Remember how I couldn’t resist the fresh pasta from Bombolini at last weekend’s SOTJ Market?
I did a little search on the internet and discovered that fresh pasta should be used within 3 days so I knew I had to get cooking. This was not the healthiest adventure I’ve had, but it was oh so delicious.
The temperature dropped about 15-20 degrees between Thursday and Saturday. I don’t handle drastic temperature changes very well so I found myself fighting a headache all weekend. When I got cooking on Sunday, I was craving comfort food.
When I used to get migraines as a kid, my Dad always made me cheddar mashed potatoes when I woke up from my headache-induced naps in my cool dark bedroom. A big bowl of starchy cheesy potatoes was all it took to get me feeling like myself again. So it’s no mystery why I crave pasta or potatoes (with a generous dose of cheese) when I am feeling a little under the weather.
With that in mind, I got to work on the stockpile of noodles in my refrigerator. With the pound of dill shells, I cooked a cheesy pasta by making a béchamel sauce with a dash of cayenne and then melting in a combination of colby, cheddar, and monterey jack cheeses. I cooked the pasta in boiling water for two minutes and then added it to the cheese sauce. After seasoning with salt and pepper, I served it alongside swiss chard sauteed with white beans, onion, and fresh heirloom tomatoes, and dressed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
I wanted to make a nice pasta salad to take for lunches at work this week, so with the twist of spinach fettucine, I made cold pasta salad with the following mix-ins:
- diced green bell pepper
- white beans
- diced heirloom tomato
- diced cucumber
- extra virgin olive oil
- balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
It turned out very good, despite it being an unconventional pasta shape for salad. I was even able to share some of the fettucine with some friends to get a second and third opinion. There were second helpings all around so I called it a success. I was happy that my comfort food was able to create a bright spot in someone else’s day.
And now that we are back to highs in the mid-nineties, I am feeling much more like myself. Whether it was the return to normal temperatures or it was the shells and cheese, I will never know. But it’s good to be back!