Monday, March 29, 2010

Spaghetti with Brown Butter and Mizithra

One of the Gallagher's children's birthday was last week, and her favorite restaurant is "The Old Spaghetti Factory" so I recreated her favorite dish from that restaurant for her and her boyfriend's birthday dinner at the restaurant. That must be the most horrible and tortured sentence I have ever written, but I guess it explains this post. I have been to "The Old Spaghetti Factory" once, but I don't remember it well, or why I was there. It is a huge place located on "Laclede's Landing" on the St Louis riverfront. Laclede's Landing is a touristy area of shops and restaurants with a large number of pick-up meat market type bars-Spaghetti Factory is one of the touristy family style places, relatively inexpensive, large portions, great for families because it is located close to all the hometown teams-Rams, Cardinals, and Blues.

Mizithra is a Greek sheep's milk hard cheese that is made out of the whey from Feta Cheese. The cheese is like a mild feta, not quite as salty and pungent, a nice alternative to Parmesan for a change.

It seems that there alot of copy-cat recipes for this dish all over the internet, and it is quite simple

Here is the ratio:

1 pound cooked pasta

1/2 pound clarified brown butter
1 cup grated Mizithra cheese
Minced fresh parsley
I thought this dish was pretty simple and delicious, please note that Mizithra does not melt, it remains chewy.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Butterscotch Ice Cream and Date, Macadamia Nut, Coconut Cookies
This ended up being a little too rich for me, but the ice cream and the cookies were both delicious.
Butterscotch Ice Cream
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tablespoons of butter
1 Tablespoon rum
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 cups half and half
6 egg yolks
Heat the cream, sugar, butter until smooth and bubbly, add the rum, let the mixture cool.
Heat the half and half to the simmering point.
In a mixing bowl, whip the eggs, add some hot half and half to the eggs, the return the egg mixture to the pan of hot half and half. Whisk until the mixture thickens-do not boil.
Thoroughly combine the two mixtures and let chill over night before freezing in your ice cream freezer.
Date, Macadamia Nut, Coconut Cookies
1/4 pound butter, softened
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
2 Tablespoons Vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup coarsely chopped dates
1 cup coarsely chopped toasted Macadamia nuts
1 cup flaked coconut
1 cup rolled oats
Cream the butter and sugar with a mixer until smooth and creamy, add the egg and vanilla.
Add the flour. Fold in the dates, nuts, and coconut.
Drop the batter by tablespoons onto a greased baking sheet and bake in a 350 degree pre-heated oven for 12 to 15 minutes, makes about 3 dozen cookies.