Fooding around with Jenny Morris

Fooding around with Jenny Morris

Using your noodle

Jenny Morris

Jenny Morris

“As long as there’s pasta and Chinese food in the world, I’m okay.”
Michael Chang
The word pasta means paste or dough in Latin. Some say it was invented by the Chinese; others say it is an Italian invention.

My take is that the Chinese invented pasta. I have certainly had enough of it in China to believe that it could be them who made this amazing discovery by flinging a few ingredients together. In fact I have had some of the best ever tomatoes ace and noodles that I have ever tasted in China, come to think of it. Rice noodles are easy to make and the Chinese eat them almost daily as part of their diet in some shape or form. They say that the Chinese were making a noodle-like food as early as 3000 B.C.E. and Greek mythology suggests that the Greek God Vulcan invented a device that made strings of dough – I suppose that that would have been the first spaghetti.

It is believed that Marco Polo took the pasta to Italy and they began making pasta using wheat. I’m glad they did that – the Chinese used rice flour for their pasta.

Pasta made its way to the New World through the English, who discovered it while touring Italy and I think that we are all grateful for that. The pasta we know today comes in all shapes and sizes: long, thin, flat, short, shells and macaroni, not to mention the hundreds of other shapes made by the old Nona’s in Italy. It is said that Thomas Jefferson, who was the ambassador to France, who should get the credit for bringing the first macaroni machine to America in 1789.

Let’s cook!

Anchovy and sage butter pasta

I like to fling this together with freshly cooked pasta when I am starving and need to eat in a hurry. I serve it with a huge bowl of fresh rocket, dressed fresh lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and Malden salt, and topped with shaved Parmesan. There is nothing better than a big chunk of well matured Parmesan cheese, with gorgeous big crunchy rock crystals in it.

  • 150 g unsalted butter
  • 8 fresh sage leaves
  • 6 anchovy fillets
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • ½ tablespoon green peppercorns in brine
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3 cups cooked pasta
  • Handful of fresh Italian parsley, roughly chopped

Melt the butter in a frying pan and when it foams add the sage leaves. Cook them till they are crisp; remove and set aside.
Add the anchovies and stir them into the butter, mash them and then add the capers, peppercorns and garlic. Fling in the pasta and toss it into the butter.
Stir in the parsley and sage, and then get down to the business of feeding that face. Enjoy!
Serves 4

Tip: If you have a blob of creamy goat’s cheese handy, stir that in too. This butter is also to die for on a juicy, rare steak.
© Jenny Morris,” Cooking with Jenny Morris 2012 “

Chicken noodle salad with a peanut dressing

When making a salad I love to mix the textures; it makes for a far more interesting salad.

The salad:

  • 2 roasted chicken breasts, shredded
  • 1 red pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 4 spring onions with tops, sliced very thinly at an angle
  • ½ English cucumber, seeds removed and cut into thin strips
  • 1 peeled carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 very ripe sweet pineapple, peeled and cut into chunks
  • ½ cup roasted cashew nuts, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup toasted peanuts
  • 2 cm fresh ginger, peeled and very finely shredded
  • 1 red chilli, seeded and diced
  • 1 cup cooked instant Chinese noodles
  • ½ cup roughly chopped coriander
  • ½ cup torn fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh mint

Dress it up:

  • 1 small chilli
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon palm or brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter
  • 10 ml sesame oil
  • ¾ cup lime juice
  • ½ cup coconut milk

Toss all the salad ingredients together in a large bowl.
Fling all the dressing ingredients together in a liquidiser and give it a good whizz. Taste and adjust the seasoning; you might like it to have more fish sauce, or sugar or even peanut butter.
Pour the dressing over the salad and give it a good toss. Tip the salad out onto a serving platter and serve right away.
Serves 4 – 6
© Jenny Morris,” Cooking with Jenny Morris 2012 “

Smoked salmon and dill linguine with crème fraiche

Ingredients

  • 2 portions fresh linguine
  • Water
  • Salt
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 200g good quality smoked salmon
  • 1 cup of cream
  • 1 Tsp. chopped dill
  • ½ cup grated parmesan
  • Salt and pepper

Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil. Add the cream, half the smoked salmon and chopped dill and season with salt and pepper. Allow for the sauce to thicken.  Bring water to a gentle boil. Add the salt and cook the pasta for 2-3 minutes or till al dente.  Add the pasta to the sauce, garnish with fresh smoked salmon, cover the parmesan shavings and serve immediately

©Fraiche Food Pam and Kyle Miller 2012