Tomato Sauce with Olive Oil, Chopped Vegetables, Rosemary, and Pancetta

It’s fun looking through my Marcella Hazan cookbook and finding new simple recipes to make that taste good. This one has vegetables built in, and because they are chopped rather than diced, they remain fresh tasting in the sauce. The pancetta adds a bit of flavor and meat to the dish, if you or your family members (ahem, K) require that in a meal. If not, you can make the same dish without the pancetta. This dish is also toddler-friendly with the fun pasta shapes and easy to chew vegetables.

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Beef Pot Roast Braised in Red Wine

If you are tired of beef cooked slowly in a pot…then move along. I haven’t tired of it yet, and love finding new recipes that riff on a classic.

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Pasta with Sausage, Asparagus, and Lemon

This was a recipe I partially sketched out ahead of time, and partially did in the moment. It was a nice, light dish that was filling but perfect for a warm day. If you don’t have asparagus, you could swap in a different vegetable such as broccoli. I would recommend steaming the broccoli first, then adding it in near the end.

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Bolognese Focaccia with Bacon and Parmesan

Another bread recipe for you. This time, it has bacon in it! You don’t see it, you don’t feel it in the texture…but you taste it. If you don’t tell people it’s there, they will still be able to taste the extra savory bits in it.

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This is different from a normal focaccia that you might buy at a store. It is extra crisp on the outside, and the flavor is really interesting because the seasoning is almost all inside the dough, and not on the top.

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Chinese and Italian Chicken with Rice Noodles

It took a while to come up with that title. I mean, you guys know I like to mix cultures but this one was quite a bit unique. We had leftover rice noodles from when Lisa was over cooking Pad Thai (fresh from a cooking trip to Thailand) for us. I decided to treat them kind of like cooked spaghetti. So, I decided that browned butter, chicken, mushrooms, and the rice noodles could go well together, along with a bit of sage and soy sauce. Surprisingly, it came together in a nice homey dish.

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Homemade Tagliatelle with Sage, Bacon, and Browned Butter Sauce

This is the start of Italian Week on this blog. After watching America’s Test Kitchen where they made this pasta, I was motivated to make three related dishes. Two involve the pasta recipe, and then there is a surprise one on Friday. It’s more American than Italian, but that often is the case with the Italian food I ate growing up (and about half of my family is Italian…sooooo, yeah). You can make this pasta and have it with any sauce. In fact, I only tossed half of the pasta with sauce and left the rest plain for the next recipe. I reheated it in a marinara sauce and it was great.

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Chicken with Herbs

I know, I know, really creative title. Well, it started off as “Chicken with Sage” but I decided to go nuts and add all of my fresh herbs (thyme, rosemary, basil, and sage). Sooooo, this turned into chicken with mega herbs. The technique is mostly taken from Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen with a few spins to make it more my style. Part of my style is that I don’t enjoy pounding meat flat. At all. It’s why I used to buy the already flattened stuff at the grocery store where I used to live. It cost just a little more, but it was already in perfect scallopini form. Every time I do it at home I get a major mess, so I have gotten crafty (or just lazy) and started slicing the chicken breasts horizontally so that I can create thin fillets. They do not end up uniform in size, but they are fairly uniform in thickness, which is the main concern. You can pound your meat or slice it. I don’t care, and it certainly ends up the same!

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