Since today is my birthday, instead of a cake, I opted to make something a little less traditional to celebrate. I’m obsessed with caramel—I could drink the stuff—so I decided to make a really easy caramel tart. The tarts are small, eliminating the risk of eating 4 slices, and fast to assemble, which meant I didn’t have to slave in the kitchen on a day when I should be relaxing.
I tend to get obsessed over regional favorites. It’s a little bit about exclusivity and a lot about getting a feel for the culture of a place. Enter Old Forge pizza. It’s a rectangular pizza topped with a creamier cheese and it’s served in Northeastern PA (hence the “Old Forge”part). I used to have this type of pizza a lot because I have two sisters-in-law from that area (I wrecked the streak by marrying a New Yorker). It’s one of my favorite pizzas so I had to make it at home.
In my kitchen, tomato sauce—or “gravy,” as my family calls it—isn’t just for pasta. I make bulk batches that I can use to add flavor to chicken or spice up a boring rice side dish. I always have so much on hand, that it appears frequently in dinners. So, I decided to change things up a bit by switching out that same, old gravy with a zingy roased red pepper sauce.
As a frugal cook, I love escarole soup. It’s just greens and broth! The entire pot can cost you less than a few dollars. And when you throw a few meatballs in there, you have yourself a delicious Italian wedding soup. I like to make a ton of this soup ahead of time and then freeze individual servings for future lunches.
Last year, I encouraged you to go out and eat a sfinge, but this year, I want you to make your own. St. Joseph’s Day (Mar. 19th) is fast approaching, so I decided to tackle this recipe. It has homemade cannoli cream (which I could eat by the bucket), chocolate chips, and candied fruit. Since sfinges are my all-time favorite dessert, I anxiously await the start of Lent each year – the only time these delicious treats are available at my local bakery. Now that I can personally whip up a batch, there might be trouble. Sfinge Fridays anyone?
I’m always in the mood for any type of soup or stew. Always! This week, I decided to make fish chowder. What could be better? It’s got vegetables. It’s got fish. And it’s even got wine and cream. Basically, those are all of the ingredients that I need for a happy life.