Monday, 16 November 2015

Wild and Wonderful Pasta!

Linguine con Salami di Cinghiale, Pastinaca, Cavolini di Bruxelles & Salvia
Linguini with Wild Boar Salami, Parsnip, Brussel's Sprouts & Sage

Yes, this dish tasted totally delicious and perfectly seasonal, with the Brussels sprouts and parsnip and especially so with the sage and exquisite wild boar salami. 

To make it more delicious still, there was fennel seed and nutmeg in there and it was topped with a little grated Parmesan--- what a perfect way to make the beginning of a new week! smile emoticon

The beauty of this dish- and of all the pasta dishes that I love the most... is that you need so little of each ingredient to make a wonderful composition of flavors. People so often absolutely overload pasta with overly rich sauces and ingredients- the secret is getting the balance right!

And the only way to do that is to practice, practice, practice! Oh... and to follow a few hints from me wink emoticon Of course!

Ok... I added the piece of cheese in for the picture, because otherwise it really would have been a little empty and bare! But hey! You really don't need much to make this!

For one generous portion I needed about 2" of salami, finely diced, 1 Spring onion, 1 small parsnip, 6-7 Brussels sprouts, 5-6 sage leaves, salt, pepper, fennel seed, nutmeg fresh parsley and a little Parmesan cheese for grating. That was it!

See how lovely and rich this was? I didn't even need any added oil of any sort, as the salami had fat enough of its own to bring lots of flavor and smooth texture with it. 

And don't fret if you can't get this admittedly fantastic wild boar salami- any old salami will do, or alternatively some diced bacon... you just want to have that salty richness in there to combine with the sweet Brussels sprouts and the nutmeg... which tastes soooo good!

Start off by dicing the parsnip and salami very finely, slicing up the onion, chopping up 3-4 sage leaves and frying them together with a half teaspoon of fennel seed in a dry non-stick pan. As I already mentioned, the salami has plenty of fat of its own, so you will not need any occasional oil.

In the meantime, start your pasta boiling and also add the Brussels sprouts, cut into thin slices, into the ring pan along with the salami and other ingredients. Season with plenty of black pepper and toss a few times until it begins to soften and cook along with the rest.

After the pasta has boiled for 4-5 minutes, add it to the other ingredients in the frying pan along with plenty of the water it was cooking in, and let it continue cooking and soaking up all of the good flavors in the pan.

And speaking of good flavors, grate generously with nutmeg and keep stirring for the next 4-5 minutes, until the pasta is completely saturated with all of that great taste!

Add a good pinch of finely chopped parsley after around 3 minutes in the pan and stir this in well- it will give a hint of brightness and freshness to lift the other flavors a little... remember that parsnip in there too! All really great, intense stuff! That's why... just a little of each thing goes a loooong way!

Serve with some freshly grated Parmesan or Grana cheese, freshly ground pepper and a smile! And enjoy!

Once you get in there and give it a stir, it all comes to life in the most glorious and aromatic way... You are going to love it!

Be modest with the amount of ingredients you add to your pasta, hold back a little on the seasoning as the parsnip is intense, the salami and the cheese are salty and the sage is pretty rich too... and just let that good stuff you put in there do all the work for you!

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