Cavatelli with Heirloom Tomatoes and Goat Cheese
2 cups heirloom tomatoes, cut in half if they are small or in bite-size pieces if they are larger
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1/4 cup thinly sliced elephant garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
1 lemon, zest and juice
1/4 cup dry white wine
Crushed red pepper flakes to taste
1/2 cup FireFly Farms fresh goat cheese, crumbled into pieces
4 cups homemade cavatelli (see recipe)
In a large sauté pan, set over medium high, heat the olive oil until just smoking. Add the onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt, and cook until translucent.
Add the lemon zest and juice and white wine. Reduce the mixture by half.
Add the cavatelli and cook until just warm.
Add the tomatoes and basil, and cook until the tomatoes just start to soften, no longer than five minutes.
Season with salt and red-pepper flakes. Divide into four warm bowls and garnish with the goat cheese. Serve immediately.
3 cups (1 pound) all-purpose flour
1 pound ricotta cheese
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
Place 2 1/2 cups flour into a bowl; make a well in the flour, and add cheese and eggs. Gradually work the mixture together, adding more flour if necessary, to make a soft, but not sticky, dough.
On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until it is smooth. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
If you have a cavatelli maker, follow the manufacturer’s instruction to roll out the cavatelli.
Alternatively: Form the dough into a round and cut into quarters. Working with one quarter at a time (cover the remaining dough with an inverted bowl to keep the dough from drying out), on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a rope 1/4 inch in diameter.
With a knife, cut the rope into 1/2-inch pieces. With your index and third fingers held together, gently press down on each piece, beginning at the top and moving down toward the bottom, dragging your fingers toward you and causing the pasta to roll over on itself.
Transfer the formed pasta to a lightly floured jelly-roll pan and let dry at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
Bring a saucepan of salted water to a boil, and add the pasta. Cook until the cavatelli are al dente, 6 to 8 minutes. They’re done when they float to the top.
Drain the cavatelli and plunge into an ice-water bath. After the pasta cools, drain again, toss in olive oil, and refrigerate for up to one week.
—From Jerry Pellegrino, Waterfront Kitchen
Dogwood’s Barbecued Beef Brisket
This is a two-step cooking process that starts in a smoker and is finished in the oven. The brisket absorbs most of its smoke flavor in the first four hours. Additional time on the smoker does not improve the quality.
1 (8-pound) beef brisket, preferably from Liberty Delight Farms, thawed if frozen.
8 ounces kosher salt
1/4 cup New Mexican chili powder
1/2 cup ancho chili powder
1/4 cup chipotle powder
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1 teaspoon ground cloves
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon coarse ground black pepper
1 cup dark brown sugar
Pat brisket with paper towels to dry. Mix together spices (see note) in a bowl. Generously rub spices over the meat. Allow to marinate overnight in the refrigerator.
Remove the brisket from the refrigerator one hour prior to smoking. Allow it to come to near room temperature. Trim fat cap to 1/4-inch thickness.
Heat the smoker to 225-250 degrees. Using mesquite wood chips, smoke and cook for approximately four hours. Use the mop sauce (see recipe) to baste the brisket throughout the process.
After four hours, transfer the meat to an oven in a roasting pan, cover with aluminum foil and cook at 225 degrees until finished. The total cooking time is a little over one hour per pound of brisket (about 70 minutes per pound).
Test a slice of brisket to see if it has reached the desired tenderness. Slice across the grain and serve.
Note: Vann’s spices were used in this recipe.
BBQ Brisket Mop Sauce
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup onion, minced
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon ancho chile powder
1 tablespoon dark chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 cups beef stock
1 (12-ounce) beer
1/4 cup tomato purée
1/4 cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Tabasco
1 red bell pepper, roasted and peeled
1 poblano pepper, roasted and peeled
Melt butter in a sauce pot. Sauté onion until it begins to caramelize, then add garlic.
Turn the heat to medium and sweat the garlic and ginger until soft. Add the spices (ancho chile powder through coriander) and toast briefly to develop aromas.
Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Adjust the heat quotient by adding crushed red pepper flakes or more Tabasco. Makes 1 quart.
Note: Vann’s spices were used in this recipe.