So as you might have already heard, bambino/a #5 is on the way for us! That's right, five kiddos. Before you draw up the paperwork to have me committed, hear me out....
Kids are tough, but coming from a family of only TWO kids (me and my younger brother) I always wanted a big family. My husband, on the other hand was #6 of 7 kids, so he felt the same way:) And so here we are, with four (and a half) kiddos, where our house is messy, our family dinners are loud, and our weekends are full of fun. In a certain sense, it keeps you young;)
So somehow with this "youth" and my expertise in being pregnant, I have found the time to let you all follow along with my unusual pregnancy cravings. Aside from tomato juice with a dash Tabasco sauce in the morning (weird, right?!) I just cant seem to eat enough CHEESE! I guess they say whatever you crave is what your body is in need of, so perhaps I need more calcium? Who knows?!
Cheese is darn yummy and I am all about eating it alone, with crackers, with fruit, on pasta...and even, IN pasta! So here's some cheese stuffed dishes for your enjoyment!
(that's what the restaurant called it anyway...this recipe is adapted from my long-time love of a favorite restaurant's cheese tortellini in a spicy pink sauce)
1 small onion, diced
1 tbsp butter
a few tbsp e.v.o.o.
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 cup heavy whipping cream
black pepper to taste
This sauce is so simple, it just takes a bit of love and attention. Saute the onions in the butter and olive oil. WATCH THEM CAREFULLY. You want to use a medium heat and sweat the onions. Try not to let them get any color. This means waiting patiently for them to turn transparent. While cooking, add the crushed red pepper. The spice infuses the oil with the help of the heat and adds a lasting bite to the sauce. Add the can of tomatoes. Puree with a hand blender. Simmer for 30 minutes or so, until the raw tomato taste is cooked out, and the flavors meld. Lower the heat to low, and slowly add the cream, while stirring. Do not let it boil. (see what i mean by TLC?) bring back up to temp, serve over CHEESE tortellini, and LOVE EVERY BITE!
DAD'S LOBSTER RAVIOLI
This is a recipe my dad had recently experimented with, which also incorporates my second love - cheese. (My first love is arguably my husband...or, at the moment, McDonald's apple pies -I'm not quite sure.) This is a very creative combination of lobster and ricotta cheese, stuffed in a homemade pasta dough, cut into ravioli and served with a tomato cream sauce made with shallots and brandy. Given the way that my dad and I cook, recipes are hard to come by. It's usually a little of this and a little of that, but I can tell you the basics and if you want more details, email me...SUBITO!
Stuffing: Saute some minced shallots in e.v.o.o. and cook the seasoned lobster in them. Remove and let cool. Roughly chop the lobster and mix with beaten egg, grated cheese, ricotta cheese, salt and pepper to taste.
Sauce: Saute some minced shallots in e.v.o.o. Add the brandy, cook out the alcohol. Add the crushed tomatoes, simmer. Add the heavy cream (using a similar method as above). You may or may not want to cook some additional lobster in with the shallots and brandy to make it more of a fishy dish.
Here's some pics to get you started: