MoM Aug. ‘08 Tastes of Italia: Bowtie Pasta with Smoked Salmon and Gorgonzola…and the devil was dill

Since Miss Macchiato already stole all the good recipes from this issue I settled on this one, which I was pretty excited about.  Smoked salmon, gorgonzola, capers and dill, what’s not to love?  Here is the recipe all typed out in long-hand because they aren’t on their website meh!

Bowtie Pasta with Smoked Salmon and Gorgonzola
1/2 lb bowtie pasta
3 T oilve oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
12 oz diced smoked salmon
1/2 cup brandy
1/4 cup capers
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup gorgonzola
2 T chopped walnuts
1 t lemon zest
1/4 cup fresh dill

Drain the pasta, then add it back to the cooking pot, combining with the sauce and reserved 1/2 cup water.   Cook gently on medium 3 to 4 minutes or until water is absorbed and sauce is creamy.  Remove, add lemon zest, dill and salt and pepper to taste.

To make sauce, heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high.  Add garlic and cook for 2 minutes.   Add salmon, brandy, capers and tomato sauce and cook for 3 minutes.  Stir in cheese and walnuts and cook for 1 minute.   Remove from heat.

Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente.  Remove 1/2 cup water from pasta when done and set aside.

So here is the money shot of the ingredients:

You’ll notice those are real smoked salmon pieces there, not that lousy pink stuff!  You’ll also notice there is a bottle of port there and no brandy.  I personally hate buying booze for recipes, and since I rarely drink I decided to use port instead.  Which I think was a fine substitution since port is a fortified wine and has brandy in it.  Or maybe I’m making that part up.  I just like port.

Could have stopped right there and just sat down with a fork, but that is probably because the salmon at this point looks like ham.  Which would have probably made it turn out better, but I’m getting ahead of myself.  Next I put in the walnuts and the lovely lovely cheese.

The sauce at this point was getting nice and creamy, and I was excited to see that the pasta cooks with the sauce for a bit to bind it up.  And the final product:

Got to be a winner, right?  I mean just look at that!  Well no.  There was something wrong in this dish, something horribly wrong.  Well ok maybe not horribly  wrong because we ate all of it.  But there was something in this dish that really clashed with the rich earthiness of the gorgonzola sauce.  That’s right, it was the dill.  Maybe it would have worked better if I had used a “lesser” smoked salmon (perish the thought!) but as it was the dill just smashed it’s way all over everything WHICH IS WHY WE CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS DILL!!

“I think pickles are cucumbers that sold out. They sold their soul to the devil, and the devil was dill.”
-Mitch Hedberg

~Citizen Chef

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