Make sure you match.

I know how to make pasta. I am a cook, I even speak a little Italian, and I like to think that if I need to something easy to make, I can boil a little water, throw in the noodles, and make it taste delicious. It’s like knowing what to say in an uncomfortable situation, or exactly what to wear on date. I never knew what to say on a date. Going out with me is like going out with some kind of weird late night television. I either talk too much or not at all and it might be about music, but I can easily get stuck for way too long in the seventies, and I might start in on seatbelts.
Tonight, I slivered fat garlic cloves into an olive oil from trees in the Chianti, and let them simmer with perfect little sprigs of thyme and tiny squares of shallot until they were balanced on the edge of crisp and tender. For a little va va voom I sprinkled in so few red pepper flakes, just enough to wake up a tongue. Then I poured the pasta into water that I seasoned with salt, and at just the right moment, I added my little broccoli spears so that the noodles and the broccoli would finish in the same minute. I tossed the two of them with the olive oil and garlic and all the rest of it; I added a little fresh parsely and a grate of lemon zest, I stirred in just a knob of sweet butter and a drizzle of the flavorful pasta water that I had saved in a cup from the pan, added the thick grated Grana Padano, and a pinch of salt. As soon as I had coaxed everything together I realized I had ruined it. There must be twelve boxes of pasta in my cupboard and I had opened up the first one and emptied it into the pan without using the noodle in my head! Shells are not for broccoli. Shells are for meat sauces, saucy sauces, anything that you want to catch in a little cup of pasta. Broccoli gets lost in shells, and hibernates along with everything else that I had so carefully seasoned it with, never to be seen again. Don’t forget to match the shoes with the bag and the pasta with what you’re putting on it.

One thought on “Make sure you match.

  1. Hey Faye,
    I love the picture of Ferdinand with the cake!
    It’s 22 degrees in Illinois, so I made meatloaf and mashed potatoes tonight. I found this new variety of potatoes called Klondike Rose. They have a dilectible thin red skin and buttery yellow flesh. We love them!

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