Monday, July 29, 2013

A Tale of Two Cheese Steaks

At the end of June and for the first half of July my family went on vacation that took us to Atlanta where we rented a car and drove through eleven states and saw many historical sites, natural wonders, and the food. Oh the food. This story is about one city and its famous cheese steaks. This is the tale of two cheese steaks.

We didn't plan on visiting Philadelphia originally but once we made the decision we knew where we had to go. Pat's and Geno's. These are the most known cheesesteak restaurants in Philadelphia. Why are they famous? An age old feud or not as some have said. Well we had to try them regardless. We were worried about parking and lucked out that someone left their spot right in front of Pat's as we drove up. Score 1 for us.

Corinne and I decided we'd take on Pat's as he has a unique was of ordering and we sent Doug to Geno's. At Pat's King of Steaks you  have to be johnny on the spot with their ordering as Corinne and I found out. Here is what you do as they show you on their website and they also have a sign to help you along. The line at Pat's King of Steaks moves quickly, so it's best to be prepared — know what you want, and how to order it by the time you get to the front of the line!

Step 1 Specify if you want your steak with (wit) or without (wit-out) onions Step 2 Specify Plain, Cheez Whiz, Provolone, American or Pizza Steak Step 3 Have your money ready. We are cash only. Step 4 Order just your steak at the first window. The second window is for fries and drinks. Step 5
Eat up while it's hot!

Of course I was ready and had it all planned what we wanted nothing could be simpler than a cheese steak wit wiz, that is until it's your turn. The line moved so quickly and I was taking it all in and it's my turn. The girl in front of us ordered provolone so that was on my mind. Did I say wit wiz, no of course not it came out provolone, no wait onions and cheez wiz. What a moron I felt like. How did I screw that up? I know they yell at you if you're not fast enough. Geez I should have sent Doug here.

Next window is where we ordered pizza fries and drinks if we were getting them there. They were just as impatient at that window as they were at the first. I really wish I sent Doug here.

We met Doug by our car and it was time to chow down. He told me ordering was easy at Geno's and they were nice. How could that be? I'm the nice one and I got yelled at? Anyways time to try.

Pat's Cheese Steak
First bite of Pat's was really good, a little meat, wiz, onion and bread. Pat's has some incredible bread. Now time to wrestle the cheese steak from Doug, we did say before we got there we were SHARING & NO HOGGING the one you liked better. This was a really good cheese steak and I have only had one before and that was at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio so I had nothing to really base a good or a bad one on.... come on it was in Ohio. What are they known for? Oh, yeah the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, not cheese steaks.

Geno's Cheese Steak

Now time to try Geno's. First bite and you could taste the difference. It was more flavorful and you did have more wiz. I don't know if it was the combination of the wiz, onion, and juice of the meat but it was good. Did I want to share? No, of course not, but that was the deal.

We did try to be good and share, but my sweet husband did try to eat all of the Geno's cheese steak and there was talk of divorce and or murder, but we had our daughter there and he did remember his manners and we had to share.

After we sucked down these large sandwiches, where two were plenty for the three of us even though we looked like people who hadn't been fed in days while we were scarfing these down, we worked on the pizza fries. They tasted like fries with a good pizza sauce and wiz on them. They were good and just enough to satisfy us.

Time for the judgement. Who was our favorite? Pat's had our favorite bread, but as a total package the overwhelming winner was Geno's. To each is own and everyone has their own opinion and no one person is right or wrong. Thanks to Geno's and Pat's whether the feud is real or just a show, you gave us something to talk about and remember from our time in Philly.

If you have visited Geno's & Pat's let me know what your choice of favorite is.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Mother's Day Pyramid Cake

A few months ago my mom gave me several baking cookbooks by Gesine Bullock-Prado. These books are works of art and the baked goods in them are just stunningly beautiful. For Mother's Day I decided to make a Chocolate Pyramid cake from the Bake it Like You Mean It book.

Before I got down to the nitty gritty of baking I sat down and read the recipe and saw there was a discrepancy in the ingredients and the instructions. So what did I do? I sent a tweet to the author asking her for HELP! She was kind and replied and sent me the link where the recipe was correct. There was a mistake in the printing.

Shopping for the ingredients was pretty easy, nothing too crazy you cannot get at your neighborhood supermarket, except one thing. Vanilla Bean Paste. I had never heard of it until I started reading her books. Thankfully for me a few weeks ago I stopped by a cupcake/baking store in Redlands and they had it there and I knew I would be using it someday so I had to have it.

Saturday was my baking day because there are so many steps to this recipe and time between steps when things are in the freezer or the refrigerator.
 This is what the batter looks like after you have folded in the eggs whites, cake flour and cocoa powder.

 Spread the batter on a parchment lined half-sheet pan. You do not use butter or any non-stick spray since you want the batter to climb the edge of the pan.

 Use an angled spatula to spread the batter out evenly on the half-sheet pan.

This is what the cake looks like after 10 minutes in the oven. It should spring back when touched. After it has cooled a bit cover the top of the cake with another sheet of parchment paper and place another sheet pan on top and weigh it down with heavy books. Doing this the cake levels out and becomes even since it may rise more in areas on the cake during baking.

Melt chocolate in a double boiler for the buttercream frosting and allow to cool before you add it to the butter, sugar, and egg mixture.

 After the cake has cooled and you have removed the pan and the top layer of parchment paper and allowed the simple syrup to soak in, cut the cake into 4 equal slices and then begin layering the cake and the buttercream until you get to the 4th layer. Here you will cut the cake in half and cover the top of one half with more buttercream and add the other half.

 Here is the cake in 8 layers. Here you will wrap the cake in plastic wrap and place in freezer for about one hour. When the hour is up you will then remove the cake from the freezer you will trim the 4 sides of the cake and then cut the cake in half at a 45° angle. You will then flip the cake and frost the inside of the half triangle you have now made.

 This is what the cake should look like once you place the two sides together. Now you will take the cake and place it on a cooling rack over a pan where you will now cover the top with the ganache and sprinkle with cocoa powder.

This is my finished result. In hind site I should have trimmed the sides a little better before I put it on the platter. It's not a perfect cake but not bad for my first try. I did send the picture of this cake to the author and she responded, "You matched up the layers. That's rare thing for a first timer. You've got "the touch". I was speechless in receiving such a compliment from someone who does such incredible work.

As for the taste of this creation it is a chocolate lovers dream. It is rich and wonderful. Go ahead give it a try, you might surprise yourself in what you can do.

Thank you Gesine for the help and tips in making this cake. For those interested in trying out this cake go to for the recipe.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Beer at The Farm

The Farm Artisan Foods in Redlands has been offering beer dinners about once a month for several years now. My husband Doug and I have attended one other in the fall of 2012 and were impressed by the wonderful flavors that were paired with the beer that came from Olive Ave. Market. This latest beer dinner on March 5, 2013 featured Avery Brewing Co. out of Boulder, Colorado.

Maureen Perez, the beer guru at Olive Ave. Market and now also at The Farm assisted in pairing the food and beer together. On this evening there were thirteen diners set to enjoy this meal of five courses each paired with a beer.

Our dinner began with penne with bacon and pork shoulder ragu. The penne did not have the usual homemade pasta taste that The Farm is known for, but it was tasty and perfectly cooked none the less. Now the sauce was a wonderful red sauce with nice chunks of the bacon and pork throughout. This was paired with Joe's Pilsner. This was an excellent pairing with the hops complimenting the sauce wonderfully.

Our next pairing was mushroom and barley soup paired with Salvation, a Belgian style strong pale ale. The soup had a luxurious broth filled with mushrooms, carrots, kale and barley. Being our second course we were served a full portion and not a tasting portion as we thought we would have. After having a full appetizer portion of the first course, we figured we needed to pace ourselves as we were already headed to being full.

Salvation comes in at around 10% alcohol and we were served a smaller pour that the pilsner as we would be bombed if we had full pours by the end of the night. Salvation has a slight sweetness that when paired with the mushroom and barley soup, as it cuts through the creaminess that comes from the texture of the barley. Another excellent pairing.

Course number three brought us lamb chops with mashed turnips over sautéed spinach. The portion of lamb was generous being that of two double chop pieces arranged artfully on the turnips. Once again, Chef Roberto outdid himself in the preparation of this dish. Because of the size of the portion I did concentrate on the lamb and enjoyed a little of the turnip and spinach garnish.

The lamb was expertly prepared with a wonderful crust and paired with The Reverend, a Belgian-Style Quadrupel Ale. The Reverend is seriously good. It has a sweet caramel taste that paired so nicely with the crust and flavor of the lamb. The Reverend is a grown-up version of Salvation that we previously tasted.

Our fourth course and final savory dish was a smoked beef cheek pot pie. This pot pie was encrusted in a homemade pastry that was light and tasty. The beef cheek entombed inside was tender and melts in your mouth good. Doug commented that the beef cheek reminded him of the one I make at home and I took that as a complement. 

We were really slowing down at this point. The food was so good, but having the full portions and the beer made it hard for us to find room. As with the prior dish I mainly concentrated on the meat and left a majority of the pastry. The beer pairing for this dish was Hog Heaven Barley Wine. This is an Imperial Red style ale. It is dry hopped and pairs well with food.

Fifth and final course, we were really hurting at this point and wish we could order another stomach to hold everything. For this last dish we had a warm strawberry cobbler paired with Ellie's Ale. Ellie's Ale is a brown ale that has the look of root beer when poured into a glass. It was one of my favorite beers of the night. The strawberry cobbler was the best strawberry dessert I have ever had. The problem with it was we had no room for it or the beer. We did however take the cobbler home for later.

Overall our experience was a great one. The Farm gave us great portions and was an excellent value for the price of $49 per person. In looking back we would have liked smaller portions as it would have left room for us to enjoy all of our food. We are not complaining too much as we left full and happy and with a handful of goodies that were given out throughout the dinner to take home. Upon the end of the dinner we each received a bottle of The Beast that comes in at 16%. The tasting of that is yet to come.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Madera Canyon

One of the cabins & gift shop
This post isn't about food as much as it is an experience. The experience I am talking about is Madera Canyon, Arizona. This is a beautiful place located about 45 minutes south east of Tucson and is a favorite spot or birdwatchers and nature lovers alike. The canyon takes you up to elevations over 5,000 feet on the main road and yet higher when you venture on many of the hiking trails.

My husband first brought us here in 2010 when we were traveling in the Southwest U.S. for vacation. We stopped at a couple of the B&B's in the canyon to look at the birds there. The owners put out seed and sugar water to attract some of the incredible species that pass through the area.

In March 2012 we decided to rent a cabin at the Madera  Kubo for 3 nights. There are four cabins to chose from we picked Cabin #3. This is a rustic cabin with a full kitchen, bath, one bedroom, a sleeper couch, and a wood stove for heat. The owner's supply you with milk, fruit, and cereals for breakfast, as well as basic cooking utensils and pans. There is also a small barbeque in the back for you to enjoy. Be prepared and bring your own charcoal if you want to use it.

Home Sweet Home Cabin #3
We enjoyed our first stay so much we decided to return at the end of June 2012 for a week and then again in March 2013 each time renting Cabin #3. There is something about the tranquility of this place that can recharge you. It can be pretty busy with hikers and birdwatchers on the nearby road, but there is privacy and they tend to blend into the place. 

At night it is a different story s the people leave and the wildlife comes out. What you mostly see here are squirrels, lizards, and birds with the occasional deer. The largest grouping of animals though are the flock of turkeys. The amount in the flock depend on the weather. We've had up to 25 roost at night in the tree next to our bedroom to as few as 12. We have heard that there are mountain lions and ring-tailed cats but have never seen them.

Back porch of Cabin #3
 Last June while I was sitting on the back porch overlooking the stream listening to the rain starting to fall I encountered a bear. Having heard the story of a mother and her cub causing a ruckus the day before for hours I was weary. I heard a sound to my left and looked that direction and was surprised to see a large black bear walking along the creek. Not sure at that point if it was the mother and cub I quietly and quickly went back inside to one grab my camera and two make sure I wasn't going to put myself in harm's way. After a few minutes and seeing that the bear was alone and walking away down the stream I decided it was safe enough to go back out on the porch. There I took a few pictures and watched this beautiful bear walk and mind his own business. Because it was so late in the day and the lighting was horrible, the pictures looked more like black blobs than a bear. But the experience was one I will not forget.
My favorite view

As for staying here at the Kubo life here is a simple one. I plan our meals out before hand and we bring most of our supplies from home, but for a few things we pick up in town before we head up. There is something about roughing it as I call it here. I come prepared with my knives, other kitchen essentials, and spices so we can have the best possible meals we can while we are here.
Dinners consist of steak and baked potatoes, chicken, broccoli, and rice, and hamburgers with homemade french fries. It's easy and we are happy to eat in style in this bare bones location. We also bring up some fantastic wines and beer to enjoy.

What do we spend our time doing? For my husband he goes off birding and the occasional hike. As for me, I take our daughter on hikes and I like to sit on the back porch and read. Today I am sitting on the porch writing for my blog. There is something about the fresh air and the sound of the streams on either side of the cabin that converge to one a few yards away that bring out the creative juices.
I forgot to mention, the internet does not exist here. They have no WIFI and you are lucky to get a cell phone signal. You can go down the canyon a few miles if you really need it. At times you are lucky to get a bit of a signal and email will come to your phone. Text messaging is the best way to communicate with the outside world if you really have to. 

The tree the turkeys roost in at night.
If you have time and want to get away and relax and re-energize yourself come out to Madera Canyon. Enjoy the little bit of Heaven in the Desert Southwest.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Quest for Pliny The Younger

What do you think of when you hear the name Pliny the Younger? For some it takes them back to history class and back 2000 years to the time of 79 AD when he wrote about his uncle and adopted father Pliny the Elder saving those from the destruction of Mt. Vesuvius. For other it brings to mind one of the top rated and one of the best beers in the world. For me this was a quest to taste one of the most sought after beers there is today.

I have only recently been into drinking beer. I was one that would have the occasional Coors Light and more recently Hangar 24's Orange Wheat. My husband decided to try beer again as he could taste some of the best beers in the world at a fraction of the price of the best wines in the world. We started attending beer and food pairings at our local craft brewery Hangar 24 located in Redlands, CA. In doing this my eyes and palate have been opened to a whole new world.

With the new knowledge and taste I became one to try some of the more unique and highly rated beers. We found a local market that would get small quantities of some of the great beers in the world such as Russian River's Pliny the Elder and Blind Pig as well as the genius creations of Mikkeller the nomad brewer. With these beers we would try out some of our own pairings. During this time we also started going to beer tasting parties where we would have anywhere from 20 to 40 beers to sample from all over the United States and the world.

This brings you up to date a little of my beer history. As you can see it is a very short one, but one of quick learning and appreciation of the fine crafted brews. I discovered during this time I like pilsner's, wheat beers, scotch and brown ales, boozy strong beers that taste more like liquor than a beer. I can appreciate a good IPA even a double IPA if it is paired well and not overly hoppy. I am not a fan of the overly bitter and hoppy tastes.

Through Facebook I had seen a posting from Eureka Burger, a local restaurant that brings in some of the finest beers, this simple message PTY. Having heard of the legendary beer I knew what they were saying and it was confirmed in later postings that Pliny the Younger would be coming to Redlands. They didn't say when other than soon. This posting was HUGE in the beer world especially in Redlands where the other known place to try PTY was in Northern California at the Russian River Brewery where this beer is created. The posting appeared toward the end of the week right before the President's Day holiday weekend.

A little history about PTY. Pliny the Younger is a triple IPA, yes I said TRIPLE! It got its name after the Double IPA Pliny the Elder. Pliny the Elder the man lived 23-79AD and in brewing notes is contributed for writing about hops and the brewers at Russian River sought it fitting to name the Double IPA they were creating after the man who wrote about such an important ingredient in the beer world. When they created this Triple IPA they could not name it anything but Pliny the Younger after the son of this man.

I continue now with my quest for PTY. My husband, who had wanted to try this beer, was out of town and I told him that The Younger was coming, when I did not know, but hopefully it would be after her returned on Monday, President's Day, from his trip. Facebook had been quiet about the PTY other than speculation on the postings when it would arrive all weekend. That takes us to Monday. Eureka Burger posted again. This time with the cryptic number 2. All the post was the number 2. What did that mean? Two hours, two days? WHAT???? Once gain the comments were nothing but speculations. Until, someone posted they called and were told 2 o'clock we would have PTY.
This left me with a dilemma; do I go without my husband or not go? I talked to Doug and he said for me to go. So our daughter and I went to Eureka Burger for a late lunch. We got there just before 2 and the place was packed. People inside jammed the bar area and every seat was taken. We put our name in and were told 60 to 75 minutes. Okay, I could do that. I'm starving, but I can do that, I just hope they don't run out the beer before I get in. 

We ran into friends outside while waiting and they told me to expect hoppy. Hoppy? Oh no I do not like hoppy beers, but I am here and I am going to do it anyways. We patiently waited and after 30 minutes our name was called. That wasn't so bad. First thing I did when the waitress came I told her I wanted the sampler. They were only pouring the beer in 5 ounce pours and in a 4 beer sampler. I can't honestly tell you if they were serving it alone since I never asked. In the sampler you received some of Russian River Brewery's finest beers, Pliny the Younger, Pliny the Elder, Blind Pig, and Damnation.

Russian River Brewery's PTY, PTE, Blind Pig, & Damnation
My sampler came well before our food did, but I dove right in. My first sip of Pliny the Younger was not what I was expecting. I did not know at the time that this beer was a Triple IPA, but I would never have known it was an IPA at all because it was creamy. Did I call a Triple IPA creamy? I did. It was so smooth and well balanced that it just glided over my tongue. And at that point I know I had done it. I had tasted one of the beers thought to be the best in the world. I also did this with a bit of sadness as I couldn't share this with my husband. 

The other three beers were good, but not as good as The Younger. Was it the hype that made it taste better or was it actually that good? I cannot tell you for sure, but I could taste the hops in The Elder and Blind Pig. I enjoyed Damnation more than the other two, but not as much as The Younger.
My husband got back the following day and we decided to head over to Eureka Burger just on the off chance that there was some left. Once seated and we talked to the waiter he told us the two kegs of PTY was gone in 5 hours. The Elder was also sold out. I felt a little regret that my husband missed such a chance, but he was happy that at least one of us got to try it and there will be another keg or two next year.

Pliny the Younger with it's father Pliny the Elder 
Here is to all of your beer drinkers out there. To the quest of great beers and bottoms up. Sláinte!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Baking Challenges

Most people who know me know me as someone who loves to cook. But what they might not know is that deep inside I am a baker at heart. My earliest memories of baking were with my grandmother. I remember making lemon meringue and pumpkin pies with her.  She didn't always make everything from scratch, but she taught me a few tricks that I still use today.

There is something about baking that I love and find challenging. I don't know if it's the fact that baking is chemistry and for most things you cannot just throw ingredients together and expect great results. When you bake you have to be exact or what was supposed to be light and fluffy is now a brick and would damage your floors if dropped. As for having to stick to the recipe I do admit that because of that I do find myself a little more fearful to experiment with changing the recipe.

Since the internet is such a handy tool for finding recipes for just about anything you want to make nowadays I have for the most part have stopped buying cookbooks. Until this Christmas that is. Thomas Keller of the renowned French Laundry and Bouchon put out a book from his loved Bouchon Bakery and that became a must have.

The cookbook is as much a coffee table book as it is a cookbook. The pictures are incredible and would make any person browsing through it begin to drool. Surprisingly also many of the recipes are incredibly easy. I know many of you are thinking easy for her to say. But I am telling you the truth. You can make an olive oil cake in less than 30 minutes and have an impressive base for a wonderful dessert.  If you read the recipe thoroughly prior to starting the baking and follow the instructions you will be successful.

Are you flummoxed over a baking term? Thankfully the internet is here to make it easy for you discover the meaning without feeling like a complete idiot. The best way to learn is to practice and take thosse chances. You may nail it on the first try, but most likely it will be the third or fourth time before you get those desired results. There is nothing wrong with no succeeding, even the world's greatest chefs and bakers had disasters before they found the perfect technique and came out with the results they wanted.

Back to the challenges I love. I found a strawberry parfait in the Bouchon Bakery cookbook that I couldn't wait to make. Problem was all the steps and different recipes I had to make to get this one final product.  Step one: Bake an olive oil cake. Step 2: Make pastry cream. Step 3: Make buttercream. Step 4: Blend the pastry cream and butter cream together. Step 5: Assemble parfaits.

I told myself I can do this and I'll make it for my Bunco group. So the day before Bunco I proceeded and baked the olive oil cake. That was simple and I had to let it cool and freeze it to make cutting out the cake easier. Next was the pastry cream. That was pretty easy also as I have made this before. The worst part was running it through a fine mesh sieve to get out all the impurities.  Finally the buttercream. Now this recipe was different than the one I usually make for my cakes. This one had egg whites, boiled sugar, and then the butter would go in. You need a good candy thermometer and to watch the sugar so it doesn't burn. Pour the sugar into the beaten egg whites and once that mixture has cooled to room temperature you can add the softened butter to combine.

Finished Strawberry Parfaits
With all three steps complete I was able to blend the pastry cream and buttercream together and complete the final parfait the next day.  I had to modify the assembly as I was using smaller dishes than the recipe called for.  Once complete I placed the parfaits back in the refrigerator until they were to be served. 

I was pleased my Bunco friends enjoyed our dessert as there wasn't a bit left in any of the dishes.

I happened to have some leftover buttercream and pastry cream so I experimented with another way to use all the same ingredients and made another olive oil cake and put all the ingredients together more like a napoleon. In this manner I was able to serve more people and have an impressive cake.

Next time you think that something is too challenging for you, stop and think about it. Is it really that hard or are you ready to face that fear. Go ahead and take the challenge. What's the worse that can happen? You end up with cake? Go enjoy and have some fun.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Recreating an Experience and Making it Your Own

For the last several months my husband and I have been going to beer and food pairings. I have never been a big beer drinker. I was a Coors Light drinker for years and in the last few years I have become a fan of the wheat beer. We have a local brewery Hangar 24 that started offering Flight Formations where they pair a type of food with their beers. Man has this been mind blowing. Who knew some of these bitter beers were actually good?

Several weeks ago we attended a beer and food pairing dinner at Farm Artisan Foods in Redlands. This was our first fine dining beer dinner there. Let me say all the food and beer were incredible. Roberto & his team outdid themselves. One of the dishes we had was a butternut squash ravioli with sage brown butter, served with Ommegang Scythe & Sickle beer. Now this was the best beer/food pairing that I have ever had.

Over one weekend we went out on a beer collecting trip. We went looking for some of the beers we had a few weeks ago at three different stores. We were lucky to find the beer from Ommegang and we brought that home. So now it was my turn to try to recreate the dish we had at The Farm.
Flour with a well with eggs, olive oil, & salt.

Now I was ready to get to work. I had some butternut squash from the farmer's market and I was ready to make homemade pasta. I happen to have Roberto's recipe for pasta so half the battle was done there. In the oven went the squash and then it was time to make the pasta. I like to do it the old fashioned way, by hand flat on the counter, no bowl required. Once the pasta was made and resting I went to work with the baked squash getting it pureed.

Roasted butternut squash.
Pureeing squash is easy. Once it is baked where a knife will slide in and out easily let it cool slightly then scoop the flesh out of the skin and put into a food processor or blender and pulse it until the flesh is creamy and smooth. Because squash has a lot of liquid in them I place cheesecloth into a strainer add the puree and let it drain for a few hours. With a large butternut squash you can get close to 1 cup of liquid from it.

Pasta dough with finished filling.
After several hours of separating the liquid from the puree, the squash was ready for me to make the filling. The filling consisted of the butternut puree, shallots, parmigiano-reggiano cheese, cream, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. More water evaporates when you heat the puree, so it becomes more solid than runny. Adding the cream adds a richness to the filling. While the butternut mixture was cooling it was time to roll out the pasta into sheets to start the assembly process of the ravioli.

Finished ravioli waiting for boiling.
After you assemble the ravioli you then cut out the shape desired and place on a floured pan so it does not stick while you are finishing the other raviolis. The ravioli does dry out a bit, but don't worry about it. You then bring salted water to a boil and add a few of the finished ravioli at a time as not to crowd the pot and cook until the ravioli is tender. About 7 minutes.

Butternut squash ravioli ready to be eaten.
While the ravioli is cooking in a saute pan melt butter and let it begin to brown. Add fresh sage leaves and allow them to crisp up. Once the butter achieves a nice brown color without burning remove from heat. Place finished ravioli on a plate, spoon over brown butter and sage, finish dish with grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese and parsley. It is now time to eat the fruits of you labor.

Making pasta may seem a bit labor intensive and time consuming, but in reality it can be done in less than an hour and fillings or sauces can be made while the pasta dough is resting. This is something you can get the whole family involved with and what kids don't enjoy helping make dinner? It is also a way to introduce your family to vegetables in fillings that they might normally not eat. Have fun with pasta and for the adults try a beer you wouldn't ordinarily have with food.  Enjoy!