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My dog sits right under my baby boy's high chair and watches for falling food like a hawk. One time she emerged from under the table with mac and cheese noodles stuck all over her head which made my kids die with laughter. It's one of those sweet memories I'll never forget! This recipe is for the busy mom or dad who wants less time spent cooking and a bit more quality time with their kids some evenings. It's a fool proof dinner that your kids are sure to love and you will love the quick prep time!
AGLIO E OLIO and The Feast of Seven Fishes- Fave Memory
Christmas Eve has always been my favorite family holiday. The night was always filled with anticipation for what was yet to come. The holiday was just beginning!!
Christmas Eve is also The Feast of Seven Fishes, my favorite Italian Food tradition.
As relatives argued the true meaning of the seven fishes, a parade of seafood would hit the table. Seven different kinds of fish were required for the event. There was mom’s beloved filet of soul, schmelts (tiny filets of fish lightly floured and sautéed), shrimp scampi and sometimes clams orreganato. We no longer had Nana’s, Baccala or Eel, which had been banished from menu by the late 70s. But, we still had more choices then you could possibly imagine! Preparation started weeks in advance, procuring the finest seafood and freshest produce.
But, by far, my favorite dish was the Pasta. Every Christmas Eve, mom served her bowl of steaming hot spaghetti called Aglio E Olio (the bowl actually said Spaghetti on it) to her eagerly awaiting family. (Eye-ya Oy-ya) as it was pronounced in our best southern Italian dialect, is a savory sauce made with garlic and anchovies and garnished with fresh parsley. Mom coaxed magic out of a few very humble ingredients to create a silky sauce that was comforting with a big bold and nutty flavor. Not for the faint of heart- with all those anchovies-it was the Umami of your dreams!
We always knew that we had to save room for our next six courses!! But, our bellies kept getting fuller as we continued to slurp our way through this year’s batch of Aglio E Olio!
I’m sure the rest of the dinner was just as delicious. But, I guarantee you that as we were clearing the table and setting out cookies for dessert, we were already thinking about next year’s Christmas Eve Aglio E Olio (or at least leftovers, if there were any).
Fave Memory - Macaroni Casserole, the one dinner dish I remember my Dad making growing up. Quick & simple, and of course - cooked in that lovely green and white pyrex dish from the 70's. I decided to lean into the olive color that dominates my memory of this dish. Home decor has come along way since my childhood!
Macaroni and Cheese, for about a hundred people! I am a college student enrolled in a design course that is working with our local free lunch service; They provided recipes for us to illustrate. Every day of the week, the Berkshire Food Project's team of volunteers serves lunch to several dozen community members (at least): Hence the large quantities of ingredients in this Macaroni & Cheese recipe!
I illustrated by hand with pen & ink and watercolor pencils. Thanks for looking!
The first year that I was married, my mother-in-law came for an extended visit over Christmastime. I was so wrapped up in planning the entire visit that I completely forgot to plan a "nice" Christmas meal. When we woke up, she innocently asked me what I had planned. Oops! So we spent the day making peanut butter balls, and for dinner, we had my old stand-by, spaghetti and meatballs. She was a great sport! Spaghetti and meatballs remains one of her favorite meals (whew!). Love you, Nancy!
my paper sculptures illustrate this meal. perfectly displaying the geometry of food. the curves, lines, circles, squares shown separately and as a whole to create a meal. i've created of all the ingredients and the final dish. "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle" I use paper i've saved from various places. The pasta is made from old manila file envelopes (thank you marsi). You can see the writing still on it. Much of my other paper is from printing sample books i saved from the trash years ago. Joanne DeWald