Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Extremely tasty pasta dish...

This pasta dish is so delicious and versatile, it can make great tea time treat, a special supper, or very desirable dinner party dish! It is creamy and garlicky, with the tender crunch of fresh vegetables (the nutty flavour of just beginning to soften cauliflower and broccoli).

With the exception of the pasta, it's an all-in-one-pan meal, and can be reheated* (if you have any left over) the next day.

I tend to use the same vegetables each time I make this, however I do tend to vary the protein element, often choosing between tasty prosciutto ham, or smoked salmon or poached salmon with some very nice prawns. However, you could add any protein you wish, and indeed any vegetables you wish, having a sort of variation on a theme!  The recipe below gives 2 decent portions with a smaller amount left over for a quick lunch for one the next day!  Serve with pasta (fusilli or conchiglie) and hot garlic bread!

*I would not recommend you reheat this dish if you use shellfish or chicken

You will need:

  • 2 leeks, halved lengthways, and thinly sliced widthways
  • Approx 8-10 mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 courgette, medium slices or strips
  • Approx 5 florets of broccoli (try to seperate into smaller florets)
  • Approx 5 florets of cauliflower (try to seperate into smaller florets)
  • 2 cloves of crushed garlic
  • Approx 5 tablespoons of creme fraiche
  • a few turns of freshly ground black pepper
  • A sprinkle of flour
  •  2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard
  • A small amount of single cream or milk
  • Small amount of olive oil
  • Prosciutto ham trimmed of all fat, and cut into strips (or your preferred protein element) 
  • A sprinkling of freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional) 

1.  Heat olive oil in a large sautee pan (with lid) and add all vegetables
Click on photo for a larger image and you can see the vegetables more easily!
2.  Stir occasionally, and sautee (without burning) until beginning to soften
3.  As soon as vegetables are beginning to soften, spoon the creme fraiche into a jug, and add mustard, black pepper, and garlic.  Mix these ingredients together, and add a little milk to make the sauce into a more pouring consistency
4.  Sprinkle a little flour over the softened vegetables and stir this in.
5.  Add the Prosciutto ham (add it in individual strips laid over the top of the vegetables as it has a habit of sticking together into a clump which is then difficult to separate)
the Prosciutto Ham before it is trimmed of its' fat, and cut into strips
6.  Add the sauce mixture and stir well to combine all ingredients
7.  Add the Parmesan cheese if using
8.  Add a few tablespoons of water from the cooking pasta to the sauce to make it more fluid, but it also has a thickening effect too, and gives the sauce a more coating consistency
9. Serve immediately with pasta (you can add a few spoonfuls of the cooked pasta to the pan if you wish), and garlic bread.


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