Do any of you remember a baked spaghetti dish that was an old standby of most of your friends' moms back in the 70s?
Yeah, neither do I.
That was certainly before my time. But, I've been told, it was a very popular dish because it consisted of leftover spaghetti, to which you'd add bottled spaghetti sauce, a sprinkle of shredded mozzarella and there, by the power of Chef Boyardeeplorable, a reconstructed dinner was born.
Here is a delightful pasta dish that is just as easy to prepare, but far tastier and a bit more elegant. Serve this as a side dish with chicken (as pictured below), or fish. And if you want to take it to another squisito level, then Du-ude, by law you have to make the Tomato Coulis I've included. So, if you're lucky enough to have access to really good tomatoes, use them here. Bon Appétit.
Angel Hair Flans
1 cup whipping cream
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1 pinch dried, crumbled
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1½ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 ounces of angel hair pasta, freshly cooked
garnish with Parmesan frico, optional
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter six ½ cup soufflé dishes or ramekins. Whisk first 4 ingredients in a bowl. Season generously with salt and pepper. Stir in 1 cup Parmesan cheese. Divide cooked pasta among prepared ramekins. Pour egg mixture over angel hair pasta. Sprinkle flans with remaining Parmesan. Bake until flans are set and golden brown, about 20 minutes. Run small knife around sides of ramekins to loosen. Unmold and serve. Yields: 6 servings.
2 pounds ripe, fresh tomatoes, cored and chopped
1 tablespoon cold butter
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly groung black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
Place tomatoes in a saucepan and cook over medium heat, covered, until very juicy, about 20 minutes. Strain into a bowl through a fine-mesh strainer.
Return the strained tomatoes to the pan and slowly reduce over medium heat until thickened to a sauce consistency. Reduce heat to very low and whisk in the butter. Slowly whisk in the olive oil to enrich the sauce. Season with salt, pepper and cayenne. Serve warm. Yields: 2 cups. Tomato Coulis from Union Square Cafe.