Fregula with Clams and Tomatoes

Love this! This is my 2nd time making. I use Rustichella d`Abruzzo brand of fregula. MY changes are to steam the clams in a mix of wine and water, 8 cloves garlic + 1 whole onion, add a zucchini and cook the tomatoes and zucchini with the onion/garlic, 2 cups fregula, 36 clams, 2 bottles clam juice (if needed, I did the 1st time, did not the 2nd,). Also added some basil since I have it growing.  Try it!

Back Road Journal

Spaghetti or linguini with clams is a very popular dish in most Italian restaurants, wherever in the world you may be dining.  The Italian island of Sardinia has its own version of pasta and clams known as Fregula (Fregola) Sarda con vongole. The dish can be found on the menu, whether you are in the tiniest seaside osteria or a fine resort restaurant.

Fregula Sarda is a pasta made from semolina rolled into rough, porous balls that are dried and then toasted until golden. They resemble couscous but are larger and heartier with a nutty taste. Once cooked they will have doubled in size with a chewy texture. The pasta can be found in Italian markets, specialty stores or online.

Fregula With Clams

  • 2 dozen small clams, purged and cleaned
  • 1 cup of water, plus extra as needed
  • 3 T. olive oil plus extra to drizzle
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped…

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Fusilli with Broccoli Rabe, Roasted Tomatoes and Basil-Mint Pesto

I could not decide which foods to make from my pre-prep and then this won out. It is a riff on this, but I wanted more veg and color, so added the broccoli rabe and tomatoes, both which I roasted because I seem to be obsessed with roasting stuff.

I made the pesto yesterday, but this is just as speedy to make it all at once while the veg are roasting.

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Spinach and Sundried Tomato Spaghetti Cake with Kale Caesar Salad

Since it is New Year I am starting with something I found at the beginning of 2011 when I started my ban on take out. Of course it is a Jamie Oliver recipe because he was my starting point for finding new recipes. Prior I was only cooking from my head and looked at cooking blogs as inspiration, but to follow a recipe – I thought that it meant that I couldn`t cook. Yeah, it is stupid. To pair, I am doing a bit fancier than my standard simple salad and making this kale caesar that my friend David made for xmas eve dinner that I thought was pretty great. Luckily he texted me the recipe – a term I am using loosely here – about a half hour before I was about to start.

We also have a 1993 reserve Veuve Cliquot to drink that we have been holding and it is time. I was too sick to drink it on xmas, and last night we stuck with reserve cava as we were going out drinking at the bar with a friend so it seemed wrong to open at 8:30 and slug prior to going out. Our pre-night out meal was cheese plate, spanish almonds and the cava which we shared with my friend Delphine who we spent the holiday festivities with us.

I admit to making an almost total error in making this tonight, but luckily quickly caught it and was able to correct. Also, I modified it to lighten the calorie load by using skim milk. I also swapped 2 egg whites for 1 whole egg, but that was only because I had used 2 yolks in the dressing and didn`t want to trash them.

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Creamy and Healthy Asparagus-Zucchini Pasta

I haven’t made this in a while and to be honest, I should have gone to the gym today but decided to be all futzy cooking instead.

This was one of the first Jamie Oliver recipes I tried and it is great because it has a ton of flavor but has very little fat. You can make the sauce ahead like on a weekend and put this together in a snap after work. I also should just rename this blog Cooking Jamie Oliver`s Stuff, or JO Fangirl.  It was not on my on deck, but I had the asparagus and zucchini on hand and here it is.

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Healthy Tuna Casserole – No Cans

I happened upon this last winter. I’m not sure I was looking for it, but when I found it, it sounded pretty ace.  I had forgotten about tuna casserole! I made some changes, and this has no cans of cream of crap soup.

It’s not gonna change your life, unless you have never had a Hot Dish, but this is good, easy, and comfort food. Try it.

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Fall Mushroom and Spinach Pasta

Supposedly it was national pasta day, though I only know this from an email I got from somewhere. I didn’t pay attention where. I took it as a sign to make some pasta.

I had some mushrooms and found a recipe on serious eats for a wild mushroom pasta which I linked in the last post. I made some changes though, like adding spinach. It was super aces. Make this.20111017-101046.jpg

 

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Tomato-Spinach Pasta Bake

Another oven day and I am straying from my menu planning, but that`s ok, I do it all the time. I could not decide between stuffed roasted squash and a pasta bake. I decided on the pasta bake as it does double duty. I needed more sauce for Pizza Party! and this would make extra.

I started with a base of this Jamie Oliver recipe in mind, but tweeked it a bit. I had make that one before, but didn`t like the gooey quality, so I switched the cheese and added more veg to make it a bit more healthy, but still keep the flavor. The husband said it tasted like the best lasagne ever, I thought it was more like a pizza bake. You will think it tastes like whatever you think.

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