Skip to main content

Creamy Caramelized Pasta with Greens


Photography is an art.  Food photography is an art form I lack, mostly because I just won't devote any energy to learn.  When your income is based upon your photos such as so many food blogs/video feeds are, photography is critical.  The lighting on the second picture in Farfalle with Spinach Mushrooms and Caramelized Onions that hooked me.  Never have I seen such beautiful caramelized onions.  These were golden brown while still holding some shape not almost burnt and limp.  Even if nothing more than cooking the onions was the goal, this recipe had to be attempted.

Modifications Made:
In a large cast iron skillet, one and half yellow onions were "caramelized instead of three.  Red wine vinegar was used to deglaze the skillet before white mushrooms and chard were cooked and set aside with onions.  To help make a creamy sauce without all the milk or half and half, one quarter cup of flour was browned in one tablespoon of butter.  Flour was browned until just off of white coloring.  One cup of milk was added slowly to flour, whisking constantly.  Half of cup of water was then added along with a dash of salt and pepper and vegetables.  Mixture was allowed to simmer on low for 20  minutes, checking for salt and pepper and sauce consistency.  During this time, the noodles were cooked to al dente, added to sauce mixture, simmered for 5 minutes.  Parmesan cheese was not added into cream mixture but reserved for fresh topping.

Scaled for Likability: Good
Not creamy enough.  The sauce was too runny for this tables preference.  We like pasta sauce to stick to the noodles instead of forming puddles on the plate.  The use of flour/ milk was a good combination as the sauce did not taste milky or floury.  As for the caramelized onions, well mine did not ever reach the color of caramel but they did taste great.

If this meal is made again, each ingredient layer will be cooked as if eaten separately so when combined to simmer the flavor depth will be higher.  Liking the cream based sauce, the same process could have been achieved with chicken broth and flour instead of milk adding yet another depth layer.  The sauce was simple in flavor and could use some flavor boosts from garlic, more salt, a heavy dash of pepper, and a pinch of nutmeg.  Having meals where there are lots of room for improvements means this meal can easily be improved to suit table preferences.

Popular posts from this blog

Better Than Campbell's Old Fashion Vegetable Soup

Went to the store with the hopes of gathering fresh produce for soup. With more than 45 people in line for two packages of any meat product and the produce section containing only avocado, orange, and most randomly, strawberries, I settled upon canned soup.  Well not canned soup since that section was still void of food, too.  Instead soup made from canned goods as the canned vegetable section had been mostly restocked. Soups like this 15 Minute Vegetable Soup  are ideal in dire food situations such as current times. Modifications Made: Plain petite diced tomatoes omitted, frozen carrots instead of canned, green beans and corn undrained, peas omitted (gross, nasty little pods), one cup celery, three cups diced potatoes, one can tomato sauce, two beef and two pollo de tomate bouillon cubes, six cups water.  Once onions were softened, carrots/celery/potatoes/juice of green beans and corn, sauce, bouillon cubes, water were added and allowed to simmer until carrots almost tender.  Green be

Sour Cream & Chive Scalloped Potatoes

Can't believe the Month of the Potato is over.  There are so many more potato recipes saved.  Guess I will have to work them into another month. Last week's scalloped potatoes were one of the best new recipes during the month of potatoes.  With today being the last day in the Month of Potatoes, I decided to go out with a bang by cooking another batch of scalloped potatoes but this time sour cream and chive.   The Best Scalloped Potatoes , or so they said. Modifications Made: Recipe was reduced by half.  Mayo was omitted and one entire package of chives were chopped and added to sauce before pouring onto layers. Scaled for Likability: Good Betty Crocker Sour Cream and Chive Box Scalloped Potatoes were the standard for this recipe.  These were a family favorite for years but have long since been discounted.  Bummer.  Trying to replicate this seemed easy enough.  Alas, it was not. These had a nice texture but were too oily from the cheese and did not contain enough onion, garlic,

Papas a La Mexicana (Ranchera)

It  is a crying shame that there are six hens and not a egg in sight. What am I supposed to do with homemade ranchero sauce? Thankfully with a few quick searches of the internet a recipe from my hometown newspaper was discovered: Papas Ranchera . Not once in the thirty years I lived in my hometown did I ever eat at a local food joint serving papas rancheras. No time like the present to remedy this cultural dish. Because this recipe is hidden behind a paywall (grrr...) I have included it here for you: Servings: 4-6  Ingredients: 1 pound potatoes, diced 1/4 cup vegetable oil 1/2 large onion 1 1/2 medium tomatoes 3 jalapenos 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup juice from canned tomatoes Instructions: Fry potatoes in vegetable oil until lightly browned (about 4-6 minutes).  Saute onions, tomatoes, jalapenos until soft.  Add garlic powder and salt. Add tomato juice until vegetables are covered (may need to add water).  Bring to a boil and then add potatoes.  Cover and reduc