Mediterranean

Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa/Tomato Sauce, With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

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Last  month my friend Curtis introduced me to a store which I have been missing all my cooking  life. It’s the “Foodtown Supermarket” in Davie, corner sterling/dairy rd extension. Here I can find EVERYTHING my culinary cravings will ever desire as far as Asian and Latino food ingredients are concerned. EVERYTHING !!! 🙂  – Live frogs, live crabs, live shrimps, fresh fish heads, intestines, you get the idea.
(You can check it out online by clicking this link, especially read the comments) 🙂
Although Merguez sausage is neither Asian nor Latino, Foodtown has a great quality one on offer, as well as a small selection of  other African/Mediterranean items.
So yesterday after work I stopped by there for a few goodies and amongst other stuff I got merguez sausage, harissa and pearl pasta (Piombi)
So here is what I had for lunch today :

Click here for more on  MERGUEZ SAUSAGE

Click here for more on LAMB MEAT BALLS

Click here for more on HARISSA
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on Appetit !   Life is Good !

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Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa / Tomato Sauce With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa / Tomato Sauce With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

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Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa / Tomato Sauce With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa / Tomato Sauce With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

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Preparation :
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cook pearl pasta in salted water, strain, reserve some of the cooking liquid in case you need to thinnen the sauce

cook pearl pasta in salted water, strain, reserve some of the cooking liquid in case you need to thinnen the sauce

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cut mild chilies, onion and blanched carrots into triangels

cut mild chilies, onion and blanched carrots into triangles

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saute carrots and onions in a generous amount of herb / garlic butter and olive oil until starting to caramelize

saute carrots and onions in a generous amount of herb / garlic butter and olive oil until starting to caramelize

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add chilies and sliced scallions

add chilies and sliced scallions

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add pearl pasta, mix well, check / adjust seasoning

add pearl pasta, kosher salt and cayenne pepper, mix well, check / adjust seasoning

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remove merguez sausage from casing, form into small balls, saute in olive oil until medium, add 1/3 of harissa and 2/3 of tomato sauce. If too thick, add some of the pasta liquid, simmer for one minute, check / adjust seasoning

remove merguez sausage from casing, form into small balls, saute in olive oil until medium, add 1/3 of harissa and 2/3 of tomato sauce. If too thick, add some of the pasta liquid, simmer for one minute, check / adjust seasoning

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plate pasta, leaving a well in the center

plate pasta, leaving a well in the center

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add lamb meatballs and harissa / tomato sauce

add lamb meatballs and harissa / tomato sauce

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sprinkle with finely crumbled feta cheese and sliced scallions

sprinkle with finely crumbled feta cheese and sliced scallions

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Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa / Tomato Sauce With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

Lamb Meat Balls In Harissa / Tomato Sauce With Garlicky Pearl Pasta And Feta Cheese

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Dear Friend’s, to help support this blog,
please be so kind and click on the video below.  Thank you 🙂
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Baby Octopus In Spicy Salice Salentino/Bell Pepper Sauce With Ziti Lunga

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Sunday’s  lunch featured two of my favorite ingredients, baby octopus and lunga ziti. While the baby octopus have become a beloved food during my younger year’s as a marine merchant in the Mediterranean, lunga ziti, or, as they were simply known in our home when I grew up, macaroni, have been a familiar food item since I can remember as a small child. My mom used to serve them simply with some butter-sauteed bread crumbs (schmelze) and freshly grated swiss cheese. What a feast that was, fondly remembered to this very day 🙂

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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To serve, top pasta with octopus. Sprinkle with chopped italian parsley

To serve, top pasta with octopus. Sprinkle with chopped italian parsley.

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Cook octopus in salted water until tender, but still with a bit of bite. Drain.

Cook octopus in salted water until tender, but still with a bit of bite. Drain.

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Saute in olive oil until starting to change color

Saute in olive oil until starting to change color.

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Add finely diced onions and garlic paste. Saute until fragrant

Add finely diced onions and garlic paste. Saute until fragrant.

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Add diced bell peppers

Add diced bell peppers, saute one minute.

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Add diced tomatoes and sliced scallions. Saute for one minute.

Add diced tomatoes, oregano and sliced scallions. Saute for one minute.

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Deglaze with Salice Salentino or other robust red wine, add kpsher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Simmer for two minutes. Check seasoning

Deglaze with Salice Salentino or other robust red wine, add kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Simmer for two minutes. Check seasoning.

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Meanwhile, cook the lunga ziti al dente.

Meanwhile, cook the lunga ziti al dente.

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To serve, top pasta with octopus. Sprinkle with chopped italian parsley

To serve, top pasta with octopus. Sprinkle with chopped italian parsley

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Baby Octopus In Spicy Salice Salentino/Bell Pepper Sauce Over  Lunga Ziti

Baby Octopus In Spicy Salice Salentino/Bell Pepper Sauce With Lunga Ziti

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Dear Friend’s, to help support this blog, please be so kind and click on the video below.  ( You don’t have to watch it, just click once )   Thank you 🙂
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Spiders From Mars

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Just  a light dinner tonight with one of my favorite ingredients – Octopus.
In the seventies I spent a lot of time in the  Mediterranean  and some of my  fondest memories take me back to  Turkey,  Spain  and  Greece and their great seafood.. Almost all memories I possess of that time are connected to food. Parties, dates, travel, good times and bad times, all somehow  lead to (mostly) great meals. Most involved seafood of one way or another. While there were too many outstanding meals to count, the ones I remember the most were the many octopus dishes I had, and of those, the ones I had in  Mykonos. To this day I can picture exactly in my head walking along the very small area in town, right on the water, where the fishermen had hung up their freshly caught little monsters on racks in the fresh air. We used to pick the ones which appealed to us the most, took a chair at one of the tiny restaurants right there on the other side of the walk way and just pointed the waiter to our catch, which he then took to the cook who added nothing more than salt, garlic,  olive oil  and lemon juice and grilled it to perfection. Memories……….
I am fond of octopus of any size and any preparation, so today on my way home from work when I saw some nice baby octopus at my neighborhood Asian store, there was only one option for dinner tonight : ” Baby Octopus Salad ” .
( Once I looked at the finished dish,   ” Spiders From Mars ”   just came to my mind and stuck there   🙂
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Click to hear  “Spiders From Mars
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Real Food, Real Opinions &  ”  REAL MUSIC  ”
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When it comes to baby octopus, folk’s have different opinions and preferences. Some people eat the head, others remove it (me). Some grill or saute them straight, others simmer them first until tender (me), then continue to grill or saute. Some like them in complicated sauces, others just simply grilled or sauted (me). Baby octopus curry anyone? Good stuff   🙂  So if you love seafood but have not yet tried these little creatures, it is high time to get a bit adventurous and put them on the menu.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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