Good Morning! I hope you are all off to a great week. My weeks continue to get busier and busier but I am enjoying the company I carry around with me every day. 🙂 This little girl is a movin’ and a shakin’…reminding me every few hours with a kick and a punch that she is on her way. The last 2 weeks so have been filled with “moments-to-remember”. At 21 weeks, I POPPED. Yes, without question, there is now a baby bump..and I SWEAR, it happened OVERNIGHT. My friends and co-workers have been not been shy about pointing this out. LOL. In the 21st week, Baby B also started flexing her muscles hard enough for Dad to see it from the outside. I can only imagine what it is like for him to see a kick or a punch “outside” without having felt them on the “inside” for so many weeks now. It was so fun for me to see the look on his face as we watched my stomach move all about. He had this look of “Oh-my-gosh-that-is-FREAKY-but-really-COOL!” I wish he could feel what I feel. 🙂
In addition to feeling her move, I had my first dream about this munchkin. I dreamt that my dear friend Jenny McCauley and I were taking a walk together…and while we were walking, Jenny looked down and noticed that suddenly we could see through my stomach! Baby B was actually a young toddler in there…with chin length blonde hair pulled to the side in a barrette, big blue eyes, and was dressed in a pretty white and pink outfit. We decided to pull my stomach off of me and hold it out in front of us like a sphere so we could get a better look at her. All of a sudden…she pooped everywhere! You know…all over the place. I insisted that we needed to “clean her up” before we put her back in my tummy. So…we got out the wipes and washed her up. Jenny then handed me a solid gaudy blue Elmo diaper. I looked at her and said, “No…we cannot put that diaper on her! That is NOT her style.” Jenny reminded me that it was our ONLY option. So, on went the diaper and a clean little outfit. Suddenly she was back in my stomach….and I awoke. And now…I wait…several weeks (and perhaps months) to see if she looks at all like I dreamt. I can’t wait to find out! 😉
Amidst all of the excitement surrounding the baby, we are still finding time to cook! This week, we decided to re-create one of our favorite meals! Over the last couple of years, Ryan has had to travel to Boston several times for work. Each time he comes home he says, “You have GOT to try the Bombolotti Al Forno that I had in Boston. There is this great little restaurant called Ristorante Fiore…” Lucky enough for us, worked landed BOTH of us in Boston last fall in the same week…overlapping by 1 day. We took that 1 day and night to share a date at Ristorante Fiore and indulge in Bombolotti Al Forno! He was right. DELISH!
We started our meal at home with a veggie-full salad packed with flavors to compliment the pasta. You have seen this one before on Indulge….it is “Sarah’s Spinach Salad.” We love it! (Word is that this week baby is beginning to taste everything that I taste….so we figured we better get her going on veggies and italian food NOWZA!)
Next up…the Pasta!
With a brief review of the menu description, a little memory of flavors, and some creativity of our own…we replicated this amazing italian baked pasta. I’m not sure that even the original Chefs would be able to tell the difference. Give it a try this week!
BOMBOLOTTI AL FORNO
Inspired by Ristorante Fiore
- 8 x 8 pan
- 3-4 oz freshly grated Reggiano Parmesano
- 2/3 lb of Hot Italian Sausage, rolled into quarter sized balls
- 3-4oz Goat Cheese, crumbled in medium-sized chunks
- 12 oz Rigatoni noodles (Bombolotti noodles if you can find them!)
- 1/2 of 1 Yellow Onion, chopped
- 8 large Basil Leaves (divided in half)
- 2 cloves of Garlic, finely chopped
- 1 jar of Classico Spicy Tomato Basil Sauce
- 1 can of diced tomatoes with juice
- 1 can of petite diced tomatoes with garlic & olive oil (with juice)
- Optional: a pinch or 2 of crushed red pepper. Do you like it HOT?!
*Preheat oven to 475 degrees
Start by making the SAUCE in a 5 qt pot
1. Saute onion and garlic until translucent
2. Add both canned tomatoes w/juice and Classico Sauce. Mix well.
3. Add 4 leaves of chopped basil.
4. Sprinkle in crushed red pepper (optional)
5. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring occasionally while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
6. In a separate pan (wide base), cover bottom of pan with quarter-sized balls of sausage. Brown on each side for ~5mins on medium-low heat until cooked thru.
7. Make a cut in each ball and continue cooking if still pink in the middle.
8. Drain grease and add sausage to the sauce.
And the NOODLES
9. In another 5 qt pot, bring water to a boil.
10. Add a dash of salt.
11. Add noodles and boil until al dente (~10 min)
12. Strain and add noodles to sauce.
13. Grease 8 x 8 baking pan with butter or olive oil.
14. Pour a layer of the pasta mixture over the bottom of the pan.
15. Sprinkle a thin layer of goat and parm cheese.
16. Using the rest of the mixture, pour another layer of the pasta mixture.
17. Top with a thicker layer of the cheeses.
(Notice the excitement on Ryan’s face as the pasta was just about to go into the oven! LOL)
18. Bake at 475 degrees for 10 minutes.
19. Top with freshly shredded basil and serve!
If you like spice…and you like goat cheese…you will LOVE this pasta. Pair with a glass of bold Zinfandel….one that can stand up to the bold flavors and heat of this dish!
Indulge. In Life. In Love. In Food.