Pasta Recipes Made Easy
Smoked Salmon, Cream and Fusilli Pasta
I think pasta is one of the most delicious things on our planet! It's not difficult to understand why - I'm Italian. I usually use pasta that I buy at my local supermarket, which is dried and very convenient. I love easy pasta recipes too and this is one of my favorites.
Sometimes I make my own fresh pasta, and if you're interested in learning how I do this and wondering which pasta making machine I use then here's a link.
How to Cook Perfect Pasta
I am very fussy when it comes to pasta and I always buy the best quality I can. Organic durum wheat is the one I recommend and it's even better if it made in Italy.
( well I would say that wouldn't I!)
But no matter how rushed I am for time, I never buy quick cook pasta, or any thing that boasts 'it cooks in just 5 minutes', because it will not have a bite to it and that is essential. The only exception to this is when I make lasagna.
When you boil pasta it should have a hard core that stops it from becoming slimy and mushy. Italians call it 'al dente'. I hate overcooked pasta.
When I go to Italy, however, I marvel at just how much al dente their pasta is. My husband finds it too raw. My son on the other hand loves it. They really just give the pasta a chance to soften and then remove it from the water.
Here's the way I cook it:
I bring a large pan of water to the boil, add salt, and when it's bubbling hard I carefully immerse the pasta into the bubbles, I use a long fork to separate it and swirl it around a bit till it starts to soften. I reduce the heat a bit to stop the water from boiling over. I wait for about 5 minutes and then start to do taste tests. As soon as I can bite into it and it feels a bit floppy, I drain the pasta, add the sauce and serve. The smell and the colour changes a bit too. I never leave it standing because it will overcook and get soggy.
When I strain away the water I do not shake it out in the colander until it's completely dry. Instead I leave it quite wet, I quickly put it back into the saucepan sued to boil it in and place it back on the heat. I then add the sauce and a bit of olive oil and parmesan cheese. I stir this around a bit until all the pasta is covered with lovely tomato sauce. I serve it in a bowl with lots of grated parmesan cheese on top.
Here's the smoked salmon recipe I promised. This recipe is a very simple but an absolutely delicious way of preparing a quick and inexpensive meal for the family.
We love smoked salmon, and if you ask at the fish counter in your supermarket, they will sell you off cuts, which are much cheaper.
For this simple recipe you can substitute the salmon with cooked ham or bacon if you wish. Or if you're vegetarian you could add fresh peas and asparagus tips - or any vegetable you may have in your fridge.
I learned this dish last year in Italy. My friend cooked for about 10 people in about 15 minutes and all she needed was pasta, cubes of ham and some single cream. She served it with a huge salad and bread and everyone was very happy. I was so impressed. Cooking for large numbers is hard enough, but if they're Italian, then that's very scary! Also, she hadn't even planned this particular dinner party. Superwoman or what.
I hope you enjoy this recipe from Italy.
- I clove of fresh garlic
- I medium onion
- 200 grams flaked smoked salmon ( cooked ham or bacon pieces)
- 1/4 pint of fresh single (runny) cream. This can be substituted for the top of the milk.
- I packet of pasta (any shape you like) or spaghetti
- Salt & Pepper
- Boil a large pot of water, add salt and pasta and cook the pasta as instructed on the packet
- While the pasta is cooking, finely chop the garlic & onion and fry in oil of your choice until golden brown
- Once cooked drain the pasta and put into a serving dish. Keep a little water ( about 3 tablespoons)
- Add the cream to the cooked onions and mix into the pasta.
- Add the salmon and mix thoroughly but gently -try not to break up the salmon too much.
- If the pasta looks a bit dry add the water you saved
- Season to taste - not too much salt if you're using salmon or bacon.
If you're interested in Italian cooking then you must like garlic, here's an article I wrote about the Health Benefits of Garlic.
Do you think you'll try this recipe? Don't forget you can substitute the salmon for bacon or ham and it's just as delicious -the kids will love it. Please leave a message. Thanks for your visit.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2014 Giovanna