2/9/2012 Featured Recipe 09 Feb 12

FETTUCINI PRIMAVERA (Fettucini with spring vegetables and cream)
- from The Classic Pasta Cookbook by Giulian Hazan

  • 1 lb. fettucini or tagliatelle
  • 4 oz. asparagus
  • 4 T butter
  • ¼ c finely chopped yellow onion
  • ¼ c finely chopped celery
  • ½ c finely diced carrots
  • ¼ c finely diced zucchini
  • ½ cup finely diced red bell pepper
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 c heavy cream
  • ¼ c freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
  • 2 T finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Trim and peel the lower green portions of the asparagus. Cook whole in salted boiling water in a skillet until tender, then cut into ¾ inch lengths. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion and sauté to a rich golden color. Add the celery and carrot and sauté for another 5 minutes.

Add the zucchini and red bell pepper to the heat until all the vegetables are tender and lightly colored, about 10-20 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Add the asparagus to the skillet and sauté for about a minute. Add the cream and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cream has reduced by half, then remove from the heat and set aside.

While the cream is cooking, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large saucepan or pot. Add 1 tablespoon of salt and the pasta to the boiling water in the saucepan, stirring.

When the pasta is cooked al dente, return the skillet with the sauce to medium heat, drain the pasta and toss it with the sauce, adding the grated cheese and parsley. Serve at once.

 

CREAMY POLENTA
- from The Good Housekeeping Cookbook

  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1-1/2 c. yellow cornmeal
  • 4-1/2 cups boiling water (2 bottles)
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 T butter or margarine, cut into pieces (1/4 cup)

In a 5-quart Dutch oven, combine cold water and salt. With a wire whisk, gradually beat in cornmeal until smooth. Whisk in boiling water. Heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring frequently with wooden spoon, until the mixture is very thick, 20-25 minutes.

Stir Parmesan and butter into polenta until butter has melted. Serve immediately. This makes 7 accompaniment servings.

CREAMY POLENTA WITH SAUSAGE AND MUSHROOMS
- from The Good Housekeeping Cookbook

  • Polenta (above)
  • 1 lb. sweet Italian-sausage links, casings removed
  • 1 lb. mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 can (28 oz.) plum tomatoes in puree
  • 2 T chopped fresh parsley

Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add sausage; cook, stirring frequently to break up sausage, until browned, about 10 minutes. With slotted spoon, transfer sausage to bowl. Discard all but 1 tablespoon drippings from skillet. Add mushrooms, onion, garlic, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are golden and mushroom liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes.

Stir in tomatoes with their puree; heat to boiling over high heat, breaking up tomatoes with side of spoon. Return sausage to skillet. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare Creamy Polenta as directed. Serve the polenta topped with sausage mixture and sprinkled with parsley. This makes 4

main-dish servings.