• trader joe gnocchi
    Dinner

    Trader Joe’s Gorgonzola Gnocchi Pasta

    So, I will admit that I don’t shop at Trader Joe’s that often. For whatever reason, that seems rare for my generation. This is not because I don’t like TJ’s; honestly I actually always find really good things there. It’s actually often a good place to consistently find some odd ingredients. It’s really just out of inconvenience. Its a bit of a hike; I have to drive past at least 3 other grocery stores to get there (not counting the Whole Foods I live above). When it looked like we were going to be placed under a stay home order, we decided to make a TJ’s run. We picked up…

  • summery bolognese
    Dinner

    Summery Bolognese 3.0

    As this is now my third version (Versions 1 and 2 are available HERE and HERE) of what might as well be a series on Bolognese, it should be clear that I love a good pasta sauce. I mean really whats not to love about a flavorful bolognese and pasta when you want an easy, low fuss dinner. As a result, I have made many varieties over the years to suite almost any situations. This particular version was born out of a desire to use ingredients we had on hand from a variety of store runs before they went bad. So we had a bunch of ground meats, some stuffed…

  • tri tip ragu
    Dinner,  Instant Pot

    InstantPot Tri-Tip Ragu

    It feels like work for both Rob and I has been keeping us pretty busy since we got back from vacation. As a result, I have been looking for simple recipes to make when we get home. We have made a lot of our go-tos and remade a few others that we haven’t made in a while. But the other night, we tried something new that was inspired by our trip to California: Instant Pot Tri-Tip Ragu. Tri-tip is effectively the official cut of meat for California that is rare on the east coast. Its a cut out of the bottom sirloin of the cow, which means its pretty lean…

  • summer bolognese
    Dinner

    Summer Bolognese 2.0

    One of the few downsides to summer is that cooking hearty meals isn’t usually something you want. When its hot and gross out, do you really want a heavy meat dish? So, I have been continuing to experiment with making bolognese a good summer meal. I really wanted to make something like the Rabbit Bolognese (yes, Rob made a pasta sauce with a rabbit sausage) we made back in April; however, just a little lighter. To really get that lighter flavor, I started with the veggies base. This time around I went with leek. If you aren’t familiar with leek, think really big green onion. It’s got a great light…

  • basil pesto pasta
    Lunch

    Classic Basil Pesto

    I have probably posted 2 or 3 different kinds of pesto on the blog now, but I have yet to post about simple classic Basil Pesto. Basil is pretty much the standard and produces a fresh, bright flavored pesto that is perfect for a summer day. Its light, pretty healthy and tasty, so what’s not to love? Our AeroGarden basil plants had started getting a little out of control; so Rob basically harvested every decent basil leaf from them to make the pesto. We ended up with a pretty big pile of leaves (which in reality isn’t all that much). The nice thing was we new the basil was fresh…

  • cacio pepe milanese
    Dinner

    Brown Butter Cacio e Pepe

    Cacio e Pepe is a pretty classic, easy pasta recipe which is what I love about it. The problem I have with it is, for a dinner, it can almost be TOO simple. I wanted to find a way to make it a little more interesting and also incorporate a protein source with the recipe. The answer is this Brown Butter Cacio e Pepe with Parmesan-Milanese Chicken. This chicken breasts are pretty straight forward. I started with some thin pieces, gave them a quick egg coating, and then into a breadcrumb/parmesan mixture. Then its just a simple pan fry in an oil/butter mixture. See, pretty simple! Now is the fun…

  • chicken bolognese
    Dinner

    Summery Chicken Bolognese

    Now that it basically feels like summer here in DC, its seemed like the right time to look at lightening up some of my favorite recipes. A prime target is one of my favorite pasta sauces: bolognese. When you think of bolognese typically a heavy, hearty meat sauce comes to mind, so I wanted to go after that. So, I started with the meat selection. Normally, I go for pork, beef, or lamb which all tend to be a bit heavier. This time I went with chicken; chicken sausage to be specific. I like cooking with sausage since it helps give a good base flavor to the sauce since its…

  • Rabbit sausage bolognese
    Dinner

    Rabbit Sausage Bolognese

    The idea to make something with rabbit was all Rob, as was the cooking. His love of a gamey meat sauce over pasta definitely highlights the Italian in him. As strange as it sounds, this kind of recipe is almost comfort food to him. So I let him cook for me, for our Sunday night date-night-in dinner. This started with an idea Rob had to make a Wild Boar (yes BOAR) pasta sauce after watching an episode of Phil Rosenthal’s food travel show on Netflix. PSA: If you haven’t watched “Somebody Feed Phil” or its PBS predecessor on Netflix, DO IT NOW!!! Our local butcher didn’t have boar at the…

  • spaghetti and meatballs
    Appetizer,  Dinner

    Chicken-Pork Meatballs

    Meatballs are such a versatile ingredient. You can eat them as a snack or over pasta. Plus they can be eaten right away or frozen to save for later. At any given time I probably have at least two dinners worth of meatballs in my freezer just waiting to be heated. I make meatballs in many different ways, more often than not based on the types of ground meat available at the grocery store. This trip, I was glad that they had chicken-based Italian sausage and ground pork. I didn’t want to double down on pork Italian sausage since I wanted to be able to build a little more of…

  • Dinner

    Brown Butter Cream Sauce Pasta

    I have to say Rob has been on fire with his recipe ideas recently, this Brown Butter Cream Sauce Pasta being the most recent. Not sure where the idea came from (he’s not either), but it was a real winner. It reminded both of us of a cream sauce pasta from one of our favorite Italian restaurants in Old Town Alexandria, VA. That dish is a cheese stuffed pasta with a rich creamy sauce that is deceptively filling (maybe get 6 pieces of pasta, but its enough). I know I’ve seen brown butter used in a lot of baking recipes recently but not as much in the general cooking arena.…