It’s summertime and that means fresh veggies, fruit, grillin’ out and salads—and there’s nothing better than pasta salads in the summer—chilled or warm—they make for a delicious meal themselves or as a light side dish! Hodgson Mill has launched a new line of whole wheat pastas and they’re looking for innovative ‘pastabilities’ for summer salads. Once I put my Bohemian brain in high gear for a few days, tossed some things through my mind, I knew exactly what I wanted to create—I ‘Boho’d’ bruschetta and made a pasta and tomato tower! I mean who doesn’t love tomatoeee bruschetta, and what better to combine it with than whole wheat cheesy fettuccine pasta nests. There in one love tower you have all the flavors and tastes you adore and look for! So, while this is not my entry into the ‘Summer Pastabilities Contest’ sponsored by Hodgson Mill. I must say it was a tough decision deciding which of the fabulous pastas to use—the two top runners for me with this creation were the spinach spaghetti and the fettuccine, but those weren’t options. Using my ‘designer’ eye, I decided that the lovely nutty brown look and taste of the fettuccine would deserve a spin and practice run before I actually did the real recipe using angel hair pasta! Like I said, I didn’t enter this one into the contest because fettuccine wasn’t one of the options to use…I just wanted to determine the different between two different pastas with this recipe…both are great!
Makes: 4 tartlets
Preheat oven to 325
What you need:
1 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella (divided)
2 beaten eggs
1/4 cup heavy cream
½ tsp Dijon mustard
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
1 tsp chili pepper flakes (optional to reduce amount or omit–I like spicy!)
2 tbl fresh chopped basil
6 ounces Hodgson Mill whole wheat fettuccine
2 large tomatoes
Sea salt to taste
4 thick slices fresh mozzarella (I cut my own from fresh mozzarella balls.)
16 basil leaves
6 tbl extra virgin olive oil
Broccoli spouts (garnish)
What you do:
In a medium size mixing bowl, combine 1 cup of shredded mozzarella, beaten eggs, heavy cream, salt, pepper, pepper flakes and fresh basil and blend. Cook pasta according to directions for only about 7 minutes. Drain and toss into wet mixture in bowl. Use your hands to blend well.
Coat tartlet pans with cooking spray. Using your hands, place a ‘nest’ of pasta mixture into each dividing equally. Top each with the remaining shredded mozzarella. Place tartlet pans in a cast iron skillet or on a cookie sheet and bake in a preheated 325 oven for about 15-17 minutes. Remove and let cool. Take a butter knife and go around the edges to ensure a clean release.
Meanwhile, slice a thin piece from the top and bottom off each of the tomatoes so it will sit flat. Cut the tomato in half. Salt to taste. Place the mozzarella on the tomato then place about 4 fresh basil leaves on the mozzarella. Finally, top with the pasta tartlet, which is still warm. This will slightly melt the mozzarella. Drizzle about a tablespoon of olive oil on each pasta tartlet and garnish with broccoli sprouts. Serve immediately.
©2012 Alice D’Antoni Phillips Ally’s Kitchen