Farfalle di ‘Floydsdad’…

5 Jan
Be honest, how often do you actually use yours...?

Be honest, how often do you actually use yours…?

Hello again my mighty kitchen warriors! I trust you are all well. Firstly, I’d like to thank those of you who have taken the time to ‘have a bash’ at some the dishes so far, and been kind enough to leave a comment. That’s the sort of thing that keeps us ‘bloggers’ happy! Anyway “enough of that!”, I hear you cry, let’s have a look at what’s on offer today. I’m trying to keep with a theme of ‘nice and easy’ dishes for now, but at the same time, trying to pick dishes that pack a heap of taste, and create the impression to any guests you may have, that you’re a bit of a whiz in the kitchen. So, I thought we’d go Italian this time, and this little baby is a ‘bistro’ style pasta dish which uses some ‘unusual’ ingredients and is so easy to do because the sauce almost makes itself! As with everything in life, you get what you pay for, so when you pick up the ingredients for this dish, bear that in mind. Ideally you’d want to be making your own pasta, using one of those machines you always see in charity shops. That in itself tells you that it’s a bit time consuming, and fiddly and so most people buy one, use it for a month and then give it away for the good of the cats or something! Trust me though, home made pasta (using top quality ‘double yolkers’ from somewhere like The Collins Egg Company and good quality Durum wheat flour) simply knocks the socks off the dried stuff, and the kids will love making it !!!

In the absence of home made, I went for a decent dried pasta...

In the absence of home made, I went for a decent dried pasta…

Anyway, enough of all that, as El Maestro used to say, let’s take a spin round the board and see what you’ll need. I didn’t make my own pasta, (it’s at the charity shop!) and they didn’t have De Cecco, which is the best in my opinion,(because Rick Stein said it was!), so I went for the only Italian made one they had. To go with that,a pack of Mozzarella pearls,(or a ball of the same), a pack of dry cured smoked pancetta, a couple of fat garlic cloves, a nice sprig of fresh thyme and a block of proper Parmagiano Reggiano, (definately not those shavings!), a bag of pine nuts, and finally a nice plump Savoy Cabbage. I told you there were some strange ingredients, but come with me on this!

Toasting your nuts improves the flavour...!

Toasting your nuts improves the flavour…!

As with everything we do here ‘Floydsdad Style’, I want you to spend a bit of time prepping stuff up, so first things first, get your bezzy big frying pan out, and toast off the pine nuts. Keep an eye on them, and give them a toss every now and then. At the same time, (come on, you should be up to a little multi-tasking by now!) shred about half of the cabbage, and finely great plenty of Parmesan, I’d say at least 2 coffee cups worth! Strip the leaves of the Thyme, slice up your garlic, (slice, not chop!), and if you have gone for the Mozzerella Pearls, cut them in half, or if you’ve gone for a full one, shred it into small pieces.

Pancetta is best, dry cured streaky bacon will do, just get it crispy!

Pancetta is best, dry cured streaky bacon will do, just get it crispy!

OK,  are your nuts toasted? If so then you think about wearing looser fitting pants! (Sorry!) Set them aside, and get the pancetta into the same pan, a few slices at a time, fry it for a minute or two on each side so it goes nice and crispy. Once you’ve cooked it all, then drain it on kitchen paper, and then slice it into thinish strips. I tried slicing and then cooking it, and believe me, it isn’t worth it, as it almost always sticks together.

We're going to move quite quickly here, we don't want anything to wilt...!

We’re going to move quite quickly here, we don’t want anything to wilt…!

Once the pancetta is all cooked and sliced, stick it with the pine nuts, and slop a glug or two of olive oil into your pan. Throw in the cabbage, garlic and thyme, and in a big pan of boiling salted water throw in your Farfalle for as long as it says on the pack. Cooking pasta can be a bit hit and miss, but you want to get it ‘al dente’ (with a bite), and that may mean testing a few pieces as you get toward cooking time.

Almost there ... gently stir everything together and the sauce makes itself...!

Almost there … gently stir everything together and the sauce makes itself…!

OK, your pasta is cooking away nicely, and  the cabbage has softened slightly, so now you can tip the pancetta and pine nuts back into the pan, and combine the two, making sure you resist the temptation to stick a fork in and stuff your face. Drain off the pasta once that’s cooked, (but save a cupful of the cooking water for later) and add that to the pan. Slowly stir everything together until the cabbage and pancetta has been distributed evenly throughout. Nearly done, so pour a glass of chilled Albarino or Rueda, and crack on with the finishing touches. Take your finlely grated parmesan and just throw it all into the pan, giving it a good stir to stop it from going all ‘claggy’. Pour just enough of the reserved cooking water from the pasta into the pan until you are left with a nice shiny coating over everything. Finally tip in the mozzaerlla and give it a final 30 seconds and there you have it! “Farfalle di Floydsdad”.

Serve in a warmed pasta bowl with maybe a (large) glass of Rueda...

Serve in a warmed pasta bowl with maybe a (large) glass of Rueda…

Hopefully you will have warmed through some pasta bowls, so take these out of the oven and spoon in a generous helping. Be sure to evenly distribute the cabbage as it can sometines cling together. Pour over some of the self made Parmesan sauce and enjoy! As always, I’d love you to give it a go, and let me know what you think. If you like the look of it, but don’t fancy trying it, then simply click on the ‘like’ button at the bottom so I can see the stuff that floats your boat. Feel free to share this with your cybermates using the ‘Twitter’ and ‘Facebook’ buttons,  and of course, if there is anything you fancy seeing me have a go at, or to chat about anything ‘foody’, then just leave a comment below, and I’ll gladly get back to you.

Laters peeps! FD  :@)


2 Responses to “Farfalle di ‘Floydsdad’…”

  1. pammie (@pamkirkby) January 12, 2013 at 9:30 pm #

    Farfelle di Floyd
    I can tell you I’m a can’t cook won’t cook kinda person , but this dish looked dead easy , after taking advice from @floydsdad I got everything prepared first ,
    As I usually only eat pasta with a tomato base ,I was quite surprised how tasty it was
    A first for me , but I’m sure I’ll be moving on now to the pad Thai

    • Floyd Kay (Snr) January 12, 2013 at 9:34 pm #

      Glad you liked it !
      It’s great that people are trying the dishes. Do have a go at the Pad Thai, and don’t forget, I’m here to help if you need it… Which I’m sure you won’t !

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