Gorgonzola Cheese, Pear and Basil Macaroni

Friday, 13 June 2014

Being sporty is not easy. No matter how addictive it could be and how well you feel afterwards. It is easy to be persuaded by your lazy side and surrender to the charms of a luscious millionaire shortbread.

And my lazy side can be stunningly persuading.

This I why I have decided to seek some help and professional advice. And I have joined a boot camp. Well, I haven’t joined it yet, but I have gone to two “taster sessions” encouraged for picture of those American camps, where a well-built ex-military yells without an iota of compassion to a flock of fleshy people sweating and asking for more.

What a disappointment.

No yelling. No mistreating. No humiliation. Just normal people encouraging other normal people to run, jump and work together. Well, maybe not 100% normal people, but definitely not the people I imagined I was going to find.


How much bad effect has MTV had on our perception of 'normal'?

So I've ended up without knowing what to do. Keep on jogging on my own? Paying someone for kindly asking me to run?  Spend my money on tons of millionaire shortbread and blame my lazy me?

I must admit the experience has been great and I have had so much fun during the sessions. And a lot of pain after it. But… is that enough? I don’t want to waste my money and after all jogging is free. And this allows you to be persuaded with no regrets.

I have until next Monday to make a decision. Will keep you posted.

In my way for a healthy living this week I've prepared a really nutritious, tasty and delicious recipe: Gorgonzola Cheese, Pear and Basil Macaroni. And I have expanded with some tips on how to cook pasta properly. Pasta is the great unknown. It seems child’s game to cook, but it is actually really difficult to do it right.


150gr Gorgonzola Cheese
350gr Macaroni
300gr Pear Halves in Light Syrup
Fresh Basil
5tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt to taste


How to cook perfect pasta*:  

Covering the pot of cold water with a lid will help bring the water to a boil faster. Salting the water makes pasta taste better by bringing out the natural flavour of the pasta.

Do not add your salt until the water has come to a full boil. There are two reasons for this:

1.  First, unsalted water has a lower boiling point than salted water, so it will come to a boil a few seconds faster.

2.  Second and more important, salt dissolves faster in hot water. Un-dissolved salt crystals in cold water can mar the surface of your stainless-steel pots with small white dots or pits.

Add plenty of salt, about 2/3 tablespoons of salt. This may seem like a lot, but it is necessary for getting the pasta properly seasoned. Plus, most of the salt drains off with the water. If you taste the salted water, it should resemble "sea water."

Add the pasta, all at once, to the boiling salted water, and keep the heat high to bring the water back to the boil as quickly as possible. Tip: Never mix pasta types in one pot.

Stir with a long wooden spoon to prevent pasta from sticking to each other and from sticking to the bottom and the edge of pan.

Cook the pasta, uncovered, at a fast boil. Tip: once you have added your pasta, do not cover the pot with a lid.

Don't rely on the package to give you the correct cooking time (this is only a guideline). Start timing when the water returns to a boil. Most pastas cook in 8-12 minutes.

Test dry pasta for doneness after about 4 minutes of cooking by tasting it. It is difficult to give exact cooking times since different shapes and thickness of pasta will take less or more time to cook.

Watch the cooking process of the pasta carefully. Pasta can overcook very quickly. Pasta should be tender but still firm when you eat it, what the Italians call "al dente." To be sure, bite into a piece of the pasta. REMEMBER - Pasta will continue to cook and soften even after it has been taken from the water.

Drain immediately into a large colander standing in the sink, and then pick up the colander with its contents and shake it well to remove excess water.

Do not rinse unless the recipe says to do so.

As soon as it is drained, remove it from the colander and place it back in the cooking pan, add extra virgin olive oil, butter or your favourite sauce.

In this case, pour the extra virgin olive oil, Gorgonzola cheese in chunk pieces and a generous amount of fresh basil into the pasta and place over medium heat; cook until the cheese starts to melt.

Serve immediately.

*Extracted from What’s Cooking America.

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