Passion Project: Spaghetti Carbonara with Pancetta

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I don’t care much for bacon… Never have, and probably never will. I didn’t grow up with it, and though I enjoy the occasional strips that come with my scrambled eggs at hotel breakfasts, I have never bought a single pack. It’s not like I have anything against it, but it simply never crosses my mind. What I do love, however, is “pancetta”. Think diced Italian bacon, a.k.a the perfect addition to any pasta sauce. The most famous of them all being “Carbonara”. Continue reading “Passion Project: Spaghetti Carbonara with Pancetta”

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(Post) Winter Quinoa Salad

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Though it’s officially spring season, the weather here in Philly is still on the wintery side. It seems fitting to celebrate this new season with a wintery dish. Quinoa bowls are always amazing when it comes to warming you up. They’re hearty, healthy and make you feel good inside. This specific bowl is amazing thanks to the refreshing apple cider vinaigrette. It adds a nice fruity taste to the delicious caramelized vegetables. As per usual, I roast my veggies in big batches over the week end so that this type of recipes only take me 10 minutes to prepare on week days. This recipe is perfect if you want to indulge in a wintery dish on this cold spring beginning, or if you feel like trying a new quinoa dish. Bon appétit!

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Prep Time: 15 minutes (with pre-roasted veggies) or 40 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup quinoa
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup cauliflower
  • 1/2 cup butternut squash
  • 1/2 carrot (sliced in ribbons with a vegetable peeler)
  • 1/4 cup diced pancetta
  • salt, pepper to taste

Apple Cider Vinaigrette:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. If you haven’t pre-roasted your vegetables, preheat the oven to 400°F. Toss the cauliflower, butternut squash and carrot ribbons with olive oil and roast until tender and caramelized (about 40 minutes for the cauliflower and butternut squash, and 4 minutes for the carrot ribbons).
  2. Cover the dried quinoa with ½ cup water, and cook until the water is absorbed and the grains are tender (about 15 minutes).
  3. Meanwhile, cook the pancetta until brown and slightly crispy, in a dry pan over medium-high heat. This should take about 5 minutes.
  4. Make the apple cider vinaigrette by mixing the mustard and apple cider vinegar together first. Then add the olive oil and mix until homogeneous.
  5. When the quinoa is ready, add it to the bowl, and toss with the dressing, crispy pancetta and roasted cauliflower, butternut squash, and carrot ribbons. Adjust the seasoning and enjoy!