New Years Day Comfort Food

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It’s New Year’s Day 2017. Maybe you stayed up a little too late and drank a little too much, celebrating last night. Or maybe its freezing cold out and you just want a stay-at-home family day of relaxing. No matter what, this month I’ve chosen a hearty winter comfort food for you to cook, that is sure to satisfy! (As a plus, this carb and protein packed dish gives your body a boost of healing energy!)

Carbonara is found on restaurant menus around the world and is defined as a pasta sauce denoting a sauce made with bacon, ham, egg, and cheese. My adapted recipe is full of Montana flavor, quick, easy, and makes for a beautiful presentation on your dining table.

This rich, creamy (without cream!) Italian pasta and sausage based one-dish-meal is delicious! Serve with a salad at mid-day (or even brunch!) for a new family favorite. Many cultures consider this a breakfast food, it’s so versatile and good for any meal of the day.  Garlic toast is always a nice side as well, to compliment and complete the Italian holiday menu.

Montana Carbonara

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon fresh grated orange zest

¼ cup fresh, flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped

¼ cup bread crumbs

1 tablespoon kosher salt

16 ounces uncooked linguine noodles. (I prefer whole wheat)

12 ounces smoked beef or pork sausage rope, sliced thin (there are so many flavor options so just choose your favorite)

1 medium onion, minced

3 large organic fresh eggs, room temperature

3 ounces Romano or Parmesan Cheese, finely grated

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION

Combine the orange zest, parsley and bread crumbs in a small bowl and set aside.

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Add 2 quarts of water, salt and linguine to a large pan. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 4 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, cook the sliced sausage in a 12-inch skillet (I prefer my trusty cast-iron pan) over medium-high heat until the meat starts to brown and crisp around the edges. Add the onion and cook for a few minutes more.

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While the pasta and sausage cook, whisk together the room-temperature eggs, cheese and pepper.

Drain the pasta and immediately add the pasta to the sausage mixture in the skillet.

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Remove skillet from heat, add the egg mixture and toss together thoroughly. The heat from the cooked sausage and pasta, as well as what comes from the skillet will lightly cook the egg mixture and melt the cheese.  (You don’t want to add heat or you’ll have scrambled eggs)

Ladle portions into individual serving bowls and serve immediately with a generous sprinkle of the colorful parsley, orange, and bread mixture on top.

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The flavors blend well leaving a pleasant taste with each bite, yet no one ingredient stands out.

It’s easy to see why this recipe has stood the test of time and cultures, and I hope your family will request it time and time again.

Now, to the sofa for a nap or outside for some sledding? Happy New Year everyone!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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