Friday, November 12, 2010

You too can make food crack -- Braised Short Ribs over Pasta

There is a food god and her name is most definitively pasta. As clearly evidenced by the preponderance of pasta dishes on this blog, I am an absolute pasta-aholic. This is another sensational dish from one of my favorite people on planet food, Giada De Laurentiis. A rich, dark and meaty sauce that has serious depth of earthly, round warm flavor smothered over freshly cooked, tender pasta. It’s a hug in a bowl.

If that weren’t enough for you, here are two more good reasons to try this dish: it’s cheap and it includes cheese AND chocolate! Short ribs are a fantastic cut of meat. They are down right cheap and require simply a bit of liquid and a long bath on the stove to produce a tender and tasty mass of flavor power. The vast majority of the other ingredients in this dish are highly accessible, many of which happily reside in your pantry. Who knew when thrown together (and I mean thrown, prep time for this one is like a whopping 20 mins) you could make magic!

The second reason for my deep respect for this dish is the fact that I get to garnish this one with both cheese AND chocolate! Don’t let the chocolate thing throw you for a loop. It is completely clutch. The slightly sweet smoothness of the dark chocolate plays well with the salty bite of the cheese. Together they bring out an earthy richness that is warm and soothing all the way through.

But I should warn you. This recipe is basically food crack. It is highly impossible not to over eat with this one and it makes amazing leftovers so honestly, attempt at your own risk. I’ve been known to be caught standing with fork in hand, strands of pasta hanging out of my mouth while smuggling bites late at night in front of the frige in the dark. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Chicken and Mushroom Marsala Made Easy

Most nights I want a warm, scrumptious meal that doesn’t take me a year and half to make. Clearly I am a major fan of the kitchen, but after a long day of work what I mostly want to do is snuggle with the husband on the couch with a warm plate of heaven in my hands. Well, this here recipe was just the ticket! I found this one while perusing smittenkitchen, one of my all time favorite blogs. It’s delightfully simple to throw together and cheap no less! But the taste makes you think I spent hours in the kitchen. A fantastic dish. Tender chicken that has been browned and then slowly cooked in broth and marsala wine (a pantry staple) with a ton of good old white mushrooms (yes WHITE!) that have been sautéed the heck out of.  This dish comes together into a warm bowl of homey goodness. Serve it over rice, pasta or save the carbs and just bask in the glow of its mushroomy delight.

So pull those Costco chicken breasts out of the freezer to thaw, grab a pound or two of mushrooms and prepare yourself for an awesome dinner.