Dinner:  August 20, 2009

My week has gotten unexpectedly crazy, and between the heat and trying to fit 28 hours worth of stuff into 24 hour days, I haven’t been feeling particularly inspired. Our pantry was a bit bare until Mike took my list and did an emergency re-stocking run today, but that wasn’t much help to us last night.

I did, however, have half a package of bucatini and some canned San Marzanos to work with. I also over-bought on zucchini last week, and luckily the last one standing was still in good enough shape to go into our dinner. I softened up a mess of chopped onion in some olive oil, added a couple of sliced garlic cloves and one little fresh red chile pepper (thinly sliced) from a mixed basket that was lingering in the crisper, and when the chile and garlic were fragrant I added the tomatoes and their juices. A little salt, a good squish with a masher to crush the tomatoes, a splash of wine, then I left it to reduce. I added the diced zucchini and cooked it just briefly so it retained some crunch, then tossed in my cooked pasta and a bit of grated pecorino. Not my most creative supper, but it was quick and tasty, and some nights that’s enough.

14 thoughts on “Enough

  1. You’re eating homemade food and not shoving down takeaways or TV dinners on a daily basis. That to me, is as tasty and beautiful as it gets.

    Thanks for being inspirational and reminding us of how important it is to keep preparing freshly made food everyday.

  2. I think posts like these are so great because while preparing elaborate meals is always fun to read about, it’s so important to show the humble pantry-raid dishes as well. If cooking-averse people keep seeing how easy it is to make a fresh, simple dinner, maybe they will stop reaching for the menus and instead try it themselves.

  3. I don’t know, sometimes the “make do with what you have” meals are the most fun because you really have to evoke the creative juices within. I would say this dish is not half bad!

  4. I love what’s-in-the-pantry dinners! I think of them as little endurance tests, like “Survivor” for the kitchen: “Can they make it one more day without grocery shopping? Tune in tonight to find out!”

    Great entry, and what looks like a great dinner!

  5. Mmmm… One of the most inspirational articles I ever read (in F&W?) was about a decision NOT to grocery shop one weekend, and ending up with the most creative, beautiful, simple food.

    I LOVE bucatini — it’s probably my fave long pasta. The texture is just so great.

  6. I love these pantry-style dinners because often, that’s what I end up making at the end of the day:-). This one sounds especially tasty and delicious, too!

  7. See, taking whatever is around and making a tasty meal… that is creative cooking. Or, rather, that’s when being a creative cook comes in handy the most. This dish is an argument for always having pasta and grating cheese in the house!

  8. Jennifer Hess says:

    Thanks, everyone! I guess pasta is one of those pantry staples, and a good fall-back, for a reason 😀

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