What are you up to this weekend?
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We're hosting our first Spaghetti Saturday of 2016
After a hiatus over the holidays, we're excited to get to catch up with everybody again. As we calculated our meatball count, it was fun to see the names of everyone who responded: “Yes, we're coming!”
It's going to be a really great group of people. We'll also have some new faces this month, and a few people who live far away and make it when they come to town.
A few fun facts about Spaghetti Saturday?
Number of people on our invitation list: 62
Largest Spaghetti Saturday? 30 people. Smallest? 4
Shortest distance traveled? Next door Longest? New York City
The youngest person in attendance? 8 years old Oldest? 71
Average bottles of wine consumed? 10.2 After cleanup? 11.1
I hope you have a good one!
A few fun links from around the web to share ..
How Martha Stewart, George Clooney, Jerry Seinfeld (and many others) got their starts [via NY Mag]
Ever wondered which yoga class to choose? Me too(!) [via S-Life Mag]
Non-Dairy Milk – Which to make and which to buy. I bet a few will surprise you [via Food52]
Debunking the myth of nightshades [via Dana James]
Don't be basic(!) 6 Tips to building your ultimate smoothie [via The Chalkboard]
A beautiful and heart-hurting essay – The Friend [via Esquire]
Loving these low-key New Year's resolutions. This one especially this one – “The greatest gift to myself I can give is the time to travel by foot” [via 3191 Notes]
Why you should always buy the men's version of everything – because I'm forever borrowing my husband's cologne [via The Washington Post]
This weekend temps in Iowa will be in the sub-zero range(!) Home facials to save our winter skin [via The Chalkboard]
The Easy Trick your fried eggs are missing. Who knew? [via Bon Appetit]
One of the things I love so much about the blog (and Spaghetti Saturdays) is the push to try recipes outside of our normal. I'm appreciative for the nudge to change it up
At every party, we offer a gluten-free or healthier option, if you will, for those who come and are following special diets.
This mushroom bolognese is a rich and hearty mushroom, tomato, and red wine ragu that's perfect for cold winter days. A vegetarian re-make of a classic bolognese sauce that gives it less meat, more flavor, and the same luxurious creaminess as the traditional version.
You'll love the smell as it cooks, offering a deep, earthy, and mushroomy fragrance. The best part is the flavor lives up to the promise of the aroma.
Note: The recipe makes quite a bit of sauce. For the two of us, I halved the recipe and still had plenty of left-overs.
~ Adapted from America's Test Kitchen
Sweet Potato Noodles with Mushroom Bolognese
- Mushroom Bolognese
- 2 pounds cremini mushrooms trimmed and quartered
- 1 carrot peeled and chopped
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 28-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
- 2 Tbsp clarified butter ** the original calls for 3 Tbsp butter
- 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms rinsed and minced
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tsp coconut sugar
- 3 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- Fine grain sea salt + freshly ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp heavy cream ** if you're avoiding dairy, coconut cream is a great option
- Grated Parmesan cheese for sprinkling optional
- Sweet Potato Noodles
- 1 Tbsp ghee
- 6-8 medium sweet potatoes or 1 per person, peeled and spiraled
- Fine-grain sea salt to taste
- Mushroom Bolognese
- Working in batches, pulse cremini mushrooms in food processor until pieces are no larger than 1/2 inch, 5 to 7 pulses; transfer to large bowl.
- Pulse carrot and onion in now-empty processor until chopped fine, 5 to 7 pulses; transfer to bowl with mushrooms.
- Pulse tomatoes and their juice in now-empty processor until chopped fine, 6 to 8 pulses; set aside separately.
- Melt clarified butter in Dutch oven over medium heat.
- Add chopped vegetables and porcini mushrooms, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they release their liquid, about 5 minutes.
- Uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and cook until liquid has evaporated and vegetables begin to brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Stir in garlic and coconut sugar and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Stir in tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Stir in wine and simmer until nearly evaporated about 5 minutes.
- Stir in tomatoes, vegetable broth, soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper, and bring to simmer.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until sauce has thickened but is still moist 8 to 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in cream.
- Meanwhile, make the sweet potato noodles
- Sweet Potato Noodles
- To make the sweet potato noodles, heat the ghee in a very large skillet over medium heat.
- When the pan is hot, add the noodles and toss with tongs to coat them with the ghee.
- Let the noodles cook for about 2 minutes, then add 1/4 cup of water and cover the pan.
- Let the noodles steam, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 minutes, or until they reach your desired degree of doneness. (** I like mine almost soft, but with a tiny bit of bite left to them.
- It seems to be a thin margin between too crunchy, just right, and too mushy, so I recommend watching them closely and tasting them often)
- Season the noodles with a bit of salt and stir.
- Serve the noodles hot with the sauce spooned on top, garnished with additional basil if desired.