Roasted Red Pepper Linguine with Pecan Crumbs

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Autumn has settled in and with it winter-like temperatures for me. So I turn to my trusted carbs to keep me cozy. The combination of roasted bell peppers and caramelized onions in the sauce, and the topping of toasted breadcrumbs with pecans and spices, make a wonderful combination of flavors. To save time, I bought the bell peppers already roasted.

This recipe serves 3.

Ingredients:

For the pecan crumbs:

2 tablespoons of olive oil

½ cup of pecans, finely chopped

1/3 cup of breadcrumbs

1 tablespoon of oregano

Pinch of garlic powder

Pinch of onion powder

Pinch of cayenne

Salt

Pepper

For the sauce:

3 tablespoons of olive oil

3 white onions, thinly sliced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

½ teaspoon of celery salt

4 roasted bell peppers, peeled and deseeded

250ml of cream

40grs of grated Parmesan

Extras:

350grs of linguine or the pasta of your choice

Extra parmesan for serving

 

Start by making the pecan crumbs. Place 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the pecans, oregano, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and cayenne. Stir for a few minutes until the breadcrumbs are toasted. Keep an eye on it so it doesn’t burn. Adjust the seasoning to your taste. Transfer it to a bowl and set it aside.

For the sauce, place 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onions and lower the heat to low. Cook for about 16 minutes, stirring from time to time until the onions are caramelized. Then add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the celery salt and roasted peppers. Blend until smooth.

Start cooking your pasta according to the package instructions.

Then add the cream and parmesan to the bell pepper sauce over medium heat. Let it reduce for about 3 minutes. Taste for salt and turn off the heat.

Drain the pasta and add it to the pan with the sauce. Toss or stir to coat the pasta.

Divide it into 3 plates and serve with the pecan breadcrumbs and extra parmesan

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Chewy Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Orange & Pecans

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It’s been a while since I made cookies and now that the weather has turned, I feel more like baking sweet things. I added chopped dark chocolate, orange zest and salted pecans to the cookies. If you don’t want to use salted pecans, just add a good pinch of salt to the cookie dough. These cookies are soft and chewy. It’s impossible to eat just one!

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This recipe makes around 30 cookies.

Ingredients:

1 cup of granulated sugar

½ cup of brown sugar

226grs of butter, at room temperature

1 tablespoon of vanilla essence

¾ teaspoon of baking soda

2 eggs

2 ¼ cups of all-purpose flour

100grs of dark chocolate, chopped

Zest of 1 orange

½ cup of salted pecans, chopped

 

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.

Place both sugars in the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter and mix until it’s soft and fluffy.

Add the vanilla essence, baking soda and eggs. Mix it for a few seconds. Then add the flour and mix until all the flour is incorporated into the cookie dough.

Finally add the dark chocolate, orange zest and pecans. Mix just until everything is combined.

Scoop about 1 tablespoon of the cookie dough and place it on the prepared tray. Make sure to leave enough space in between the dough because the cookies expand quite a lot.

Bake for 9 minutes, until the edges start to get golden. Allow them to cool for a few minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

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Thyme & Vanilla Bean Ice Cream with Roasted Pecans (No-churn)

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This is a very easy ice cream recipe and the best part is that you don’t need an ice cream machine to make it. Like all ice creams it requires some waiting, but the amount of time you actually need to do something is minimal. I have a thyme plant by my kitchen window that I use very often. I just grab a pair of scissors and cut as many sprigs as I need for a recipe. I really like the flavor that it infuses in the ice cream. It’s not too strong and it goes well with vanilla. I also served the ice cream with some buckwheat-banana waffles. The recipe for the waffles is still to come.

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Ingredients:

For the ice cream:

2 cups of cream

1 can of condensed milk, 400ml

15 sprigs of thyme

1 vanilla bean or 1 tablespoon of vanilla essence

For the pecans:

100grs of pecans

1 tablespoon of butter, melted

1 tablespoon of honey

1 tablespoon of sugar

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Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.

Melt the butter with the honey in the microwave. Add the pecans and sugar. Mix well. Spread the pecans on a tray lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 minutes. Then allow to cool before roughly chopping them.

Slice open the vanilla pod, scrape off the seeds. Place the cream, vanilla seeds, vanilla pod and thyme leaves in a pot over medium heat. Once it starts to boil, turn off the heat and cover it with a lid. Let it steep for 1 hour.

Once the hour has passed, pass the cream through a sieve. Place the cream in the fridge and let it get completely cold.  This will take a couple of hours.

Once the cream is cold, whisk it until soft peaks form. This will take about 3 minutes (I used the stand mixer).

Place the condensed milk on another bowl. Add 1/3 of the whipped cream and mix it. Then slowly fold the remaining whipped cream into the condensed milk. Once it is all mixed, add the chopped roasted pecans.

Pour the ice cream into a freezer container and smooth out the top with a spatula. Press a piece of parchment paper on the top to prevent it from forming ice crystals. Cover it well with plastic wrap or if you have a large enough Ziploc bag, just place it inside a bag. Let it freeze for at least six hours or overnight. The ice cream lasts for up to 2 weeks. But it is better to eat it within a few days from making it, as it is softer.

Pecan Pasta Sauce

pecan pasta

I love this rich pecan sauce. It’s not something I eat very often but when I do, it is so satisfying. Especially during these cold months.  It is one of those dishes that I would ask my mom to make me as a kid. But with time I kind of forgot about it.  It is not until a couple of years ago that I started to make it. It is super easy to make.This recipe serves 3.

Ingredients:

3 medium white onions, sliced

2 tablespoons of olive oil

4 sprigs of thyme

1 garlic clove, minced

100gr of pecans, chopped

250ml cream

½ cup of milk

40gr of grated parmesan

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

¼ cup of the pasta cooking water

400gr of the pasta of your choice

 

Over medium heat, add the olive oil to a large pan. Add the sliced onions and thyme. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring from time to time. Then lower the heat and cook for another 4 minutes.  Add the garlic, pecans, cream and milk. Stir and then put it all in a blender. Add the grated parmesan and blend.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Cook the pasta as instructed on the package.  Reserve ¼ cup of the pasta cooking water to loosen up the sauce.

Add the reserved pasta water to the sauce and mix until combined.

Mix the cooked pasta with the sauce and serve it right away. If you want, you can add a bit of chopped pecans and some thyme leaves to decorate the plate.