A splash of red wine vinegar balances the richness of this cheesy pasta and magnifies the pink color of the onions and radicchio. Omit the prosciutto to make this a vegetarian main dish.
Active: 25 mins Total: 1 hr Yield: 6 to 8
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium-size red onions, thinly sliced
1 large head radicchio, cored and sliced into 1/2-inch-thick ribbons
2 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, divided
6 ounces softened goat cheese, crumbled (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
3 quarts water
1 pound uncooked short pasta (such as gemelli, casarecce, or strozzapreti)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
8 ounces fontina cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups), divided
4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, torn into 1-inch pieces
Unsalted butter, softened, for greasing baking dish
2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about 1/2 cup)
Preheat oven to 375°F. Heat oil in a 12-inch, high-sided skillet over medium-high. Add onions; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in radicchio, garlic, vinegar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; cook, stirring often, until radicchio is just wilted, about 1 minute. Stir in goat cheese and cream; bring to a simmer over medium-high. Remove from heat, and set aside.
Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a large pot over high. Stir in 3 tablespoons salt. Add pasta, and cook until just shy of al dente, 7 to 9 minutes. Drain; reserve 1 cup cooking liquid. Stir pasta, reserved 1 cup cooking liquid, pepper, nutmeg, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt into radicchio mixture. Fold in 11/2 cups fontina cheese and prosciutto; toss well.
Transfer pasta mixture to a 3-quart baking dish lightly greased with butter. Dot with remaining 1/2 cup fontina cheese; sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown on top and bubbling around edges, 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Pasta can be assembled through step 2 one day ahead. Cover and refrigerate until ready to bake.
Cacio e pepe is a great way to eat pasta, but have you tried cheese and black pepper on your peas? If not, we recommend doing so immediately.
Inspired by cacio e pepe (cheese and pepper), the classic Italian pasta sauce, this salad features spring greens and fava beans topped with a delicious buttermilk dressing.
Total: 45 mins Yield: 4
1 large egg yolk
3 tablespoons buttermilk
1 small garlic clove, finely grated
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese plus more for garnish
3/4 teaspoon coarsely cracked black peppercorns
2 pounds fava beans, shelled (2 cups)
2 cups fresh or frozen peas, thawed
4 cups spring greens, such as pea tendrils or baby arugula (2 ounces)
1 Hass avocado, peeled and cut into thin wedges
In a food processor, pulse the egg yolk with the buttermilk and garlic. With the machine on, drizzle in the olive oil until incorporated. Add the 3 tablespoons of cheese and the peppercorns and puree until smooth. Season the dressing with salt.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Fill a bowl with ice water. Boil the favas until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beans to the ice bath. Add the peas to the pot and cook until tender, 5 to 7 minutes for fresh and 1 minute for frozen. Drain and transfer to the ice bath. Drain the favas and peas. Pinch the fava beans out of their skins.
In a bowl, toss the favas, peas and greens. Add some dressing, season with salt and toss. Arrange the avocado on plates and top with the salad. Garnish with grated cheese and serve.
Chicken and whipped feta sandwiches are the ideal addition to any springtime picnic basket.
The secret to incredibly flavorful chicken cutlets is a quick marinade in feta brine in advance of grilling. Food & Wine’s Justin Chapple then whips the feta cheese with lemon juice and olive oil to use as a spread for the excellent sandwiches here.
Active: 30 mins Total: 1 hr Yield: 4
1/2 pound feta, crumbled, plus 3/4 cup of the brine
1 tablespoon Louisiana-style hot sauce, preferably Tabasco
Four 4-ounce chicken cutlets
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
Four 6-inch ciabatta rolls, split and toasted
Arugula (not baby), sliced cucumber, red onion and seeded piquillo peppers, for serving
In a large resealable plastic bag, mix the feta brine and hot sauce. Add the chicken cutlets, seal the bag and turn to coat. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a food processor, pulse the feta cheese and lemon juice. Slowly blend in the 1/3 cup of oil until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
Preheat a grill pan. Remove the chicken from the brine and pat dry; discard the brine. Brush with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the cutlets over moderately high heat, turning once, until cooked through, about 5 minutes total.
Spread the rolls with some of the feta. Top with the chicken, arugula, cucumber, onion and peppers and serve.
This quick chicken-and-veggies dish is great for weeknights, and you can make the Everyday Spice Blend beforehand—keeping in your pantry for added ease.
A stellar spice blend is one of the easiest ways to amp up the flavors of a dish, taking a simple seared pork chop or baked chicken thigh to the next level. But what makes a spice mix great? We asked Meherwan Irani, chef and founder of the spice retailer Spicewalla, for advice. His first tip? For the best flavor, make your own blend from scratch. Toast whole spices first to bloom their fragrances, then grind them to medium-coarse consistency. And taste your spices as you go. “A common mistake is assuming a spice will taste the way it smells. But there’s often a big difference.” Try your hand at this simple Everyday Spice Blend, then put it to good use on chicken thighs for dinner tonight. If you don’t want to make your own, try the Cowboy Blend, available at spicewallabrand.com, and add your own fresh rosemary.
Preheat oven to 450°F. Toss together chicken thighs, radishes, olive oil, and spice blend on a large rimmed baking sheet until evenly coated. Spread in a single layer. Roast in preheated oven until an instant-read thermometer inserted in thickest portion of chicken registers 160°F, about 30 minutes. Divide arugula evenly among 6 plates, and top with chicken, radishes, and pan juices. Sprinkle with salt to taste.
To eat less meat, stretch a small amount creatively. This recipe from F&W’s Justin Chapple calls for pounding beef tenderloin fillets thin and grilling them superquickly, so they stay tender and juicy.