Easy Dinner at Home

Do you feel like dinner can be a chore? I know there are days where I think cooking is the last thing I want to do! Well this recipe is one that you may want to keep on speed dial. My family loves it with the creamy rose sauce and a hint of smoked salmon. Paired with this crisp green salad dinner is done! With spring officially here having a light dinner of pasta and salad is perfect served up with a glass of riesling for mom and dad and sparkling water for the kids (although milk is better for both!)
I hope you enjoy the recipes and they become family favourites at your house too!

Smoked Salmon Pasta

While I was in Italy this was a favourite dish to serve for guests at home because it is elegant, not too expensive and quick, all at the same time. Fresh fish can be very expensive, but a little bit of smoked salmon goes a long way and imparts tons of flavour. You can use your favourite short pasta.

1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
1/3 cup (75 mL) finely chopped red onion
1 clove garlic, minced
6 oz (200 g) sliced smoked salmon
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) 35% whipping cream
1/2 cup (125 mL) homemade or store-bought pasta sauce
1 lb (500 g) farfalle pasta
Pinch each salt and pepper

In large deep skillet heat butter over medium heat and cook onion and garlic for about 2 minutes or until softened.  Add smoked salmon and break up with spoon and cook for 5 minutes. Add whipping cream and pasta sauce; bring to boil. Reduce heat and boil gently for about 5 minutes or until coats the back of spoon.

Meanwhile, in large pot of boiling salted water cook pasta for about 8 minutes or until al dente. Drain and add to sauce. Stir pasta into sauce over medium heat and add salt and pepper and stir until combined and coated well.

Makes 4 servings.

Tip: You can substitute 1 shallot, finely chopped for the red onion.
From my Italian Express Cookbook

Mixed Green Salad

This tart little salad finishes off your meal with a bite of radicchio and the smoothness of romaine. Having some homemade red wine vinegar is great but store bought works just great! As a kid I would wait until the last bit of salad was eaten before tipping the bowl of vinegar dressing into my mouth to drink. Really it was that good! 

5 cups (1.25 L) torn romaine leaves
1 small head radicchio, torn
2 cups (500 mL) torn Boston lettuce leaves, arugula or spinach
1 carrot, grated
1/3 cup (75 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup (60 mL) red wine vinegar
Pinch dried oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large bowl, toss together romaine, radicchio and Boston lettuces and carrot. 

In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper. Toss with lettuce. 

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Tip: You can use mesclun or spring mix leaves if available instead of romaine, radicchio and Boston lettuce.

1 small radicchio will give you about 2 to 3 cups (500 to 750 mL) torn and you will need about half a head of Boston lettuce.
From my Per La Famiglia Cookbook


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