Monday, May 24, 2010

Rosemary Gorgonzola Pasta (Ruby June's Favorite)

This dish, and this flavor combination, have to be one of my top all time favorites.  There's this aromatic earthiness to a quality gorgonzola cheese that just pairs perfectly with rosemary's intense, nearly piney flavor, and garlic and red onions round out the ideal palette--on a pizza, on a pasta, on top of a chicken breast...I'd put this into a smoothie if I thought I could survive the morning after drinking it.

When I worked in the restaurant where I learned this heavenly duo, we got weekly deliveries of huge wheels of gorgonzola, and all the guys in the kitchen knew to leave it to my shift to do the work of breaking the gorg into manageable chunks for our mise en place.  After that was done, I would --away from the view of any patrons--lick my paws clean with very little shame.

The rosemary in my garden was your basic culinary herb from the nursery, but I'm addicted to its unique scent, it reminds me of chocolate when I smell it.  I ate a bite tonight with a piece of dark chocolate, and that's going to be a whole 'nother post for dessert ideas...I'm imagining a rosemary creme brulee.

Anyway, this dish is pretty simple once you've prepped your chopped rosemary, crushed garlic, and sliced red onions:

1 tbsp chopped rosemary (peel the leaves from the woody stem first)
1/2 large red onion, sliced
3-4 cloves garlic
4 cups fusilli pasta cooked al dente (8 minutes boiled, then drained and cooled under cold or icy water so it stops cooking) .  The fusilli is important because it captures more of the bold, creamy sauce.  My dish looks too colorful, I would have preferred non-colored fusilli if it was all about looks.  Unfortunately it's all about what the store I was at had on sale.
2 small precooked chicken breasts, sliced thinly
1.5 cups half and half
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
1/2 cup gorgonzola cheese
First, saute the garlic and onions at low heat (with butter or oil), then stop them from burning by adding the half and half.  Add rosemary, cheese, and chicken, and heat until cheese incorporates into sauce.  Salt and pepper to taste.
Add in the pasta, then heat at a low simmer for 1 more minute.  Serve and sprinkle a teeny bit of rosemary on top.

No comments: