Shrimp, Pasta and Broccolini in Tomato Cream + A Pastaiola Giveaway

shrimp pasta and broccolini Happy National Pasta Day! Who doesn’t love pasta? It delicious, comforting, it comes in endless shapes and sizes and can be made countless ways with a variety of different sauces. It’s also crowd pleasing, a great party food, present at many family dinners and dinner for one. Many fond memories have been etched in our minds recalling favorite pasta dishes made by our dear loved ones hands.

So in honor of the day I made you a luxurious pasta dish that includes shrimp and broccolini in tomato cream sauce, and you won’t believe how quick you’ll get it to the table!

Lagostina Pastaiola  To further celebrate and to make you feel like an absolute pro in the kitchen, the generous team at Lagostina is giving away this gorgeous, and I mean gorgeous, Hammered Copper Pastaiola pot to one lucky reader of mine.

Lagostina Pastaiola

Here are some of the features

·          Lagostina Martellata Tri-Ply Copper 6 qt. Covered Pastaiola features durable tri-ply construction for lasting utility plus thermal efficiency courtesy of a heat radiating, encapsulated aluminum core

·         Brushed 18/10 stainless steel interior will not react with food

·         Polished, hammered copper exterior looks striking on a stovetop and enhances heat conductivity

·         Compatible with most stove types, except induction

·         Oven safe up to 500º F

·         Polished, snug-fitting stainless steel lid helps prevent heat and moisture from escaping

·         Sturdy, riveted cast stainless steel side handles for confident handling

·         Flared edges for dripless pouring

·         Comes complete with a stainless steel pasta insert

·         Copper, aluminum and stainless steel

·         Hand wash

·         6 qt. capacity

Valued at 249.99

marinara in pastaiola First thing I did with my pastaiola was make a big pot of marinara, I normally keep a stash in my freezer and I was running low. I’m happy to say I was able to fit two gigantic cans of tomatoes both over five pounds each into the pot with no problem, so you’re going to love how deep it is! It will be perfect for making future stocks and seafood boils because of it’s deep size.

marinara in pastaiolashrimp and broccolini

This pasta dish comes together quickly once you have all your ingredients ready so when you begin to make the sauce get your water boiling!

Add some garlic and olive oil to a pan then toss in shrimp, (I had eight large) and steamed broccolini, when the shrimp is cooked remove and set aside.

tomato cream sauce Deglaze the pan with three cups of marinara, preferably homemade or a good quality store bought brand then splash in about a quarter cup of  heavy cream, stir and combine then it’s time to bring back the shrimp and broccolini.

boiling pasta Did you know there are over 600 known shapes of pasta? I love seeking out different and unique shapes, for this dish I used Festoni, it’s like a pappardelle with ruffled edges.

drained pasta Looks done to me, nice and al’dente, now It’s time to drain it and toss it into the creamy tomato sauce making sure everything gets coated well. ( I used 8 oz. here)

shrimp pasta and broccolini Silky, slurpy and luxurious!

shrimp pasta and broccolini

Happy Pasta!


It starts today Oct. 17, 2016 and it will run for 10 days ending on Wed, Oct. 26, 2016

Leave one comment only my blog please, and tell me your absolute favorite pasta dish or pasta shape.

You must have a valid email address so I can reach you, no anonymous comments will be accepted.

Winner will be picked randomly and announced on Thursday Oct. 27, 2016 and contacted by the email used in their submission.

The winner of this giveaway will receive one Lagostina Martellata Copper Pastaiola

 You must be at least 18 years old and a US resident. 

( Disclosure: I received one pastaiola for review, and as always opinions are my very own)


Print Friendly

Braised Short Ribs with Red Wine and Roasted Garlic

braised short ribs Braised short ribs is what I call cold weather comfort food at it’s best. Meaty short ribs that braise in a hearty red wine, a little broth, roasted garlic and thyme. The meat becomes so tender and fall off the bone delicious, and the best part is you only do a minimal amount of work to get them ready then the oven takes over for a while.

In the meantime your house is guaranteed to smell amazing!

roasted garlic

I mentioned roasting garlic for this recipe, it’s a MUST, you have to do it because when your meat is done braising you’re going to smash the sweet mellow cloves right into the liquid and then strain everything so you have a nice smooth sauce that’s packed with so much flavor you can’t even imagine!

To save time I recommend roasting the garlic a couple of days ahead and storing it away in your fridge, I always make a little extra to use in other things like mashed potatoes, sauteed greens or simply smeared on crusty bread.

braised short ribs

You can serve this on top roasted garlic mashed potatoes, some thick eggy noodles or pappadelle pasta, or my favorite… creamy polenta, (too die for!) In fact the other day I posted a picture of  just that, a juicy, tender short rib on top of creamy polenta with a layer of  roasted garlic sauteed kale on my Instagram, check it out here.

Now go grab a heavy pot and start braising!

Braised Short Ribs with Red Wine and Roasted Garlic
  • 4 whole heads of garlic, cut in half
  • 6 large meaty short ribs
  • hearty red wine
  • beef or chicken broth
  • ¾ of a cup of tomato puree, finely diced tomatoes, marinara or a couple of tablespoons of tomato paste
  • cremini mushrooms, 12 oz. package, cut in half
  • 1 small pack of pearl onions, blanched and peeled
  • (optional, for a little spicy heat, a teaspoon of harissa or Calabrian chili paste, I used harrisa, but again not needed just optional)
  • fresh thyme
  • olive oil, salt and pepper
  • fresh parsley for garnish or chopped scallions
  1. Roast the 4 heads of garlic the day before by cutting them in half, drizzling them with olive oil adding fresh thyme, salt and pepper. Wrap in heavy foil and roast 45 minutes to 1 hour at 400 degrees
  2. Season short ribs with salt and pepper all over.
  3. In a heavy bottomed pan like cast iron get it nice and hot then drizzle with olive oil and add in the ribs and start searing them.
  4. Let ribs get a deep golden brown all over, not moving them too often, letting the fat render out.
  5. Remove ribs and pour off all extra fat, leaving brown bits on the bottom.
  6. Add ribs back in and add your tomato ingredient and optional extra spice, let it cook a bit.
  7. Pour in the wine enough to cover almost half up the sides of the short ribs, let it bubble and cook down for a little while, it should reduce a little.
  8. Add in the broth, again enough to reach halfway up the sides of the short ribs.
  9. Add in one whole head of the roasted garlic, two halves.
  10. Throw in some fresh thyme.
  11. Cover with lid or heavy duty foil and place into a hot, preheated 300 degree oven, they will take around 2½ hours.
  12. Half way through add in the onions.
  13. In a skillet, saute your mushrooms on medium high heat, set aside.
  14. When short ribs are finished cooking, and have become tender and fall off the bone, remove them gently from the pan as well as the onions.
  15. Smash all the garlic that came out of the head with a fork into the gorgeous liquid, it will be chunky looking.
  16. Strain the sauce through a fine mesh strainer, pushing and scraping the bits to get all the juice extracted, discard all pulp from garlic, you are left with a smooth sauce.
  17. Place smooth sauce back into the pan, add the short ribs and onions back in, at this point you can skim more of the fat off if you like, I did.
  18. Add the sauteed mushrooms and some fresh thyme.
  19. Garnish with fresh parsley and chopped scallions.
  20. Serve over creamy polenta, egg noodles, pappadelle pasta or roasted garlic mashed potatoes.
  21. Delicious with sauteed greens on the side.
  22. Enjoy!


Print Friendly

Autumn Sformato, a Savory Italian Custard

autumn sformato I like to describe sformato as a little Italian souffle or Italian custard that can be made savory or sweet and often served in individual portions. They’re usually made in a ramekin then unmolded for a nice presentation and served with a sauce of some sort.

Here I made my favorite one, a savory version filled with a puree of butternut squash, creamy parmesan cheese and a few other ingredients that give it it’s dreamy texture.

I posted this some years ago but adjusted the recipe a little and wanted to share it with you again since it’s the perfect starter, side dish or light veggie entree for a nice autumn meal.

cooked squash

Squash is everywhere now and all you need to do is roast some up and scoop out the pulp!
squash puree and parmesan I love the combination of butternut squash and Parmesan Regggiano they compliment each other so well and are the base for this savory sformato.

autumn sformato When cooked and cooled down the sformato will unmold on to a plate very easy.

autumn sformato A parmesan cream sauce, some crispy sage, toasted pumpkin seeds and a swipe of balsamic glaze takes this over the top, and I mean over the top!

autumn sformatoautumn sformato

Each spoonful is beyond words, you have to make this!

Come see what I’m cooking up during the week, you can follow me on Instagram here.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Autumn Sformato
  • 1 large butternut squash, roasted with pulp scraped out, should equal around 2 cups for 4 ramekins.
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup of grated Parmigiano Reggiano and more for sauce and garnish
  • 2 tablespoons, mascarpone
  • ½ cup of half and half
  • salt and pepper too taste
  • 2 cups of half and half or heavy cream reduced down
  • a handful of grated Parmigiano Reggiano to toss into the cream
  • balsamic glaze, pumpkin seeds, crispy sage and extra parm for garnish
  1. preheat oven to 350. I recommend doing the squash the day before or early in the day.
  2. Cut your squash in half, scoop out the seeds, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper then place cut side down on parchment and roast until a knife pierces all the way through easily. Times will vary depending on the size of squash.
  3. Scoop out the squash the puree it smooth in a food processor, your squash puree is now finished.
  4. Then into a bowl add the rest of the ingredients, 2 cups of squash puree, the egg, mascarpone, parm, half and half, salt and pepper.
  5. Pour mixture into a buttered ramekin.
  6. Place ramekins into a baking dish with water to come up halfway to the sides, place a sheet of tin foil on top.
  7. Bake at 375 for around 30 to 40 minutes or until custard is set and cooked without jiggling.
  8. Let it cool down and make the sauce.
  10. Reduce half and half or heavy cream in a small saucepan, cook on low heat until it thickens then turn off heat and add the cheese.
  11. Unmold your sformato onto an individual plate, spoon some of the sauce on top.
  12. Sprinkle pumpkin seeds around and a swipe of balsamic glaze.
  13. Crisp up some sage leaves in brown butter for garnish.


Print Friendly