Thursday, May 3, 2012

salted capers

courtesy of wikipedia
photographer:  EugeneZelenko
caparis spinosa, or caper
near the Technion, Haifa, Israel.
This particular plant hangs
on an artificial wall which supports a road.

angel hair pasta with roasted tomatoes, garlic, and salted capers

for this recipe, refer to my other blogged recipes here and here for roasting tomatoes with garlic.  just prepare your angel hair pasta according to package directions (only a few minutes boiling, and in this recipe, with canola oil in the water - not salt - while cooking).  toss your pasta in the simple egg sauce described in the previously blogged recipes, top with roasted tomatoes, and sprinkle your salted capers on top, with desired shredded cheeses.

serve and enjoy!  a nice red wine, of course.

courtesy of daily painters
title:  where's the pasta?

cream sauce instead

i am a pasta fan, and must eat it at least once a week, preferably with more vegetables than pasta.  i started adding salted capers to pasta, by accident, after viewing an old library vhs of an obscure seattle television chef, whose name I can't recall, and who must be obscure since i can't find him again, internet or library catalogue searching.  he enthusiastically prepared a tempting and fairly simple pasta cream sauce, adding salted capers.

i have since adapted his cream sauce, using either half-and-half or non-sweetened condensed milk (whole or non-fat, though whole adds more flavor).  with vegetable variations (i don't recall exactly what he did, although i do remember he used chopped celery). 

in any case - if you prefer - and in lieu of your egg sauce for this recipe - sauté some more peeled and sliced garlic cloves (amount, to taste) in olive oil, and when not especially browned, add your cream substitute (amount relative to the amount of pasta) with a couple of dry bay leaves, a strong dose of freshly ground black pepper, and a sprinkling of salted capers in the milk, to taste. 

if you like, you can also sauté some sliced and chopped yellow onion, after you get the garlic going a bit (otherwise it will "drown" in the onion juices).  note, however, that onion will add a distinctive, strong, sweet flavor of its own.  if you are cooking for kids, they may like this very much.  add the milk or half and half, with bay leaves, pepper, and capers, as the onions soften up nicely.

get the half and half (or condensed milk) steaming hot, but without boiling it - lower the heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently.

toss your pasta in olive oil, and then with this adapted (or less fattening, less cholesterol-laden) cream sauce.

serve with your roasted tomatoe and garlic, and of course, shredded cheeses.  enjoy!

courtesy of wikipedia
photographer:  fastily
a close-up of several bay leaves
(laurus nobilis)

and more stuff

caper nutritional information from a quick google. capers are the flowering bud of a low growing shrub native to the mediterranean.  they are pickled in salt, or salt and vinegar.  the capers in this blog recipe are preserved in salt - and they are very salty, so other salt is excluded from the recipe, with the exception of the roasted tomatoes - however, use it sparingly, there.  if you are using the egg sauce, you can also roast the salted capers with the tomato and garlic slices. just sprinkle some on top before putting in the oven.

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