Friday, April 22, 2011

Presto Pasta Night #210

Hosting the Presto Pasta Night was great fun. I got to review a very interesting array of pasta dishes, featuring different colors and flavours, of all shapes and sizes, and influenced from different parts of the world. There is pretty much someone for everyone, except of course if you are on a carb-free diet! The dishes are presented in alphabetical order, except one which I thought deserved last spot. Perhaps it should not even be on the list, but that’s for you to decide. 

After going through all the posts I tried to think of dishes that would be my personal favourite. I could not identify one, they are all different and fantastic in their own special ways - hearty, bold flavoured, simple, easy to prepare, vegetarian heavy, unique...  

beef daube provencale cooked by eat the right stuff
This is a very hearty dish which takes two days of preparation. It you have time on your hands this will be well worth the wait

Chicken and Mushroom Pasta Bake cooked by Life in the Slow Lane at Squirrel Head Manor A quick and easy pasta dish that includes chicken, mushrooms and cream. As the chef says "whats not to like"
Mediterranean penne alla puttanesca cooked by The Beet Reporter

 A Mediterranean inspired dish and just in time for the asparagus season

Mushroom Pasta with Truffle Oil cooked by Lavender and Lime

As you can see this dish features just a handful of ingredients, allowing a few core ingredients to shine through, namely mushroom and truffle oil. "Less is more"!.

Orzotto cooked by The Accidental English Teacher

First reaction ‘what the heck is orzotto’! Orzo is the Italian word for barley. Exotic sounding dishes usually taste delicious even before we taste it. And  The Accidental English Teacher promises this tastes absolutely divine. And the muffin in a bonus!
Mediterranean penne alla puttanesca cooked by The Beet Reporter

Another Mediterranean inspired dish. This one is heavy on leafy greens and Mediterranean flavours like olives

Pastitsio cooked by Honey from Rock

Pastitsio is the Greek version of Mac n Cheese, or should I say Mac n Cheese is the US equivalent of pastitsio! Pastitsio is made with yogurt and kefalortiri cheese. It is these two ingredients that give it the Greek touch

Penne Pasta with Escarole and Bacon cooked by From Kirsten's Kitchen to Yours

Escarole is a leafy green vegetable. The picture speaks for itself, bright and fresh looking dish.

The recipe for this dish is courtesy of Union Square Café. Apparently it is a fan favourite. If you are a regular to Union Square Café and loved this dish, now you have the recipe!

This dish features two  less common ingredients – squid ink and ramps. Ramps is related to onions and looks a bit like scallions.

Tagliatelle with Broccoli “Pesto” cooked by The Spamwise Chronicles

Not everyone loves broccoli. If you don’t this dish may convert you.

Tortellini Tricolore cooked by Culinary Flavours

A baked pasta dish featuring various types of peppers, cauliflower and mushroom and ham. A ham flavoured vegetarian delight

Three-Alarm Spaghetti & Pinto Bean Chili cooked by Holy Cannoli Recipes

This is a one pot wonder vegetarian chilli pasta dish, or a vegetarian meat dish since the lack of meat is unnoticed unless you are specifically reminded

Wild Garlic Macaroni Cheese cooked by Mango Cheeks

The dish is well timed. With spring here, foragers now have another great use for wild garlic.

Yakisoba cooked by Roti n Rice

 A "Japanese pasta dish" made with soba which are Japanese noodles. 

Coconut Polenta Cookies cooked by Easily Good Eats
Is polenta considered pasta? I suppose there is no right answer. In any case I thought it would be good to end on a sweet note!


  1. Lovely roundup. Such a broad spectrum of dishes. Thanks for such a great job of hosting.

  2. Great round up! Thanks for hosting the event. All dishes are delicious!

  3. Wow those look good, and sorry I forgot to place a link on my comment before about a pasta recipe I wanted to share, I thought I had pasted the link but after checking the comment it was not there. But in case you were wondering what was it, it is this one Spicy Prawns and Salmon Fettuccine

  4. Great ideas for weeknights! Thanks for hosting!

  5. "Is polenta considered pasta? I suppose there is no right answer."

    Yes there is. It's not.

    The commitment to diplomacy is admirable, but polenta is pasta like grouper is a vegetable. It just isn't.

  6. Everyone: thanks for the kind compliments
    Skillet Doux: point taken, calling polenta pasta is a bit of a stretch.

  7. Hey, just wanted to let you know that the link for the 2nd recipe down; Chicken and Mushroom Pasta Bake goes to the recipe Mushroom Pasta with Truffle Oil. Please amend? And thanks for another great round up. I'm salivating right here lol :)

    -Sarah from UK

  8. Sorry... that was intended to be humorous, but rereading, I think it just came across as... well... less than nice.

    (Polenta's still not pasta, though :-)