Sonia’s Easy Pasta

1 box of your favorite pasta y usually use whole grain
1/2 cup of Extra Virgin Olive Oil (no substitutions)
3 roma tomatoes cut into small pieces about 16 pieces per tomato
1 tablespoon dried onions
3 tablespoon tomato paste
6 basil leafs cut into pieces or 2 tablespoon dried
1/4 cup aged balsamic
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon red pepper (optional) Spicy!
Salt and fresh black pepper to taste

Boil water and cook pasta for 8 minutes. Drain pasta leaving some water in the pot. Return pasta to the pot, add rest of ingredients, stir and continue to cook cover on medium for 5 minutes. Turn the heat off, cover and let it sit for 4 minutes or until serving time. Serve 6-8.

*This recipe was created one day that I was in a hurry for a side dish. Even do it takes almost no time I highly recommended!

Cindi’s BLT Pasta

In my craving for flavor, sometimes I just mix flavor together and hope it works!  In this case it did.  My family really enjoyed this dish.  It had something for everyone and when my son came through the door as I was cooking last night…. he excitedly said …. “I smell Bacon!”…What’s for dinner?  My original concept included home made pasta, I was thinking back to a dish from Rome.  To this day that dish was perhaps one of the most scrumptious meals I have ever tasted.  Simple, yet scrumptious, as I found all the meals in Italy.  This dish was made of  thinly pressed pasta in strips about  1 1/2 inches wide and 5 inches or so inches long.  It was covered in roasted baby tomatoes.  It had a very rustic appeal.  Well, my day ran longer than I expected and I found myself going for the packaged pasta.  This dish was still super scrumptious.  I hope you find yourself with a little time available some day and make your own pasta.  It is surprisingly easy … a bit messy… but the the flavor and consistency is to die for!

If you find yourself in Rome, (and I hope you do) try this amazing restaurant, Target.  In the Heart of Rome, two blocks or so from the St. Regis Hotel, you will not be disappointed!



1 1/2 lb Baby Heirloom Tomatos

drizzle of extra virgin olive oil

1/4 tsp Penzeys garlic powder

1 tsp Penzeys Mural of Flavor salt free seasoning  (this is a new flavor from Penzeys)

6 oz apple wood smoked lardons (cooked crispy)

12 oz penne pasta (or if you have time… make your own pasta!)

3 oz herb salad mix

pinch of salt and pepper – if needed

Optional: Poached eggs and shaved parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 425

Add tomatoes to baking sheet and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.  Sprinkle garlic powder and Mural of Flavor seasoning.  Toss to coat. Roast tomatoes about 12 – 15 minutes.  Remove from oven, add tomatoes and all of their delish juices into a deep large sauté pan.

Bring heavily salted (kosher salt or if you have it sea salt) water to boil and add pasta.  The salt in the water will season your pasta.  I always hear the water in which you  boil pasta should taste of the sea!  So, taste your water!  This trick really does make a difference in the flavor of your pasta.

While tomatoes are roasting and water is coming to a boil,  crisp your lardons.  When crispy, remove from pan and place onto paper towels.  This helps to remove the additional bacon fat.  Set aside.

When pasta is ready, and I find this to be to ones own taste ( I don’t like my pasta al dente, I like it cooked a bit more)…Shock!  Reserve a cup of the starchy boiling water and keep to the side, drain pasta.  Add drained pasta to the large sauté pan with tomatoes and mix together over medium heat.   If your pasta is dry and you need a bit of liquid, use the pasta water.  Add in the herb salad mix and stir to incorporate into the pasta dish.  This will slightly wilt and cook the herb salad and add the delish flavors of the herbs!  Now is the time to taste and add a sprinkle of salt if needed.

Serve with bacon sprinkled on top and a couple pieces of crusting.

Optional- Poached eggs and Parmesan top.  I personally like poached eggs on pasta.  I started doing this a long time ago…I think because I love poached eggs!  And, who doesn’t like their pasta with parm???

4 – 6 servings


Chicken Lasagna – Recipe

9 pieces lasagna pasta
2 pound of boiled in salt water and shredded chicken breast
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
5 basil leaves cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 jar marinara sauce
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 cup chopped white onion
4 green olives cut into small pieces
5 crushed garlic cloves
1/2 green pepper cut into thin half moon pieces
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste