June 19, 2012

Penne with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Arugula

Yet another reason to lament the folding of Gourmet magazine (for other reasons see here, here and here).

This particular recipe is from the May 2009 issue in the section on quick weeknight dinners. And as promised, it came together quickly, was satisfying and surprisingly delicious. I followed the recipe as written, except I never make a pound of pasta when a recipe calls for it; a pound can easily feed six people and that is just too many leftovers for MM and me. I used about 1/2 to 2/3 of a pound of penne and it still made four servings.

One last thing, I know I have mentioned this before, but I am always pleasantly surprised/reminded how perfectly De Cecco pasta cooks. Its al dente is textbook tender. And a bonus for leftovers, it reheats well too. It doesn't fall apart like some other brands.

June 18, 2012

Lemon Cake

Two pounds of lemons

Address the elephant in the (virtual) room or not? I suppose I will.

Quite honestly, moving into a new home that happened to be an older home with lots of needs and quirks has the amazing ability to consume extra time and energy. Even after our new, gorgeous, highly functional kitchen was finished (I KNOW, you need to see pictures!), I didn't feel like cooking, or when I did, I made basic, boring, run of the mill dishes that didn't need to be shared. So I am sorry to have been absent for so long and if anyone is still reading, I have a couple seriously delicious recipes to share this week.

Let's start with dessert! MM's sister and brother-in-law came over this weekend to see our new house and while I couldn't bring myself to actually make lunch, I did make a delectable dessert. Although I love lemons, lemonade, lemon squares, lemon curd, etc., a lemon cake isn't the first thing I would be drawn to when deciding on a dessert. However, I had some inside knowledge that MM's brother-in-law loves lemon cake, so I thought I would give it a try.

I settled on Ina Garten's recipe from FoodNetwork.com, mainly because it has so many rave reviews. Well, they are for good reason. This cake was perfect: moist, delicate crumb, a slight tartness, but just the right amount of sweetness. As you can see, I made it in a bundt pan because I thought it would be prettier. I was impressed that it came out of the pan so perfectly, but I obsessively greased and floured every nook and cranny. I pulled the cake at exactly 45 minutes and it was perfect (in fact, it probably could have come out a couple minutes earlier). If you are looking for something a little different, or happen to have a surplus of lemons lying around, give this recipe a try!