It’s no surprise that leading up to the New York City Marathon, His Lordship and I ate a lot of pasta.
I’m talking boatloads.
But because we were leading up to the New York City Marathon, and we had been traveling quite a bit, and also had my family and friends visiting, I made all this pasta and didn’t blog about it.
Because sometimes, blogging is hard. Especially when you’re dealing with all the aforementioned activities while freelancing and job searching. So much at once. Enter my panic attack.
Anyway, I finally feel like I’m back on my feet.
(Literally and figuratively.)
So it’s time to put up those pasta posts.
First up is a traditional Italian dish that my friend Danika asked me to make for her while her husband was on his bachelor party. (His Lordship, too, was on said bachelor party. The first time we would hear from them was shortly after the Chardonnay 5K in which we were SHAMED for drinking wine at 9:45 a.m. Oh, yous guys…)
Anywho, after a nacho-fueled lunch (5Ks are hard!), we packed up and hit the road to Westchester, where we would make said pasta dish at our friend’s house whilst taking care of six kids. (None of them are mine.)
To make sure I was keeping it super-traditional, I consulted the king of orange Crocs and pasta: Mario Batali.
“This dish is named for the town of Amatrice, about an hour east of Rome, considered by many Italians to be birthplace of the best cooks on the peninsula. Many dishes at the heart of Roman cooking may indeed have actually started in the region to the east of Lazio, Abruzzo.” —M. Batali
Like most Italian pasta dishes, the recipe calls for few ingredients and is super simple to make.
And not only did Danika request the dish, she asked to be taught how to make it.
So there was a cooking lesson.
And, success! A delicious dish that even the kiddies enjoyed.
(adapted from a recipe by Mario Batali)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
12 ounces thinly sliced guanciale pancetta, or good bacon
2 med. shallots, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch-thick half-moons
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons hot red pepper flakes
black pepper, freshly ground
2 cups good tomato sauce
1 pound pasta
Freshly grated Pecorino Romano
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
2. Meanwhile, in a large saute pan, add olive oil, guanciale, shallot, garlic and red pepper flakes; season with salt and pepper; sweat over low heat until softened, about 10 to 12 minutes; drain most of the guanciale fat out of the pan, leaving 2 Tbsps.; add tomato sauce; raise heat to medium-high, bringing sauce to boil; reduce to simmer for 5 to 7 minutes; season to taste; reserve.
3. Cook pasta to al dente; transfer to sauce and toss; serve immediately topped with freshly grated Pecorino.