Homemade Pasta with Tomato Sauce and Octopus Salad

As requested by my family, today was a return to the tomato sauce from last week with plain ole pasta.  With the help of my gals, we made both fettucini and spaghetti noodles.  Fettucini for tonight, spaghetti to dry and save for another meal.  Garnished with fresh basil, and freshly shaved parmesan, it was simplicity at its best.  Chris & my greedy hopes of the girls not finishing their plates were quickly dashed. 

But I couldn't let the day pass without trying something new.   I decided to try a recipe from Mario Batali's new cookbook, Molto Gusto, called simply Octopus and Celery.  A little hitch in the works was that I bought already steamed octopus, instead of, I assume required, raw octopus.  His recipe calls for simmering the octopus in wine, onions, carrots, celery, herbs and a wine cork.  I'm sure this imparts a wonderfully delicate flavor to the octopus.  Oops on my part.  After that, the only other ingredients to add are sliced celery heart, red wine vinegar, olive oil, and salt.  Trying to spruce up my octopus a bit, I added chopped parsley, finely minced scallion (green part only), and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.  It was tasty nonetheless.  The crisp and crunch of the celery was a perfect partner to the sturdy and salty octopus.  I can only imagine, had the octopus been cooked in the wine and herbs, how much better it might have been.  

On a side note, reading the New York Times today, I came across this article... Marijuana Fuels a New Kitchen Culture.  All this time, little did I know, culinary genius can be attained through the use of a weed.  Just think...


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