Dinner No. 57: Tuesday June 14, 2016: Quick & Easy all’Amatriciana Pasta
June 16th, 2016 by Katekoster

Tonight we were tired–long busy weekend and I (Max) am leaving for a school trip tomorrow so I really wanted to make one of my favorite meals: Pasta all’ Amatriciana (my “signature” dish); we also wanted to use some fresh peas we had bought at the farmer’s market, and Alex had a mystery ingredient that mom gave her (poor Alex…wait till you see what she had to cook).  But it was a fun and quick dinner.

Here’s my final plate:


For the pasta all’Amatriciana, first I chopped one onion; then I sauteed pancette in a little olive oil till it was brown.  (I started water boiling for the pasta at same time).  I removed the pancetta from the pan and added the chopped onion.  You need to cook the onion cook until tender then I added a can of chopped tomatoes.  You can use fresh or grated or chopped tomatoes–but it was a week night and the canned ones are fine. Salt, pepper and let simmer for a while.  When the pasta is al dente, you add it to the tomato sauce.  And then you plate it by adding freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and a large handful of the pancetta.  The pancetta flavors the onions and then you taste the crispy bits in the pasta. (If you mix it into the sauce, you lose the crispiness).

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For the peas, they were so fresh all we did was shell them and eat them raw.  We also made a simple arugula salad — with just tomatoes and shaved parmigiano reggiano.

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I (Alex) also cooked a mystery ingredient that Mom gave me: SQUID. Ewwwwh!  At least it was already cleaned so I didn’t have to clean it but I did have to cut it up.  It was kind of cool that you could easily cut it into rings.  I also chopped some garlic and cooked that in olive oil with paprika and red pepper flakes, then I added the cut up squid.  I wasn’t sure how long to cook it but I sauteed it until it was at least brown.  Then I squeezed a lemon on top of it.  I wanted to add fresh herbs but all we had was basil and oregano but hat didn’t seem quite right flavor-wise.  Mom said it was pretty good.  (I just couldn’t try it, those tentacles looked too weird:).  Max is so lucky he got to cook the pasta!:(

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