What We’re Eating Again: Baked Ziti from the NYT Cooking App

Winters in London can sometimes be a bit depressing: short days, damp, rainy, fog, dreary with VERY occasional snow showers. So the only answer on days like this is to have some comfort food, and if you ask me, you can’t get more comfort than baked ziti.

Having grown up in Northern New Jersey– where people take their Italian food very seriously with an Italian dish of one kind or another featured on every buffet table– I love Italian food (even if I am of Irish-German extraction). In the past, I’ve tried to make baked ziti without a recipe, but didn’t have much success doing so. But when I gave this one from the NYTimes a try, that all changed.

This reminds me so much of the ziti I was raised on– cheesy, tomatoey goodness. When I made it recently on one of the aforementioned December days described above, I added a new feature of smoked bacon lardons. It did not disappoint. It was just the thing this family needed to propel us toward another dreary December day.

If you’d like to give a try, the recipe can be found by clicking through this sentence.

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What We’re Eating Again: Baked Ziti from the NYT Cooking App

What We’re Eating Again: Pork & Beef Polpette with Basic Tomato Sauce from “Polpo”

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Polpo meatballs and tomato sauce is firmly on the list of our family’s high rotation meals. It’s such a favourite that it guarantees a round of cheers and applause when I announce that it’s for dinner.

With that sort of reception, why wouldn’t I make it all the time?

When I was looking up the previous post, I was surprised to see I’ve been making the Polpo meatballs since March 2013— almost four years ago. Though I suppose that also speaks to its staying power: we loved it then, and despite all the dinners I’ve made between now and then, including other meatball recipes, we love it still.

Unusually, I haven’t altered this recipe in any way. I follow it to the letter. The same goes for the tomato sauce, which is absolutely delicious. But the tomato sauce only happens when I’m forward thinking enough to get it started in the afternoon. You can get it done in an hour, but it really shines when you give the ingredients time to mix, mingle and get to know one another before serving it up.

Also, the yield on this recipe is enormous, but actually that’s a good thing. With all of the leftovers, I do one of three things: freeze the remaining, make meatball subs a few days later (yum! highly recommended) or put the meatballs on one of our pizzas on pizza night (also highly recommended).

Perhaps I’m being stupidly effusive about this recipe, but I can’t underplay how much my family loves it. You should try it. You won’t be disappointed.

You can find the recipe on issuu, where it has an extract of the Polpo cookbook. The meatballs are on page 22-23. Unfortunately, the recipe for the tomato sauce isn’t there.

What We’re Eating Again: Pork & Beef Polpette with Basic Tomato Sauce from “Polpo”