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Monday, January 27, 2020

Lemon and Pea Alfredo ala ~DKBB~

Lemon and Pea Alfredo ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe GDL Italian by Giada, Horseshoe Baltimore
in Wine Spectator, July 31, 2018 edition)
Original photo from Wine Spectator
 16 oz. fusilli col buco pasta
3 Tbsp. butter
½ cup pasta water
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 ½ cups grated Parmigiano
1 cup mascarpone cheese
2 tsp. lemon zest
¾ tsp. kosher salt
1½ cups frozen peas, thawed
1 small can mushrooms, drained (optional)
1 Tbsp. lemon juice 
  • Bring pot of salted water to a boil over high heat; add in the pasta and cook until just under al dente (about 10 to 11 minutes). When done, you will add the (drained) pasta directly to the sauce.
  • While the pasta is cooking, heat a large, straight-sided skillet over medium heat, adding in the butter; when the butter is melted, add the minced garlic and cook on low, stirring often until soft and fragrant; add ½ cup of pasta water and reduce heat to low.
  • Add the mascarpone, lemon zest, and salt to the sauce; mix well to melt mascarpone.
  • When pasta is done, drain it thoroughly and add it directly to the sauce, combining with sauce; sprinkle with 1½ cups of grade Parmigiano and peas (and mushrooms, if using), stirring well to combine; add pasta water to thin if necessary.
  • Sprinkle each serving with Parmigiano cheese and fresh cracked pepper, if desired.

Bacon-Wrapped Dates with Lemon Basil Crema ala ~DKBB~

Bacon-Wrapped Dates with Lemon Basil Crema ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe by Pronto by Giada, Caesars Palace,
printed in Wine Spectator, July 31, 2008 edition)
Original image from Wine Spectator
2 Tbsp. sour cream, brought to room temperature
1 Tbsp. mascarpone brought to room temperature
1 tsp. lemon zest (from 1 small lemon)
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
3 Tbsp. chopped basil
¼ tsp. kosher salt
12 Medjool dates
2 links hot Italian sausage
6 slices bacon
1 tsp. chopped chives
  • Whisk together sour cream, mascarpone, lemon zest, lemon juice, basil, and salt; cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to let the flavors marry. Let it come to room temperature before serving.
  • Preheat the oven to 400° F.
  • Make a small slit lengthwise down the center of each date and remove the pits.
  • Remove the casing from the sausage and discard.
  • Cut the bacon slices in half, making 12 smaller pieces.
  • Place 1 tsp. of sausage into each opened date; close up each date and wrap each in a piece of bacon, securing with a toothpick; place on bacon baking sheet (rack on sided cookie sheet).
  • Bake the dates for 8 minutes; remove baking sheet from oven and flip each date over; replace sheet in oven and cook for another 7 minutes.
  • Serve warm alongside the lemon basil crema. Garnish with chives.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Cheesy Garlic Spinach Spaghetti Squash ala ~DKBB~

Cheesy Garlic Spinach Spaghetti Squash ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe from

1 medium spaghetti squash (2 to 3 lbs.)
3 to 5 cloves garlice, minced
1 tsp. olive oil
5 oz. fresh spinach, chopped
½ cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp. whipped cream cheese
½ cup grated Parmesan Reggiano cheese
Salt (at least ½ tsp.) and pepper to taste
Grated mozzarella cheese for topping
  • Preheat oven to 400° F.
  • Slice spaghetti squash lengthwise and scoop out seeds. For easier cutter, you can put the uncut squash in the microwave to soften it up a bit; pierce the squash a few times and microwave it on high for 3 to 5 minutes; the knife will cut through easier this way.
  • Rub a small amount of olive oil on the cut sides of the squash; place the squash cut side down on a rimmed baking (or cookie) sheet; roast for about 40 minutes, or until tender and easily pierced by a fork.
While the squash is roasting, prepare the sauce:
  • In a medium pan, add a drizzle of olive oil and heat over medium-high heat; add the minced garlic and sauté until fragrant.
  • Add the spinach and stir until wilted; add cream, cream cheese, Parmesan Reggiano cheese, salt, and pepper and stir well.
  • Once the squash is done and cooled a bit, you can use a fork (or two) to separate and fluff the strands of the spaghetti squash, leaving it in the shells.
  • Pour the sauce over the spaghetti squash boats, working it into the strands a bit; top with the mozzarella cheese and a little bit of the Parmesan Reggiano cheese.
  • Bake at 350° F for about 20 minutes or until hot and bubbly.