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When I started my retirement travels - the first of which was my solo overseas trip to Italy in 2009 - I wanted a way to share it with family and friends as it happened. Hence, "My Travel Journal". However I realized I wouldn't always be on a trip and wondered what to do with the blog in between times. My daughter pointed out, wisely, that travels can also include trips to the kitchen to try a new recipe, trips to visit family, trips to my neighborhood Starbucks, or a fun day trip with a friend. You're welcome to join me on any of these journeys!

P.S. I've set up separate pages for each of my major trips (see tabs above).

I recently added an "Italian Word a Day" thingie which shows up at the bottom of every page. You see the word and can click to hear it pronounced. I've been enjoying it and I think my accent is improving as time goes by.

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December 01, 2001

Smoked Salmon Pasta

Smoked Salmon Pasta
A recipe from Simply Recipes.com

I'm going to list the ingredients for a full recipe here which they say serves 2 to 3 people.  I think it's more like for 4 people.  And the column with smaller amounts is my "cooking for one" amounts so I don't have to do the math every time I want to make this.

Ingredients Ingredients for One
8 oz. spaghetti or other pasta 1-1/2 - 2 oz. spaghetti
Salt Salt
1/4c. pine nuts 1 T. pine nuts
2 T. olive oil 1-1/2 tsp. olive oil
1/3 c. chopped shallots (or onions)1+ T. chopped shallots
2 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 tsp. minced garlic
1/3 c. dry white wine 1+ T. dry white wine
1/4 c. cream 1 T. cream
1 T. lemon juice 3/4 tsp. lemon juice
2 T. lemon zest, divided 1-1/2 tsp. lemon zest
2 T. chopped dill 1-1/2 tsp. chopped dill
4 oz. smoked salmon, torn 1 oz. smoked salmon, torn
Fresh ground black pepper Fresh ground black pepper

Heat salted water for pasta and lightly brown the pine nuts while waiting for the water to boil.  Add pasta to water and cook according to package directions.

While pasta is cooking, heat oil in skillet, add shallots and garlic and cook til tender. Add wine (or you can use some pasta water), lemon juice, and half of the lemon zest. Increase heat and boil down by half (which when making one serving is basically un-doable). Add cream and keep warm.

When pasta is done, drain (saving a little cooking water) and add to the sauce in the skillet (using the saved water if you want a little more moisture). Add the smoked salmon, pine nuts, dill and remaining lemon zest. Season with freshly ground black pepper.

MY NOTES:  I didn't have any pine nuts and didn't notice myself wishing they were in the sauce.  Also I didn't have white wine - pondered putting in a squirt of red, but didn't.  And I didn't use all the lemon zest I grated.  I like a little lemon flavor but I'm not a great lover of lots of it.  I think if I had used more, I wouldn't have noticed the dill as much and the dill was a very nice delicate taste.  I actually weighed out my ounce of salmon, didn't add it all in cause it was looking like so much, and could easily have done with less.  Also, since it was cold out of the fridge, I actually let it cook a little in the skillet and shouldn't have done that probably.  It was still fine, but the color changed to a much pinker color and it wasn't as tender as it would have been.

SECOND TIME:  I tried a splash of red wine and won't do that again.  It turned everything a sort of frightening pink color.  It still tasted good enough, but appearance matters too.  And I measured the zest and lemon juice this time and think I was right - I don't think I used the full amount the first time and I liked it better with less.  But that's a matter of personal taste, of course.

But I really enjoyed this dish and, in fact, will probably use the rest of my salmon and dill tomorrow and make it again.  So, bon appetit!

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