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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Pasta and Reorganization

I'm starting to feel inspired.  First of all, I have embarked on a "kitchen project".  Ever since we moved into our house eight years ago, I have been struggling to find enough storage in the kitchen. The house is over 100 years old and, let's face it, our forefathers didn't have Costco.  Even though the kitchen was remodeled by the owners just before us, there's just not enough space.

I have thought about remodeling the remodel but frankly I'm just not up for it.  It's just too inconvenient and dusty.  So, I have made the executive decision that the kitchen is fine, attractive, and with the addition of the "birthday" refrigerator and new dishwasher, quite nice.  I am planning to replace the ovens and with that I will be in full gourmet mode.  Nonetheless, there has never been enough pantry space.

Recently, when tackling other storage issues, I had California Closets come out to add some more storage to my already California Closeted closet upstairs.   I got to chatting with my consultant about my kitchen issues and she suggested converting a coat closet in the kitchen into a pantry.  Why did I never think of this?  Truly an inspired idea.

So, today began the demolition of the interior of the closet.  Soon my new pantry with all kinds of adjustable shelves and storage will go in.  I can't wait.  It's going to be fantastic.

You can certainly understand why I'm feeling inspired.  I'm going to do a complete kitchen reorganization.  I'm going to throw away all my old spices and herbs and start over with just those I actually use.  Imagine that.  I'm going to go through all the food in the various cabinets and cull out.  It sounds like a plan, don't you think?  Hopefully I'll actually follow through and get it all done.  It's spring and I'm cleaning out!  I'm on fire!

So, in the spirit of spring cleaning, here's a delicious recipe that takes about 10 minutes to make and will make you look like a woman who has her life, family, and house under control.   We can all pretend, can't we?

Recipe:  Tagliarelle with Truffle Butter
(Barefoot Contessa, Back to Basics, 2008)

*  Note:  Truffle butter is available at Whole Foods.  For my Pittsburgh friends, it is also available at Penn Mac.


Kosher salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 ounces white truffle butter
Freshly ground black pepper
1 8.8 ounce package tigliarelle dried pasta or other egg fettuccini
3 tablespoons chipped fresh chives
3 ounces Parmesan, shaved thin with a vegetable peeler


Add 1 tablespoon salt to a large pot of water and bring to a boil.

Meanwhile, in a large saute pan, heat the cream over medium heat until it comes to a simmer.  Add the truffle butter, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper; lower the heat to very low and swirl the butter until it melts.  Keep warm over very low heat.

Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook according to package instructions.  When the pasta is cooked, reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta.  Add the drained pasta to the saute pan and toss it with the truffle cream mixture.  As the pasta absorbs the sauce, add as much of the reserved cooking water as necessary to kepp the pasta very creamy.

Serve the pasta in shallow bowls and garnish each serving with a generous sprinkling of chives and shaved Parmesan.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve at once.


  1. Well, well, look at you Nadine in full swing for Spring cleaning and reorganization. The closet pantry sounds like a GREAT idea. It sure brings new meaning to repurposing!

    Have fun shopping for all your new ingredients (I would image there will be some gadgets too:)

    The Tagliarelle with Truffle Butter sounds delectable. We are finally getting a Whole Foods in State College, soon:)

    Thanks for sharing...

  2. How nice, I wish I had a pantry makeover! Just in time for Spring cleanup, perfect. How divine does this recipe sound! And easy to put together anytime.