Tuesday, August 17, 2010


i am quite predictable at times.

when i am stressed, i cook to comfort. when i am happy, i cook to extend the pleasure. when i am exceedingly pissed off, i cook to work out the anger. how and what i cook is an extension of who i am and what i am feeling at that moment.

a couple of "oh fuck" bombs have dropped recently. as a result, most of my processing has been done in the kitchen or in my private and very not online journals. it is an ongoing challenge i have....to remain true to one of the original concepts behind this blog....to remain open....yet, also ensuring that i protect those that i care about and well...my livelihood.

earlier this week i was extremely pissed off. the kind of pissed off that i knew i had to step away from the computer, phones, blackberries, etc. etc. in order to ensure that i would continue to have a job in a generally crappy economy. when i am this angry, i started going through my pantry and fridge to see what i had on hand....just letting my mood and instinct pick out the ingredients which included dried roasted chili peppers, nduja, a can of diced red tomatoes (notice at trend here? red, red, and more red) .....and thought about what i could make with these three things. then i decided to make a pasta from it.....i chopped up some onion, basil, and did my prep.

i heated up some extra virgin olive oil, the nduja, and onions in a pan.....

i should have waited a bit longer before i put in the tomatoes, but i was a wee bit distracted when the fire alarm went off in my place. dontcha love it when that happens? after opening up he windows and fanning the fire alarm, i went back to the pan...losing my place a bit....and adding the tomatoes....chili flakes and dried (which i do at home) sage.....but that was ok. i didn't realize that i didn't like the onions that firm once the sauce reduced down a bit...and did a taste....as a result, i just added some more water and let it simmer for a while longer until i liked the consistency of the onion more.

i am all about tasting as i cook....as each time is different....which is directly related to what i am feeling at that moment....perhaps i need a bit more salt, more pepper, more spice.....it all depends on what is going through my mind and who i am cooking for.

while the sauce was simmering, i decided to try out this spelt angel hair pasta that i bought. i'm constantly experimenting with different sorts of dried pastas due to some gluten and other food restrictions that members of the family are under.

then once the pasta was done, i added it to the twice reduced sauce......and some fresh basil....

plated it (and tasting along the way btw).....it was nice, peppery, smoky (from the nduja), spicy....

yet by this point, i wasn't as angry and decided that a nice mellow ricotta salata to mellow it out a bit would be just the thing.

it was pretty tasty and was just wanted i needed that day. i also ended up it for a late dinner as well.

so there you have it..... an example of how predictable the foodie hunter can be....yet, i doubt i will be changing anytime soon. i have a feeling that if i am fortunate to live to a ripe old age and be a part of my loved ones lives....i'll still be cooking food from them and myself....in such a way that reflects what i am feeling in that moment.

perhaps predictability isn't as bad as it sounds.

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