For those of you dear friends and family who adore summer, I apologize (for your season as about to pass), but I get downright giddy this time of year. I’m always energized by fall’s arrival.
There are 10 more days of summer, clearly more than that of warm weather, but we can plan, can’t we? I love everything about this time of year. Back to school (when I was a student and when my kids were in school), cooler nights (for better sleep), a fire in the fireplace on especially cool evenings, scented candles, [Red Current (Votivo), Pomegranate Noir (Jo Malone), Fig, by almost anyone who makes a candle in this scent], hearty stew with crusty bread, mac and cheese (see a new recipe below), cashmere sweaters, blazers, boots, plaid, warm throw blankets on chairs and sofas, pumpkins…I could go on.
So my nod to the season…images that may inspire you.
for the love of a house, fall in New Hampshire
Total time: 50 minutes
Servings: 8 to 10
1 (1-pound) box Cellentani (corkscrew) pasta
1/4 cup minced shallot (2 large shallots)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 quart heavy cream
8 ounces Boursin Garlic and Fine Herb Gournay cheese, crumbled
1. In a large pot of salted, boiling water, cook the pasta to al dente according to the package instructions, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
2. Heat a medium, heavy-bottom pot over medium-high heat until hot. Saute the shallots in the olive oil until lightly colored, then add the heavy cream. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and reduce by half, 8 to 10 minutes.
3. Whisk in the crumbled cheese until melted and incorporated, then stir in the pasta.
4. Remove from heat and reserve the base, still in the pan, in a warm place.
4 (6-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper
2 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
Drizzle the chicken breasts with the olive oil, and season each side of each breast with a pinch each of salt and pepper. Sprinkle over the chopped parsley and rosemary. Grill the chicken over moderate heat until the flesh is firm and the juices run clear, and a thermometer inserted reads 165 degrees. Remove from heat, cover and keep warm until needed.
Mac ‘n’ cheese assembly
1/2 cup diced pancetta
2 tablespoons oil
1/4 cup bread crumbs
Prepared macaroni base
4 teaspoons chopped parsley
4 teaspoons white truffle oil
1. In a medium saute pan, cook the pancetta in the oil over medium-high heat until crisp, 5 to 7 minutes
2. Strain the pancetta, leaving any fat in the pan.
3. Heat the pan with the fat over medium-high heat and sprinkle over the bread crumbs.
4. Saute the bread crumbs until darkened and toasted, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and drain the bread crumbs on a paper towel.
5. Heat the macaroni base over medium heat until hot, stirring frequently. While the base is heating, slice the chicken into strips.
6. Stir the chicken into the base, then stir in the crisp pancetta, parsley and white truffle oil, tossing to coat.
7. Divide the mac ‘n’ cheese among 4 serving bowls and top with the crisp bread crumbs. Serve immediately.
Copyright © 2011, Los Angeles Times Note: Adapted from The Bistro at Four Points by Sheraton Bakersfield.