To Market To Market…

IMG_3558It’s nice going to the market on the weekends with my better half since we always discover something new. We get on the Bahn, walk through a new neighborhood and always seem to find a market close by. A vast array of veggies awaits. We have no clue how to prepare half the things we see. I will definitely have to learn more about the King Oyster Mushroom and other interesting fungi nature offers.

Unrelated to mushrooms, I did discover a pasta dish last summer from Daphne Oz that uses cauliflower instead of cream. Imagine that for an Alfredo sauce! So home we went with the very reliable and comfortable cauliflower, shallots, white wine, cheese and a few other market finds.

IMG_3565But before heading home, we had to stop and see what the long line up wrapped around the corner was all about. They were serving Pulled Pork Belly and Short Ribs. I couldn’t leave without giving the “Small Plate” a try. See how nice it is served on parchment paper over a half sheet baking tray in true southern style. I love the simplicity of the presentation, the smoky and sweet flavors of the BBQ sauce and especially the tenderness of the pork. Lip smackin’ good! The lemonade was even served in mason jars with a sprig of mint and slice of lemon. How complete it would have been to be on a back porch with a beautiful sunset to stare into. Sigh…

Back to reality and the cauliflower. This “Alfredo” recipe is soooo good that you won’t even miss the cream. I promise. Pinky promise.

DSC09544Pasta with Guilt-Free “Alfredo” Sauce by Daphne Oz

1 pound fettucine/linguine/spaghetti

4 cups cauliflower, chopped into large florets

1 cup milk

2 tablespoons butter

1 shallot, finely minced

1/2 cup white wine

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, grated

1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped

olive oil

salt and pepper

Silly me. In my haste, I forgot to take pictures of the cauliflower florets cooking in the milk. Start by placing the cauliflower and milk in a pot. Cook, simmer for 8 – 10 minutes, or until softened.

DSC09291Transfer to a blender or use an immersion blender directly in the pot. Blend. Add butter and continue to blend until smooth. Taste to adjust seasonings. Set aside. In another large pot, boil water for pasta, adding salt to the water to taste like the ocean. Cook pasta one minute less than the package directions.

DSC09295In a sauté pan over medium heat, add olive oil and sauté shallots. Add a pinch of salt and cook for 2 minutes or until tender.

DSC09298Deglaze the pan with white wine. Allow to simmer for about 2 minutes or until the liquid is reduced by half.

DSC09303Add the cauliflower puree to the pan. Loosen with 1/3 cup pasta water. Add some of the parsley, reserving some for presentation. Then toss in pasta.

DSC09545Sprinkle with Parmesan. Season with pepper, nutmeg and more parsley, if desired.

IMG_1091In the summer when tomatoes are at their best, I paired this pasta dish with sliced tomatoes and grilled chicken too.



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