Thursday, January 29, 2009

A Tale of Two Pastas

No tomatoes in that one.

It was cold. It was snowy. Going out for dinner or ingredients just didn't seem justifiable, so I consulted the fridge and larder. Lots of crème fraîche. Lots of onions. Lots of pasta. And of course, cured pork. Lots of spices too. But what to do? I set some water on the boil and got to work.

I was very hungry and not about to start looking for recipes, but I figured crème fraîche is like sour cream (I think--here's a link to a post discussing, in part, how I make it) and that was a start. Sour cream is used as a sauce in chicken paprikash (again, I think), which contains pasta or dumplings or something, in addition to chicken, of course. Maybe a paprikash-style sauce for pasta? That should at least be edible, even sans chicken and such.

So while the pasta water was heating up I sauteed some sliced onions (Snake Hill Farm) with some diced pancetta, pepper flakes (Urban Herbs), and a little salt. Once the onions were translucent and the pancetta rendered in went several generous scoops of homemade crème fraîche (Snowville Creamery). At this point the pasta (artisanal dried stuff from Gallucci's) was getting there, so I brought the sauce up to a boil. At first it looked pretty watery. That lasted about 3 seconds, then the sauce turned creamy, but still tight. In went salt, pepper, and paprika until things looked/tasted good. Then the sauce was kept at a low temp while the pasta finished up.

Once the pasta was just shy of al dente it was drained quickly, but not thoroughly, and added to the sauce. Everything cooked together for about a minute (I added a bit more pasta water to keep the sauce loose) and that was it. Pasta Paprikash. It's not world changing, but it tasted very good. No grated cheese necessary.
Pasta #2, first attempt at apple/mascarpone/breadcrumb ravioli. Cooked and briefly sauteed in butter. A work in progress but what the hell, it was a snow day and I finished shoveling.


Adam said...

I like the noodles paprikash, it goes well with my Hungarian roots. I'll have to try it sometime along side some meatballs or along with some meatloaf. Thanks and keep up the kick ass food blog. Buchanan from Philly.

The CFT said...

Long time Mr. Buchanan. If it's who I suspect this blog isn't as anonymous as I thought.

Them good noodles, and I like the old school balls or loaf accompaniment.

Hope you're enjoying the brotherly love and Wissahickon River. It's nice here, just not the same.

ball of dough said...

you do have a picture up after all

Adam said...

Don't worry Clark Kent, your secret is safe with me. Good to see you're keeping busy. I really like the blog and have gotten a few good ideas. Email me some time and I'll tell you how I figured out the mystery of CFT.

The CFT said...

I'll be in touch.

And thanks dough, for pointing that out.