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1.19.2011

Pasta and ricotta...

....there I was sitting on the kitchen floor playing pick-up sticks with a box of whole wheat spaghetti that blended in perfectly with my hardwood floors...(sorry no photo!)
so now what was I going to do.. the whole wheat pasta idea was definitely out...I was not about to sit there and dust off each "spaghetto"* individually...

*spaghetto is the diminuitive of spago which in English would be string.... so spaghetti = lots of skinny strings
add that to your dictionary of useless trivia!

so.. back to the pasta drawer.. I have it! Dischi Volanti (that would be flying saucers) with ricotta!



Pasta and ricotta was one of my father-in-law Antonio's favorites. Quick, easy, nutritious, naturally low in dairy fat (if you use real ricotta - and not the "creamed version" that has lots of added dairy fat) and delicious!
Once I had tasted it, it quickly became part of my 10 minute pasta recipe repertoire!

So here goes...
Ingredients:
1 small onion (yellow or white strictly for aesthetics! the red onion turns kind of grayish when cooked and is not pretty with the ricotta, believe me I have tried it!)

Extra virgin Olive oil

Ricotta - I used about 1 1/4 cups for 3 servings
basil or if you are lucky enough to have some, fresh mint!
salt and pepper to taste

about 300 grams of a short round pasta (shells, wagon wheels, flying saucers if you can find them! mine are by Garofoli, the children's collection !!!!)




Procedure:
First... by now you should know! Put your pot of water on to boil!
Now.. coarsely chop the onion, sauté it in a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil in a large non-stick or aluminium fry pan. It should be translucent and just starting to brown. You don't want it too browned or your condiment will have a bitter onion taste!


At this point your water is probably boiling, so salt it and put your pasta in to cook.
Next, add the ricotta to the onions. I put a couple of basil leaves in, but as I said before, fresh mint also gives it a nice touch - especially if you make this in the summer!


I like to use coarsely ground black pepper, so at this point add your pepper - freshly ground if you have a pepper grinder! By the way.. you can see my pasta cooking in the background? Being fast in the kitchen is all a question of orchestration!


 When your pasta is cooked the way you like it.. drain it, leaving a bit more water than you usually do!


Add the pasta to the ricotta and onion mix.


Toss well to coat all of the pasta with the ricotta mixture and I added a bit more pepper, that's up to you!

 And that's it!
Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, or if you like a more piquant flavor, freshly grated Pecorino or Pecorino Romano cheese...

and....

as Julia would have said, had she spoken Italian:

BUON APPETITO!


2 comments:

  1. Love Pasta & ricotta,use shells,have to add the onion,used to make it without onion for the kids instead of just pastina & butter when they when little. Trying to be "a follower " will try again,picture problem . Will try again, enjoying blog, like visiting with you again, ciao & baci !

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  2. it's not like having you up the street!! what fun times we had! but it's a good substitute!!
    you should have seen me picking up the spaghetti from the floor....... why me??? ;))

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