marzo italiano continues.
i'm over here savagely effing up huge, vast, copious quantities of pasta.
sauce and bread and olive oil and love are all on the menu,.
every day, and every night, for the pre-spring 'talian tailgate for the tail end of winter.
....and today is only day 7!
i made some baked penne, neighbors.
and i LOVE a good bakey pasta bowl.
i truly do.
and this one just happened to bring the thunder AND the lightning to the party, too.
y'wanna see it?
check the bake-a-roni-and-sauce-type teleport:
i really should be taking more in-progress shots of all of this stuff.
i mean it.
i like a nice plate as much, or maybe even a little bit more, than the next guy,
but it might be nice to document the process, too.....no?
we'll see what happens as the days go on.
in the meantime,
i made this burly bowl of big business the day before.
that's the smart move, man,
baked zeets, or, in this case, those slanted bias-cut mini-penne tubes,
always always always taste more expert the next day.
so, i let the next day be the first day.
i even made a whole other 'nother other spicy sauce.
too much is the right amount,
and more sauce is always the right decision.
homemade chunky pomodoro is pretty easy.
it's basically the same recipe, give or take red chili flakes,
as the previous posts form this month have detailed already.
the bigger deal was the cheesy filling.
oh, yes, my friends.
i do not skimp out on the ricotta-be-kidding-me stuff.
here's how it goes:
1/2 brick drained xxxtrafirm tofu;
3/4 pkg. silken tofu, pressed to the best of your ability;
one big handful of nutritional yeast;
GPOP, 1 T each component;
2 cups chopped baby spinach;
2 T lemon juice;
2 T egg replacer powder;
oregano, basil, black pepper, salt, fresh parsley, to taste;
1/2 cup coarse ground soaked raw cashews;
one big handful of daiya mozzarella chee'.
smooshed and stirred and mixed in with 3/4 lb of mini-penne,
boiled to a precise al dente level of doneness,
and mixed into 1/2 your sauce.
i got the sexxxy glazed italian terracotta bowl game on lock.
and this wide mouth jaun i used for the 'roni scene was perfectamundo.
you can use whatever you want,
but put a little olive oil and a splash of sauce on the bottom of your pan, man.
that's a thing that the kids like these days.
i topped my mix with another handful of daiya mozzarella chee;,
and then the rest of the first batch of sauce,
and put it in the fridge to set up and get right.
while i was making the spicier sauce, it heated the oven up to 410F,
and before i put the penne in to bake,
i poured in about a 1/4 cup of tomatoey veggie broth into those set-up noods, dudes.
that's a thing.
and it's a GOOD thing.
covered in foil and fired up for 20 minutes,
before another 'nother 15-20 uncovered,
and you've got the TRUTH in scoopable format ready to get devoured.
...provided you put it on a fresh-made bed of fresh-made sauce,
and top it off with even MORE.
don't forget your parsley sprankles, either.
nobody likes a lazy pile, as it implies a lazy person made it.
you know who is NOT invited for supper?
the lazies, bruh.
what are you?
some kind of a hippie?
F* off, kid.
i eat salad. wet leaves are dope.
try some, you'll see.
ensalata mixte is nice, man.
all the weirdie leaves, a little radicchio, a little baby kale,
shaved cucumber, grape tomatoes, red onion ringlets,
and olive-oil-fried sunflower and pumpkin seeds?
that's a salad worthy of warrior poets.
dressed with white balsamic vinegar,
and especially virginal oil?
perfection in form and function is in effect here, friend.
one last thing-
if you aren't F*ing with good bread, i'm not F*ing with you.
that's no joke.
i was at the supermarket, picking up a few leafy greens for the salad,
and it wasn't until right aterwards, when i was halfway to work,
that i remembered that they have TWO sections full of bread.
that's what happens when a make-it-yourself mentality
takes hold of your heart and mind....
i was stressin' about baking bread before dinner,
and it only incidentally occurred to me that i didn't have to.
then again, once you've had the real real,
all the rest can go sniff farts in a gopher hole.
so i got home, thinking garlic bread, but also thinking about time constraints.
i was hungry, homies.
i split the difference, and made garlic buns, and oh MAN, am i glad i did.
no, but realllllllllly.
1.5 cups flour;
2 T olive oil;
1 T sugar;
2 tsp bread machine yeast
1/4 tsp salt;
1/2 + 2 T warm water-
plus 2.5 tsp commercial yeast.
kneaded in a stand mixer for eight hard minutes,
covered and allowed to rise for 15 minutes more.
cut it into 1/4s, shape it into buns on a floured baking tray,
olive oil the tops,
spritz 'em with garlic powder and fried garlic sprankles,
score 'em deeply, and let 'em hang out until the oven is molto hot.
(which was already underway for the bakey 'ronis)
bake these little flavor grenades for about 15 minutes,
or until they're golden and aromatic and awesome.
keep an eye on that, and you'll be well rewarded-
the double yeast and sugar combo makes for verrry fluffy buns,
and the double olive oil makes for verrry crusty tops.
you couldn't ask for a more expert set of buns.
that's no lie.
do i go pasta-less, or tomato-less tonight?
i haven't decided.
i could do risotto,
i could do eggplant parm.
i could do lots of things.
i just don't know what i'm in the mood for yet;
i've still got enough baked penne to last for days.
who's coming over to take a plate for me?
i'm not saying you can't have tonight's dinner, too,
but rules is rules,
and you're responsible for removing the maxxximum allotment of leftovers.
marzo italiano is pretty cool.
i just like a theme.
a dedicated notion i can adopt, adapt, and become adept at.
it's all really happening, and it's drenched in tomato sauce;
never quiet, never soft.....