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Healthy Pizzoccheri – The Italian Winter Dish

cookingwithdorus's picture
Pizzoccheri is the name of a pasta with buckwheat flour and wheat flour. It is also the name of a deliciously tasting Italian dish with this pasta, green cabbage, potatoe, tasteful Fontina cheese and sage garlic butter. It is the perfect winter dish. You can find a live video instruction on my Youtube channel "cooking with Dorus". http://www.youtube.com/user/cookingwithdorus
Ingredients
  Green cabbage/Savoy cabbage 14 Ounce, cleaned and cut (1/2 head, 400 gram)
  Potatoes 7 Ounce (2 whole, 200 gram)
  Garlic 2 Clove (10 gm)
  Sage leaves 6 Large (use more leaves if small)
  Fontina cheese 5 Ounce (140 gram)
  Parmesan cheese/Pecorino cheese / combination 2 Ounce (60 gram)
  Butter 1 Ounce (30 gram)
  Pizzoccheri pasta/Whole wheat flour tagliatelli 7 Ounce, uncooked (200 gram)
  Salt To Taste
  Black pepper To Taste
Directions

PREPARATION (20 minutes)
1. Wash the cabbage and remove the ugly leaves. When you use green cabbage remove the dark green leaves (these are to tough). Cut the cabbage in the length into two halves, remove the trunk, and cut it into small pieces.
2. Peel the potatoes and cut them into cubes of 2/3 inch (1.5-2 centimeters).
3. Cut the garlic into pieces
4. Wash the sage leaves and cut them into strips
5. Cut the fontina into cubes of 0.4 inch (1 centimeter) and grate the parmezan cheese.

COOKING (35 minutes)
1. Heat water in a big cooking pan and add salt. Add the cabbage and the potatoes and let them boil for 15 minutes. Add pasta in the same cooking pan. The cooking time of the pasta can vary between 8 and 15 minutes.
2. Preheat the oven to a temperature of 180 degrees Celcius (356 degrees Fahrenheit).
3. Prepare the sage garlic butter while the vegetables and pasta cook. Fry the sage in the butter on a low fire. Add garlic after 1 minute and fry the ingredients for 5 minutes. Keep the fire low, otherwise the garlic will burn. After frying keep the mixture apart.
4. Pour off the vegetables and the pasta when they are ready. Let them drain in a colander.
5. Fill a casserole with the ingredients. The first layer consists of 1/3 of the vegetables and pasta mixture. Add pepper to taste. The second layer consists of ½ of the Fontina cheese and ¼ of the Parmezan cheese. The third leayer is equal to the first layer. The fourth layer is equal to the second layer. The fifth layer consists of the remains of the vegetables and pasta mixture. Now you spread the sage garlic butter over the dish. You finish with the top layer: the remains of the Parmezan cheese (50 % of the original quantity).
6. Put the casserole in the oven and heat for 15 minutes. Serve immediately.

VARIATIONS
1. The pizzoccheri pasta can be replaced with whole wheat flour tagliatelli. Please adapt the cook time.
2. If Fontina cheese is not available, replace it with sweet smelly cheese. The taste will be fine but not as good.
3. The cabbage can be wholly or partially replaced with spinach or wild spinach. Cook these vegetables for 1 minute.

DORUS TIPS
The pizzoccheri pasta can stick to the bottom of your pan when you boil it.
Stir frequently and scrape the pasta from the bottom when yoy cook it.
The remaining 1/2 kool can be cut, blanched and frozen in order to you use it next time.
Don't throw away the remains of you dish. This dish tastes even better next day. A perfect lunch snack!

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: 
Easy
Cuisine: 
Italian
Course: 
Main Dish
Taste: 
Savory
Feel: 
Rich
Method: 
Boiled
Dish: 
Casserole
Restriction: 
Vegetarian
Story
I learned the traditional recipe from a Italian woman. In this version I have slightly adapted the traditional recipe in order to lower the fat and carb rate (less butter, less pasta, more vegetables).

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