Leftovers: Linguine with mushroom purée
I used the leftover mushroom purée and mushroom dice from the "Porcini, cherry, toasted garlic, almond" dish in my dinner the other night.
I took a handful of Bionaturae gluten-free linguine and laid it on a baking sheet, which I put into a 375F-degree oven for 8 minutes. As it roasts, the pasta gets more golden and slightly brown in some spots, and the heat just brings out a kind of nutty flavor to it. Well, maybe not nutty... but sort of. Yeah, I'm sticking with nutty. And heartier. And, roastier. I don't know how else to explain it. It deepens the flavor, for sure. Bionaturae is a really great brand of gluten-free pasta, and I really don't buy any other kind. It's the closest I've ever tasted to "normal" pasta, and it holds up well in both hot and cold pasta preparations.
So, why roast the pasta? I got the idea from Frank Ruta, owner and chef of Palena. I went to Palena a few weeks ago for a nose-to-tail beef tasting menu, and he did this oxtail and cheek ragout that, quite literally, has been the best thing I've eaten so far this year. My dining companions got to spoon theirs over roasted vermicelli (which they all thought was much more delicious than regular pasta). I ate mine senza pasta, but texted myself a reminder to roast some dried pasta to see what it tasted like.
I finally did it, and it's goooooooood.
So, while the linguine was roasting (again, you just do it plain -- no oil or anything), I brought a pot of water to a boil. While I boiled the pasta, I reheated the leftover mushroom purée and mushroom dice in a saucepan on the stove. I added a little bit of olive oil to stretch it a bit, then when the pasta was done, I strained it and tossed it into the pan with the mushroom goodness.
Poured it all into a bowl, shaved some parm-reg on top, and dug in. After my first bite, it struck me that I had some leftover ham powder, as well. So, I dashed a bit of that on top, and it made my dinner even better. A glass of Etude pinot noir rosé rounded it all out quite nicely.
And there you have it. The pleasures and benefits of doing this blog are with me in my everyday eating. They can be in yours, too.
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So, I got a nice surprise on Twitter the other day: I was nominated for Saveur's Best Cook-Through Blog. Such an honor, and a pleasure to be nominated in the same category alongside my friends Ryan, Clay, and Zach. So, click on the image below if you'd like to vote for me. You'll have to register for a Saveur account (if you don't already have one), but it's free and takes about 20 seconds to do. Voting is open until May 12.
There are so many amazing, fun, wonderful people nominated in all the categories that just being together with them already feels like winning, you know? Thanks, in advance, for your vote (if you vote for me). Check out the other categories, too. I think you'll find some great new blogs to check out -- some really fantastic cooking and writing out there right now. Good luck, everyone!
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I'm covering the James Beard Awards on Monday, May 9 -- this year, for The Washington Post. (squeeeeeee!!!!) I'll let you know when and where you can read the updates -- probably some of it via Twitter, and some on the Post's website. More details as we figure them out. Really looking forward to being in New York, and seeing some of my favorite chefs. Happiness.
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And, thank you for all your kinds words about my previous post. You guys are the best. I mean it.