Tag Archives: carbonara

On Foods and Pins…

Like any basic white girl, I have an obsession with Pinterest. When I first got off the “waiting list” to have an account (is that a thing that even happens anymore?), I spent hours – HOURS – pinning everything I could in hopes that what I pinned would start to permeate into my own life. That’s probably what any pinner hopes for as they pin photos of beautiful, expensive kitchens, dream weddings filled with mason jars, and intense workouts that promise flat abs in just a week.

Yes, my Pinterest account includes all of these things, and I’m not ashamed of it. Yes, I have over 40 wedding pins and I’m not even engaged (though being in a five-year relationship does give me some reason to pin such things). My beauty boards feature long, Kate Middleton-esque hairstyles and the perfect smokey eye that I’ll never be able to use anywhere. My DIY board includes crafts I’ll never actually get around to doing – and most would probably end up as fodder for a “Pinterest Fails” blog anyhow.

But my food board…yeah my food board is pretty sweet. I recently realized that I had tons of recipes pinned and that I rarely ever tried any of them. Considering I have enough food smarts at this point to not be duped by a recipe that seems too good to be true, I have a lot of faith in my food board. When I made my grocery list last week, I decided it was time to tackle some of these recipes and I haven’t been disappointed yet.

Last week I started with a Spaghetti Squash Carbonara…and…ok so this one did not turn out as expected. First of all, we went shopping at Trader Joe’s and since spaghetti squash is not in season, it wasn’t in the store. So I decided to use the recipe and use regular pasta. And then as I read through the recipe I decided to find a different one and ended up with Tyler Florence’s Spaghetti alla Carbonara. I trust Tyler Florence. However, did you guys know that carbonara is actually kind of a difficult thing to make? I was less stressed out making chocolate zabaglione than I was making carbonara sauce. So after you cook some pancetta or bacon, you take it out and quickly saute some garlic in the fat, then you’re supposed to put the cooked spaghetti into this mixture, then add this raw egg and parmesan cheese mixture you’ve whisked together, all while cooking the eggs but not scrambling them. I didn’t trust myself to get the sauce cooked with the pasta in the pan first, so of course I threw the egg/cheese mixture in and my eggs partially scrambled. And then I added too much salt because I didn’t realize that the kosher salt I usually use had been replaced with a very fine sea salt. It’s the little things.

Regardless, we still ate the pasta and it was not the worst thing I ever made. This week has been a much bigger success so far.

After making a classic beef bourginion on Sunday that I can almost make in my sleep, I decided to try an easier recipe for Monday: Hoisin Shrimp. Trader Joe’s failed me again in not having hoisin sauce for this one, so I went with their Soyaki sauce because I know it’s good. After whisking together the sauce the recipe laid out, I wasn’t happy with the sweetness of it, so I added a pinch of brown sugar to it and a dollop (like, the most dollop-y dollop that’s ever dolloped) of barbeque sauce to it. It was delicious. I regret nothing. And really, if you know me and followed my old food blog from college and beyond, me having to substitute a bunch of things in a recipe should come as no surprise.

Tonight, I opted for BLT Salads from my favorite food blog, How Sweet It Is. I ended up using spring mix in place of butter lettuce because, yes, Trader Joe’s didn’t have butter lettuce. And in typical avocado fashion, the avocado I bought for this recipe went bad by the time I wanted to use it today. Avocado is the most fickle of fruits. I kept everything else the same and devoured this salad. Then again, I’ll pretty much find anything delicious if it has bacon in it.

Tomorrow night’s Pinterest recipe will be Easy Lemon Chicken, which I plan on serving up with some asparagus (because I’m desperate for spring) or some broccoli. Or who even knows. It does look pretty easy, and I was actually planning on making it tonight, but I tried to thaw my chicken the way you’re “supposed to” (in the fridge) and I put it there last night and it still wasn’t ready at 6pm tonight.

Anyhow, if you guy are pinners as well and want to see what kind of life I wish I lived and all the projects I wish I had the energy and skills to take on, you can follow me here 🙂

And not to be all Livejournal-y, but I listened to Songza’s Vintage Rock Instrumentals playlist while writing this, and I recommend it if you’re looking for something a little different while trying to be creative.

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