Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Spaghetti - A justification for having Wine on mondays!

We had some sort of a power surge/failure in my office yesterday, so, I decided to pack up and work from home the rest of the day.. Now, leaving home around 6ish is a pretty rare thing for me.. So, I felt like going home and relaxing for a bit and having some Wine.. And, seeing as it was just Monday (a long way from the weekend, which usually seems to be a good time for alcohol), I felt I need to justify my drinking cravings.. Which made me think of Spaghetti.. Since it was still early, I drove over to my favorite pasta store in Davis Square called Dave's Fresh Pasta . Now this place has all different flavors of pasta. I generally get their cracked pepper pasta. However, they were all out of it, so I decided to get their special for the day, Lemon and Basil Pasta. I had them cut it Spaghetti style. I also picked up a bottle of red wine from there.. I also got picked up some green and red peppers from the neighborhood store, Evergood Grocery Store .

Once I got home, I opened the wine to let it start breathing and started cooking the pasta.. Took me about 1/2 hour to cook, and the result was amazing.. This morning, Jacquelyn said, "oh and pasta was amazing last nite. the best yet".. Can't wait to go home and have left-overs.. Pasta always tastes better the next day, because it absorbs all the sauces.

So, here is the recipe


1/2 Medium Onion
1/2 Green Pepper
1/2 Red Pepper
2 Small Green Chillies (or 1 Jalapeno)
1/2 Pound Fresh Pasta (You'll need more if you are using dry pasta)
1/2 Jar of Classico Four Cheese Sauce
1/2 Cup of Stella 3-Cheese (Parmesan, Romano and Asiago) mixture
1 Tablespoon olive oil
6 Cups of Water
1 Tsp Salt


1. In a pot, start boiling the 6 cups of water (This step takes the longest amount of time)
2. While the water is boiling, start dicing the chillies, onions and peppers.
3. In a saucepan, start heating the olive oil, remember that olive oil heats up very fast, So, I'd atleast have the chillies and onions chopped before heating up the oil
4. Once the oil is hot, add the chillies and onions and sauteé them.
5. As the onions start getting translucent, add the peppers into the sauce pan.
6. Next, add the sauce to this and let it simmer.
7. If the water has started boiling, add the salt in it and then add the pasta
8. Cook the pasta either as instructed on the box or till the water starts to boil again for fresh pasta.
9. Once the pasta is sufficiently cooked, (I like it a little Al-Dente) strain it and transfer to a bowl
10. Next mix it well with 1/2 of the cheese and all of the sauce.
11. Plate it and garnish it with some more cheese and Enjoy!

Note. Now, I don't like mushrooms, but these would also be a good addition to this dish. Also, for protien, you could choose to add meatballs to this.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

How much is too much money to spend on dinner?

I say, anything over $25 is starting to be an expensive dinner and that includes drinks..

I was watching Phantom Gourmet the other day on TV.. I watch this show to learn about the different restaurants in area.. They had a segment going on "New and Hip" restaurants in Boston and at one point said.. "Drinks for around $10 and Entrees for less than $20, can you beat that deal.. " Now come on, is that cheap? I don't think so.. OK.. OK.. I know I am ranting.. But, seriously, some of my friends feel that spending $30 (without tip) is a normal phenomenon..

I guess, sometimes I don't mind spending money if the food is good.. But, a lot of times, the food is either not too good or not enough to fill me up...

I understand that I live in an expensive city, but, there is still a limit.. Fortunately for me, there are good restaurants in my neighborhood in my price range...