rigatoni with spring alliums, lemon, radicchio, pinoli, mint

It was light and delicious, a bit like the weather itself last night.

Also pretty, and even before I started cooking.

  • a mix of 3 small ramp bulbs that had made it this far through the spring carefully tended inside the refrigerator crisper, and short sections of spring garlic bulb from Lani’s Farm, plus one whole dried peperoncini Calabresi secchia from Buon Italia heated over a low flame in a tablespoon or so of Whole Foods Market house Portuguese olive oil inside a large, heavy, antique high-sided copper pan, stirring until the allium had softened, the zest and some of the juice of an organic lemon from Whole Foods mixed in, followed by 8 or 9 ounces of Setaro Torre Annunziata Napoli Penne Rigatoni from Buon Italia in the Chelsea Market, cooked al dente and drained, along with most of a cup of its cooking water that had been reserved, continuing to stir the mix over a moderate to high flame until the liquid had emulsified, seasoned with sea salt, then, after the heat was turned off, 2 handfuls of roughly chopped one small beautiful head of radicchio (possibly a variegata radicchio di lusia, or, less likely, a variegata radicchio di chioggia) from Eckerton Hill Farm, the pasta arranged in shallow bowls, some toasted pine nuts, or pinoli, also from Buon Italia, tossed on top, finished with a bit of olive oil drizzled around the outside of the pasta, garnished with torn furry spearmint leaves from Space on Ryder Farm

We had a cheese course, something not seen around here lately, but it was a light and delicious cheese course.

  • an intense, slowly maturing ‘Mammuth’ Camembert-style goat milk cheese from Ardith Mae Farmstead Cheese
  • lightly-toasted slices of ‘Whole wheat Redeemer Bread’ (wheat, water, salt) from Lost Bread Co., out of Philadelphia, but, fortunately for us, sold in the Union Square Greenmarket on Wednesdays and Fridays