Food and culture go hand in hand, and nowhere is this more evid
ent than in the cultural dishes of Italy. In The Essential James Beard Cookbook: 450 Recipes That Shaped the Tradition of American Cooking James Beard manages to capture a number of different cuisine-styles in easy to make-at-home recipes. Pasta, one of the 19 chapters in Beard’s book, is filled with the very basics of quick, contemporary meal preparation along-side clever quick dishes that transport you to different parts of Italy. Spaghetti with Raisin and Pine Nut Sauce is intriguing if nothing else, and takes only minutes to pull together. The meatiness of the pine nut blends with the sweetness of the raisin, all in a garlic based olive oil sauce. What could be simpler or more transporting?
Beard’s narrative form of recipe writing helps even the inexperienced navigate his book, each recipe relayed as if Beard were speaking directly to the reader. A handful of minutes to prepare, TSTE™ updates his Spaghetti with Raisin and Pine Nut Sauce recipe, with permission, by adding Autumn Harvest Blend to the sauce. We think the combination of warm spice notes and a hint of sweetness go toe-to-toe with this sauce. Try it and see what you think. Then remember to enter our Cookbook Giveaway for your chance to win a copy of by commenting on any of The Essential James Beard Cookbook posts between now and December 1st (full details here). To read a review of The Essential James Beard Cookbook: 450 Recipes That Shaped the Tradition of American Cooking click here.
Spaghetti with Raisin and Pine Nut Sauce
adapted with permission by The Spice & Tea Exchange®
Makes 4 Servings
Editor: The intriguing mix of sweet raisins and buttery pine nuts identifies this dish as Sicilian.
1 pound spaghetti
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped (substitute 2 teaspoons TSTE Vik’s Garlic Fix blend)
3/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup seedless raisins
1 teaspoon TSTE Autumn Harvest Blend
Freshly ground black pepper (TSTE™ recommends Four Peppercorn Grinder Blend)
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the spaghetti and cook according to the package directions until al dente. Drain the pasta and return to its cooking pot.
Immediately, heat the garlic in the olive oil over low heat until the garlic begins to soften, about 2 minutes. (Optional: combine the Vik’s Garlic Fix and oil in a shallow saucepan and warm over low heat. Let the oil infuse for about 15 minutes before proceeding.) Pour the oil over the pasta and toss well.