Baked dishes are a breeze; simply shoving the tray into the oven and waiting for a lush treat is not difficult to do at all. Best part is, you’ll get a crispy layer on top, and succulent parts below. You can bake just about anything – from rice to pasta, vegetable to poultry. But here’s what I did last night:
Dump whatever tickles your fancy into a tray, with the parboiled pasta dumplings. For this, I had a base layer of fresh wild rocket leaves, then a bunch of mushrooms and a couple of white onions, all sliced up. The tortellini of choice was bacon-filled, but if you’re vegetarian, spinach-filled ones works too! After adding the tortellini, I grated a hunk of cheese to cover the top, making sure every inch of that pasta goodness was sitting under a snug blanket of mature cheddar. Drizzled with nuts and chopped rocket, the tray goes into the oven, baked till golden and precious.
Welcome the Aroma Fairies to your kitchen.
Before devouring, more rocket is laid atop, together with a sprinkle of paprika for colour.
Discovered a new way to eat pasta today. No, it doesn’t involve using bare hands to dig in. It’s actually a slightly different kinda sauce from the usual white sauce. Almost like carbonara but less rich and more tasty. I think. Here’s how to make, what I’d like to call, Cheesy Eggy Pasta.
Fry the bacon to render out some of that glistening fat. Then, add a wad of butter together with the mushrooms and peas. Don’t forget some oregano to complete the wholeness of flavour. Let the pasta join in the party when it’s done al dente.
When you’re happy with the way everything looks in the pan, add milk. Just enough to make a sauce. And just before the milk boils, crack in an egg and grate in a hunk of cheese. Now, turn down the heat and mix. Don’t forget the salt and pepper. Parsley, optional.
Finally, get ready to sink your teeth into a marvellous alliance of bacon, egg and cheese, all in your pasta sauce.
Asparagus and Bacon, were made for each other. Due to impatience and negligence, this didn’t turn out quite right for me. Follow the instructions below and I’m sure you’ll get a better result.
The beauty of this dish is that apart from the potato mash, no seasoning is required. I made a mash so that it’ll be a bigger meal. If you exclude the carbohydrate, it’s a breakfast fit for a king.
Here’s how to make your own Asparagus in Bacon & Egg Jacket.
- 3 streaks of bacon, halved lengthways
- 6 stalks of asparagus
- 2 large eggs
Asparagus in Bacon
Using the smoked bacon, wrap the sticks of asparagus. Grill in the oven at 200°C till brown and crispy, flipping them at midpoint. (They looked so good that I got impatient and hungry, so they didn’t make it to the slightly crispy and almost charred stage. I couldn’t do it, but you can.)
There’s a trick to getting them right even though you can’t see what’s going on inside. Stick a pot of water on the hob and get your eggs in. Make sure there’s enough water so that the eggs are completely submerged. Hit the switch to full whack. Once the water boils, turn off the heat and let the eggs soak for about 3 minutes. Flush them briefly with cold water and place them on those little egg holders, or shot-glasses would do. With the ‘sharper’ tip of the eggs pointing downwards, lop the tops off with a knife. Say hello to your golden yolks.
To consume, grab a stick of that pretty asparagus, with your fork or fingers, it doesn’t matter. Dunk it into the soft-boiled eggs and take a bite. Let the incredible nuttiness of asparagus mingle with the smokey aroma of bacon. Pay attention to the lush gooey texture of the egg, holding everything together. And just before you swallow, have a little wad of potato mash join the party.
Feel like a king yet?