I’ve only been back in Montreal for three days and already I find myself invited to a mid-week party, in honour of Tim, a fellow Peter Pan who at 44 is even more of a refugee from geezerdom than I am. Regardless, the theme for this pot-luck was “Italian”, so I opted for a recipe that I had read but never tried. It’s a pasta recipe, but not very traditionally Italian, given its use of whole-wheat pasta, smoked salmon, cilantro, and feta cheese.
I wanted to try it out, and post-vacation I felt brazen enought to do so in public. It was a great success. Therefore, I present, in non-traditional style, the recipe, as follows:
Boil a load of whole-wheat spaghetti. When it is done, reduce the heat, dump the pasta in a strainer, oil it, and return the empty pot to the burner. Add an inch of heavy (35%) cream, and let it heat up but not boil. In the meantime, warm (in a sauce pan or the microwave) some whiskey or brandy–about 2/3 as much as the cream warming in the pot.
When both are warm, tip the liquor into the cream and stir in a measure of chili powder (roughly one teaspoon per cup of cream/liquor).
Fold in a handful of roughly chopped smoked salmon. After a moment, roll in the pasta, and stir to coat. Take a minute or two to reduce the liquid and thoroughly coat the pasta. Then tip the whole lot into a warmed pasta bowl and cover with a generous handful of crumbled feta cheese and a bunch of choppped cilantro. Toss, and scratch some black pepper across the top.
Serve immediately, or keep for up to 20 minutes in a warm oven.