We eat a lot of pasta. It's a great base for veggies, meats, and sauces. It's also perfect for a week night meal. I'm always on the hunt for new pasta recipes. Here are two recent favorites.
Turkey Meatballs & Basic Tomato Sauce
I love making homemade tomato sauce (I talked about it a lot when I made Pasta al Pomodoro). This particular one has a rustic feel to it. Since the tomatoes are crushed by hand they retain so much flavor and come through the sauce in big chunks. It's also nice because you don't need any fancy kitchen gadgets to make it. Of course Mario Batali sells jars of sauce at the grocery store, by why not make this recipe yourself?
For the meatballs, I pretty much make it up as I go along. On this night, here's what went into the bowl: 1 lb ground turkey meat, 1 egg, 1/4 cup bread crumbs, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. After forming them into small meatballs (about the size of a golfball), heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a pan and brown them on each side (about 2-3 minutes a side). Then transfer to a 350 degree oven and bake for 15-20 minutes.
Shrimp and Skinnier Alfredo Sauce
Okay so it's not completely skinny (I don't think Alfredo can ever be skinny...) but this is about as close as it gets. The best part is that non of the flavor is compromised. The sauce was creamy and the perfect coating to the pappardelle and shrimp. I'll be returning to this one again this winter.
Here's what you'll need...
1 package of refrigerated pasta (fettuccine or pappardelle)
10 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup half and half
3 tablespoons 1/3 less-fat cream cheese
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh parsley
2 tablespoons reserved pasta water
Here's what to do...
Cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Heat olive oil in skillet over medium high heat and add shrimp, shallot and garlic. Cook shrimp for 2-3 minutes and then turn. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until shrimp are pink and cooked through. Remove shrimp from skillet and add half and half, cream cheese, Parmesan and pepper. Whisk together for several minutes until the mixture is combined and heated through. The cream cheese and Parmesan should melt entirely into the half and half. Pour over cooked pasta and add 1-2 tablespoons of reserved pasta water to loosen sauce if necessary. Garnish each plate with 1 tablespoon of Parmesan and 1 tablespoon of parsley.