April 14, 2013

Pasta with Peas and Potatoes

Since I've been at home, lunch is my department. The summer heat has been quite annoying. It brings with it lethargy and irritability. Definitely not the weather to be cooking hot rice and dhal (unless of course the kitchen was air conditioned). 

Pasta is usually a dinner thing at home, but today it would be on the lunch menu. 

I'm going to modify this recipe a bit from what I actually made that day. I have this problem of often making less sauce than required for the pasta we need. And this time too, I did just that. So it ended up being a bit on the dry side.

Finely chop up a medium sized onion and a few cloves of garlic and add to hot oil. Fry till onions are translucent. Then add 2 tbsps of rosemary (fresh is best). Potatoes and rosemary make an excellent flavour combination. Also add 1tsp each of dried oregano and sage, 2 tsps of salt and 1/4 tsp of ground pepper. 

Chop up 3 medium potatoes into roughly 1" cubes. I usually leave the skins on for more flavour and added bite, so make sure you scrub them really well so that you don't get any mud into the pasta. Add a tiny bit of water and then cover the pan to let the potatoes cook. Stir every few minutes. (If you have less time than I did, boil the potatoes first) When the potatoes are half done, add 1 cup of frozen peas. 

Once it's all cooked and fried well together, add 200 ml of cream, 200 ml of milk. (creme fraiche would have been ideal) Mix well, till it forms a smooth sauce. If you want it a bit more runny, add some of the brine from a bottle of olives (will give it some extra saltiness too). 

Last of all, mix together with boiled pasta and a very generous grating of Parmesan cheese. 

1. If the cream you have is really runny, add 300 ml of cream and only 100ml of milk.
2. If there was pesto in the fridge, I would have added some, so if you have, add 1 tbsp. 
3. Add olive oil to the pasta immediately after draining the water out.

I tried some experimenting with the camera and with the post processing- fiddling with white balance and exposure etc. Hence the colours of the pictures are all different. I was reading some articles on food styling and now I think I need some nice serving bowls and textured surfaces. 

With a little help from Andre from Bella Eats (see here) and Dario Milano from Food Pixels (Facebook page here), I came up with these pictures.  

The first picture in this post is probably my favourite. All I did was brighten up the highly underexposed original.

I got the ruffled tablecloth idea from his photo (click here). Love the shadows it gives.

And for this one, I added some colourful bowls too. 

This one was taken with an old canon G5. Pretty decent picture.

And here's one with tungsten filter and zero post processing.

Will try out some other options for my next food post- play with the choice of colours and textures more. 

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