Tag Archives: cheese

Garlic Pasta

17 Nov
Bowtie pasta mixed with garlic and olive oil, garnished with freshly grated kefalotyri cheese.

Bowtie pasta mixed with garlic and olive oil, garnished with freshly grated kefalotyri cheese.

My apologies for the long absence in new postings. School has been very busy. But here’s a very simple and delicious recipe for garlic lovers!

  • 10 to 15 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 450 g pasta, cooked according to the package’s directions (before draining the pasta, save 1/4 cup of the pasta water)
  • (optional) 2 cups of kefalotyri cheese, coarsely grated

1. In a large pan, cook the garlic with olive oil for approximately 10 minutes on medium heat.

2. Once the garlic is cooked, add in the drained pasta and pasta water. Combine well.

3. Serve, and if desired, sprinkle each serving with a generous amount of kefalotyri cheese.

Minced garlic gently cooking in olive oil.

Minced garlic gently cooking in olive oil.

Bowtie pasta with garlic and olive oil.

Bowtie pasta with garlic and olive oil.

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Homemade Pizza

27 Nov

Homemade pizza. Toppings are bacon, cremini mushrooms and kumato tomatoes.

The following makes two thin crust pizzas. The original recipe can be found in the book “Cooking: A Commonsense Guide”.

Dough

  • 1 sachet dry yeast (about 8 grams)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup warm water

Two pizza doughs. Roughly shaped into a rectangle.

1. In a small bowl add the yeast, sugar and salt to the warm water. Cover. Leave for ten minutes or until foamy.

2. In a large bowl, add flour and make a well.  Add the yeast mixture to the hole and gradually add flour to yeast mixture to form dough.

3. Place dough on a clean floured surface. Knead the dough for several minutes.

4. Split the dough into two halves. Roll each dough ball into approximately 1/4 inch thickness. (Flour your rolling device, be it a rolling pin, jar, glass tumbler, etc.)

5. On a lined baking sheet, brush 1 tbsp of oil to prevent dough from sticking and to help form a golden crust. Place pizza dough on tray and tuck in edges to form a crust. Repeat for other pizza dough.

Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 14 oz crushed tomatos
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp sugar

Pizza sauce.

1. In a pot, add onions and oil. Cook until onions are soft (about 5 minutes).

2. Add in remaining ingredients. Simmer on low to medium heat until sauce thickens to a consistency similar to pizza sauce (about 15 to 20 minutes).

3. Spread half of the sauce onto each pizza dough.

Pizza dough with sauce.

Assembly:

1. Add a layer of cheese to the pizza and sauce. (I used a mixture of grated cheddar and mozzarella.)

2. Add the toppings of your choice (e.g. pepperoni, pineapple, feta cheese, olives, shrimp, ham, bacon, mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes, onions, ground beef, etc.). TIP: Do not overload pizza with toppings to allow for more even baking in the oven.

3. Top with a light layer of more cheese.

4. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in a 415º oven or until cheese is melted, bubbling and golden brown.

5. Let cool at least 5 minutes before eating.

Pizza imediately before baking.

Pizza immediately after baking.

The second pizza, which has bacon, green peppers, onions and tomatoes as its toppings.

A special thank you to Andrew who made much of the pizzas.

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

21 Feb

Grilled sourdough with baby spinach, cheddar cheese and prosciutto.

  • two slices of medium thick sourdough bread
  • a few slices of cheese (e.g. havarti, cheddar, mozzarella, swiss, etc.)
  • a few baby spinach leaves
  • 3 to 4 slices prosciutto

Heat a frying pan* on high heat. Place both slices of bread into the pan. When the slices are toasted, turn down the heat to medium and flip one of the slices over. On this flipped slice, place the cheese first, then spinach and prosciutto and then another layer of cheese. (The double layer of cheese will help hold the sandwich together). Place the toasted side of the other slice of bread onto the cheese.

Depending on how thick your sandwich is, you might want to cover it with a lid or plate. I find I usually don’t have to though. After a couple of minutes, carefully flip the sandwich and cook for another two to three minutes or until the cheese has melted. The grilled prosciutto spinach sandwich is now done. Cut in half with a sharp knife and serve immediately.

Feel free to switch it up by replacing the prosciutto with spicy genoa salami or adding thinly sliced tomatoes or using a different type of bread.  I personally love grilled cheese with sourdough because it’s a dense bread and when sourdough is toasted, it becomes incredibly crunchy especially the crust.

*I don’t have a panini press but if you do and you’re making this recipe, this is an ideal time to use it.