I called it wrong today and I’m kicking myself for doing it.
You see, I met Dudette for lunch today. I stopped at McDonalds on my way to the school and picked up a couple of cheeseburgers (plain) for my little lady. For those who are thinking that my poor choice was in meal selection, um, nope, that’s not it. Healthy types may snub their noses at that kind of fast food, but I’m all about the ear-to-ear grin it brings to my child’s face. At least sometimes.
The choice came after lunch was done and I was ready to leave. I had to decide whether to take Dudette with me or leave her there to finish up the last few hours of learning. You see, it’s sleeting a bit down here. It’s not heavy but it’s definitely little pellets of ice tinkling on the windows.
I asked the ladies in the office if they had heard any rumors of school being cancelled. The answer was ‘no’ across the board. Not wanting to be the one wiener parent who pulls their kid out of classes because the weather looks like it could get nasty, I left alone, having made the decision to let Dudette absorb as much math and history as she could.
So of course, as soon as I walked in the door and took my coat off, the phone rang. Classes in Forsyth County were being cancelled for the rest of the day. Funny, huh?
Now instead of being able to leisurely eat this amazing pasta dish for my lunch as I had planned, I’m going to hurry through it so I can be ready when Dudette walks through the door.
The March/April issue of The Saturday Evening Post has a fantastic food section this month, highlighting family recipes used to create a real Italian meal. The other dishes will probably get made at some point, but I went with the pasta because of how easy and quick it was as much as for the fact that it had pistachio nuts in it and I adore pistachios.
The process was very, very easy, especially since I used my handy little food chopper to mince the onion and coarsely chop the pistachios. Once that was finished, all I had to do was boil my pasta, sauté the onion and nuts together, add some hot pepper flakes, the cooked pasta, salt and pepper and a bit of cheese. That was it.
As you’ve probably figured already, I ate this alone, which was ok because I was able to savor every hurried bite I took. I really enjoyed the flavors in this a lot. The sweetness of the onion goes very well with the pistachios and cheese. I wasn’t sure how much I’d like the nuts in a pasta dish, but I really did. It’s great comfort food.
I can also tell you that Hubby won’t like this. He’s not a fan of Pecorino cheese (he says it tastes like throw-up) so I’m guessing he won’t even give it a try. Dudette’s opinion is up in the air. It always is. She’ll be thrown by the green in the dish but will probably give it a try because she loves pistachios as well. If there’s anything negative for her, it’ll be the heat from a teaspoon of hot pepper flakes.
What I’d Do Different Next Time
I’d add a clove or two of minced garlic or at least sauté some chunks in the oil and then remove them.
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
- 1 medium yellow onion, minced
- ½ cup shelled natural pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped
- 1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes or hot red pepper paste
- Fine sea salt
- 1 pound farfalle or penne
- Freshly ground black pepper
- ⅔ cup grated pecorina cheese
- In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until soft but not brown. Stir in nuts and cook 1 minute. Turn off heat and stir in red pepper flakes or pepper paste. Add a little more olive oil if mixture seems too dry. Cover and keep warm.
- Bring 4 quarts of water to a rapid boil in a large pot and add 1 tablespoon of salt. Add pasta and cook until al dente.
- Drain, reserving ¼ cup cooking water, and transfer pasta to sauté pan. Reheat slowly, stirring in reserved water and combining ingredients well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in cheese. Transfer pasta to a shallow platter and serve immediately.
So, what would you have done? I suppose it depends, in part, where you live, doesn’t it. I’m sure my Chicago friends support my decision wholeheartedly and think the school board is crazy for cancelling school for as little ice as there is. But how about my friends down here. What would you have done?