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Video: ‘Rock’ out dinner with a perfect pasta dish

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    >>> in today's kitchen what's for dinner?

    >> the host of secrets of a restaurant chef on the food network is out with her first cookbook called "cook like a rock star ." anne, good morning. how are we going to cook like a rock star today?

    >> good morning. thank you for having me. we are cooking like a rock star by cooking really good food seasonally making it look good and taste good and then collecting the big fat compliments at the end.

    >> there you go. you're teaming up this with roasted butternut squash .

    >> we tossed it in olive oil , a little salt. put it in the oven. we have broccoli we blanched quickly in salty, boiling water and then whole wheat.

    >> how do you get rid of the bitterness?

    >> just a quick dunk in and out of salty boiling water . it is a bitter vegetable.

    >> so the squash kind of cuts the bitterness?

    >> the squash is super sweet so we have bitter sweet . then we have our beautiful wheaty pasta which is really nice. we cook in salty boiling water as well. and then we just finish up the whole shooting match with some pumpkin seeds and some parmesan cheese .

    >> did you put a little pasta water in there as well?

    >> yes. just to keep things sort of loose. go ahead and do that, al.

    >> you have a really nice, hearty dish you're going to make.

    >> we have short ribs over here. we're talking about big fall stuff and these are all recipes in pie book "cook like a rock star " which is great.

    >> why did you choose the whole wheat?

    >> all right. this is for somebody who is really hungry. all right.

    >> yum.

    >> here we go. hilarious. add crunchy pumpkin seeds to finish it off. here we go.

    >> that is a fall meal.

    >> tell us about the ribs.

    >> braised short ribs. and we have, we're going to fin wish a little horseradish, spicy stuff just at the end. so again, all of these recipes.

    >> something is cooking in the kitchen over there.

    >> that's in the book too. make sure you turn off your burner when you're done.

    >> with me you don't want to leave anything to chance.

    >> there we go. it looks beautiful and tastes beautiful. it's got all like lovely flavor points. we finish up with little christicrunchy stuff. short ribs are a low and slow. these aren't like 45 minutes to make dinner and whip out some short ribs. it is sort of a sunday afternoon i've got four hours and i want my house to smell delicious then have you people over for dinner and they walk in like, hum. you're a rock star . yes, i sure am.

    >> then you say, big meat!

    >> i like it. anne, thanks so much. congratulations on the new book "cook like a rock star ." coming up kourtney

TODAY recipes
updated 10/5/2011 1:25:52 PM ET 2011-10-05T17:25:52

Recipe: Whole wheat pappardelle with roasted butternut squash, broccoli rabe and pumpkin seeds

  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2 -inch dice
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 bunch of broccoli rabe, tough bottom stems removed
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups veggie or chicken stock
  • 1 recipe Chef Anne's All-Purpose Pasta Dough or 1 pound fresh pappardelle
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano
  • Big fat finishing oil
  • 1/2 cup pepitas (green pumpkin seeds), toasted

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a large bowl, toss the butternut squash with just enough olive oil to lightly coat it and sprinkle with salt. Put the squash on a baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes, or until soft. Reserve.

3. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Add the broccoli rabe, give it a swish, and immediately remove it from the water; save the water to cook the pasta. When the rabe is cool enough to handle, coarsely chop it and set aside.

4. Coat a large wide saucepan generously with olive oil. Toss in the garlic and red pepper and bring to medium heat. When the garlic is golden brown and very aromatic, 2 to 3 minutes, remove it from the pan and ditch it — it has fulfilled its garlic destiny. Add the roasted squash and the stock to the pan. When the stock has reduced by about half, 5 to 6 minutes, add the broccoli rabe.

5. In the meantime, bring the broccoli rabe water back to a boil, add the pasta, and cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until tender but tooth-some. Drain the pasta and add it, along with 1/2 cup reserved pasta cooking water, to the squash and rabe. When the pasta water has evaporated, remove the pan from the heat, add about two-thirds of the Parmigiano, and a big drizzle of the big fat finishing oil. Toss or stir vigorously to combine. Divide among serving bowls and top with more Parm and the pepitas. Squash it!

Serving Size

Serves 6 to 8. Time: About 45 minutes with pre-made pasta dough.

Recipe: Big brown braised short ribs with horseradish

  • 6 to 8 bone-in short ribs
  • Kosher salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2 carrots, coarsely chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, coarsely chopped
  • 6 to 8 cremini mushrooms, trimmed, cleaned and coarsely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 1/2 cups tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup prepared horseradish
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 thyme bundle, tied with butcher's twine
  • 1 bunch of fresh chives, minced
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated horseradish

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Season the ribs generously with salt. Coat a large wide pan with olive oil and bring to high heat. Add the ribs to the pan and brown very well on all sides — this is an EXTREMELY important step in the development of big brown flavors. It may take up to 20 minutes — don't rush it!

3. While the ribs are browning, put the onions, carrots, celery, mushrooms and garlic in a food processor and puree to a coarse paste; set aside.

4. When the ribs are very brown on all sides, remove them from the pan. Ditch the fat, add a bit of fresh olive oil, and add the pureed veggies to the pan. Season generously with salt and cook over medium-high heat until the veggies are very brown and a crud has formed on the bottom of the pan, 8 to 10 minutes. Scrape the crud and let it reform. Don't rush this step.

5. Add the tomato paste and prepared horseradish and cook, stirring frequently, until it starts to brown, 1 to 2 minutes.

6. Add the wine, bring it to a boil, and stir frequently to scrape the crud from the bottom of the pan (this is the big-money flavor). Continue cooking until reduced by half, 3 to 4 minutes.

7. Return the ribs to the pan and add enough water to barely cover the meat. Toss in the bay leaves and thyme bundle, cover the pan with aluminum foil, and cook in the oven for 2.5 hours. Check the ribs every 45 minutes to make sure they are still covered in liquid; if the liquid has reduced too much, add more water. Turn the ribs after about 1 hour and continue cooking.

8. Remove the foil during the last 20 minutes of cooking to let things get nice and brown and to let the sauce reduce. When the meat is done it should be very tender but not falling apart. To serve, remove the bay leaves and thyme bundle and spoon the sauce over the ribs and sprinkle with the chives and freshly grated horseradish for an extra kick.

Serving Size

Serves 6 to 8. Time: About 3.5 hours.

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