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Handmade Pasta with Pancetta, Cherry Tomatoes, and Herbs

Handmade Pasta with Pancetta, Cherry Tomatoes, and Herbs

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  • 2 cups (or more) 00 flour
  • 4 teaspoons plus 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped white onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped pancetta (Italian bacon)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 3 cups small cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 16 fresh basil leaves plus fresh sprigs for garnish
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese plus additional Romano cheese, shaved

Recipe Preparation

  • Place 2 cups flour in large bowl. Make well in center. Add 1/2 cup hot water, 4 teaspoons oil, and pinch of salt to well and stir to combine. Gradually mix flour into wet ingredients, adding remaining 1/2 cup water to form soft dough. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead until smooth, adding more flour if sticky, about 5 minutes. Gather dough into ball. Transfer dough to bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rest 1 hour at room temperature.

  • Lightly dust large baking sheet with flour. Place dough on work surface and cut off 1/2-inch-thick slice. Roll dough between palms of hands and lightly floured work surface to 1/3-inch-thick rope. Repeat with 5 more dough slices, rolling each into rope. Cut ropes into 1-inch lengths. Using 2 fingers, push fingertips into dough as you pull it toward you to form horizontal imprints. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough in batches. DO AHEAD Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover with dry kitchen towel, then plastic wrap, and let stand at room temperature.

  • Heat remaining 1/2 cup oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, pancetta, and pepper and sauté until onion is translucent, about 8 minutes. Add tomatoes with any juices and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Mix in 16 basil leaves and oregano. Season to taste with salt.

  • Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Add pasta and boil until tender but still slightly firm to bite, about 10 minutes. Drain well; return to pot. Add half of sauce and 1/2 cup grated cheese and toss over medium heat until warm, about 2 minutes. Divide pasta among bowls. Spoon remaining sauce over. Garnish with basil sprigs. Serve, passing shaved cheese separately.

Recipe by Antonio Pisaniello,Reviews Section

Bucatini with Tomatoes, Pancetta, and Hot Pepper

1 Pour the oil into a skillet large enough to hold all of the cooked pasta. Add the pancetta, onion, and crushed red pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat, until the pancetta and onion are golden, about 12 minutes.

2 Add the wine and bring to a simmer.

3 Stir in the tomatoes and salt to taste. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is thickened, about 25 minutes.

4 Bring at least 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add 2 tablespoons of salt, then the pasta. Stir well. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, until the pasta is al dente, tender yet still firm to the bite. Set aside some of the cooking water. Drain the pasta.

5 Pour the pasta into the pan with the sauce. Toss the pasta and sauce together over high heat about 1 minute, or until the pasta is coated. Add a little cooking water if the pasta seems dry. Remove from the heat. Add the cheese and toss well. Serve immediately.

From "1,000 Italian Recipes." Copyright 2004 by Michele Scicolone. Used with permission of the publisher, Wiley Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Nutritional Facts:

This Bucatini with Tomatoes, Pancetta, and Hot Pepper recipe is from the Cook'n in Italy Cookbook. Download this Cookbook today.

Handmade Pasta with Pancetta, Cherry Tomatoes, and Herbs - Recipes

Pasta alla Carbonara
Recommended pasta for this recipe:
spaghetti, rigatoni or penne
Photo by Italy Bit by Bite

The traditional recipe originated in Amatrice, a small town in Abruzzi 100 kms east of Rome, after which the dish is named. The recipe is based on sauteed onions mixed with guanciale (ideally, pork cheek meat, but bacon may also be used) and tomato. Once ready, the pasta is topped with grated cheese (either pecorino or parmigiano according to the taste). Serve with a glass of strong red wine.

A "secret" recipe created by the famous chef Alfredo (in Rome) consisting of a double-butter based sauce mixed with cream and parmigiano cheese. What seems a simple recipe at first sight results in the perfect combination of the ingredients combined with the perfect al dente cooking of the fettuccine (egg-based home-made pasta).

Campania: Food Traditions

Best known around the world for its pizza, Campania's exuberant cuisine relies on sun-kissed vegetables and herbs, salty capers, dried pasta, and fresh farmhouse cheeses (chief among them water buffalo's Mozzarella). In the nineteenth century, people living in the capital city of Naples were nicknamed Mangia Maccheroni (Maccheroni Eaters) to this day, Neapolitans remain devout pasta eaters, and their pasta is among the best and the most varied in all of Italy. In Campania (as in Sicily) you will find the elaborate dishes of the seventeenth- and eighteenth-century French monzù tradition one, a rich rice Timballo called Sartù di Riso, is made only for feasts.

On the Amalfi Coast (a stretch that has been called "The Most Beautiful Coast in the World") there is a unique pasta called Scialatielli, prepared with flour, eggs, milk, grated Parmigiano, and parsley, shaped into stout strands, and tossed with seafood and flavorful cherry tomatoes. Fertile volcanic soil near Mount Vesuvius and a thriving fishing industry combine to make Campania's kitchen one of the luckiest, and most varied, in Italy. Seafood dishes are bright and vibrantly flavored, a true ode to the sea, while pastries bespeak an Arab and Greek influence and often feature honey, nuts, and spices.

The Kitchen's Best Pasta Recipes

Photo By: Chris Amaral ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Emile Wamsteker ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Jason DeCrow ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Jason DeCrow ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Jason DeCrow ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Jason DeCrow ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Fresh Pasta with Parmesan Butter Sauce

Yes, it really is possible to make authentic homemade pasta with just four ingredients. If you don&rsquot have a fancy stand mixer, you can also make it by hand.

Pasta with Lemon Herb Yogurt Sauce

This sauce requires no cooking at all, just mixing cool ingredients like Greek yogurt, feta, lemon zest, oil and herbs. Add fettucine noodles and a splash of pasta water until the sauce is nice and creamy.

Rigatoni with Spicy Chicken Sausage, Asparagus, Eggplant, and Roasted Peppers

This hearty pasta gets a five-star rating from our fans it&rsquos quick to make and full of flavor.

Burrata Ravioli with Fresh Tomato Sauce, Parmigiano and Basil

The secret here is starting with ready-to-go fresh pasta you don&rsquot have to make your own!

Baby Shells Bechamel

You&rsquove had mac and cheese before, but we bet that you haven&rsquot had it like this. The bechamel sauce is super creamy and soaks into each baby shell.

Beef Stroganoff

The addition of sour cream delivers a welcome tang to classic stroganoff.

One-Pot Super Easy Fusilli

This dinner is as simple as dumping everything into a pot &mdash dry noodles, tomatoes and all &mdash and letting it simmer. The liquid from the stock will absorb into the pasta and create a rich, flavorful sauce.

Fettuccine with Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce

Picture this: All the creamy richness you know and love in a classic alfredo sauce but without any of the actual cream. Sold yet? That's the scene here in Katie's game-changing recipe. The secret is boiled cauliflower, which becomes smooth and creamy when pureed with milk.

Penne with Beans and Pancetta

1 Pour the oil into a large saucepan. Add the pancetta. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Add the onion and cook until it is tender and golden, about 10 minutes.

2 Stir in the garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add the beans, tomatoes, and salt and pepper. Cook 5 minutes.

3 Bring about 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add 2 tablespoons of salt, then the pasta. Stir well. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, until the pasta is al dente, tender yet still firm to the bite. Set aside some of the cooking water. Drain the pasta.

4 In a large warm serving bowl, toss the pasta with the sauce and parsley. Add a little of the cooking water, if needed. Add the cheese and toss again. Serve with freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

From "1,000 Italian Recipes." Copyright 2004 by Michele Scicolone. Used with permission of the publisher, Wiley Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Nutritional Facts:

This Penne with Beans and Pancetta recipe is from the Cook'n in Italy Cookbook. Download this Cookbook today.

Mediterranean Chicken Salad

I love to cook (…duh) but sometimes weeknight meals feel like a chore to come up with. The BF and I do our weekly grocery shopping on Sundays and sometimes I just can’t think past Sunday night as far as meals go. “Are you sick of penne vodka?” I always ask, staring down at the shopping list with the same twenty items as last week and the week before.

If you’re like me, and you often run out of ideas, there’s a savior: Epicurious Weekday Meal Planner. It’s literally a meal for every night of the week. Not just an entree, not just a soup or a sandwich, a whole meal: salad, entree, and even a dessert suggestion. Epicurious even offers up suggestions on what to do with leftovers (for example, 2 cups of rice made on Monday could serve as the base for Tuesday’s soup). And the best part? Most meals are working-girl/guy friendly. You won’t find any four-hour-long roasting menus or Thanksgiving-sized turkey dinners. If you’re ever stuck for a meal idea, you gotta check it out.

The below meal comes straight from Epicurious’ Weekday Meal Planner and it exceeded my expectations. And I love that it makes enough leftovers for my lunch tomorrow and The BF’s dinner on Thursday.

On the menu:
Mediterranean chicken salad
Serves 5
Adapted from

4 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp fresh tarragon, chopped
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 Tbsp dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
3 cups cooked, diced chicken

1 cup orzo
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1 6-oz. jar of artichoke hearts, drained
2 Tbsp capers, drained
3 cups mixed greens
1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup cucumbers, diced

In a small bowl combined oil, vinegar, tarragon, lemon juice, and mustard, and whisk together until combined. Add salt and pepper to taste. Toss the chicken with 1/4 cup dressing until coated.

Cook orzo as directed and once drained, toss cooked orzo with the remainder of the dressing. Add chicken to the orzo, then add the cranberries, artichoke hearts, and capers.* Plate mixed greens and then chicken salad on top of the greens. Add tomatoes and cucumbers on the side (or on top if the mood strikes you).

*This salad is “supposed” to be served cold (I don’t really do a lot of things I’m supposed to when it comes to cooking) but I looooved the flavor of the balsamic vinegar when the chicken and orzo warmed it up, so feel free to serve it warm or at room temperature.

Note: I warmed up some naan and served it alongside the salad. It was the cherry on the sundae… and yes. Afterward I ate a sundae.

The best spaghetti bolognese recipe

Put a large saucepan on a medium heat and add 1 tbsp olive oil.

Add 4 finely chopped bacon rashers and fry for 10 mins until golden and crisp.

Reduce the heat and add the 2 onions, 2 carrots, 2 celery sticks, 2 garlic cloves and the leaves from 2-3 sprigs rosemary, all finely chopped, then fry for 10 mins. Stir the veg often until it softens.

Increase the heat to medium-high, add 500g beef mince and cook stirring for 3-4 mins until the meat is browned all over.

Add 2 tins plum tomatoes, the finely chopped leaves from ¾ small pack basil, 1 tsp dried oregano, 2 bay leaves, 2 tbsp tomato purée, 1 beef stock cube, 1 deseeded and finely chopped red chilli (if using), 125ml red wine and 6 halved cherry tomatoes. Stir with a wooden spoon, breaking up the plum tomatoes.

Bring to the boil, reduce to a gentle simmer and cover with a lid. Cook for 1 hr 15 mins stirring occasionally, until you have a rich, thick sauce.

Add the 75g grated parmesan, check the seasoning and stir.

When the bolognese is nearly finished, cook 400g spaghetti following the pack instructions.

Drain the spaghetti and either stir into the bolognese sauce, or serve the sauce on top. Serve with more grated parmesan, the remaining basil leaves and crusty bread, if you like.

Two tarts walk into a bar…

First off, an admission. I did not make the pastry – I sauntered into M&S and bought me some ready-made tartlets. I mean, there are times when I would make my own pastry, but for the most part, a good quality bought version will do the trick. These are terribly easy, and endlessly adaptable. Basically, I try and think of my favourite foods that go together and match 2 or 3 of them together in a tart-case, shove them in the oven and voila.

The first tart is basically a Caprese in a cup – soft mozzarella di bufala, juicy cherry tomatoes and a thick spread of basil pesto. I like to roast the tomatoes first and then just barely grill the tarts when assembled, because I like the cheese to be barely melting. Caprese tartlets

1. Cut the tomatoes in half, place in a roasting tin with 3-4 whole cloves of garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and season liberally with sea salt and black pepper.

2. Place in a hot oven for 20 minutes until soft, but still keeping their shape.

3. Spread pesto on the base of the tart, tear up the mozzarella and tumble in the tomatoes and cheese. Drizzle with a small amount of extra virgin olive oil

4. Place in a hot oven, or under a grill for 5-7 minutes.

Goat’s Cheese, Walnut and Cranberry Tarts.

The second tart is one I devised for Christmas, hence the cranberries. Molten goat’s cheese is always a winner, and the flavours of this tart work really well together. I like to think it is quite a sophisticated dish, either as a lunch or starter, even though it involves little effort really.

1. Use about 150g of cranberries for this recipe. Place in a heavy-bottomed saucepan with a splash of red wine, 1-2 tbsp of orange juice (i.e. squeeze in an orange) and 1tbsp of sugar. Sprinkle in 1/2 tsp of fresh thyme. Put it on a low-heat and stew until the fruit is soft and forming a compote – season with black pepper and remove from the heat.

2. Roughly chop a handful of walnuts. Toast for 1-2 minutes in a dry frying pan on a high heat.

3. Cut the log of goat’s cheese (St. Tola or similar) into 1cm rounds. Spoon the fruit into the base of the tartlets and lay the cheese on top. Sprinkle over the walnuts. Drizzle with a small amount of extra-virgin olive oil.

Gluten Free Bow Tie Noodles

These Gluten Free Bow Tie Noodles from Clean Eating Mag are an amazing blend of gluten free flours and seeds. There aren’t any gums or fillers in this recipe, so the pasta is slightly more delicate than some others you might be used to. It’s a unique blend of flax meal, ground chia seeds, brown rice flour, chickpea flour, Bob’s Red Mill Potato Flour , tapioca flour, eggs and olive oil. You can use a pasta machine when flattening the dough, then use your fingers to lightly press it into bow tie shapes. Alternatively, you can also leave the dough in sheets and use it as a base for a fresh gluten free lasagna.

When it comes to gluten free pasta recipes, the options are plentiful. From ravioli to bow tie noodles, to traditional pasta, there’s something here for the pasta enthusiast in us all!

Have any favorite gluten free pasta recipes you like to make? Feel free to share them with us in the comments below! We’d love to hear what you create.