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Video: Yum! Pasta primavera, strawberry cake, scones

TODAY recipes
updated 5/1/2014 8:15:48 AM ET 2014-05-01T12:15:48

One in six Americans don't have enough food to live a healthy life, but today you can do your part to change that. "Feeding America" is a hunger-relief charity that has launched a new program on Pinterest called "Pin a meal, give a meal" to help families in need.

Pin any recipe to your board and help a worthy cause.

Get some inspiration from our TODAY Pinterest food board, including the three recipes listed below from the popular food bloggers Ree Drummond, Bridget Edwards and Maria Lichty. For every pin and repin, Land O Lakes will donate $1 to "Feeding America."

Recipe: Pioneer Woman's signature recipe: Pasta Primavera (on this page) Recipe: Strawberry layer cake with amaretto swiss meringue buttercream (on this page) Recipe: Raspberry almond scones (on this page)

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Recipe: Pioneer Woman's signature recipe: Pasta Primavera

Ingredients
  • 4 tablespoons butter with olive oil & sea salt
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced diagonally
  • 1 cup bite-sizes broccoli pieces
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced diagonally
  • 1 medium summer squash, sliced diagonally
  • 4 ounces white mushrooms, washed and sliced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup diced cooked ham
  • 8 whole basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 pound pasta (penne, fusilli, or linguini), cooked according to package directions and drained
  • Extra Parmesan cheese and chopped basil, for garnish
  • Sauce
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine (up to 1/2 cup), optional (replace with additional broth if not using)
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Preparation

Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the carrots and cook for 1 minute, then add the broccoli and cook for an additional minute. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Add 1 additional tablespoon of butter to the skillet and allow it to melt. Add the zucchini, squash, and mushrooms, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until vegetables are starting to soften. Remove from the skillet and add to the other vegetables. Set aside.

Add the onions and garlic to the skillet and cook for 2 minutes, or until starting to turn translucent. Pour in chicken broth and stir, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen all the flavorful bits. Cook the liquid for 3 to 4 minutes, allowing it to reduce by about half. Stir in the cream and Parmesan and allow cheese to melt. Add black pepper to taste. Add all the vegetables to the sauce, then add the frozen peas, diced ham and chopped basil. Stir to combine everything. If the sauce needs a little more liquid, splash in a small amount of broth as needed.

Place cooked pasta in a large serving bowl and toss with remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Pour all the contents of the skillet over the pasta and toss to combine. Sprinkle with extra chopped basil and serve with extra Parmesan!

Serving Size

Prep time: 30 minutes, Cook time: 20 minutes, 6 (1 cup) servings

Recipe: Strawberry layer cake with amaretto swiss meringue buttercream

Ingredients
  • Cake
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 ounce container powered strawberry gelatin (not sugar-free)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 5 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup puréed sweetened strawberries (from a thawed container of frozen sweetened strawberries)
  • 1/2 cup milk, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Buttercream
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into tablespoons
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon amaretto
  • Pinch kosher salt
Preparation

Preheat oven to 350oF. Butter three round 8-inch cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment, then butter the parchment. Flour the pans; set aside.

With an electric mixer, cream together the butter and oil until fully blended. Add in the sugar, strawberry gelatin and baking powder. Beat several minutes on medium speed until combined and fluffy.

Add in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl as needed.

In a large measuring cup, combine the strawberry purée, milk and vanilla.

Add in the flour in three additions, alternating with the liquid mixture. Begin and end with the flour, adding the salt with the last addition. Beat just until incorporated.

Pour the batter evenly into the prepared cake pans, smoothing the tops with an offset spatula.

Bake the cakes for 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, or with a few loose crumbs.

Cool in the pans on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes from the pans, peel off the parchment paper, and then set right-side up on the cooling rack to cool completely.

For the frosting, place the egg whites and sugar in a bowl of a stand mixer. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water, not touching the water. Whisk constantly until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture comes to a temperature of approximately 160F.

Immediately place the bowl on the stand mixer and whip on high using the whisk attachment until the frosting has become thick and glossy, forming a stiff peak. Continue to whip the frosting until the bowl feels room temperature to the touch or a total of about 10 minutes.

Switch the whisk attachment to the paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, drop in the butter, one tablespoon at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. If the frosting appears curdled or clumpy at any time, increase the speed to medium-high and beat until smooth.

Once all of the butter has been incorporated, mix in the amaretto and pinch of salt.

To assemble, spread about 2/3 cup frosting in between each layer of cake. Use the remainder to cover the sides and top of the cake with an offset spatula.

Store in the refrigerator.

Serving Size

Makes one 3-layer cake

Recipe: Raspberry almond scones

Ingredients
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1 cup heavy cream, plus 1 tablespoon, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • Almond glaze
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 4-5 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, for garnish
  • Butter with canola oil, for spreading
Preparation

Preheat oven to 400o F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking sheet and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Quickly cut in the butter, using your hands, two knives, or a pastry blender. Mix until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few larger butter lumps. Pour almond extract and 1 cup of the heavy cream over the ingredients and stir with a spatula until dough begins to form. Don't over mix. Gently fold in sliced almonds and raspberries. The raspberries will get a little smashed, but that is ok. The scones will still be pretty.

Transfer dough to a floured countertop and knead dough by hand just until it forms a ball. Form scones by patting the dough into a 3/4-inch thick circle. Cut the scones into even triangles. We got 8 scones.

Place scones on prepared baking sheet. Using a pastry brush, brush scones lightly with the additional heavy cream. Bake scones for 15-18 minutes, or until scones are light brown. Cool scones on a wire cooling rack.

While the scones are cooling, make the almond glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, heavy cream or milk and almond extract. Whisk until you reach desired consistency. Drizzle glaze over the scones. Top with additional sliced almonds. Serve!

Spread butter with canola oil on the warm scones, if desired.

Scones will keep in an air-tight container for up to 2 days, but they really are best eaten the day they are made.

Serving Size

Yield: 8 scones, P

rep time: 10 minutes, Cook time: 15-18 minutes, Total time: 30 minutes

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