I write today’s entry with much restraint.
There is so much I want to share with you about a discovery I made this week but am conflicted with simply dumping my overload of excitement on to you. . In moments, perhaps described best as temporary insanity, when one imagines one has seen it all, New York City springs upon you, a most delightful, decadent indulgence. “Eataly” is exactly one such place that will send your senses in a tizzy! Home to the finest Italian produce, utensils, artisanal epicurious treasures and restaurants, Eataly has taken New York by storm. If you live around here and have not been to Eataly, what are you waiting for?!? If you aren’t a local, it’s worth a trip.
Perusing the various market-like squares reminding me of my much missed ‘Piazza dela Cure’ in Florence, it was hard to know where to start. My husband and I started at the cheese counter that was a small and somewhat less overwhelming counter. Forty minutes later, we were still sampling rarities, such as, tobacco and cognac infused cheese (don’t judge it until you try it). After being pushed along by murmurs and heavy sighs coming from behind us, we moved on into a world beyond imagination. Fresh pastas; breads (the one with fig being most memorable); a vegetable butcher serving samples of celeriac carpaccio with olive oil and lemon juice.
To describe Eataly would be doing it a great disservice. I will say however, that it turned even the Alpha-est of males into a child in a candy store. Our last stop was at the butcher’s counter. How they had managed to make that counter look so beautiful was beyond me. With a flurry of ideas rushing to my mind for this weeks blog, I wanted it all. Of course, I couldn’t have it all and in my husband’s weakening moment of all things delicious, he suggested I should make Italian sweet sausage with pasta for this weeks entry. Great idea I thought and as my eyes darted across to the pasta counter, I felt papadelle would work really well with this. We made simple and sweet sausage pasta which had that seldom-experienced flavor from the fennel seeds. I love fennel seeds and despite its presence in the sausage, I sneaked a little more in.
1 lb of Italian sweet sausage (squeezed out from casing)
1 lb of fresh papadelle or tagliatelle
Olive oil 1/8 of a cup
3 cloves fresh and pounded garlic
1 tsp chilli flakes
1 tsp of fennel seeds (optional)
½ cup of white wine
¼ cup of starched water from the pasta
Handful of fresh flat leaved parsely (Finely chopped leaves only)
4 vine-ripened tomatoes
1 tblsp butter
1) Heat the oil and add the garlic. Saute on low heat for a few minutes and until the garlic softens. Add the crushed chili and fennel seeds to toast them and extract the full flavor
2) Coarsely crumble and add the sausage to the garlic oil adding the wine after 3 minutes and cook until golden brown (usually 7 minutes)
3) Boil the pasta as per directions and add ¼ cup of the pasta water to the sausage
4) Toss the pasta with the sausage
5) Quarter your tomatoes, melt butter in a pan and on low heat, glaze the tomatoes for 3 minutes
6) When serving, garnish with a couple of pieces of tomato and sprinkle with the parsley.
Help yourself to a glass of wine from the bottle you will use for the cooking.
Pearls of Wisdom
Remember ‘if it ain’t good enough to drink, it ain’t good enough to cook with’..Please use a good quality white wine.