The Sensitive Kitchen

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Fettuccine Alfredo

12 ounces pasta (I used linguine)
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
3 Tbsp flour
1 cup low-fat milk (I used 1%)
1 tsp broth concentrate (such as Better than Bouillon)
1 c freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
3 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Cook pasta in generously salted water according to package directions until just al dente.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic; saute one minute, stirring occasionally, until fragrant. Sprinkle with flour; stir to make a paste. Saute for an additional minute to cook the flour, stirring occasionally.

Remove 2 c cooking water from pasta. Slowly add to flour mixture, whisking until smooth. Whisk in milk; stir in broth concentrate, then bring the mixture to a simmer. Let cook for an additional minute until thickened, then stir in 3/4 c Parmesan, salt and pepper. Stir until the cheese melts. Reduce heat to low; keep at a bare simmer.

Drain pasta, reserving some cooking water. Add pasta to saute pan. Toss to combine; add additional cooking water as necessary to reach desired consistency. Serve topped with reserved Parmesan and parsley.

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Monday, September 21, 2015

Greek White Fish with Whole Lemons

This simple dish uses whole slices of sauteed lemon -- edible, rind and all -- which add a deeply flavorful tang to the fish. 

2 lemons (preferably homegrown)
1 pound tilapia fillets or other mild white fish
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp fresh oregano, minced
salt and freshly ground pepper
chopped fresh parsley

Cut off ends of lemons; reserve. Slice lemons thinly, removing seeds. Set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet with lid over medium heat. Add lemon slices. Cook several minutes on one side. Flip slices carefully, reduce heat to medium-low and add garlic. When it has softened and become fragrant, add oregano and tilapia. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, cover and cook 5 minutes or until cooked through according to the thickness of the fillets.

Squeeze lemon ends onto fish. Remove fish to a serving platter. Carefully remove lemon slices and set atop fish filets. Stir sauce and drizzle atop fish. Serves 4. 

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Gigantes Plaki (Greek Giant Baked Beans)

We first had these at a little restaurant in Naxos, Greece. Turns out they are a staple dish in nearly all Greek households. This is my version.

1 pound dry gigantes (giant lima) beans
2 bay leaves
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 rib celery, diced
14 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/4 c chopped Italian parsley
1/2 c sheep's-milk feta, crumbled

Place beans in triple their volume of water. Soak overnight. Drain liquid. Replace with water to cover; cook with bay leaves for 1 hour or until beans test done. Drain beans, reserving 2 cups cooking water.

In a large saucepan, saute onion, garlic and celery in olive oil until softened and beginning to brown. Add diced tomatoes, salt, pepper, cloves and reserved cooking water. Bring to a boil; cook until aromatic. Add cooked beans. Simmer to bring flavors together and thicken sauce. Top servings with parsley and feta. Serves 8.