I grew up in a family who gathered for Sunday supper. Multiple generations reconnecting as a new week started. Baking and cooking skills were compared. Recipes were shared. Almost always the featured entree was pasta. It was economical and filling, ingredients were found in the pantry or garden, and could be made to feed more if needed, ensuring no one would leave the farm table hungry for food or fellowship.
Sunday’s sauce was never the same. As the seasons changed, so did the sauce.
Summer would welcome a lightened sauce of fresh tomatoes, tossed with grilled sweet onions, chicken and summer squash. Cubes of cheese dressed with olive oil, vinegar and fresh herbs.
Perhaps a rich ragu in the fall made of porcini mushrooms, end of season zucchini and peppers picked from the garden moments before being sauteed in flavorful olive oil. The colors of the peppers were like falls bright colored leaves, some sweet, others spicy.
Winter would find an assortment of meat, legumes or both simmered in fragrant garlicky, chili spiked tomato sauce with a drizzle of olive oil.
Spring has always been my favorite. After winters chill, the prospect of newly gathered chard, spinach or lamb’s quarters, spring onions, and garlic chives sauteed in olive oil and a bit of sweet cream butter. Tossing the pasta with spring greens, parmesan cheese, sea salt and black pepper. Oh and, of course a little more olive oil. All combined making a light yet filling dish.
Did you catch the common ingredient? Well yes, besides the pasta… It’s olive oil!
Olive oil adds a fruity, flavorful note to all the pasta dishes. Even family members who said, “I don’t like olive oil,” would have second helpings not knowing that was the ingredient that made the sauce taste better. That certain something that rounded the flavor of the sauce. Olive oil gives the sauce a rich finish.
*Recently I was given a chance to test Filippo Berio, Gold Selection, Robusto Extra Virgin Olive Oil. http://filippoberio.com/ourproducts/detail/robusto
It was exciting to receive a complementary bottle. The Robusto variety was perfect for the spicy sauce I was cooking. The sauce had sweet peppers, onions, garlic, tomato sauce, herbs and spices, hot Italian sausages, (vegetarian or your choice.) I cooked the sausages and veggies, in a little olive oil. Next I added the herbs, spices and tomato sauce, simmering on low heat while the pasta was cooked.
Just before serving, a little more Robusto olive oil was stirred into the sauce. The hearty fruity olive flavor finished the sauce to my delight.
From our farm to your home,
*I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.