Finally… Pasta Carbonara!

One of our favorite followers, Chris from Key West, has asked us to show him how we make our Pasta Carbonara! The thing is… that he actually asked us this a couple of months ago! We feel awful that it took so long to get up here, but truthfully this is not a dish for the diet conscious! So we waited to make it for when we had guests over to share the indulgence!

Here in the video, Harris shows you how to make a perfect Pasta Carbonara! See below for the recipe!

While our recipe calls for Hog Jowl, aka Guanciale at the Italian market, you can use Pancetta or a quality bacon.

Ingredients

(Serves four)

3 – tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

8 ounces Guanciale (which is cured pork jowl) or Pancetta or good Bacon

1 pound Spaghetti or pasta of choice

1 ¼ cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

4 – Large Eggs (room temperature)

Freshly ground Black Pepper

2 – tablespoons Kosher Salt

Frozen peas (Optional)

Directions

The Dads Tip: Guanciale is our first choice, but it may be difficult to find. Try your local pork butcher. Also, adding half the olive oil at the end adds that fresh olive oil flavor!

Bring 6 quarts of water to boil in a large pot and add 2 Tablespoons salt to the pasta water. Cook the spaghetti/pasta in the boiling water until just al dente.  

Meanwhile, combine half the olive oil and bacon/pancetta in a 12- to 14-inch skillet on medium heat.  Cook until the bacon/pancetta has rendered its fat and is crispy and golden.  Place cooked pork on paper towels to drain, set aside.  Retain about half of the dripping for coating the cooked pasta.

In a bowl, mix together the cheese, eggs, and pepper until smooth.  We like to add just a little bit of the hot pasta water to help temper the egg mixture.  This will prevent the eggs from cooking when added to the hot pasta.

When the pasta is done, reserve a cup of the pasta water.  Drain the pasta and place it in a bowl or back into the pot.  While the pasta is still really hot, slowly drizzle in the egg mixture, stirring the pasta the whole time.  The sauce will become very creamy as it coats the pasta.  If you need to loosen it up a bit, you can add some of the reserved pasta water. 

Now add the peas (optional) and crispy bacon to the mixture.  

Serve immediately and sprinkle the top with remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese!

The Dads Pasta Carbonara

Love this recipe? Follow us and share it with your friends! Let us know how it came out and send us some pictures! Questions? Ask The Dads in the comments or e-mail: HarrisandDave@gmail.com

Tuesday Two Minute Tutorial: Simple Syrup

We’re back! After some relaxing in Key West, we are very excited to share with you this week’s Tuesday Two Minute Tutorial: How to make Simple Syrup. Spring is in the air and we are ready for cocktails! Simple Syrup is an ingredient in so many of our favorites, but we can’t figure out why so many people buy it in the store.  Not only is it very inexpensive and quick to make, simple syrup can be stored easily in your fridge. And the best part? You will only need equal parts of sugar and water! Simply heat on the stove until the sugar has dissolved, then store in a Mason jar.  Watch the video below and you will be making mint juleps and mojitos in no time!

If you love this tip from The Dads’, be sure to “Like” us on Facebook or “Follow” us on WordPress by clicking the link in the right sidebar to receive our e-mails!

We Quinoa believe how tasty Quinoa can be!

Quinoa: It looks like a grain, it cooks like a grain, it even fills you up like a grain, but this high protein, gluten-free seed is packed with nutrients and amino acids. It can even replace rice in most dishes. So, it makes sense that such a beneficial ingredient is so popular, but we had to know: can it taste good?  Yes. Seriously.

Quinoa’t are we talking ’bout?! (Quinoa is pronounced Keen-Wah, in case you were wondering.) Well, here at HarrisandDave.com, we put together a few test recipes. We wanted something healthy that we could eat, but tasty enough for company. We came up with Mushroom Quinoa with Roasted Butternut Squash & Fennel. It’s our favorite way to enjoy this superfood. Maybe it will be yours too? Give it a try and we promise we won’t make anymore quinoa puns.

Mushroom Quinoa with Roasted Butternut Squash & Fennel

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups quinoa (rinsed)

  • 1 ½  cups chicken stock

  • 1 ½  cups water

  • 1 cup  baby portabella mushrooms

  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms

  • 4 tablespoons butter

  • 3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce  

  • 1 butternut squash cut into chunks

  • 1 fennel cut into chunks

  • 1 red onion cut into chunks

  • Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

 Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Rinse your quinoa in a sieve. This is an important step to ensure all of the coating of bitter-tasting saponins have been removed from the quinoa seeds.

Place the rinsed quinoa into your rice cooker or medium saucepan and add the water and chicken stock. If cooking in a rice cooker, press the cook button and wait for quinoa to fully cook. If using the traditional method of a saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

Meanwhile, place your chopped butternut squash, fennel and red onion on a roasting pan and lightly coat with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Place into 400 degree oven and roast until tender and caramelized; about 20 minutes. Stir part way through cooking time to ensure even caramelization.

While your vegetables are roasting and the quinoa is cooking, melt butter in large sauté pan or skillet over medium-high heat. When the butter is hot, add the mushrooms and sauté. Add Worcestershire sauce, salt & pepper to taste. Cook mushrooms until tender; about 5 minutes.

Fluff the quinoa with a fork and combine the mushroom and place onto a large serving platter. Place on top of the mushroom quinoa the roasted vegetables, adjust seasoning (I sometimes like fresh olive oil) and serve.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Image

 

Harris’ Yellow Layer Cake!

Since we just threw our friend a birthday dinner at our home, we wanted to share with you the recipe for Harris’ Yellow Layer Cake!

20140306-122817.jpg

Yellow Layer Cake

Ingredients

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
1 ¾ cups sugar
10 tablespoons soften butter
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
6 large egg yolks, at room temperature
3 large egg whites, at room temperature

Directions

Grease two 9-inch round cake pans and line the bottom with wax paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl whisk together and set aside, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In a medium size bowl whisk egg whites until soft peaks form, gradually add ¼ cup of sugar and whisk until moderate peaks form and set aside.

Beat in large bowl, using whisk attachment if possible, beat together, 1 ½ cups sugar, butter and oil until lite and fluffy, which usually take 4 minutes. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla.

With mixer set to slow speed add flour mixture alternating with buttermilk and beat until smooth. Fold in egg whites. Pour into cake pans and bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Chocolate Frosting

Ingredients

1 10 oz. Package of Semisweet Chocolate Chips or Squares
¾ Light Cream or Half & Half – Room Temperature
¾ lb. of Unsalted Butter
3 ¼ C Confectioners Sugar

Directions

In saucepan on low heat, melt and combine the butter and chocolate. Add cream and sugar. Whisk until smooth and holds shape.

Tonight’s Feast: Rack of Lamb!

If you’re looking to spoil yourself tonight, how about serving up this delicious dish? Try this recipe below that we love!

Rack of Lamb with Rosemary Parmesan Pesto

Ingredients:

2 to 3 Racks of Lamb (each rack has 8 ribs and you need 3 ribs per person)
1 ½ cups (packed) parsley leaves and small stems
4 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 medium garlic cloves
¼ cup olive oil
Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper

Directions:

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 450 degrees.

French your racks of lamb down to the tenderloin. Trim most of the fat off the lamb and place on a small rimmed baking sheet and season on both sides with salt & pepper.


“Frenched” Definition: A culinary term for the process of cutting away fat and meat from the bone end of a rib chop or steak for esthetic presentation. The bone is scraped completely clean with a knife, leaving a white bone that is often decorated with a “chop frill” (rack of lamb chops is a classic example) or used as a “handle” for eating.


The Dads: Frenching the Rack of Lamb

Place coarse chopped parsley, rosemary, grated Parmesan cheese and garlic into food processor. With machine running, gradually add olive oil until you get the consistence of pesto. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Coat the top of the meat with the pesto.

The Dads: Rack of Lamb with Pesto

You are now ready to roast the lamb or you can place in the refrigerator and store in advance for your dinner party. Simply remove from the refrigerator 1 hour prior to the time you intend to place in the oven, allowing it time to come to room temperature.

Roast 10 minutes at 450 degrees, then reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees and roast additional 15 minutes for medium-rare. 
Rare: 120 – 130 °F, Medium – rare: 130 – 140 °F, Medium: 140 – 150 °F, Well-done: 150 – 165 °F

Bon appétit!

Classic Comfort Food: Glazed Meatloaf

Try Dave’s favorite Meatloaf recipe for your next family meal! This comes out very light and still the perfect flavor! Dave demonstrates in the video below how to make this perfectly glazed meatloaf. We’ll warn you- this is not your mom’s meatloaf!

With fresh herbs and big flavor, this meatloaf takes a little longer than those other meatloaf recipes out there, but the proof is in the pudding… or is that loaf? We’re not sure, but you should try it out!

Princess Diana’s Poached Pears: A Romantic Dish for Valentine’s Day

Inspired by Princess Diana, this is a very special dish that we only make for very special occasions!

Princess Diana's Poached Pears

Poached Pears are beautiful as a dessert, which is the way Princess Diana preferred them. Or you can place them on top of a salad which is how we like them at The Dads: Harris & Dave! Make these for your loved one on Valentine’s Day or any day you want feel like romancing! Nothing says “I Love You” like these babies!

As a bonus, you will be left with our “liquid gold” sauce that you can use for the rest of the year! The “liquid gold” is great over ice cream or even as a base for a rich vinaigrette! That’s amore!


Poached Pears in Port Wine

(Recipe adapted from In the Royal Manner, Paul Burrell, former Butler to Diana, Princess of Wales.)

Ingredients:
3 cups ruby port wine

  • 1 cup cabernet wine
  • 2 strip lemon rind
  • 2 strips orange rind
  • 6 tablespoons redcurrant jelly
  • 2 cinnamon sticks broken in half
  • 6 ripe pears
  • ½ lemon
  • Directions:

    Pour wines into saucepan.  Add citrus rinds, jelly, and cinnamon sticks.  Bring to a boil, stirring until the jelly has dissolved.

    Meanwhile, peel the pears, leaving the stalks intact.  Since the bottoms if necessary so they stand up straight.  Squeeze and rub the juice of the lemon on the pears to prevent browning.

    Place the pears in the sauce pan with the wine.  Bring back to a boil, removing any surface scum.  Once the wine returns to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cover; turning every ten minutes and spooning the wine over the pears to allow all sides of the pears to absorb the wine mixture.  Cook until the pears are tender, about 45 minutes.

    Remove the pears using a slotted spoon, reserving the wine and set the pears in a heatproof dish.  Return wine mixture to the heat and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium and cook until the liquid is reduced and syrupy, 15 to 20 minutes.  Pour liquid through a sieve to remove any pieces of cinnamon, etc.  Allow to cool before serving.

    These delicious pears are wonderful served standing straight up with a scoop of vanilla ice cream topped with the wine syrup. 

    They are also a wonderful topping to your salad.  Imagine baby field green salad with gorgonzola cheese, a few cherry tomatoes and a few Kalamata olives, topped with the poached pears.  So good!! 

    Slice the pear in half lengthways. With a paring knife trim, off the stem and core very carefully, as the pears are very tender.  Slice pears lengthways in ¼ inch slices, holding pear intact and fan on top of the salad.  Top the salad with a balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

    Great Party Dish: Pork Tenderloin!

    This past Friday we were invited to a dear friend’s 60th birthday celebration. We wanted to bring an hors d’oeuvre that would be fun and satisfying for the crowd. They were expecting over 40 guests at the party so we wanted to make a few things that would be great with drinks and be substantial at the same time!

    So, we made this wonderful Pork Tenderloin! We marinated them the night prior and then roasted a couple of hours before the party. This gave them a chance to rest and cool before slicing, since we wanted to serve this hors d’oeuvre at room temperature.

    We placed the thinly sliced pork tenderloin around the platter and in the middle placed the dipping sauce. Next to the platter we put a cachepot filled with fancy toothpicks. If you don’t happen to have a cachepot, you can substitute with your favorite shot glass!

    Here is a picture of how our’s came out:

    The Dads' Pork Tenderloin

    Of course our second appetizer was our ever famous fresh pizza! They saw it on our blog and insisted we make that as well!

    Check out our Pork Tenderloin recipe below! Let us know in our comment section if you choose to make it or if you have any additional tips! Enjoy!

    Pork Tenderloin

    Marinade Ingredients:
    • ¼ cup soy sauce
    • ¼ cup hoisin sauce
    • ¼ cup honey
    • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
    • 1 teaspoon diced garlic

    Coating on pork for roasting:
    • ½ cup uncooked sesame seeds

    Directions:
    Combine the above ingredients, mixing well. Trim two pork tenderloins (12 oz each) and place in zip lock bag. Pour into bag the marinade and allow meat to marinate for 2 to 24 hours in the refrigerator. We find it is best if you have time to allow the meat to marinade overnight.

    Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

    On a piece of wax paper spread uncooked sesame seeds and roll pork tenderloins in the seeds to coat the exterior. Please pork on greased baking sheet and cook for 20 to 25 minutes. Insert instant thermometer into the center of the meat to ensure it is between 150 to 155 degrees.

    Let meat rest for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing.

    The above dish is great for a dinner or served cold for a party. If you use it for a party the below dipping sauce works perfect. We recommend slicing very thin if being used for a party and serving with tooth picks.

    Dipping Sauce Ingredients:
    • Juice of ½ a lemon
    • Juice of ½ a lime
    • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
    • ½ tablespoons Mirin (Rice Cooking Wine)
    • 2 green onions – just the green part, sliced very thin
    • 1 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
    • 1 tablespoons brown sugar

    Instructions:
    Combine all ingredients and place into a dish for dipping!

    Impress Your Guests with This Homemade Gourmet Pizza!

    We mentioned recently that we had made a pizza from scratch for Harris’ mother’s Italian birthday, so we wanted to share our recipe with you! 

    Gourmet pizza is always a great crowd pleaser and with Super Bowl Sunday coming up, this might be one of the best entrees to serve up!

    Here is our recipe that worked great for us. But the beauty of pizza is that you can dress it anyway you like, so feel free to experiment with your own variations! What’s your favorite way to decorate your pizza? Have you made it at home before? What tips worked great for you that you would like to share? Leave a comment and we will let you know if we try any of your suggestions!

    Arugula with Pesto, Cherry Tomatoes, Basil & Four Cheeses Pizza

    The Dads: Pizza

    For the Pizza Crust:

    1 teaspoon active dry yeast
    ¾ cups of warm water, not over 110 degrees
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
    3 tablespoons olive oil

    Directions:

    (Note: If you do not have a standup mixer, then mix it by hand using a wooden spoon. An electric mixer would be too difficult to use in this instance.)

    Pour yeast into the warm water and allow to sit for five minutes.

    Using a standup mixer first combine the flour and salt. Next, set your mixer to run at low speed and drizzle in olive oil until combined with flour. Pour in yeast and water until just combined. The dough will be sticky. Coat a mixing bowl with olive oil and form the dough into a ball. Toss the dough ball in the bowl with olive oil to coat the ball. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for one to two hours. It is best to place bowl in the refrigerator 24 hours ahead for the best flavor.

    Punch the dough down and roll out to fit your greased pan (we used a standard baking sheet). Try to avoid stretching the dough.

    For your Toppings:

    1 unbaked pizza crust (as above)
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    Pinch Kosher salt
    Pinch black pepper
    Red pepper flakes
    1/3 cup basil pesto
    5 cloves garlic, minced
    1 ½ cups red cherry tomatoes – sliced in half
    1 ½ cups yellow or orange cherry tomatoes – sliced in half
    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    ¼ cup basil leaves, rolled and sliced thin
    8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, grated
    4 ounces asiago cheese, grated
    ½ cup parmesan reggiano cheese, grated
    ½ cup ricotta cheese
    4 ounce fresh arugula

    Directions:

    Preheat oven to 475 degrees.  Place cut tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste in a medium size bowl.  In small skillet, heat olive oil, add garlic and stir for one minute and remove from heat.  Pour over tomatoes mixture, tossing to coat evenly. Set aside.

    Image

     

    Roll out dough very thin, dusting with flour and transfer to oiled baking sheet.  Drizzle a little olive oil over dough and spread evenly.  Spread pesto over dough.  Sprinkle mozzarella, asiago, and parmesan reggiano evenly over pizza.  With a spoon place a small amount of ricotta over the entire pizza and sprinkle with red pepper flakes to taste.

    Image

    Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until the crust is golden brown.  Remove from oven and allow to rest for five minutes. Then cover top with arugula, then spoon over tomatoes mixture.  Cut into squares and serve.

    Bon appétit! 

    Our Fresh Pasta Journey in the Harris & Dave Test Kitchen!

    The Dads: Harris & Dave decided to learn how to make pasta and share with you. We’ve all watched the cooking channels and saw how easy it is to make so we decided to see if all that is true. We downloaded several recipes and began our experimentation.

    We tried the method of using the food processor and realized you run the risk of burning out your motor and it’s not that much easier. Using the method of creating a well in the center of your flour directly on your countertop or cutting board and slowly working the egg into the flour worked just fine.

    We also tried using different flour: Bread flour, All Purpose flour, and Semolina flour. We found we got the best result from using straight All Purpose flour. We were disappointed as we thought Semolina would be more authentic Italian but what we learned is Semolina was too coarse for this application and made the pasta too difficult to work with.

    We tried recipes that called for Olive Oil to be added to the recipe. While we liked the flavor that added, it did make the pasta just a little more difficult to work with so we found less was better.

    DSC01230

    We experimented with the number of eggs to use. While we loved the taste of more eggs, we had to balance that against tenderness of the noodle and pliability for cutting in the pasta machine.

    We also experimented with cooking the pasta fresh right after you cut it, freezing before drying the pasta and drying on racks. We found if you’re not going to cook it right away, it is definitely best to let the pasta dry before freezing or it will stick together when you go to cook the pasta.

    The end result is the pasta recipe which we will upload tomorrow! Stay Tuned!

    Dave