Lately this state of Colorado has got me in a state of crazy over the windy weather. The Chinook (pronounced, shin-ook) winds have been blessing us with snow in the mountains and warm air lately this November, not to mention some hair whipping, ear whistling, eye tearing days. My children don’t even want to ‘bat an eye’, or blink, to brave the wind and play outside after school before the sun lays low behind the distant mountains. And, I have to admit, I must agree. Hot weather. Cold Weather. Both are an easy fix with some simple clothing adjustments. But wind. Ugh. We have witnessed gusts up to 90 miles per hour! Last weekend we attempted a nice Boulder Foothill hike, Little Z in the carrier, singing our hiking songs louder than the wind. Our hike was cut short, however, when a Chinook gust came head-strong at Hubby who in turn lost his balance and knocked our carrier (toddler included) into our daughter smashing her head…no worries, small tears…we were defeated. We back-tracked the short 1/4 mile and drove home amongst the tumble weeds, barreling into our tires.
If you look at the picture above, we live at the bottom of the red arrow, generally speaking.
The wind has been beckoning at our windowpanes for some 2 weeks now, on and off. And, so we, although not wanting to admit it, have decided to cozy up and start our family hibernation for the winter months. Hibernation preparation, if you were not aware, includes things such as; game nights, movie nights, hide-n-seek nightly, more stories before bed. Training our bodies and minds to accept being indoors and in dark. Oh, of course, this also includes food!
I read that the word Chinook was claimed by popular mythology to mean “eater.” Is this why I had a craving all days last week for soups, breads and pastas? The pasta dish above I found in my PASTA book by William Sonoma (yes, that is the name of the book; PASTA ) and could not believe that I hadn’t tried it yet. It got rave reviews from our tasting panel too!
~GREEN FARFALLE WITH GORGONZOLA SAUCE~
3 tbsp unsalted butter.
1lb green (I used spinach) farfalle (used spiral).
1/2 cup chicken stock.
1/2 lb *Gorgonzola Dolcelatte cheese (remove rind and cut).
3/4 cup heavy cream.
Grated zest of 1 lemon.
Handful of fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, coarsely chopped.
6 fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add shallots and saute until soft, about 4 minutes.
Salt the water generously, then add pasta and cook until al dente, 9-11 minutes.
Reduce the heat of the frying pan to low and add chicken stock, cheese, cream, and lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir about 4 minutes or until all ingredients are smooth and melted.
Drain the pasta. Add it to the frying pan with the cheesy mixture. Remove from heat and add the chopped sage and parsely. Toss briefly to coat pasta. If sauce is too thick, add more stock. Serve immediately. YIELDS 6
I served up some **Parmesan Chicken Fingers with the pasta, also a fan favorite.
Our kids were slurping the green noodles up; their lips covered in white creamy sauce. And, a small bonus for them, I didn’t make them eat without their shirts on (which is usually a requirement with our regular spaghetti and meatballs meal).
For some reason, dinner did not seem as rushed on this night. We sat around sharing stories with our kids of places we went as children, and things we experienced; salamanders in the basement, canoeing in the stumps and getting stuck, building treehouses….
Bring it on, Chinook! Bring it on, Winter!
Images: 1) Wikipedia 2) PASTA, by William Sonoma
*Find this in the gourmet cheese section of your grocery store.
**PARMESAN CHICKEN: I kind of just made up this recipe when I realized how much my kids love chicken tenders from various places and how much junk is put into them. I simply cut some chicken breasts lenthwise, dip in Olive Oil, and shake in a zip-loc bag full of homemade breadcrumbs (i.e. bread, garlic pepper, extra parmesan cheese), and then cooked them in Coconut Oil.