Lunch AND Dinner!

posted in: Cooking | 4

Yesterday was an odd day for me, I actually cooked lunch.  Lunchtime came around and, as usual, I had nothing ready.  I was famished because I had been cleaning the house all morning so I needed something hearty.  I remembered that I have a crapload of frozen pasta from my recent pasta making binges.  I love Carbonara but Matt does not so I thought this would be a perfect opportunity for me to enjoy some.  It had been a while since I made Carbonara so my first instinct was to grab my authentic Italian cookbooks for a refresher.  That quickly reminded me how many different ways to make Carbonara there are!  The end result is always the same though, the cooking method is just a means to an end. I did not have pancetta so I had to use bacon, no big deal.

Fettuccine alla Carbonara

7 oz fresh fettuccine
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
4 oz bacon, chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
1/4 cup grated Pecorino plus more for garnish
salt and pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Brown the bacon with the garlic in the oil, remove the garlic when the bacon begins to brown.  Cook the pasta in the boiling water as instructed in the package or pasta recipe.

While the pasta cooks, mix the egg, egg yolk and Pecorino in a small bowl.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Mix to obtain a creamy sauce.

As soon as the pasta is ready, drain it and immediately toss it with the bacon and egg mixture.  Sprinkle with more grated Pecorino. 

Serves 2

The truth is, I ate all that myself but it IS enough to serve two as part of a bigger meal; or two people who are not piggies like me.  This is really good and it’s not eggy at all.  It is not as good as the amazing carbonaras I had in Italy but it’s the next best thing, especially with the homemade pasta.  I was stuffed to the gills.

Of course, I still had dinner to think about.  Luckily I actually made a meal plan a few days ago which I’ve been following so I knew what I was making.  This was the first time I had chance to try my brand spanking new knives, chopping sun-dried tomatoes, chicken and potatoes.  The knife cut through the chicken breast like it was air.  LOVE.

Rosemary, Brie and Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken with Corn Mash

30g dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes, chopped finely
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
4 chicken breasts
60g firm Brie, quartered
1kg red potatoes, peeled and quartered
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbsp fat free milk
2 tbsp light sour cream
1 310g can creamed corn

Preheat the oven to 375°F

Combine the tomato and rosemary in a small bowl.  Using a sharp knife, slit a pocket in one side of each chicken breast taking care not to slice all the way through.  Divide the tomato mixture and cheese among the pockets.

Spray an oven-safe skillet with nonstick cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat.  Brown the chicken breast on both sides, taking care not to spill the filling while flipping.  Once browned, transfer the skillet to the oven and cook for 20 minutes.

In the mean time, boil the potatoes with the garlic in salted water until tender.  Drain the potatoes and mash them with the milk and sour cream.  Fold in the creamed corn and season to taste.

Serves 4

My favorite part of this meal was the mash.  It was GOOOOOD.  REALLY GOOD.  We love mashed potatoes around here but it would have never occured to me to add corn, which we also love.  I will definitely be making mash like this again

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