17 November 2006
A little over ten years ago (time flies) I was invited with my future first ex-husband to a friend’s house to have spaghetti. It was crunchy. Undercooked. And while it had good flavor—spaghetti and sauce married to perfection…almost—I couldn’t help joking (rather harshly in retrospect) that I almost broke a tooth on the very al dente spaghetti.

Stupid comments like that have a way of coming back to haunt me. In a bad way.

Yesterday I made lasagna. After it had cooled down a bit I cut a little piece off to taste—you know those bumpy places where the cheese has risen up and been grilled in the oven, those really tempting, tasty morsels—one of those. Big mistake. I bit down into what I thought was some grilled cheesy goodness and CRACK. I broke a molar. On a fucking piece of pasta that had risen up and been grilled along with the cheese it was hiding in.

Lesson learned: Never laugh at anyone’s pasta.

Fortunately I was able to find a dentist who was able to fix me up, temporarily at least because in the state I’m in anesthetics are out of the question, and I’m back in business with only a small hole in my cheek from the now super-sharp edge of my fractured tooth. I can deal with that—at least I’m no longer in pain.

And not being in pain inspired me to get creative in the kitchen. Et voilà, today’s creation:

You’re wondering what it is. Sorry, a food photographer I am not. What it is is a very quick, very easy, and wow!-I-was-blown-away-by-how-surprisingly-tasty pasta dish. Fifteen minutes, and this yummy baby is on your table. Here’s how.

Fill a pot with salted water and bring it to a boil (this is for the orecchiette, or ear-shaped pasta). While it’s heating up, cut ten slices of pancetta into thin strips. Cut a head of broccoli into little florets. When the water is boiling, dump in two cups uncooked orecchiette. In a frying pan, brown off the pancetta. When it’s just crispy around the edge, dump in the broccoli and (this is the secret part that makes it all come together) about half a cup of liquid from the pasta pot. Let the broccoli steam for about three minutes or until it’s done to your liking. Drain your cooked pasta, toss with the pancetta and broccoli (along with the rest of the liquid) and two or three tablespoons of grated hard Italain cheese (I used parmesan regiano). And wow. Simple, fast, and DEE lish! (And no broken teeth!)
posted by Doc at 21:17 | Permalink |


  • At 22:48, Blogger ViVi

    *whistles innocently*

    Dang tho, I wouldn't have wished a broken tooth on ya. :(

    That recipe sounds awesome, I'm gonna give it a shot. :)

  • At 23:56, Blogger mist1

    I am dangerous in the kitchen. I still have all my teeth because I rarely cook.

  • At 13:31, Blogger Pam

    That does sound DEE LISH!

    Yikes about your broken tooth - now I'm thinking about my own responses to meals in the past and a little afraid to eat today- maybe I'll just have soup! *S*

  • At 14:39, Blogger meredith

    That looks good, heck even my girls would like that dish, I'll be trying it.

  • At 15:25, Blogger Deb

    Yikes! You poor thing! I cringed while reading that. I am glad that you were able to find a dentist so quickly.

    I chipped my tooth once on a tuna baguette sandwich. Don't even ask me how!

    Hope that you feel better soon. And that broccoli dish looks yummy!

  • At 10:10, Blogger Wendz in France

    I make a very similar dish to that...I boil the broccoli with the pasta and then toss it with ham, gruyere cheese and fresh cream.

    And my boys just love it..which is amazing because they hate greens and are the pickiest eaters I know.