Thursday, May 16, 2013

Bees, Basil, and Summer Spaghetti (The Farmer's Market is Open!!:))

On this lovely Thursday, our local Farmer's Market re-opened its stalls, and we took a little bite of summer. Not a big bite, because the good stuff isn't quite ready yet.
Rhubarb and green onions, as well as the best fresh pasta (Black Pepper flavor) and salsa. If you are in the Pittsburgh area, try to find Mia Cucina Pastas and Cinco de Mayo Salsa at one of your local fairs. You won't be disappointed. 
The kids love exploring the stalls, especially the bees and the sno-cone stand.

Apparently, the girls don't take kindly to taxes on Whiskey (for you history fans out there;)). 
Here's what I made when we got home. I don't pretend to be a food blogger. But I like to cook. And this is the easiest thing ever. I call it Summer Spaghetti.

Dice five medium sized tomatoes and chop green onions. Add both to bowl. Zest and squeeze one lemon into the tomatoes and onions. Mince four leaves of basil and add (I also grate in one clove of garlic, which adds a nice spicy note to the sauce). In the meantime, grill one package of chicken tenderloins (I do mine in a grill pan), and, once cooled, shred and add to sauce. I also add a decent amount of salt and pepper. I mean, crank the hell out of both grinders. Also, a decent helping of olive oil. I'd say a 1/2 cup.

Before the noodles fall in love with the sauce. 
Now, the noodles here are key. The better the noodle, the better your outcome. The noodle lady I buy from has all different kinds of fresh noodles (beet, garlic, spinach, parsley), but I'm a huge fan of the Black Pepper Pasta. When you cook fresh noodles, be careful. They cook fast. 3-4 minutes max.

I also constantly turn them in the pot with tongs, so they maintain their individual identities. 
When the noodles are done to your liking, ladle them directly into the dish. The hot water helps the sauce to break down and bind to the noodles. Here's what you get. It is pure deliciousness (and these weren't even good tomatoes). Imagine it with height-of-the-summer, juicy-mouthfuls-of-sweetness tomatoes.

Yum. The bite of the fresh noodles flavored with pepper, the acidity of the tomatoes and lemon, the ground bass of a good olive oil, and the sharpness of the green onions. So, so good. You have to try it. 
We ended the day with a walk in the field. The light was soft, but sharp. And it sharply brought to me how beautiful my little girl really is.

Oh, the boots. 
Until tomorrow! ~Alice
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