Category Archives: Pasta

Wait, I have a blog?

Hi readers. Yes it’s true. I am actually suppose to contribute to this blog, and it has been over a month since my last post. Shame. Starring Michael Fassbender. A lot has happened over the last couple of weeks. I tried Burmese food, Jersey Mike’s and Bobby’s Burger Palace for the first time. I organized a holiday sweets exchange at the office. Four couples I know got engaged, and I accepted the role of groomsman. I ran more than 1 mile straight for the first time on my own free will since high school. I got my wisdom teeth pulled out. I poured boiling hot pasta water on my right index and middle fingers. I found out I would be moving onto a new client early this year. I made lemon chess pie, lobster rolls and rack of lamb for the first time. And lastly, I went to a tasting of new menu items at a friend’s restaurant.

Mint Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Catfish Soup from Yoma

Coconut Chicken Soup

New Years Eve Hot Pot at my Sister’s

Hot Pot Protein Spread

Omni Parker House Boston Cream Pie

Homemade Lobster Rolls

Rack of Lamb with Pale Dinner Roll (from scratch) and Steamed Green Beans

Pan Seared Scallops with a White Wine Sauce and Penne with Pepperjack Cream Sauce

Food wise I still find myself day dreaming about dropping everything and going to culinary school or start planning a restaurant/food venture and getting in way over my head. I took a look at my post with last year’s food resolutions and got somewhat depressed about things I didn’t get to accomplish. So with that, here are food resolutions for 2012.

1. Make noodles and pasta from scratch (rolled over from 2011)
2. Make dumplings and spring rolls from scratch
3. Make Buttermilk Fried Chicken from Ad Hoc at Home (also rolled over from 2011)
4. New ethnic food to try: Russian
5. Meat to try: alligator
6. Fruit to try: durian
7. Dish to eat that I surprisingly never had: eggs benedict
8. Dish to make: souffle
9. Restaurants to try: Neptune Oyster, B&G Oysters
10. Additional skills to learn: properly eating a crab, scaling and breaking down a whole fish, making legit bbq ribs on a charcoal grill

What are your food resolutions for 2012?

Visitors Equal Gluttony

In typical Ray fashion, I had friends over this past weekend and had a few days of pure gluttony. When friends come over, I try my best to get a sense of they are looking to try wherever I’m living and plan the weekend around meals that will be satisfying and give Boston a chance to impress.

To begin our journey, we headed to the North End since it would be a little less crowded on a Thursday night. We got on line at Giacomo’s and after 30 minutes, we were treated to calamari, garlic bread and pasta. Calamari was good, but could have been fried better. The marinara sauce was tangy and had a homemade taste to it. Pass on the garlic bread. Lobster Ravioli was finished off quickly as the portion size was small. Linguine with Fra-como sauce and shrimp and scallops and swordfish with a cream sauce were wins. Next, we braved the only semi-hectic crowds at Mike’s Pastry for cannolis. Peanut butter, yellow cream and pistachio all safe bets.

The next day, berry tarts from the previous day were for breakfast followed by UBurger. After some afternoon beer at Sam Adam’s Brewery, it was time for dinner at Yankee Lobster Fish Market were all 3 of us enjoyed clam chowder and Lobster Rolls. This was probably the most fulfilling meal of the weekend for me both because of the concept of fresh seafood by the water at the start of summer. Perfectly crispy fries and a long walk down Seaport Blvd. help too.

Lobster Roll from Yankee Lobster Fish Market

The next day, we hit up a few Asian establishments including Japonaise Bakery for some sweets including their Azuki Cream Bun, cakes and mochi. Take a pass on the cake and head straight for the Japanese cream items and pastries. For lunch we hopped between Bonchon Chicken for some wings, pork buns, and fried octopus balls and Jojo Taipei for soup dumplings, scallion pancakes and minced pork over rice. Finally for dinner, we headed to Redbones for some BBQ. St. Louis ribs won out above all and the smoked brisket was dry. Before my friends left, we had dim sum at Hei La Moon in Chinatown. If you’re concerned about my health right now, rest assured that I’ve been eating like a rabbit since the weekend.

Scallion Pancakes

Soup Dumplings

Almond Cake with Oranges and Cream with an Azuki Mochi

Linguine and Clam Sauce

The other night, the twin and I were feeling a little fancy.  We bought two dozen clams and whipped together a somewhat classic linguine with clams.  Clams are a little more than the average fare, but are still relatively inexpensive if you feel like dolling up your normal weekday dinners.

Linguine and Clam Sauce

Eat & Enjoy

  • 1 lb uncooked linguine
  • 24 little neck clams (preferably the large meatier ones)
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine (I used chardonnay, but my first choice for seafood dishes that call for white wine is generally vermouth)
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (or more if you’re feeling extra spicy)
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 Tbsp Italian parsley, chopped

In a large sauce pan, add the clams and the white wine.  Set the temperature on high and cover.  In 8-10 minutes, check for open clams and remove.  Cover the remaining clams and give it another 2 minutes.  If any clams seem like they’re never going to open, you can give it a minute.  If it’s not happening, discard.  You don’t want to eat a dead clam.

Set aside and reserve the clam juice.  Once the clams are cool enough to handle, remove the clam meat from the shells and give it a rough chop.  Despite its fancy nature, this is a pretty rustic dish.  There is no need to get crazy with the knife skills.

Throw the linguine in boiling salted water.  Depending on the brand you buy, this should take around 9-10 minutes to achieve al dente perfection.

While your pasta is cooking, add the olive oil, minced garlic, and chopped clams to medium-high heat.  Add 2 Tbsp. of the clam juice and the red pepper flakes before the garlic begins to brown and turn the heat down to medium.  Take about 3 Tbsp. of the salted pasta water and add to the pan.  The starch left behind from the pasta will help thicken the sauce slightly.  Add the pasta and coat with the sauce, taking care to evenly distribute the clams in the pasta.  If the pasta seems dry, you can add another Tbsp. of the clam juice.  Add your parsley and squeeze half of the lemon juice into the pasta and mix.

If you’re not afraid of mixing cheese with seafood, grab your cheese grater and some nice Parmesan cheese.  Give your pasta a healthy dose of cheese and eat.

Allen, Krissie, and I enjoyed the dish very much (evidenced by Allen’s extremely happy face!).  Dinner success!!!