And it's time to lash out and have a bit of fun! I sit sipping on a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon with music playing in the background feeling at peace with the world (even if the world isn't at peace!). In my mountain greenery, all is quiet as I enjoy my solitude. I know, some of you will say 'solitude' isn't much fun, but I enjoy my privacy and my own space, finding many things to amuse me. I don't need people around me all the time to entertain me (or I them!). It is not my wont to do so, unless I'm in the mood for a small gathering of close friends. That being said, I do, however, throw a few fun, leisurely luncheons every so often during which we all have a great time grazing around a laden table, topped up wine glasses at the ready! On the subject of luncheons/food, and as I adore Italian food, I'll share a couple of ideas with you in case you are at a loss what to cook this weekend!
Lingune with Prawns & Mussels: Finely chop 1-2 heads of garlic. In a pan add garlic and slightly less than a pint of olive oil (this recipe serves 10, so don't panic...just cut down the quantities for less if you so desire). On low heat simmer until garlic just begins to change colour. Add dried chilli flakes or paste, to taste and 1 bunch of Italian parsley, roughly chopped. Toss in a dollop of butter. Allow sauce to simmer 1 minute. Remove from heat. In a large pot, steam about 1kg mussels until shells open, discarding any unopened ones. Shell about 20 or so green prawns (raw). Lightly saute' empty shells in another dollop of butter and a splash or two of olive oil, a dash of salt and some ground black pepper. Remove shells, then add prawns. Cook until prawns have just turned pink. Set aside until 1.5lbs linguine is cooked al dente;. Drain but don't rinse. Plop pasta into a bowl. Add mussels, prawns and garlic mixture. Top with chopped Italian Parsley. Stir and serve.
Sauteed Sea Scallops with Rosemary & Lemon: Choose a pan that can hold 680g scallops in one layer later. Into the pan put 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and 2 garlic cloves, sliced finely. As the garlic turns golden, add 1-1.5 teaspoons fresh rosemary leaves. Stir. Add the scallops, salt and ground black pepper. Turn up heat to high. Cook, stirring fequently until scallops change to a flat white. Add 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (or lime juice, if you prefer). Turn up heat, again. Stir once or twice, then serve with crusty bread.
These should whet your taste buds, unless, of course, you're allergic to seafood...then you'll just have to wait until next weekend!