A good friend of mine has a daughter who is mentally challenged. Although I don't know anyone I really like that isn't, it still remains that I must mention her outward diminished capacity even as I quote her profundity. The point being that often the most wisdom emerges from those who are the most innocent. And when my friend told me that her daughter wished everyone (because she couldn't say NEW...) a "Happy YOU Year!" I knew that sentiment would become my theme for 2014.
Let's just be real for a minute. 2013 was bumpy, craggy, and downright unlucky. I was slightly, if not overly giddy to see it go. (Insert booting it in the backside in no uncertain terms, here.) It brought a lot of opportunities to be refined and enlightened, sure. But sometimes I would just rather have a neck rub, and say 'go away!' to the getting smarter part. Actually either a neck rub or give me something comforting like pasta to offset the whole rocky journey.
With that idea in mind, I decided that pasta would indeed be the PERFECT meal for New Year's Eve, and I gotta tell ya, what I created was a winner: Lobster Ravioli with Roasted Tomato Cream Sauce. Tart, warm, flavorful, spiked with enough garlic and thickened with real cream to cover any hint of temperance, it was served with a spring salad gently tossed with a blackberry vinaigrette, roasted pecans, and sweet onion. We finished the evening with a slab of my rum bread pudding and toasted the countdown with a cold glass of Prosecco that flaunted a delicate, single berry among the bubbles.
Aaaahhhh! The entire evening was awesome. Surrounded by old and new friends, and a bejeweled table of crystal, and multi-colored bling, we laughed and reflected and hugged each other tightly as the clock struck midnight; happy to be together, healthy, and in a land where we have peace, opportunity, and so much to be thankful for....Like pasta.
Anyway, enjoy the photos, check out the recipe, and I hope that this year truly is a happy YOU year!
Lobster Ravioli with Roasted Tomato Cream Sauce
Makes 6 to 7 cups
30 medium lobster ravioli (I bought these from a reputable fresh pasta establishment. You can use any other fresh pasta.)
10 firm Roma tomatoes diced
1 can pureed tomatoes (unseasoned)
½ can San Marzano diced tomatoes
2 t dried oregano
1/4 C light olive oil
Salt and Pepper
4 cloves garlic finely chopped
¾ C water
1 C heavy cream
10 large basil leaves finely cut
In a large roasting pan, spread the tomatoes out and cover with olive oil and salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast in 375 degree oven for 50 minutes or until the edges of the tomatoes begin to caramelize. Remove and place in VERY large saucepan or dutch oven. Add the crushed tomatoes, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper if needed. Simmer on low for 1 hour. Can then store it overnight and reheat. If using right away, add the heavy cream. Otherwise, if stored overnight, return to a simmer and then add the cream. Stir and serve with your favorite pasta. Top with fresh minced basil leaves.
Photo and recipe Copyright, Camine Pappas, 2013
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Meet the Cook...
My name is Camine Pappas and I love to create beautiful and delicious food that anyone can make. My signature style is one of combining things in a way you might not expect as I work to find a hidden combination of colors, textures and flavors from the things that are in my pantry and/or easy to obtain.