Sugo is usually made with guanciale, unsmoked pork jowl, but I wanted to see what would happen if I used any smoked pork, plus a fresh cut. The results were mighty good. The fresh cuts, especially the ones with skin, gave some nice body to the sauce. The smoked parts added depth.
'pasta sauces' on Serious Eats
This summer ratatouille is made the Julia Child way: cook the zucchini, squash, and eggplant separately, then layer them together to keep the flavors bright and distinct. A light main course packed with the bright flavors of olive oil and summer vegetables.
Breaking up what sometimes can be the monotony of pasta at home, this rich, sweet, and slightly salty sauce was a more than welcome change.
Before coming across this lovely plate of Maccheroni alla Chitarra with Ragù Abruzzese and Palottine that graces the cover of Domenica Marchetti's The Glorious Pasta of Italy, I'd always thought that spaghetti and meatballs was strictly checkered tablecloth territory, an Italian-American dish with very distant (if any) ties to Italian cookery. As it turns out, this Italian cousin of our beloved spaghetti and meatballs is quite the popular dish in Abruzzo.
Fresh tomato sauces are wonderful in the summer, but as tomato season heads south for the cooler months, it's always a good idea to have a roasted tomato sauce up your sleeve. A slow roast in the oven takes even the most middling tomatoes to the next level by concentrating all of their great sweet tomato-iness. This plate of Mafaldine with Roasted Tomatoes, Robiola, and Crushed Fennel Seeds from Domenica Marchetti's Bolognese from The Glorious Pasta of Italy takes that roasted tomato sauce to an even more thrilling place by pairing it with some unlikely but incredible partners: fennel seeds and robiola cheese.
I'm not sure why it's never occurred to me to squeeze some Sriracha into tomato sauce. The complex spiciness goes well on just about everything, and in a marinara, it's a bit more interesting than a basic pinch of red chile flakes which you see much more often. What you end up with is a sauce that's slightly sweet, slightly vinegary, slightly garlicky, and definitely spicy. It does wonders to liven up a mainstay.
A love affair with pasta and tomato sauce is lifelong, and new variations are always intriguing. My summer staple is a simple marinated fresh tomato sauce, which never sees a lick of heat except the gentle heat of the pasta....
I'm trying to cook at home a bit more these days. (The economy, you know?) And one of the easiest meals to whip up quickly is, of course, a pasta dish. French Revolution's bechamel-based Wagon Wheels with Sauce Roquefort recipe is so simple and quick that you won't think twice about using your favorite jarred sauce. Note: SE intern extraordinaire Kerry Saretsky is the force behind French Revolution. Kerry usually writes the Blogwatch entries and is much too modest to toot her own horn, so I'm doing it for her today. Or, as Erin put it, "Who Blogwatches the Blogwatcher?"...