Monday, April 27, 2009

Duplicating A Memory

Onlinepastrychef @ Pastry Methods and Techniques post on Sunday Suppers- Finishing Pasta Sauce mentions something funny; she explains about making pasta and sauce- 'Template, Not Culinary Law'. The man I married asked me to put the pasta sauce only on top of the pasta just before serving from the very beginning. His mother made it this way, but my mom made it Onlinepastrychef's way. Sure I could have just continued to do it my way. The way I adore it, because tomatoes rock my world (I like a little pasta with my sauce). In our house pasta is made to order. Penne pasta and sauce combined is what you will see on OLPC's post...

In Dallas, when hubby and I first met, and became friends first; I began to invite him to dining events held around the area. One particular restaurant my friends and I would eat quite regularly was Basha. A Mediterranean place down off lower Greenville Avenue. I was excited to see the owner participating in a food and wine tasting we were attending. I tried this dish with grilled eggplant wrapped around an artichoke heart, and covered with a rich tomato sauce; it was served over a bed of pasta. Probably one of my first vegetarian dishes I could not live with out. Though they did not call it a 'Rollatini'; it was just listed under their vegetarian menu offerings, and I decided to give it a whirl (around the fork that is).

Mother-in-laws tongue pasta is what hubby chose to go along with the eggplant. I was counting on the care I took in getting the water to a full boil in my tall pot; then letting each piece slowly give way to the hot water and hopefully keeping it's shape. After about ten minutes (or so) the pasta was al dente and ready to plate up.

Straight from their label~ This truly special Italian pasta is hand made using all natural coloring. It is made by the Marella family as it has hundreds of years. The Marella family operates one of the finest pasta factories in the world located in Puglia, one of the most important regions in Italy for pasta production and consumption. Marella colors are all natural, and take the green from spinach, the black from squid ink and red from hot peppers. The result is a pasta with a fantastic rainbow array of colors. This is a complicated process that is not simple to perform, and still have the pasta hold its shape and color structure while cooking.

MISE: Grill some 1/4 inch thick eggplant with just an EVO baste; stack them in a pan covered with plastic wrap, so that they soften up a bit more and are rollable. Grill some EVO rubbed red onions and set aside. Cut some artichokes (in water, or fresh if possible) in half, set aside. Pick out your favorite cheese (I wished I had some goat cheese for this) and place in a bowl; approximately three tablespoons of cheese for each rollatini. Roll them up, and I found toothpicks were not necessary to hold them together. Bake in a 400 degree oven for fifteen minutes, and then serve over pasta. Sprinkle with pine nuts, parmesan cheese, or parsley.

My version is just from my Basha memories...good food, wine, and times!

I am so excited you might hear me scream! If things work out, my hubby's good friend/best man is getting married in June, and we will travel to India. In their culture are many sub-cultures, so the bride's family believes one must marry soon after an engagement. He has just ask her a few weeks ago. This means a great deal to us to be a part of his life, and I adore his fiance. I send many blessings and heart felt joy, to his family, her family, and to the both of them; to whom we love dearly.

Question from a kid: Do you cut or twirl you pasta?