Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce. I’m in love with this quick and easy no-frill pasta dish. It has Kale in it which has numerous health benefits and happens to be pretty darn tasty. Check out my cookbook for “The Seasoned Life” for a quick “Kale Chip” recipe that is sure to be a favorite. And for those of you that are scared of anything green. Give it a try! It turns out to be a smooth and silky sauce that pairs perfectly with pasta. Share your favorite way to eat kale in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo-Ayesha

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce

12 ounces favorite pasta (I used orecchiette pasta)
1/2 white onion, roughly chopped.
1/2 cup basil leaves, roughly chopped.
2-3 garlic cloves
1/2 cup olive oil
Two tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup walnuts or pine nuts
2-3 cups fresh kale, ribs and stems removed.
3/4 cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste (I used about a teaspoon each)

 

Cook your pasta according to the package directions.

Remove the pasta from the boiling water and set aside. Add your chopped kale to the water and quickly blanch for 1-2 minutes and remove.

In a blender or food processor add blanched kale, garlic, onion, parmesan, lemon, and nuts. Stream in olive oil and puree until smooth.

Add kale sauce to your cooked pasta and toss to coat! Serve immediately!

Lamb Ragu

Lamb Ragu. Let’s throw it back to this delicious and crave-worthy dish. This rich and creamy, pasta is a spin on the traditional spaghetti sauce. Served over your favorite pasta. And flavored with tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, and a little red wine. Perfect for lunch or dinner! You can’t go wrong. This just may be your new favorite dinner to make. My kids were a big fan of this. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

 

Lamb Ragu

 

Lamb Ragu

1lb ground lamb
2 tablespoons olive oil
1-28oz can whole peeled tomatoes (I used San Marzano)
2 cloves garlic, minced.
One small red onion, diced.
Three cups cremini mushrooms, sliced.
One cup full-bodied red wine (I used cabernet)
One cup sour cream
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon Herbs de Provence
1 1/2teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/12 tablespoons brown sugar (Of course I’m going to use it!)
1lb box favorite pasta (I used fusilli pasta)
Grated parmesan cheese for garnish
Fresh basil or parsley for garnish

 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Make sure to salt your water! Add the pasta and cook according to instructions. Drain pasta. And set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add your onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the ground lamb into the pan. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, and Herbs de Provence.

Break up your lamb as it browns. Letting all of the liquid evaporate in the pan until you see little bits start to stick to the pan. Add mushrooms.

Add wine and deglaze the pan by getting all those brown bits off the bottom of the pan. (So much flavor!!) Let the wine cook down to half its size. Add the whole tomatoes and gently break up, simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes. Add brown sugar and sour cream and mix well.

Serve over the pasta. Garnish with freshly grated parmesan and freshly chopped basil.

Creamy Fontina Pasta Sauce

Creamy Fontina Pasta Sauce With Hidden vegetables. Hey everyone! So excited to share this recipe with you. Did you know that sauces are a great way to serve vegetables to your family? Now while my kids happen to love any type of vegetable, I know that not every parent has it this easy. So this is my spin on a regular pasta sauce that is chock full of whatever vegetables and herbs you may have on hand. It’s blended until smooth or left chunky depending on your picky eaters. Then combined with some nutty, creamy fontina cheese, browned meat, and your favorite pasta. The perfect way to feed your family and get them to eat their veggies. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

Creamy Fontina Pasta Sauce

 

Creamy Fontina Pasta Sauce

Two tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup yellow onion, finely chopped.
Two cloves garlic, finely chopped.
2 cups kale
One tablespoon tomato paste
1- 13.5 ounce can whole tomatoes.
Handful flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped.
1 cups eggplant, chopped. (I had fairy tale eggplant on hand.)
Two teaspoons dark brown sugar (Cuts the acidity.)
One teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and pepper to taste
4 ounces fontina cheese
1 pound cooked ground meat (I used ground lamb)
1 point pasta of choice ( I used rigatoni)

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add in onion, garlic, salt, and pepper and cook until softened, about 2-3 minutes.

Add in eggplant and kale and saute for another 3 minutes.

Stir in the tomato paste, whole tomatoes, sugar, and thyme. Mix well and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook over medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes.

You can choose to leave this sauce chunky or use a food processor, hand mixer or blender to puree the vegetables (hide them).

Add in fontina cheese to the hot sauce and allow to melt. Before topping with chopped parsley.

You can add your favorite browned meat to this sauce and serve over pasta.

Delicious!

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta. Heres another quick and flavorful meal to make when you are short on time. And as a busy mom of three, I am always looking for a recipe that can be put together in a flash. I made this for my family this week, and it was a hit.  Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta

1lb pasta, spaghetti.
1lb peeled, deveined shrimp
Three tablespoons olive oil
One clove garlic, minced.
1 cup flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped. (about a handful)
One tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
1/2 stick salted butter (I always buy grass-fed)
1/2 cup white wine (plus more for drinking!)
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

In a large bowl add shrimp and season with lemon pepper seasoning before carefully tossing to coat.

Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook for 1 minute. Add in garlic and butter and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Deglaze the pan by adding in the white wine. Making sure to get any bits off the bottom of the pan. (That’s flavor!) Season with pepper and add in chopped parsley. Remove from heat. Now add the cooked shrimp mixture to the cooked pasta and top with parmesan. Gently toss to coat. You can add in reserved pasta water if needed to thin out the sauce. Serve hot and garnished with extra parsley and parmesan is desired. Enjoy!

*Tip* reserve about 1 cup of pasta water to stretch the sauce if needed!

 

Turkey And Butternut Squash Baked Ziti

Turkey And Butternut Squash Baked Ziti. Hey everyone! Here is a recipe that’s easy enough for a busy school or work night. Now we all love those classic comfort foods that we had as a child. And baked ziti was one of my favorites. Its loaded with cheese, pasta and meat sauce. Not to mention a very inexpensive and easy throw together meal. Now this recipe is a lightened up baked ziti. We start with a flavorful ground turkey that’s tossed with a velvety butternut squash sauce. And topped with fontina cheese and baked until bubbly and golden. I use ground turkey in place of ground beef to lighten it up. The roasted butternut squash is pureed into a sauce alongside a little cream and chicken stock. This meal will honestly fool even the pickiest of eaters. It looks and tastes like a decadent cheese sauce. I hope that you enjoy this comforting casserole as much as we did. Leave a comment below.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

Turkey And Butternut Squash Baked Ziti

Turkey And Butternut Squash Baked Ziti

8oz pasta, cooked. (You can use ziti or whatever pasta you have on hand.)
Two tablespoons olive oil
4 cups roasted butternut squash (See below)
1lb ground turkey
One cup sweet onion, finely chopped.
Two garlic cloves, minced.
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream or half and half
One cup Mozzarella, shredded.
4 ounces fontina cheese
One tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/2 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin
Salt and pepper to taste

 

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook pasta according to package instructions.

Heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. And saute onion and garlic for 2-3 minutes. Add ground turkey and seasonings, break into pieces and cook until browned about 6-7 minutes. Remove from heat.

In a blender add roasted squash, cream, stock, salt, and pepper. If it is too thick for your liking, you can always thin it out with a little leftover pasta water.

Add butternut squash sauce and mozzarella with the turkey mixture. Combine with pasta and transfer mixture into a prepared baking dish. Break off chunks off fontina cheese and place over the top of the pasta.

Bake in a 350-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes until bubbly and browned. Serve immediately.

Mac And Cheese With A Twist!

Flashback this Friday with one of my favorite sides. Perfect for the upcoming holiday. Mac And Cheese With A Twist! Mac and cheese lovers unite. Now nothing is more comforting than a delicious bowl of ooey-gooey macaroni and cheese. I grew up eating this in so many different ways as a child. Does anyone still eat mac and cheese mixed with hotdogs?! These days I can elevate it a little more. My kids love seafood so making lobster or crab mac and cheese is such a treat for them. This particular dish is loaded with yummy veggies and crispy pancetta. I like to use shallots because they are not as sharp as onions, their taste and texture mellow out nicely. You also get some smoky and sweet in this dish from the paprika and tomatoes! Share some of your favorite nostalgic mac and cheese memories with me below in the comments.

 

Mac And Cheese With A Twist

 

Mac And Cheese With A Twist

1 lb Elbow Macaroni
2 tablespoons butter
2 cloves minced garlic
2 teaspoons shallot, minced.
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup whole milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream (half and half works too.)
3 cups white cheddar
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, drained well and chopped.
1/2 cup mushrooms
,2 cups fresh spinach
1/2 cup crispy pancetta
1/2 tablespoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cook the pasta according to instructions. Set aside.

Add pancetta to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until crispy and remove to drain and set aside.

Using the same pan add garlic and shallot and cook for 1-2 minutes. Now add in mushroom and cook for about three minutes more. (This allows the moisture in the mushrooms to release) Add your spinach and cook until wilted. Pour into a small bowl and set aside.

Carefully wipe out the pan and return to heat. Heat butter over medium-low heat.

Now whisk in flour gradually until smooth. Continue to cook for about 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in milk and cream stirring until thickened. Reduce heat to low. Add spices and two cups of cheese.

Stir in the pancetta, spinach, mushrooms, and sun-dried tomatoes. Remove from heat.

Add pasta to the skillet and evenly spoon the cheese sauce over it.

Pour the pasta into a lightly greased baking dish or cast iron skillet. Sprinkle the top with the remaining cheeses.

Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until bubbly. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before serving.

A perfect dish to serve this holiday.

 

Xo Ayesha

My Simply Delicious Alfredo Sauce

My Simply Delicious Alfredo Sauce. If your looking for a comforting bowl of saucy pasta goodness, you have come to the right place. If you’re looking for a healthy bowl of food, this is not it. This is one of those guilty comfort meals we all need and deserve every once in a while. It reminds me of one of the many meals me and my sisters had growing up at an Italian eatery. A very basic alfredo sauce with a touch of cream cheese to give it a little more creaminess. I served it with some quickly sautéed mushrooms and multi-colored fresh fettuccine noodles. So delicious! What’s your guilty pleasure meal? Comment below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

 

Simply Delicious Alfredo Sauce

 

Simply Delicious Alfredo Sauce

1 cup parmesan, freshly grated.
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup cream cheese (About four ounces)
Four tablespoons butter
One garlic clove
One shallot, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper or white

In a large pan over medium-high heat melt butter. Once butter is melted add in garlic, shallot and allow to cook for 1-2 minutes. Now add in your heavy cream, seasonings, and cheeses. Lower the heat and make sure to whisk frequently for about 5-6 minutes. Once the sauce is thickened and creamy remove from heat and serve.

For a complete meal add in your favorite ingredients along with the sauce. I used 8 ounces of fettuccine, sautéed mushroom and topped it with shrimp!

 

A Deliciously Simple Pasta With A Fancy Name “Cacio e Pepe”

A Deliciously Simple Pasta With A Fancy Name. “Cacio e Pepe” is a classic dish that utilizes simple ingredients and turns them into something so delicious. A Roman dish that means “cheese and pepper.” It’s tossed with olive oil, cracked black pepper, butter and grated cheese. Here I threw some sauteed mushrooms over the top but that’s entirely up to you. Traditionally the recipe wouldn’t call for that. I’m all for adding extra flavor. A meal that is perfect for a late night craving or when my kids want something quick to eat. They can handle the peppery taste and my kids really LOVE pasta of any kind! Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Oops almost forgot my mushrooms!!

Cacio e Pepe Pasta (Cheese and Pepper)

1/2 pound pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons butter, unsalted.
3/4 cup Pecorino-romano cheese, grated.
3/4 cup Parmigiano-regiano cheese, grated.
Coarse ground black pepper (About 1 1/2- 2 tablespoons)
Kosher salt to taste
Sauteed sliced mushrooms. (optional)

In a large pot bring water and bring to a boil. Salt your water with about one tablespoon of salt. Add in pasta and cook according to the cooking time on the box. Reserve 1 cup of cooking liquid (water) from the pot and set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and add olive oil and black pepper. Heat until the pepper begins to sizzle. Add in 2-3 tablespoons of water along with butter and stir well. Transfer hot pasta into the pan and coat with pepper mixture.

Add in cheese and toss until all of the pasta has been coated and doesn’t stick. Season to taste and serve.

I added some sautéed mushrooms over the top of mine. They were just baby portabello mushrooms that were sauteed in butter with a little salt.

**Make sure you serve with the option of extra black pepper and cheese if wanted.**