the pasta roller narrowest side first.

How to make Raviolis 11

Pass through two or three times. Narrow the thickness to a 3. Pass the dough sheet through two or three times, this should get easier and easier with each pass.

How to make Raviolis 12

Narrow the thickness to a 5. Pass the dough sheet through two or three times, this should get easier and easier with each pass. You want the dough sheets to be so thin you can see through them.

How to make Raviolis 15

 

Lay the sheets on a flat surface. It’s best to do this one at a time, moving through the steps as not to let the dough dry out, but for the purposes of photography and natural light, I broke that rule.

How to make Raviolis 16

Place about 2-3 tsp of filling on the dough sheets about 1 ½ inches apart, in to rows.

How to make Raviolis 17

Brush the dough with water around the balls of filling. Top with second sheet of pasta.

How to make Raviolis 18

Press the pasta around the filling, sealing well.

How to make Raviolis 19

Use a sharp knife or a pastry wheel to cut into squares.

How to make Raviolis 20

Place on a plate, allow to sit for about 10 minutes.

How to make Raviolis 21

Cook in a pot of lightly salted boiling water until raviolis float and are cooked through.

Drain, plate and top with sauce.

Goat Cheese Raviolis with Blistered Sugar Plum Tomatoes and Hefeweizen Marinara

Yield: Yield: 30-34 Raviolis (about 4 servings)

Ingredients

  • 1 ¾ cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 3 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 ½ teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 3 ounces goat cheese
  • (2 tbs chop fresh herbs, if desired)
  • For The Marinara
  • 1 lb sugar plum tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • ½ white onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup beer
  • 5 large basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh oregano
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 2 tbs tomato paste

Directions

  1. On a flat surface add the flour. Make a well with walls that are about 1 inch thick, make sure the well is large enough to hold the eggs, milk and oil.
  2. Add the yolks, egg, milk and oil. Break the yolks.
  3. Using your fingers, stir quickly. The motion will allow the liquid to pick up flour from the walls and will gradually become thicker. This will take about 10 minutes.
  4. As the liquid becomes thicker, close to a paste consistency, start to push the flour walls up over and into the liquid pool. Continue to stir until the flour and liquid is mostly incorporated.
  5. Pull the dough into a ball, it will be shaggy and seem a bit dry.
  6. Knead on a flat surface with the heel of your hand, this will take a ten to fifteen minutes. Knead until the dough is smooth and slightly elastic. If you aren’t sure if the dough is done, keep kneading. This isn’t a dough that can be over worked, but too little kneading is a problem.
  7. Put dough into a small bowl and cover tightly and allow to rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  8. Cut into 4 sections. Place any dough sections you are not working with back in the bowl and cover.
  9. One at a time, roll out the dough sections to about ¼ to ½ inch rectangle.
  10. Attach the KitchenAid Pasta Roller attachment to your stand mixer.
  11. Set the thickness to 1 (the thickest setting).
  12. Turn the KitchenAid stand mixer to a speed of 2.
  13. Feed the dough rectangle into the pasta roller narrowest side first.
  14. Pass through two or three times.
  15. Narrow the thickness to a 3. Pass the dough sheet through two or three times, this should get easier and easier with each pass.
  16. Narrow the thickness to a 5. Pass the dough sheet through two or three times, this should get easier and easier with each pass. You want the dough sheets to be so thin you can see through them.
  17. Lay the sheets on a flat surface.
  18. Place about 2-3 tsp of goat cheese on the dough sheets about 1 ½ inches apart, in to rows.
  19. Brush the dough with water around the balls of goat cheese (sprinkle with fresh herbs, if desired). Top with second sheet of pasta.
  20. Press the pasta around the filling, sealing well. Use a sharp knife or a pastry wheel to cut into squares.
  21. Place on a plate, allow to sit for about 10 minutes.
  22. Cook in a pot of lightly salted boiling water until raviolis float and are cooked through.
  23. Drain, plate and top with sauce.
  24. Make the sauce:
  25. Heat the oil in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat, cook the onions until soft about five minutes.
  26. Add the tomatoes, cook until soft and the skin has blistered. Add the garlic, cook for about 30 seconds.
  27. Add the beer and cook until the beer has mostly evaporated, about ten minutes.
  28. Add the remaining basil, oregano, salt and pepper, stir, remove from heat.
  29. Add to a food processor along with the tomato paste, process until smooth.
https://domesticfits.com/goat-cheese-raviolis-with-blistered-sugar-plum-and-hefeweizen-raviolis-how-to-make-homemade-raviolis/

Beer Raviolis

Creamy Kale Pesto Pasta

 

Creamy Kale Pesto Pasta

Have I told you yet that I finished my book this week?

Well, mostly finished. There are still  a few more stages, a back and forth that is still yet to be had, but I sent the manuscript with 65 photos to my publisher. I’m still dealing with momentary panics, the nightmares of ingredients left out of instructions and egregious spellings errors (I do that, a lot), but I am happily back to cooking more "normal" food.

I also made this pasta again. I love the ritual of homemade pasta and even though I own Kitchen Aid pasta rollers, I still like the no-roller method.  I like getting my hands covered in raw dough, my shoulders aching with the repetition of dragging my bench knife across the counter, turning a dime size slice of dough into a little canoe shaped sauce vessel. I even like that it takes me all day, working in fifteen minute spurts, to get enough for dinner.

The pesto, in complete contrast, takes about 15 minutes. You can keep it just pesto, store it in the fridge, it keeps pretty well, or you can cook it up with some cream and smother your pasta with it. I’m not sure how long it lasts, because in my kitchen it didn’t even make it through the day.

There is a good chance I’ll make it again really soon. And this pasta, too.

Creamy Kale Pesto Pasta4

 

Smoky Chocolate Porter Ice Cream with Beer Candied Bacon

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 ½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (40% to 45% coca)
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1 cup smoked porter (or chocolate porter)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 2/3 cups sugar
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • Beer Candied Bacon (recipe below)

Directions

  1. In the top of a double boiler over gently simmering water, add the milk and chocolate. Stir until chocolate has melted, remove from heat, allow to cool for about 5 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, add the porter, sugar, cream, smoked paprika and egg yolk, whisk until well combined.
  3. While continuing to whisk, slowly pour the hot chocolate over the egg yolks.
  4. Add mixture to a saucepan, stir over medium high heat until mixture starts to thicken, about 5 minutes. If the mixture is lumpy, pour through a mesh strainer to remove lumps.
  5. Transfer to a storage container, cover and refrigerate until very cold, about 6 hours and up to 12.
  6. Churn in ice cream maker according to manufactures specifications. The mixture will probably only reach a soft serve consistency.
  7. Transfer to a freezer safe container; freeze until firm, about 2 hours.
  8. Sprinkle with crumbled candied bacon (recipe below).
https://domesticfits.com/creamy-kale-pesto-pasta/

Adapted from Food52

Creamy Kale Pesto Pasta2

Pasta Cavatelli: Homemade Pasta Without A Pasta Roller

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Machine

I love hearing other peoples Culinary Bucket Lists. It’s always a really interesting mix of classic recipes, mastering techniques, and difficult dishes. I love that, it shows range.

But seriously people, start crossing some of this stuff off. You can do it. Just jump right in, and do it.

This is a great recipe for everyone that has "Make Pasta From Scratch" on your list because you don’t need any fancy equiptment. Just some flour, water and a knife.

You’ve go this.

I’m going to be honest with you, this is a bit labor intensive. But you can finally draw that satisfying line though the item that’s been taunting you on your bucket list for years. You can finally say things like, "This one time, while I was making pasta from scratch…" and "Well, when I make my pasta…"

It’ll be fun.

Homemade Cavatelli Pasta

2 cups All Purpose flour

1 cup Semolina flour

½ tsp salt

1 cup warm water

 

1. Add both kinds of flour and salt to a flat surface, mix to combine.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller

2. Make a well in the middle and add the water.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller2

3. Stir the liquid and the flour together until combined. Then knead until smooth, about 5 minutes.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller3

4. Cut into 4 pieces, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller4

5. One at at time, take a piece of dough and form into a long log about 1/4 to 1/2 inch in diameter.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller5 How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller6

6. Cut off about 1/4 inch slice and place in front of you. It should be about the size of a dime.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller7

 

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller8

7. Place a bench knife (I use this one, I love it), or the dull side of a butter knife, on the far side of the dough circle, pull towards you smearing the dough against the counter. The dough should curl up over the knife.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller9

8. It should look like a little canoe.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller10

10. Place on a baking sheet that has been lightly dusted with flour until ready to use. Basically, if you mound them on top of each other, they’ll stick.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller11

11. Cook immediately in lightly salted water until al dente or allow to dry and store in an air tight container.

How To Make Pasta Without A Pasta Roller12

 

 

Look at you, you homemade pasta maker.

I’m so impressed with your mad skills.

 

 

Avocado Alfredo Pasta with Spicy Shrimp

Avocado Alfredo Pasta with Spicy Shrimp P

Apparently, I like to torture myself.

Sometimes it’s in small ways, like keeping my size zero jeans from my modeling days that I will never fit into again. Ever. Ever.

Sometimes it’s by spending hours looking at photos, like these, that are so good I know I will never be able to grace the world with images that perfect.

Lately, because I’m about knee-deep  in the cookbook I’m writing, the stress of my rapidly approaching deadline has somehow convinced me that I need to read Amazon cookbook reviews. The bad ones. Always the bad one.

And it terrifies me. Although, it should makes me feel better. If people can find ridiculous faults with gorgeous cookbooks, I have no chance of pleasing everyone, and that will put me in good company. The company of every other person who has ever written a book of any kind.

Although I did learn something: People Suck.

-One lady left a nasty 1-star  review on a cookbook she didn’t own and  had never even seen in real life because she hated the POSITIVE reviews. What the hell?

-Several people left angry 1-star reviews because the cookbook in question had too many "hard" recipes.

-One lady left an irate review about a cookbook called "Savory Pies" because it wasn’t a dessert cookbook. SAVORY!!

-One guy left a 1-star review of a cookbook because he didn’t think the color of the cover went well with his kitchen.

-One lady left a bad review because the author said, "too many common sense things" Apparently the absurd and irrational cookbook wasn’t available for Kindle.

 

So, I have no chance. I can’t please everyone, that just needs to be a fact that is accepted. Like how it rains in Los Angeles from time to time, or that you will have to replace the tires on your car at some point.

I wish I was OK with this idea that someone will inevitably pay money for my book and hate it, but it happens to keep me up at night.

I worry that someone will try to make the Stout Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Porter Ganache and confuse weight ounces with fluid ounces and blame me when her husbands birthday cake doesn’t work. (BTW, whomever decided that two completely separate units of measurement, that have nothing to do with each other, should have the same name, is an A-Hole.)

I even worry that someone who can’t drink alcohol will leave me a nasty review about my Cooking with Beer book about how he can’t make any of the recipe, due to the fact that they ALL contain beer.

Instead of looking away from the train wreck of the ignorant spewing hatred at other people’s hard work, I stress ate pasta.

It was great, and even my Avocado averse husband loved it.

Avocado Alfredo Pasta with Spicy Shrimp2

 

Stout Soaked Cherry Cheesecake with Pretzel Crust

Ingredients

  • 8oz sweetened dried cherries (about 1 ½ cups)
  • 2 cups stout
  • 3 cups mini pretzels twists, lightly crushed (about 1 ½ cups once processed)
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • 24 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp vanilla

Directions

  1. Place dried cherries in a bowl or tall glass. Pour stout over cherries until fully submerged. Allow to sit at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours. Drain, reserving ¼ cup of the soaking liquid.
  2. Preheat oven to 400.
  3. In a food processor, add the pretzels and brown sugar, process until only crumbs remain, about 3 to 5 minutes. Slowly add the melted butter while the processor is running. Pour into the bottom of a 9 X 13 inch baking pan. Use the flat bottom of a heavy glass, measuring cup or mug to press the crust really well into a flat even layer.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the cream cheese, beat on high until creamy, about 3 minutes. Add the sour cream and beat until well combined. Add the salt, flour and sugar, mix until well incorporated. Add the eggs and vanilla, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Add ¼ of the stout used to soak the cherries, mixing until just incorporated. Stir in the cherries.
  5. Pour cream cheese mixture over the crust, smooth out into an even layer.
  6. Place in the oven and reduce oven temp to 350. Bake at 350 for 28-32 minutes or until the cheesecake has puffed slightly and center no longer jiggles when you shake the rack it sits on. Don’t over bake, it will firm up once it chills. Remove from oven (allow to stand at room temp until slightly cooled, about 10 minutes) refrigerate until chilled and set, at least 4 hours and up to 24. Cut into squares for serving
https://domesticfits.com/avocado-alfredo-pasta-with-spicy-shrimp/

Avocado Alfredo Pasta with Spicy Shrimp5

Orzo Caprese In Tomato Cups

When I was a kid "Pasta Salad" was just a requisite side dish at family gatherings that was hastily bought at the grocery store and remained in it’s plastic tub beside other more appetizing offerings while slowly making it’s way to room temperature. I never really understood how macaroni noodles, eggs and mustard where always such an important part of every barbecue I went to. And while these little gatherings were being planned, there was always a mention of it, "Who is going to bring the pasta salad?"  Pasta salads have so much variety and take so little time, you don’t ever have to resort to grocery store tub again.

Instead of that I offer you this. Orzo pasta and a fairly traditional Caprese salad, mixed together and served in a hallowed out tomato (feel free to bypass the individual serving size vegetable dish for larger gatherings.)

Pin This Post!

Orzo Caprese Salad in Tomato Cups

1 cup dry Orzo pasta

2 cups (10 oz) grape tomatoes, halved

2 cups small mozzareall balls (ciliegine sized) cut in half or quarters

5 basil leaves, chopped

3 tbs pesto sauce

1 tsp balsamic

Salt & Pepper

4 beefsteak tomatoes

Cook Orzo according to package directions until al dente, put in a bowl with the grape tomatoes, mozzarella balls, basil leaves, pesto and balsamic. Toss to combine, salt and pepper to taste.

To serve in tomato cups, cut the beefsteak tomatoes in half widthwise and use a melon baller to scoop out the insides.

Fill with Orzo Caprese Salad and serve.

Follow me on twitter

Follow me on Pinterest

Like Domestic Fits on Facebook


Weeknight Crab Alfredo

I’m changing the focus of Valentines day.

Forcing someone to say "I Love You" is about as meaningful as buying your own Grammy on eBay and pretending you actually won. The entitlement and expectation take all of the romance out of it. In just the same way that the show The Biggest Loser has had more successful marriages than The Bachelor series has, some things just cant be forced.

My husband and I did away with giving into the societal expectation years ago, much preferring to go out to dinner on nights that don’t include 2 hour waits and $65 pre fixe menus. He’s romantic in the little ways, negating my need for Valentines day pageantry. He will "borrow"my car in order to take it to get washed and the oil changed. He’ll get up with Tater on a Saturday and let me sleep in. When I’ve had a hard day he’ll do the dishes, giving me time to play blocks with Tater instead of spend what little time I have after work in the kitchen.

Now that I have a daughter, the focus of Valentines day is more fun and childish, more of the cartoon that it has become, and I like it that way. I buy Tater a bag of Valentines Day toys, and write her a card about how much I love her. I look forward to helping with her elementary school Valentines Days, the decorated shoe box receptacles, the paper cards, the drama of who wrote "XOXO" and who just signed their names.  The sorting out of conversation hearts according to what is ok to give the boys and what is not. Because, everyone who has been a 3rd grader knows that slipping candy with messages on them into paper envelops is a big deal.  And when you are required to give one to everyone in the class, even the boys you can’t stand and the boys you just pretend like you can’t stand, everyone know that you NEVER give a "Kiss Me" heart to a boy! Seriously, tragedy would in sue. Because you will also be reading every single heart that is the envelopes you got from the boys with the secret hopes that the boy who sits behind you didn’t just give you the "Nice Day" heart but intentionally slipped the "Be Mine" candy into the envelope with your name on it. In 3rd grade, risking possible social, school yard torture via teasing to let the little girl who sits in front of you know you like her is so romantic. 

When you grow up, and have kids and a house and a job, romance is different. It’s the consideration that tends to wain as we grow comfortable with each other. Romance is that person who has woken up next to you for years actually seeing you. As special and important and desireable. It’s someone feeling lucky to be the one who wakes up in your bed, and eat the food you make and parent along side you.

Romance isn’t feeling required to bring home red flowers on the second week February, it’s running to the store late at night for flour because we’re out your wife is behind on blog posts.

Even though Valentines day is in the middle of the week this year, and like me, you may have about 20 minutes between the time you get home from work and the time your family is expecting to be fed, this dish takes about that much time. But it feels special. Crab Alfredo in 15 minutes.


Crab Alfredo

3 tbs butter

3 large cloves of garlic, minced

1 tbs, plus 2 tsp  flour

1/2 cup whole milk

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup parmesan cheese

1/2 tsp lemon juice

Pinch Cayenne pepper

6 oz crab meat, drained well

salt and pepper to taste

Pasta for serving

(makes two large or four small servings)

Cook pasta according to package directions.

In a skillet over medium/high heat, melt the butter. Add the garlic and stir, allowing to cook for about 30 seconds. Add the flour and whisk until well combined with the butter, don’t allow to brown. Add the milk and cream and stir to combine.  Add the lemon juice, cayenne and cheese, cooking until the cheese has melted. Add the crab meat, stir until the crab is warmed up and remove from heat. Salt and pepper to taste. If sauce is too thick, add milk about 1 tbs at a time to thin.

Serve over pasta.