Wednesday, September 22, 2010

In the Kitchen :: Autumn Pasta with Apples, Ricotta & Brown Butter Sage Sauce

moi with the founding editors of Rue, Miss Anne Sage (of CitySage) and Crystal Gentilello (of Plush Palate)

Yesterday was all about some good cooking, gorgeous floral arrangements and inspiring tabletop designs.  Partnering with my wonderful team of ladies from Rue Magazine, Kat Flower and Merci New York, I had the pleasure of cooking at the New York Design Center's "What's New What's Next" event.  The event highlighted the flavors, colors and feel of season.  The featured dish was apparently a big hit (gobbled and gone within an hour or so), but  you can easily replicate it at home, bringing all the scents and tastes of autumn into your own kitchen.  A few items of note--fresh ricotta cheese makes the WORLD of difference in any recipe.  Get the good stuff, a small, local brand if possible.  And don't stress about the calories/fat - you get such great flavor and texture, a small dollop is all you need!  And bonus, ricotta is packed with calcium.  Brown butter sage sauce also sounds incredibly rich, out of the question right?  When done right, anything's feasible.  The proportion of the butter sauce to the pasta and apples is significantly smaller, making for a light but delectably smooth and aromatic pasta dish.  The recipe, and photos from yesterday's smash event below...

 if only my kitchen were this spacious, I love the "English country" feel of it

Pasta with Apples, Ricotta & Brown Butter Sage Sauce

Serves 4

½ 16 oz package of twisted or tubular pasta like garganelli, casarecci or gemelli

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
2 green or tart apples, diced

1 cup fresh ricotta cheese
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons sage, chiffonade (stack the leaves and roll them like a cigar, then cut into long, thin strips)

additional black pepper for serving

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.  Cook pasta for 9 to 11 minutes until al dente. 
While pasta is cooking, add olive oil to a large sauté pan  and sauté shallots for 1 minute over medium-high heat, add apple and cook for 3 to 4 minutes until apple softens slightly.  Set mixture aside in a small bowl.
Mix together ricotta cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper.  Add to a small saucepan and keep warm over medium-high heat.
Add butter and sage to the large sauté pan and cook over medium heat for 5 to 7 minutes just until butter begins to lightly brown in color (when it takes on a nutty smell you’ll know it’s ready).  Add apple mixture and cooked pasta back into sauté pan and lightly toss.  Serve with a dollop of warm ricotta cheese and a sprinkle of extra black pepper.   

the other apple tart with spiced caramel sauce & chicken liver pate crostini with green apple
find both recipes within the pages of Rue's inaugural issue!

Merci New York & kat flower's whimsical, enchanted-garden-themed table design. I have a minor obsession with the gold bamboo flatware (vintage courtesy of Kathleen's mom) and those beautiful gold-trimmed plates from ABC Carpet & Home

 one word: breathtaking.  kat flower, you are a floral force to be reckoned with!

...and to Anne, Crystal, Caitlin, Alaina, Kathleen and Jackie - AMAZING working with you all.  Hope everyone got home safely! note -- what made my life (ok, maybe just my cooking) a little easier yesterday?  ScanPan's fantastic cookware, particularly their saute pan.  It works wonders with induction burners. And those suckers are known to be incredibly challenging to cook on!


Will @ Bright.Bazaar said...

Hey Marissa! It was so lovely to meet you on Monday night - what a fab event the launch was!

Jaime @ La vie...J'aime said...

That dish sounds soo yummy and decadent for fall :)

DIET is a Four Letter Word said...

Will!! AMAZING to meet you as well! So excited to be working alongside of you. I'll keep you posted if I'm in London in the near future!

kat flower said...

you are super lovely and delightful. thanks so much for the kind words. wish everyone could smell all the deliciousness that has happening...yummy! x