Monday, October 6, 2008
Cracked-pepper Fettuccine with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Fresh Mozzarella
It has been a while. Unfortunately living alone isn't as conducive to nice meals as I'd like; but I try to capture them when I have them. I also try to keep it fairly simple on this blog, appropriate for a person living alone to use for dinner and lunch the following day. After all, bringing lunch to work is a lot healthier and more economical than buying it every day!
Today's meal was inspired by my trip to the St. Petersburg Saturday Morning Market, now being held in Progress Energy Park next to Al Lang Field. This past Saturday was its first one of the season, and the day couldn't have been more glorious, with lovely breezes coming in from the bay. I got many things, including sun-dried tomatoes, a beautiful bunch of radishes, a couple kinds of cheese, some fresh mini-loaves of bread, some cracked-pepper pasta, a breakfast empanada, some mildly sweet café con leche, and some dog treats.
That night at home I surveyed my treasures and put together the meal you see above: cracked-pepper pasta with a bit of butter and olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, and some chunks of fresh mozzarella added at the end. It was quite simple to put together, and promised delicious leftovers.
1/2 lb fettuccine (in this case, mine was the specialty type mentioned above.)
just under 1/4 c roughly-chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1 large fresh mozzarella ball, or a 1 1/4 c of the mini-ovolines.
1/2 TB butter
1/2 TB olive oil (or more if it seems too dry.)
salt to taste
black pepper to taste (if you have plain pasta.)
I set salted water to boil for the pasta, and while I waited for that, I chopped my sun-dried tomatoes. Mine came whole; but many kinds are already chopped. I set those aside, and by then my water was boiling so I put the pasta in and while that got started, I cut the mozzarella into bite-size chunks. I set those aside, too, and then attended to stirring my fettuccine a few more times before it was finished al dente - around 8 minutes.
While I drained the fettuccine, I melted the butter in the same pan, and added the olive oil, and sun-dried tomatoes. I gave those a few stirs to heat through. Then I added the pasta back into the pan and tossed it all together. After that I put it in a bowl and put some of the mozzarella on top so that it didn't melt; but retained its fresh, milky coolness.
This makes two to four servings and keeps well overnight in the refrigerator. The only suggestion is to keep the mozzarella separate until you're ready to use it so it doesn't melt.