Friday, July 17, 2009
Presto Pasta #122 Round-Up!
Before I get to the main event, I have a request. As many of you know, I am running the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco in October with Team In Training, an organization that raises money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. As such I have to raise $3900 by that date. To even be allowed to stay on the team, however, I have to make it to recommitment which means that I have to raise $975 by the middle of August. I have finally set up my donation page and would be so honored if some of my readers would aid me in my efforts to run the race as well as to contribute to the fight against blood cancers. As someone who wants to do cancer research for a living, I can tell you how important the funding from societies like the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society is for discovering new cancer therapies. Some important things you should know about the society are that it is one of the longest-standing charities devoted to cancer research and has been around since 1949; 75 cents of every dollar raised will go to research and or patient care/counseling until I reach my goal of $3900 at which point every dollar raised beyond that will go to these causes; and your donation is tax deductible. So please please please donate. Every little bit helps, and even a donation as small as $20 will go a long way in helping me meet my goal.
Okay now for what you've all beein waiting for!
Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a macaroni fiend. If I go a week without pasta, I begin to have withdrawal symptoms. I start shaking uncontrollably and foaming at the mouth. Everyone I encounter starts to look like a noodle - really tall guys on the street appear to me as linguine while the short and squat individuals out there become calamarata. My head becomes filled with images of what my friends would taste like covered in marinara sauce. It's a dangerous situation and homeland security should probably take major precautions to make sure it never happens.
I think what I love most about pasta is how versatile it is. There are a countless number of toppings, flavors, and sauces that you can put in it and it really seems like no matter what you do with it, it still tastes good. The dishes in today's round-up are truly a testament to that, so let's jump right in and see what you guys cooked up this week!
First up, we have Daphne of More Than Words who is sharing a Red Curry Seafood Pasta that she whipped up for dinner a while back. Here she mixes her seafood marinara sauce with some red curry paste to make a dish that can only be described as a lovely fusion between Italian and Thai cuisines!
The lovely Kristin of Sogkonnite Living brings us this Rotelle with Roasted Zucchini and Italian Sausage. She is currently doing a grocery challenge this much in an attempt to use up the items in her pantry before she buys any new goods (a very admirable goal in my book). This dish cost her next to nothing due to the generosity of her neighbors and parents! And it was tasty to boot.
Happy belated birthday to The Food Hunter! In addition to a fabulous chocolate cake, she celebrated with this dish of lamb chops, ragu, and gnocchi. Her husband even made the gnocchi himself! I need to find me a man like that.
The Sweet Kitchen joins us with a variation on pesto genovese (the green stuff that we all know and love) called pesto trapanese. This pesto contains almonds instead of pine nuts, giving it a grittier texture, which is then balanced by the creamy addition of tomatoes. The Sweet Kitchen warns, however, that its intoxicating scent will have you dreaming of summer no matter when you make it.
Natashya of Living In the Kitchen with Puppies is a first-time PPN-er and I'm certainly glad she chose this week to join in the fun, mainly because I can already foresee that her Baked Pasta with Roasted Vegetables is going to be a favorite in my kitchen. Graziana of Erbe In Cucina always knows the right herbs and spices to use to make my mouth water. This week she includes wild fennel seeds in her dish to make this Sardines Bucatini Pasta - a traditional Sicilian recipe.
Gay of A Scientist in the Kitchen returns after a blogging hiatus with a delicious noodle and vegetable stir-fry. Thank goodness she did because this everything-but-the-kitchen-sink type meal is just what my pantry is begging for!
The lovely Reeni of Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice jazzed up one of her mom's tried-and-true recipes with this Chickpea and Orzo Salad. With the good fats from the almonds and the lean protein from the tuna, this dish looks both healthy AND delicious!
Bergamot of Cooking Escapades took advantage of her husband's weekend trip to try out some new and adventurous dishes. The end result was this Campanelle in A Creamy Beetroot Sauce. I must admit, I've never seen pasta that appealed to me visually as much as that gorgeous pink hue does.
Deb of Kahakai Kitchen, one of my favorite bloggers around, joins us with a largely local dish of Peppered Ahi Tuba on Soba Noodles with Creamy Avocado Sauce. Oh to live in Hawaii (aka paradise) where tropical fruits like avocado appear in your CSA box...
Heather of girlichef is a PPN first-timer but you wouldn't know it from the mouth-watering lasagna roll-ups she has created. Heather loves lasagna for all of its variety and versatility and these roll-ups allow it to be the perfect weeknight meal.
Marye of Baking Delights includes Farfalle with Basil and Romano in a fresh summery dinner that she serves to her husband and eight children! This just goes to show you that sometimes the best dishes are those with simple and vibrant flavors.
Kevin of Closet Cooking, one of the most prolific and adventurous foodies out there, puts together this dish of Italian Sausage, Zucchini and Garlic Scape Pasta using items that he picked up at the Farmer's Market. It's dishes like these that make me remember why summer veggies are so great.
Kitchenetta of Got No Milk, never one to turn down the challenge of turning a creamy classic into a dairy-free dish, shares her version of Pasta with Vodka Sauce. This is one of my favorites as well, and I will certainly be trying her homemade version soon.
Sara of Imafoodblog had a hankering for Fresh Linguine with White Clam Sauce this week and so she turned to her adaptation of a (gasp!) Rachael Ray recipe. Although I am a self-professed Rachael fan, I know that not everyone shares my opinion, and so I put even more stock in this recipe knowing that Sara falls into the latter category. Plus she used homemade pasta, which earns her quite a few "awesome" points in my book.
Ruth, the ingenious creator of Presto Pasta Nights over at Once Upon A Feast FINALLY gets to eat pasta again now that she has entered Phase II of the South Beach Diet. She celebrated by making this Multigrain Mediterranean Linguine with Shrimps.
And finally, before I forget, there is my dish of Fusilli with Eggplant, Pine Nuts, Capers and Raisins. I made this as part of my seemingly endless attempt to cook through the hefty tome that is Bon Appetit Fast/Easy/Fresh. I loved the variety of textures and flavors in this and I must say that it tasted better the next day after the sweetness of the raisins had a chance to infuse into everything else.
And with this, I conclude my first attempt at hosting a blog event! It was a ton of fun and is something that i will definitely do again. Thank you all for your submissions and for reading through all of these fabulous dishes. Be sure to participate next week when the lovely Pam of Sidewalk Shoes will be hosting. Email your entries to firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to cc Ruth along the way.
Have a great weekend everyone and try to donate to my cause if you can!