11 December 2007

G's Dad's Birthday and Food and Wine and Ice Cream Makers

I have wanted an electric ice cream maker for a very long time. And it's not that they are that expensive. It's just that it seems so big and decadent and something that wouldn't get a ton of use once the bloom fell off the rose. Well, a nice little Christmas bonus surprise meant the ice cream maker became a reality over the weekend. And thanks to Williams and Sonoma, it's a sexy little red one!

I made my first ice cream, plain old vanilla, for G's dad's birthday. Here it is straight from the mix...

I didn't freeze it long enough, but I misread the directions, so there ya go.

For the main meal, I adapted a recipe that read in 'Food & Wine' magazine for what they call "Lasagna-Style Baked Pennette with Meat Sauce" -- I renamed it Pastitsio Italiano, changed it a tiny bit to fit my liking, and presented it to G and her parents for dinner.

The light in our kitchen is crazy because everything turns out so yellow. I tried to colour treat it, but it didn't work so well. Anyway, that's an aside.

The inside was really beautiful. Creamy, rich, delicious. G made a simple salad with a dressing of hemp oil and apple cider vinegar, and we tucked in for a delicious meal.

So in that there innard shot you can see the noodles, little penne like noodles, meat, tomato, bechamel, parsley and goodness. Honestly, I could eat like this all the time. I have had it for breakfast for the past two days!

Then we served the aforementioned ice cream with some blackberries...

Really good.

Here's the recipe:

Pastitsio Italiano

1 pound Short Penne noodles
2 small yellow onions
olive oil
1/2 pound ground lamb
1 and 1/2 pound lean ground beef
1 28oz can of diced tomatoes, drained
1 tblspn tomato paste
2 teaspoons dried marjoram
2 tblspns parsley
salt and pep
1/4 large block of butter
3/4 cup flour
4 cups 2% milk
2 large egg yolks
1 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook pasta and drain.

In skillet, put oil and fry onion until soft. Add ground meat and cook for approximately 15 minutes. Drain fat. Stir in diced tomatoes, seasoning. Transfer to pot with pasta.

In a large saucepan, melt butter then add flour and cook for two minutes over medium heat. Gradually add milk. Cook until thickened about 8 minutes. Remove from heat and add yolks and cheese.

Take 1 and 1/2 cup of sauce and set aside. Mix rest in pot with meat and pasta.

Tip into a large baking dish. Spread out to cover evenly. Add remaining cheese sauce.

Bake for 35 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes and eat until you're done!

(Adapted from the December 2007 Food & Wine magazine, which is quickly becoming one of my faves!!!!)

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