Quick and Easy Pea Pesto Pasta with Shrimp

img_20200531_095843_995This 15 minute recipe uses ingredients most people already have at home in their refrigerator and pantry. Add the pasta to the boiling water first and while it’s cooking prepare the pesto in the food processor. Serves 4.

PEA PESTO
7oz frozen peas, defrosted
1/2 cup packed fresh parsley
3 garlic cloves
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons water
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

Add all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste. Recipe yields 1 1/4 cup.

PASTA
8 oz pasta of choice, cooked al dente (reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking water)
5 oz frozen peas, defrosted
16 oz cooked shrimp or roasted chicken
1 1/4 cup pea pesto (recipe above)

Heat a saute pan to low and combine pasta, peas, shrimp, pea pesto, and 1/4 cup reserved pasta water until warmed throughout (just a few minutes to avoid overcooking the pasta). Add in additional pasta water if needed to reach your desired consistency. Serve in shallow bowls and top with grated parmesan, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Perfect “No Fry” Oven French Fries

Processed with VSCO with  presetWho doesn’t love french fries? They’re the epitome of comfort food. Carby, crispy yet chewy, salty… and they just make you feel good.

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I have been working on this french fry recipe for a while. I’ve been trying to figure out how to make the perfect french fries at home. Some recipes require you to soak the potatoes, then deep fry them, and then fry them a second time… No one wants to have to go through all that work (and no one wants to have to use all that oil).

Processed with VSCO with  presetAfter months of trial and error I’ve come up with what I believe is a great oven french fry recipe that uses simple ingredients and lets the oven do most of the work.

Processed with VSCO with  presetThe MOST IMPORTANT “tool” you need for this recipe is a cooling rack. The cooling rack is the secret. It’s how you get a soft chewy interior without over cooking and burning the outside of the fry. If you don’t have a cooling rack, don’t attempt the recipe until you get one. They’re cheap and every home cook should have at least one (CLICK HERE to order from Amazon).

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The Ingredients are Simple:

  • The quintessential potato – the russet potato. They’re cheap, easy to find, and they last a long time in the pantry.
  • Olive Oil – I use regular olive oil NOT extra virgin. If you don’t have olive oil you can use vegetable oil or canola oil… but personally the recipe turned out best with plain olive oil.
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese – yes, the kind in the plastic container with the green lid.
  • Salt and Pepper – Basics of all flavoring.

 

Perfect Oven French Fries

Servings: 2

Difficulty: Easy

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Foolproof recipe for perfect oven french fries. Setting a cooling rack on top of a sheet pan is the trick for a crispy inside and a soft and chewy inside. 

 

Ingredients

  • 2 medium russet potatoes, scrubbed clean and dried
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

 

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Place a cooling rack on top of an extra large sheet pan.
  3. Cut russet potatoes to a 1/4 inch matchstick.
  4. Place the cut potatoes in a large bowl and toss with the olive oil. 
  5. Place the cut potatoes on the cooling rack set on top of a sheet pan and bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Remove the potatoes from the oven and put back in the bowl.
  7. Increase the oven temperature to 450 F.
  8. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and black pepper to the fries and gently toss to combine. 
  9. Remove the cooling rack from atop the sheet pan and place the fries directly on the sheet pan. Fries should be in a single layer, it’s okay to use two sheet pans if needed for this step. 
  10. Once the oven temperature reaches 450 F place the fries back in the oven for 15 minutes, flipping halfway through. 
  11. Once baked, toss with the grated parmesan cheese and additional salt and pepper to taste.
  12. Serve HOT!

 

Bacon Carbonara

Processed with VSCO with  presetWhat makes a carbonara a carbonara? Pasta, egg, pork, and cheese. With these simple ingredients you can come up with a vaiety of carbonara combinations such as bacon and parmesean, or sausage and pecorino… The opportunities are endless.

I’ve decided to use basic kitchen staples for this carbonara combination. I used thick cut bacon for my recipe but you can use any type of bacon and it will come out almost exactly the same. While fresh parmesan cheese is amazing, I used the grated kind that comes in the container with the green lid (you know what I’m talking about). Although I use fresh parsley in my recipe, dried parsley will work fine as well (just use 1 tablespoon instead of two). You can use any pasta that you’d like for this recipe as well (just make sure you’re cooking the equivalent to two servings). Continue reading →