Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A Flavorful Salami Pasta Dish.

Happy Hump Day you All!! I haven't shared many recipes on this blog of mine. I do not cook every day, neither do I consider myself a great cook. I can make a few dishes though, especially pasta dishes. Most of my dishes are trial and error. I usually make my own recipes and that's the case today and let me tell you this pasta dish tasted delicious. Everyone enjoyed it. Even Vivian had some and my little girl is such a bad and picky eater, also.

Ingredients (including the ones for the sauce) for a 2-person serving:

- Rigatoni Pasta (a 16 oz pack).
-Spicy Beef Salami or Spicy Beef Sausage (1 large piece about 7-8 oz).
- Tomato Sauce (about 6 oz).
- Buffalo Cream Cheese (about 4-5 oz).
- A Whole Tomato (medium-sized).
- Fresh Dill (a small bundle, about 2 oz).
- Butter (a tablespoon).
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil (2 tablespoons).
- Salt (a pinch)
- Black Pepper (a pinch).

First I boiled the rigatoni al dente, for about 6-7 minutes total. I added a tablespoon or soup spoon of butter to the pot after the water got hot, right before I added the rigatoni. Then I drained the water, of course. While the pasta was boiling, I started making my sauce in a large pan. I used fresh organic tomato paste to which I added the cream cheese (note: I used firm buffalo cream cheese). Then I added a tablespoon of EVOO to the sauce I was preparing. I stirred them together while they were woking in the pan. At this point, I had already cut my tomato into little cubes, a few minutes after woking the sauce in my pan, I added the tomato cubes to the sauce I was making using the tomato paste, cream cheese and EVOO. I also added a little bit of salt and pepper to the sauce mix. I then added a little bit of dill (chopped in very fine pieces) and the spicy salami which I had cut into little cubes. I kept stirring well, still woking my sauce in the pan. The whole time to make the sauce took about 12-16 minutes, depending on how hot your stove is. You have to make sure you stir it well and are there the whole time so nothing sticks to the pan. If you need to add more olive oil, do so. 

After that I took my sauce and put it onto a larger deep pan and I added my boiled rigatoni pasta to it. I mixed the pasta well into the sauce and let it over my hot stove together (while I was stirring with a big spoon) for another 4-5 minutes. As I added my pasta, I also added my second spoon of EVOO, a little bit more dill and some more salt and pepper. I also added a tiny bit more of  the buffalo cream cheese. I mixed them altogether till the whole texture looked creamy and a little redish-pink since my sauce was made using both tomato paste and white cream cheese on it. After I let the dish cool off a little bit, I put it into two bowls and I added a tiny pinch of black pepper on top and a little dill on the middle of the dish to dress up the dish a little. 

Now you can totally tweak this recipe a bit or change it to your likings. You can make it vegan by using entirely EVOO, no cream cheese and no meat (salami). You can make it vegetarian minus the meat. You can substitute the salami for spicy or regular sausage which don't have to be beef: they could be pork, chicken or turkey sausages. You can make it with grilled chicken breast pieces, tuna, pepperoni or grilled salmon pieces instead. Also, to make it spicier than mine you could add red pepper or hot sauce to it. You could also use organic or gluten-free pasta. It doesn't have to be rigatoni either: pene, shell-shaped or farfalle pasta work just as good. If your kid prefers the regular spaghetti and you want them to eat it, by all means use spaghetti. My husband doesn't eat very spicy foods and I wanted Vivian to try the dish also, so my dish was very mildly spicy. Also, if you don't like dill you could use parsley, kale or a different herb for flavor.

This dish was easy to make, pretty healthy for a pasta dish since it wasn't very rich and full of flavor, It is kid-friendly too since most kids love pasta and my Vivian likes pasta also. She also loves sausage, for that matter, Let me know how it turns out for you if you try it.