Nothing in the fridge

In my fridge I have some jelly, a half a bag of carrots, some pumpkin seeds, some milk, and some ricotta cheese. Nothing in there is looking like dinner, and I am feeling about as creative as a tax return. There is no chance for me to get to the grocery store between now and when my plane takes off tomorrow, but I think it might be punishable by law if you have a small child, to close the kitchen at 3 o’clock on a Monday, when you don’t leave for another twenty four hours. We might just be eating pizza tonight and donuts in the morning. Last night though, I made one of my favorite pastas which took all of ten minutes. I may have told you about it already, but it’s good enough to make again. Bring a big pan of salted water to the boil. When it’s ready, drop in three quarters of a box of penne. In a frying pan, drizzle in about a quarter cup of your best olive oil, and then a whole clove of garlic that you have cut in half. Add one inch croutons that you cut from yesterday’s loaf of French bread, and fry them on at least two sides until they are golden. Remove the croutons from the pan. Add a little more olive oil, and three cloves of garlic, sliced very thinly,about six torn leaves of basil, and a little chopped fresh parsley. Cook just until the garlic is about to go golden. Turn off the heat. Wash two heads of arugula very well. Open a container of fresh ricotta cheese, or quark, or mascarpone. As soon as the pasta is al dente, drain it, reserving some of the liquid. Add the oil that has the thinly sliced garlic in it, about a cup of hand grated parmesan, a half a cup of any of ricotta (or whatever else you have), and a few Tablespoons of the reserved water. Give a squeeze of lemon juice and taste for salt. Very roughly chop the arugula, and add that with some more fresh basil, torn by hand. Add the croutons at the very last. I like this with flank steak, or cold sliced pork roast or even a little salmon.

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