Monday, April 30, 2012

Chef Chuck's Ricotta Pistachio Pasta


Pasta con Ricotta e Pistacchi

This pasta dish is a favorite from Sicily since the finest pistachio's come from the beautiful island of Sicily.  The nuts give this dish a salty and crunchy texture while the ricotta, parmigiano and cream bring this pasta dish all together.  I enjoy the simplicity of this recipe.

Ricotta Pistachio Pasta

1/2 pound pasta
1 cup whole milk ricotta
1/2 cup pistachio's, shelled
1/2 cup parmigiano cheese, grated
1/4 cup cream
4 tablespoons olive oil
6 sage leaves
salt and pepper

Cook pasta in boiling salted water till al dente.  Meanwhile in a large frying pan heat olive oil, with the back of a knife bruise the sage leaves.  Add these to the olive oil and cook for a minute, then discard.
Toss in pistachio's cook a minute or two, stirring occasionally.  Add ricotta, parmigiano, cream, salt and pepper stir to combine.  Add cooked pasta and mix together.  Serves 2
Ricette by Chef Chuck's Cucina

Monday, April 16, 2012

Chef Chuck's Blueberry Almond Torta


Torta di Mirtilli con Mandorla

A torta made with a flaky buttery crust, blueberry jam, fresh blueberries, and a sweet filling.  The sliced almonds on top gave a nice crunch to this dessert. 

Blueberry Almond Torta

Dough
1 teaspoon yeast
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon sugar
pinch of salt
1 1/4 cups flour
Filling
1/4 cup almonds, finely chopped
1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup flour
1/8 cup sugar
1 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup blueberry jam

Prepare dough by heating milk to 105 degrees add yeast and sugar, stir and let sit for 10 minutes.  In a mixer with a dough hook, or by hand combine yeast mixture along with sifted flour, salt, and butter.  Knead dough a few minutes form a ball and wrap in plastic wrap, let rest for 1 hour.
Prepare filling by mixing the finely chopped almonds with 1/4 cup sugar.  In a small bowl using a fork mix 1 egg white with 1/8 cup sugar, set aside.  In a mixer combine almonds and sugar, vanilla, the egg mixture then add honey and 1/8 cup sugar, gently fold in blueberries.  
Roll out dough to fit a buttered 9 inch pie pan, layer dough with blueberry jam then add filling top with 2 tablespoons of sliced almonds and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
Ricette by Chef Chuck's Cucina

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Chef Chuck's Egg Pie with Spinach


Torta di Mozzarella e Spinaci con Uovo

An egg pie that can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  I made a simple crust together with fresh spinach, mozzarella, parmigiano and fresh eggs.  Eggs and cheese is always a great combination.

Egg Pie with Spinach

Crust
1 1/4 cups flour
pinch of salt
7 tablespoons cold butter
3-4 tablespoons cold water
Filling
10 eggs
1 cup cream
1 bunch fresh spinach
1 cup mozzarella cheese,  cubed
1/2 cup parmigiano cheese, grated
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients to form crust, roll out place in a pie pan, refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Wash and remove stems from spinach boil for a few minutes, chop and squeeze out excess water. Scramble eggs add cream, cheeses, garlic powder, salt and pepper.  Add in spinach fill pie shell and place on a baking pan.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees for 30 minutes, let sit for 15 minutes before cutting.
Ricette by Chef Chuck's Cucina

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Chef Chuck's Pasta e Fagioli


Pasta e Fagioli

Pasta e Fagioli, is a pasta and bean soup that is very popular in Italy.  It's a hearty soup full of vegetables, beans and pasta.  A simple soup to make for the whole family to enjoy.


Pasta Fagioli

1 can cannellini beans
3 tablespoons olive oil
5 strips thick bacon
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 sprig rosemary, chopped
salt and pepper
4 cups water
1/2 pound pasta
shavings of parmigiana 
red hot pepper flakes

In a large pan cook bacon, remove and set aside.  Cook tomato paste till it browns then saute onions, carrots and celery for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to lift the paste from the pan.  Add olive oil and cook garlic and rosemary for about 1 minute add in bacon.  Pour in 4 cups water, salt and pepper and beans simmer for 30 minutes.  Cook pasta till al dente, in a separate pot then add to soup.  With a hand blender I blended half the soup to make it thicker.  Add cheese and pepper flakes.
Ricette by Chef Chuck's Cucina