Showing posts with label Madison. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Madison. Show all posts

29 April 2014

Asparagus-Asiago Ravioli with Chicken and Caramelized Shallots


Asparagus-Asiago Ravioli with Chicken and Caramelized Shallots

Life does not always go as planned when you are the decision-maker for an Alzheimers' Disease patient. From time to time you receive calls from the patient's caregivers, and you put your other plans on hold and attend to more important matters. It it simply one of the things you live with; you have no other choice.

So when I finally got around to preparing the fresh-frozen Asparagus-Asiago ravioli I bought from RP's Pasta Co. at the Dane County Farm Market, time was tight. The pasta had thawed and it wasn't supposed to; my fault completely for not packing it in ice for the more-than-three-hour drive from Madison to the northern hinterlands.

Moreover, the light was fading. I prefer to photograph my food in natural light; since my kitchen has only one north-facing window, I am forced to shoot my food in the dining room or TV room. But we've had nothing but gray days lately and the golden hour I was hoping for was non-existent.

But anyway...

I cooked the pasta according to package directions. While it was cooking I caramelized three large sliced shallots in olive oil with a space of balsamic vinegar and added some cooked chicken medallions. tossing in fresh thyme as an afterthought. I needed a quick "sauce" and did not want to hide the flavor of artisan-made ravioli with a bottled sauce.

I sprinkled grated Parmesan on top to marry the pasta and its partner; it was a throughly delicious supper, and I can't wait to try more offerings from RP's Pasta.

According to the RPs Pasta Web site, products are "made in small batches on Italian machines, hand-rolled and extruded through brass dies to produce an al dente texture." The company motto is "Farm to Fork with a Conscience."

I can't argue with that: In fact, I'm delighted to know it's made in my second home town, Madison, Wisconsin.

The ravioli was exceedingly fresh smelling. When I opened the packet, it smelled of lemon. While cooking, the pasta maintained its asparagus-green color. It cooked evenly, although I should have chosen a larger pan for cooking it. The pasta paired well with the sweetness of my caramelized shallots. I almost think raisins would have been good here; and I'll try them next time.

This is not a sponsored post. I liked the product and wanted to share it with you.

09 November 2008

Sweet Things

For a few days I am back in Madison, playing student again as I did only five months ago. During the day, I'll be concentrating on learning the role I can play in helping the economy, at least on a local basis.

I swear I lose 10 years every time I revisit this wonderful small but remarkably diverse city. I feel young again, walking the same streets I walked as a student, revisiting my old haunts. Was it only 20-odd years ago?

For many of my years here, I lived a few blocks off State Street. During the years I did not, I used that trendy little thoroughfare to reach my downtown office. My standard practice was to pop into a State Street bakery for a croissant or a brioche. Those were, of course, the days when I could comfortably eat sweets without assuming the girth of an entire Panzer division (is anyone out there familiar with just how large that would be?).

The photo above was taken in France. If I look hard enough this week, I'm sure I'll locate a bakery with comparable offerings. (Oh, how I miss the Ovens of Brittany on State Street!)

The test will be whether I can resist them or not. Save for a chocolate mousse-y thing, cream puffs, tarte tatin and a Jesuite, I was pretty good in France. For every whim I gave in to there was at least one more that I resisted.

How about you?