These are three things that i know my 8 year old likes, so she can’t object to trying them in combination… at least one time…
In my next life, I’m going to be one of those food bloggers who cooks meals during the day in my kitchen next to the picture window that floods the entire soapstone or reclaimed wood counter with lovely, even northern light. My masterpieces will be photographed in pottery dishes (handmade by my daughter, natch) with linen napkins and tiny vases of flowers casually placed nearby.
Unfortunately for you all, I have yet to be reincarnated and, as such, am just barely getting a shot off before the food gets shoveled into the mouths of my waiting family. (I include myself in that group, by the way.) But hey, if this isn’t authentic, I don’t know what is.
Flowers or no, this recipe, which I stumbled upon while searching Smitten Kitchen for I don’t know what) is delicious, fast, and easily elevated to culinary peaks simply by purchasing quality ingredients. We didn’t happen to have tortellini, so I skipped the part where you make the tortellini crispy (don’t worry, we’ll be doing that next week, I’m sure!) and used the shell pasta we had on hand. Add some top notch prosciutto and creme fraiche from The Bedford Cheese Shop (about as top as a person can get, in the notch department) and we were good to go.
Total home run, if I do say so myself.
Crispy Tortellini with peas and prosciutto
(from Smitten Kitchen)
In the skillet
3 thin slices prosciutto (optional)
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 13-14 ounce package frozen cheese tortellini (about 3 cups)
1/2 cup frozen peas, no need to defrost
1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons crème fraîche or mascarpone
Juice of half a lemon, more or less to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
A few fresh mint leaves, cut into thin slivers
Grated parmesan (optional)
Heat a large, deep skillet with a lid over medium-high heat. If using, add prosciutto in a single layer and cook until curling and browned underneath, about 2 minutes. Flip over and let cook until browned on the other side. Transfer a paper towel to blot oil and cool.
Add oil to same skillet and heat it for a minute. Add frozen tortellini in a single layer and cook for 2 to 4 minutes, until they’re browned underneath. (We skipped that and just added al dente shells) Sprinkle with frozen peas and add water to pan. Be careful; it’s going to ROARHISS wildly. Put the lid on, and let them steam for about 5 minutes but don’t go too far because if the water cooks off too quickly, you’ll want to add a splash more. At 5 minutes, all water should have cooked off. Scoop pasta and peas into bowl. If you find any pasta has stuck, just add a splash more water over high heat to “deglaze” them off — loosen them with a thin spatula and toss them around until they’re crisp again.
Immediately dollop on crème fraîche so it melts over the pasta. Squeeze lemon juice over, then sprinkle with salt, pepper, crumble prosciutto over (if using), then slivers of mint and parmesan, if desired. Dig in. Give your freezer a pat on its back.