If there’s 2 things I love in this life, it’s cooking and finding a good deal.
My idea of a perfect day would be waking up around 8am, cooking an amazing breakfast, then spending the afternoon going to yard sales and thrift stores. When I proudly present my bargains to my husband the conversation usually plays out something like this.
Me: Ta da!! Look what I found!!
Kevin: Oh wow! What is it?
Me: apastamachinethatIgot for 4 DOLLARS!! (Then I proceed to tell him the entire story of how it happened that I got a never used $120 pasta machine for only $4 because it had been sitting in someone’s mom’s basement since 1970, unopened, and her daughter thought $4 sounded like a fair price…?? I’m not sure about the fair part, but let’s not go there.)
Fresh pasta is one of those foods that doesn’t make it onto our American plates very often, but when it does, oh buddy!! It’s beyond good. You know what else is good? New kittens, like the little fluffy white cutie right above here!! He’s the newest addition to our Kitschen Cat family, and although he isn’t AS smitten with watching me cook as Sir Percival, he’s slowly learning that when you hang out in there, mom give you little niblets of tasty things. He’ll get an official blog introduction soon here, but for now, there’s a little teaser for ya 😉
This week I was on a quest to not take any visits to the grocery and instead eat down our fridge. With this recipe alone, I was able to use up all our eggs, sausage, squash, garlic, butter, cheese and parsley!
I created an inventory list of our fridge and freezer at the beginning of the week and estimate we had about 70 different items in there and now we’re down to a little less than 40! That includes all our sauces/dressings/condiments, so I think we’re doing pretty good 🙂 I think this week I’ll only buy the basics (eggs, meat, cheese) and we’ll be able to spend another week clearing some more things out.
An idea Kev and I have tossed around with Kitschen Cat is to provide multiple resources (possibly an E-Book) teaching people to create recipes from what they have in their cupboards and fridge.
In general, the times I find myself being most creative is when I get home from work, open my fridge without a recipe idea, and slowly start to pull a meal together using only what’s in front of me. Granted, I’m also a huge proponent of planning out your meals for the week, but it’s also SO helpful to have the knowledge to be able to pull a dinner together when at first glance you don’t feel like it’s possible. I’m still working out how to provide that for you as a concise resource, but it’s definitely a project that I would love to see happen!
The creaminess, the nutty flavors of the pan roasted squash and onions, and the fresh pasta make this dish a perfect summertime comfort food!
- 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
- 2 eggs
- ¼ cup water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ lb ground pork sausage
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 medium sized yellow squash, chopped
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, diced
- 1 cup half and half
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 ½ cup grated cheese **I like a mixture of cheddar and parmesan
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ cup parsley, chopped
- Start with flour on a large cutting board and make a well in the center. Crack both eggs into the flour and gently whisk to break yolks. Add salt. Using your hands, start to knead flour. salt and eggs until dough starts coming together. Once dough starts pulling away from your hands, slowly add water and continue kneading until a smooth ball forms. The dough will be very stiff by this point. You will be kneading for approximately 10 minutes.
- Proceed to use a pasta machine to roll out your fettucine noodles, or use a rolling pin to create a thin flat sheet and cut the noodles by hand.
- In large skillet over medium high heat, fry ground sausage until no pink is showing and it is fully cooked.
- Remove sausage from skillet, reserving some of the grease in the pan. Add 1 tablespoon canola oil, onion, squash, and garlic. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are soft and starting to brown along the edges.
- Pour vegetable mixture into blender, add ¼ cup half and half. Puree until smooth.
- Add 2 tablespoons of butter to same skillet, melt over medium low heat. Pour in remaining half and half. Bring to a gentle simmer, stirring constantly. Add in vegetable puree, turn to low and simmer until thick, about 3 minutes. Add grated cheese and salt and pepper. Stir until cheese is melted. Add sausage crumbles and parsley and stir to combine.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add fresh pasta, cooking for 3-4 minutes until al dente.
- Serve pasta with a heaping spoonful of yellow squash alfredo sauce and sprinkle with parsley.