Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving, October's Pasta Night and a Troubled Spaetzle Attempt

As Britt sings when I'm lucky, Happy, Happy, Happy Turkey Day! If you celebrate Thanksgiving, I hope you've all found many things to be thankful for and that you are enjoying time with your family,  biological or chosen. My family is feasting on Friday and Sunday, so I am not indulging yet but there's no reason not to be thankful in advance of the trimmings. I am grateful to my family and friends for their ongoing love and support, the experiences I have had this year including visiting Lizzie in Minneapolis and checking out the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens, touring Glacier National Park and attending fun weddings among others. 

One of my favorite things in NYC has been thematic cooking events. First there were Dana's where my urge to share my cooking trumped my nervousness about being somewhere surrounded (mostly) by strangers. Then there has been the new version organized by Meg. Our most recent was Pasta Night i.e. making use of her Kitchen-Aid Mixer's Pasta Roller. Everyone contributed something - Leslie's awesome meat ragu was the star in my opinion - and we learned that there is a limit to how many times you can run pasta through the roller without losing its tenderness while chatting, eating and drinking. Perfection.

My contribution was freshly grated Parmesan and Fettuccine Alfredo sauce, my favorite childhood food other than ice cream. I returned to All Recipe's Fettuccine Alfredo V something I made in college with these notes "a little buttery, use less margarine (what I substituted), rich enough to give a little stomachache, it got rave reviews from my roommates and sisters, possibly could use a bit more garlic and have to stir upon reheat then it is a bit grainy but still flavorful. That also mixes the butter back in" for the occasion. I'm pleased to report it no longer gives me a stomachache, even though I traded up to butter. It is just delicious. If you like Fettuccine Alfredo when dining out, trust me, the linked version beats it.

The following Monday I used the leftover Fettuccine Alfredo sauce, blanched zucchini, basil chiffonade and spaetzle with lemon zest to create something similar to my memory of a dish I ate at B-Bar in May. The flavor was good, but I learned the hard way that a potato ricer does not work to make spaetzle. Mine did not cook as evenly as April's and looked a bit like brains, if their tissue were white.

Vanessa and Meg made the pasta from scratch.

We all took turns running the pasta through the pasta roller. 

Erin made lovely bow ties.

The rest of the dough turned into fettuccine.

Bow Ties with Leslie's killer ragu. This was only the start of what I ate.

My attempt at spaetzle, though not lovely, was delicious.


  1. Great idea...I've only had spaetzle with German style brown gravy.

  2. Mmmm - looks so delightfully summery for almost Winter! I don't think your Spaetzle looks like brains; but if you still think so, we need to get you that $10 Spaetzle maker :)

  3. It is summery and not at all appropriate to the season but it is delicious. Perhaps one day I'll get the spaetzle maker and have a kitchen big enough to store gadgets!