Daily Archive: January 8, 2013

Pappardelle’s

*Old post alert*

I randomly discovered Pappardelle’s pasta when I was strolling the LA Farmer’s Market (the one at the Grove).  I didn’t get anything at the time (I was about to go to a show taping and couldn’t exactly bring groceries with me).  I mostly remember the sweet potato pasta.  I thought it sounded awesome.

Then I saw them at Expo West and learned they made gluten free pasta, too!

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In cool flavors, like Porcini Mushroom, Roasted Red Pepper, & Spinach Large Trumpet.

I grabbed two samples of the Della Tella Trumpet Trio, which included all these flavors, but didn’t get around to trying it out til this past week.

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I cooked them all at once so I could eat them throughout the week (and FYI, the aroma they gave off while cooking was soooo good).  It was rich and smelled like fancy mushrooms – I almost reserved the pasta water as soup broth!

Normally GF pasta doesn’t have the best texture, but this lasted the whole week in the fridge and still maintained a firm but soft consistency.  It was a nice balance of hearty and light.

Here’s how I enjoyed it:

  • tossed in olive oil, salt and pepper with fresh tomatoes from my mom’s garden
  • with a butternut squash & nutritional yeast “cheese” sauce

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My mom brought all these down to LA with her.

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They are so so good – whether eaten plain, drizzled in TJ’s balsamic glaze (another new obsession), or with a lemony olive oil dressing.  I can’t get enough of them.  Summer lives on…

LA people, you can also get Pappardelle’s pasta at the Melrose Farmer’s Market.  Non LA people, find out where you can get this pasta here.  I highly recommend their products (although I’ve only tried the pasta, so I can’t speak to their fresh sauces and oils).

Oh and just so you all know, the people at Pappardelle’s have no clue who I am.  I’m simply a fan who wants to share the yum.

Choose your own

Remember the choose your own adventure books?  Ah, the good ‘ol days.  I don’t remember finding them remotely good or interesting, but it was still fun to pick which direction you wanted the story to go. 

This “risotto” is kinda like that, in that it’s a blank slate, waiting for you to make it your own.

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Here’s why it’s “risotto” in quotation marks (and not real risotto).  I used two grains (brown rice and buckwheat) in it. 

From what I understand about risotto, it’s a pain in the ass to make and you basically have to labor over the stove all day long, stirring it periodically, giving it your love and attention, hour after hour after hour. 

Yeah, that’s not my thing.  Regular readers know I’m all about fast and easy (in terms of food!!!). 

So I figured adding buckwheat would give it a creamy texture that would allow me to shortcut the time spent over the stove.  Cheater cheater risotto eater.

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I should maybe have used a bigger pan because I kept having to add water over the course of the day.

I started it at noon, let it boil (and start cooking the grains), stirred it a bit, then turned it off, placed the lid on it, and left it alone.  Whenever I’d remember (every couple hours or so), I’d remove the lid, stir it a bit, add some water, reheat it until it was simmering, and then turn it off and leave it with the lid on again.  After doing this a few times, I had a pretty huge pot of soft creamy rice.

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I’m not sure if you could call this risotto, but that’s where the choose your own adventure part kicks in.

Plain Faux Risotto [vegan, gluten free, serves 2-3]

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1/2 cup creamy buckwheat (not groats)
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • salt & pepper (to taste)

Toppings (per bowl/serving of risotto):

Mushroom Sauté [vegan] – Slice 2 medium Portobello mushrooms and sauté in 1-2 tbsp Earth Balance until soft.  Then spoon over or stir into risotto.

Parmesan Crab – Fold 1/4 cup grated/shredded parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup lump crab meat into risotto just prior to serving.  Stir until risotto is thick with melty cheese.

Cheezy [vegan] – Fold 1/4 cup nutritional yeast and 2 tbsp Earth Balance or olive oil into risotto just prior to serving.  Stir until risotto is thick and nooch is evenly distributed throughout.

Butternut [vegan] – Combine 1/4 cup butternut puree, 2 tbsp nutritional yeast, 1 tbsp tahini, 1 tsp tamari and stir into risotto until uniform throughout.

Directions:

Add brown rice, buckwheat, and vegetable broth to a large pot.  Bring to a low simmer, stir and cover with a lid.  Turn off heat and leave the pot.

Periodically (every 1-2 hours) stir the grains, add a cup of water, and reheat the risotto to a low simmer.  Then turn off the heat and (again) leave it to rest.

Repeat this three times total (so you add the amount of liquid listed in above).

Once the grains are soft and the mixture is creamy, add the butter and salt and pepper.

Serve plain, or add one of the toppings listed above.

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Here’s the parmesan crab, which I made for Kyle.

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And here’s the cheezy one that I made for myself.

I don’t have any photos of the others.  Or the leftovers.  But they are all great.  I have another mushroom recipe coming up soon, so be on the lookout for that. 

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*I used this brand of creamy buckwheat.  In spite of it’s name, the grain does NOT have any relation to wheat.  Do not use buckwheat groats.