Monday, July 10, 2006

Something new

Rigatoni (Penne) with Chorizo and Tomato
The Essential Pasta Cookbook Copyright 1998

1 onion, sliced
8 ounces chorizo sausage, sliced
2 tbsp olive oil
14 ounces crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2-1 tsp chopped chili (optional) I omitted this
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste I didn't add additional salt - the chorizo was salty enough
12 ounces rigatoni I used Dreamfields penne
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley, for serving
2 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese, for serving

Peel onion and slice. Cut chorizo sausage into slices. Heat oil in a frying pan. Add onion and stir over low heat until tender.

Add sausage to pan; cook turning frequently, for 2-3 minutes. Add undrained, crushed tomatoes, wine, chili, salt and pepper. Stir. Bring to boil and reduce heat. Simmer for 15-20 minutes.

While sauce is cooking, add rigatoni to a large pan of rapidly boiling water; cook until just tender. Drain well and return to pan. Add sauce to hot pasta with half of combined parsley and parmesan cheese. Toss to combine well. Serve sprinkled with remaining parsley and parmesan cheese.

Makes 4 servings.

Just a day or two ago, Mixed Salad Annie asked her readers how they felt about changing recipes. I mentioned that I have trouble substituting pasta types. It's irrational for the most part. I don't necessarily think sitting down to a plate of elbow macaroni and meatballs is equivalent to eating spaghetti and meatballs but for the most part there is always a comparable shape that can be substituted. I think what really bothers me is using a different pasta shape when the shape name is part of the title because I draw the line when it comes to changing recipe titles. These are not my own recipes, after all.

But changing pasta shapes happens. In a perfect world, Dreamfield would make every pasta shape but they don't so I substituted penne here. They have recently expanded their line to include rotini and lasagne, so perhaps some day they'll make rigatoni but for now penne seemed like the closest substitute.

I first started hearing about chorizo many years ago yet only a few weeks ago did it make an appearance locally. Well, a few months ago, I saw fresh (uncured) chorizo only one time in a local store and then it was gone as it quickly as it arrived. I was more interested in the cured variety anyway and now I finally got my hands on some.

The problem here is that I've never had chorizo before now. I wasn't crazy about this chorizo but how am I to know if it tasted like chorizo is supposed to taste? I've been around pepperoni, salami and other cured meats of course and I know that different makers use different spices and amounts of spices. It wasn't bad at all, but something lingered on my palate that I couldn't quite make out. Is their coriander in chorizo? That's a spice that I can only handle in very small doses. Maybe it was the paprika since I think they used the smoked variety that I'm not used to. Like I said, this wasn't bad, just new for me. You can subsitute pepperoni in this recipe.

This recipe is from my beautiful pasta cookbook that's sadly starting to fall apart.

Another cookbook arrived! Cooking Light Annual Recipes 2006 was waiting for me on my doorstep yesterday. I spent the whole night looking through it. It's packed with great recipes and this book has more pictures than the other annual I own, 2003. Ollie's had some of the older annuals, 1996 was one of them. There were hardly any recipes in the older ones and the recipes that were there didn't seem too exciting. I'm only familiar with Cooking Light since 2003 but I've heard rumblings that the magazine 'used to be so much better' but to me it seems to have improved quite a bit.

Question of the Day: What's the last 'new' food that you've tried?


ThursdayNext said...

I just tried prosciutto for the first time a few months ago; it was so delicious. There is good and bad prosciutto, so keep trying on the chorizo!

Cant wait for the new recipes! :)

DancesInGarden said...

Avacados have to be my newest and most momentous trial. I was afraid of them. And for no good reason I have found out...and eaten a lifetime supply in a few short weeks. Now I am almost sorry I tried them ;). My faves so far? Mashed and mixed 1/2 and 1/2 with my favourite salsa from a jar, and sliced onto a tortilla filled with scrambled eggs and cheese and a bit of tomato.

Anonymous said...

Dancesingarden, I'm so glad you discovered avacados. Aren't they wonderful? You must try a sliced turkey, mayo and avacado sandwich.
I think the last new thing I tried was escargot. It was offered and I didn't want to pass up the opportunity. It was good, but nothing I crave to have again.


Randi said...

ya know what I hate about the cooking light annuals? The way they date them. 2006 is really the recipes from 2005. I just hate that.

The Bee Lady said...

Almond milk. Way better than soy milk!

Wanda said...

Hummus. I forget now why I bought a jar of it, but I did. Oh, yeah! It was because of the toasted pita triangles you mentioned, CbJ. I got it to bake the rest of my pita bread and use the hummus for dip. That was about 2-3 weeks ago. It's okay, but I doubt I'll buy it again. I just had some a little while ago - I nuked cheddar cheese and some cut up jalapeno between two whole wheat tortillas. Then I added lots of lettuce and a big spoonful of hummus spread around. It was good.

Anonymous said...

I recently tried the dry cured Spanish style chirzo too, and didn't much care for it. I really like the bulk chorizo in cooking like breakfast burritos, and sometimes I make my own from my Mixer Bible cookbook recipe.