Cream-cheese and spelt galette filled with patty pan squash

And after the rant of last post, I will keep it brief. Today I present you with a patty pan squash galette made with a spelt crust. It is the first time I made a galette and I love how easy it is to form. Plus I did not need to go looking for the pan in the pile of things to pack I had prepared for the movers.

Yes, I said movers. I am in fact moving today. Finally, I will be starting that new job I was hunting for last summer and I got in November. Actually as I am writing the movers are packing. It feels kind of strange.

It also is weird that I am leaving, but not really. BF will keep leaving here until he finds a job in the new city. If and when it will happen is not clear, but it is rather clear we will have at least a year of weekends commute ahead of us. Luckily, we will be only 4 hours by car apart.

Wish us luck! And enjoy the galette!

Cream-cheese and spelt galette filled with patty pan squash and cheese filling

Ingredients

Crust

    • 1/2 lb spelt crust
    • 1/3 cup cream cheese
    • 4 tbsp butter
    • water

Filling

  • 1 lb patty pans
  • 1/2 block monterey jack or other mild melting cheese
  • milk
  • salt
  • olive oil

Directions

  1. Make a dough by mixing the flour with the cream cheese, butter and spelt. Add enough water to make it stick (really should not be more than a couple of spoons).
  2. As soon as it sticks together, form a disk, wrap it in plastic and place in the fridge to cool down and firm up.
  3. Clean and dice the patty pan squash.
  4. Cook in warm oil and salt to taste. Let them cool down.
  5. Dice the cheese and add it to the cold squash.
  6. Roll out the dough in a circle.
  7. Place the squash and cheese in the middle and wrap the dough around the filling.
  8. Add enough milk to fill 1/2 of the inside of the quiche.
  9. Bake in a 375F oven for 40 minutes or until crust is crisp and cooked through and filling is golden brown.
  10. Serve hot or cold.
  11. Keeps well for a couple of days and makes a great brown bag lunch.

Fig and Polenta Cake

And it is Secret Recipe Club time again! And I was assigned to Camilla’s blog Culinary Adventures with Camilla. I was familiar with Camilla’s blog even before the assignment, but I did not realize how many recipes and posts she has until I actually started exploring it more closely. I mean she has 582 posts for 2012 alone! That means almost 2 posts every day! I am amazed! How does she do it? I struggle to post twice once a week!

Anyway, I started digging through her recipes and I found a lot of interesting stuff. She experiments a lot with ingredients and ethnic cuisines and offers plenty of great recipes. Digging through the recipes, I saw this cake with figs: it looked great, but I immediately dismissed it because I thought I wouldn’t be able to find fresh figs anywhere. A couple of days later I found fresh figs!! So I went ahead and baked the cake for the BF’s birthday.

It is a simple cake made with whole wheat flour and polenta. Rosemary and olive oil gives it a pleasant floral aftertaste. The figs make it pleaseantly moist. I really followed Camilla’s recipe so I will just invite to head over to her blog for the recipe. I only omitted the lemon, because I did not have it.

It turned out great, but if I were to bake it again I would probably cut down the oil slightly, use a different less coarse polenta flour than the one I used and use many more figs.

Tagliatelle Verdi al Salmone

If you follow me on instagram, you might know that when I got to my apartment I found a packet of Delverde pasta waiting form me. It was a nice house warming gift that came from LA CUCINA ITALIANA. Obviously it made moving much more pleasurable.

I know they did not do it on purpose, but it was nice all the same! Also, they could not know that I have special memories of a different gift pack of Delverde pasta of when I was in Italy. And that I have quite as fond memories of LA CUCINA ITALIANA. In fact, a collection of 2 whole years of the the Italian Edition of LA CUCINA ITALIAN was one of the few things I sent over from Italy when I first moved to the US. So when LA CUCINA ITALIANA contacted me to become one of their blogger ambassadors I was psyched. And when I got the packet I was even happier. As you can see I had to make something special with it. But what? Which pasta should I use?

My choice fell on the tagliatelle verdi  (spinach tagliatelle).  I actually rarely if ever use tagliatelle verdi, but there is someone dear to me whose favorite dish was tagliatelle verdi with salmon. He was also the person that gave me that gift pack of Delverde pasta. So you can see it had to be this dish.

If I remember correctly, the original recipes comes from a little book about salmon recipes. He gave me a copy of that book as a partying gift, so I checked on that recipe and it is quite different from the version he cooked for me: it is a simple recipe for regular spaghetti with creme fraiche and salmon. Maybe I don’t remember well and he took his recipe from a different book, but I clearly remember that he thought tagliatelle verdi were vital for this pasta to come out well.

When I decided to make this dish, I took it in a more exotic direction. The only thing I kept were the salmon and the tagliatelle verdi. Instead of going for cream and creme fraiche, I went for coconut milk and lime. I find the coconut milk and the lime lightens up the hearty notes of the tagliatelle verdi and make for a great counterpoint to the salmon. It also showcase how flexible Italian cooking can be.

You see differently that what they have you think at Olive Garden, Italian food is not about pasta, tomato sauce, garlic and parmesan, but it is about balancing flavors and letting ingredients speak for themselves and play its distinct note in a well balanced symphony. And in this dish that is exactly what each each ingredient does. So this dish is a (vaguely) Thai inspired (very) Italian dish.

Now almost 10 years have gone by since he cooked me this pasta and more than 6 since I last saw him, so I cannot say if he still likes this pasta, but I certainly hope you try making this pasta, like it and comment on how good below I like to think he would enjoy it! You see, I am entering this recipe for the dish your blog contest by Delverde and LA CUCINA ITALIANA, so  and by October 1st this pasta is so that I have a shot at impressing the judges and going to New York 😉

Tagliatelle Verdi al Salmone

Ingredients

  • 2 spinach tagliatelle nests
  • 4 oz. salmon
  • 1/2 cup lite coconut milk
  • zest of 1/2 lime
  • salt
  • pepper

Directions

  1. Start boiling the water.
  2. In a pan warm up the cocunut milk with the lime zest.
  3. Cut the salmon in strips.
  4. When water starts boiling, salt it and cook the pasta according to the instructions.
  5. When you add the pasta to the water, add the salmon and let it cook briefly.
  6. As soon an the pasta is cooked “al dente”, drain it and add it to the pan.
  7. Cook a couple of minutes more until the sauce thickens up.
  8. Serve hot adding ground pepper if you like it.

Risotto giallo alle zucchine e frutti di mare

And today I am going to serve you a risotto with saffron, zucchini and seafood.  It is a favorite for not too hot summer nights.

Other than that, I am honestly too tired to write… These are quite tiring days with the new job, new city and new everything…

Will let you enjoy the risotto!

Saffron seafood and zucchini risotto #latergram

Ingredients

  • 7 oz. arborio rice
  • 2 zucchini
  • 2 summer squash
  • 1 cup frozen seafood medley
  • saffron
  • oil
  • dry white wine
  • salt
  • parsley (optional)

Directions

  1. Saute the diced zucchini and squash in hot oil and let them wilt a bit.
  2. Ad the rice and cook it until it is translucent.
  3. Add a good 1/4 cup or so of wine and let evaporate
  4. Add the frozen seafood and mix well.
  5. Add boiling water as needed and one laddle at a time until the rice is almost cooked through.
  6. Salt to taste and add the safron.
  7. Finish cooking and add parsley if you like it.

Crustless Cheesecake with Marsala Raisins

And for today a sweet recipe for a delicious and almost light cheesecake. It is a crustless version of a cheesecake. The filling is simply made with cream cheese, eggs and sugar. To perfume and flavor the cake (and give it an Italian touch) I added the raisins soaked in Marsala.

The Marsala gives the cake a depth of flavor that makes it special. I also beat the whites to stiff peaks to lighten up the texture of the cake and make it softer.

The result is quite addicting!

Crustless Cheesecake with Marsala Raisins

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. cream cheese (I used Lebne)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 oz. sugar (use more or less to taste)
  • 1/3 cup rasins
  • 1/3 cup marsala

Directions

  1. Soak the raisins in the marsala
  2. Separate the eggs. Beat the yolks with the sugar and the cream cheese until the mixture is well blended and pale yellow.
  3. Drain the raisins and fold into the cream cheese mixture.
  4. Beat the whites to stiff picks and fold them in the the cream cheese mixture.
  5. Grease a cake pan and dust it with breadcrumbs.
  6. Pour the cream cheese mixture in the pan and bake in a 325F oven until golden brown and settled. It will take about 1 hour.
  7. Serve cold.
  8. Note the recipe is for a smaller cake, so use a small pan: I used a rather big one and the cake turned out good, but way too thin!