Pasta Please #1 - Cheese


It's perfect when:

  • we want to share a meal with friends
  • we need a quick after work meal
  • we want to use up vegetables
  • we want to be frugal
  • we need some comfort food
So I thought with the demise of the ever popular Presto Pasta Nights, we really needed something to take it's place and so I give you Pasta Please.

Each month a different host will set a pasta challenge for us and provide a linky so we can add out pasta dishes. This month the theme is cheese and in line with this blog, the entries are suitable for vegetarians. Each month this will change depending on the host. You can keep up with all the hosts and challenges here.

Let's have a look at the entries!

Jen obviously knows the way to my heart. Pasta and mushrooms coated in a luxurious cheese sauce, then  baked until crisp. Oh my yes!

What a colourful pasta dish Cate. I love it and such a great combination of flavours. Fennel, asparagus, broad beans, pattypan squash, fresh herbs, ricotta and parmesan.

This sumptuous pasta bake is brought to us by Sarah of Maison Cupcake fame. As if her time isn't stretched enough with her blog, family, cookbook writing and everything else she fits it, she has also started a new blog to feature family recipes. I'm glad she did, this looks droolworthy!

Now, I don't know why, but I have added butternut squash to a pasta dish. I can see I am missing out. This cheesy pasta bake from Helen looks like the perfect comfort food and I bet the sweetness of the butternut squash is a lovely contrast to the cheese.

4. Pasta with Walnuts, Blue Cheese and Chives
Shades of Vanilla

This is my kind of pasta dish. Simple, but packed with flavour. Mind you I would be eating it on my own now my hubby is vegan and Cooper doesn't particularly like blue cheese. I think I would be happy not having to share!

5. Cheesy Pasta Bake
Farmersgirl Kitchen

Janice was on a bit of a frugal drive when she made this pasta bake. Instead of the bog standard pasta often used in bakes, Janice used some tagliatelle nests. Butternut squash, chickpeas, pasta, Philadelphia and cheddar. You did really well from your store cupboard and fridge forage Janice!

6. Triple Spaghetti with Sesame Oil, Cinnamon and Cocos
Food with a View

What struck me first about this dish was the beautiful photography, but actually it is a really original dish. A triple spaghetti of longs strands of Çeçil peyniri cheese, long spaghetti strips of carrot and black rice noodles. Finished off with sesame oil, cinnamon, chillies, physalis and cocos rasps (not sure what these are).


 7. Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni with Hidden Veggies Tommies Sauce
Chez Foti

This is another frugal dish born of what was found in cupboard, fridge and freezer. A great family dish if you ask me. And the hidden veggies..... well they are celery, carrot, pumpkin & pepper, but shhhhhhhh don't tell anyone, it's a secret!

8. Tagliatelle with Cherry Tomatoes, Artichoke Hearts, Feta and Rocket
Elizabeth's Kitchen

Some of my favourite ingredients in this one. Artichokes, which I love, but I am afraid I always get out of a jar, feta cheese, cherry tomatoes and rocket. I don't know if I should say poor Elizabeth or not. None of her family would enjoy this dish (they are really missing out), but then that could be a good thing as it means she can enjoy it all by herself.

9. Gemelli Pasta Vegetariana Al Forno
Cooking Around The World

And we have another blogger rummaging around their store cupboard to find some ingredients for their pasta dish. I think this is a common theme in January. It is a long time until that pay at the end of January after being paid early in December. *sigh* Obviously it does inspire a bit of creativity. Another gorgeous dish!

10. Easy Colourful Pasta Bake with Mascarpone Cheese
Part Time Chef

Another pasta bake, this time with mascarpone cheese as the sauce. A great tip for a quick and velvety pasta sauce when you are short of time. This one is topped of with peas and sweetcorn and they look very appealing nestled on top there. Another great time saver too.

11. Pesto Pasta with Parmesan
Lavender and Lovage

Karen is following the same 5:2 Diet that I follow. If you haven't heard of it, we basically eat normally for 5 days of the week, then eat under 500 calories for the other 2 days. It's really easy to follow and good for health reasons as well as losing weight. As you can see from Karen's pasta dish, you don't have to miss out when you are on a fast day. It's a slurpingly tasty dish of pasta coated in homemade pesto and topped with parmesan. One of my own personal favourites and only 310 calories per serving.

12. Messicani with Spinach and Cheese Sauce
Tinned Tomatoes

This is my entry for this month's challenge and I am ashamed to say I didn't have a chance to make a dish for it, so this one is from my archives. I know you will forgive me when I tell you how amazingly scrumptious it is! Homemade cheese sauce made with lots of lovely mature cheddar and parmesan, speckled with spinach. It is one of my all time favourites and I hope you will enjoy it too.

13.  Handmade Garganelli with Crushed Avocado and Parmesan

Now adding crushed avocado and parmesan (Simona didn't specify as she realises Parmesan isn't suitable for veggies, but you can buy veggie style parmesan, so lets just say parmesan) may seem simple, but Simona did a lot of research and made her own garganelli. I am so impressed, it looks amazing. Loved her gnocchi board too. One smart piece of kit! Thanks Simona.

14. Chocolate Orange Lasagne

I left this dish for last, so we could have it for dessert. Yes, I said dessert.  My good friend and fellow Clandestine caker, Stuart, came up with this ingenious pasta dish including cheese. The cheese he use in this sweet delight is ricotta cheese, accompanied by lasagne sheets, chocolate orange cocoa powder, white chocolate, pistachio nuts and white chocolate blossoms. Mmmmmm!

Here ends the first ever edition of Pasta Please.
Next month the new challenge with be set by Lisa over at We Don't Eat Anything With A Face. Lisa is also vegetarian, so next month's challenge will  be vegetarian again. Head over to Lisa's blog to find out what the challenge is. If you would like to host a future Pasta Please challenge, then do get in touch.

Thank you to everyone who entered and long live Pasta Please!
R.I.P Presto Pasta Nights.

Bookmarked Recipes Roundup #20

Bookmarked Recipes: a monthly event to encourage food bloggers to revisit the recipes they have bookmarked from magazines, newspapers, cookbooks. websites, blogs, to try them out and post about them.

Read on to see all the entries. If you recreate any bookmarked recipes in January 2013, you can join in by adding them to the linky at the end of this post for the next roundup.

Bookmarked Recipe #20
January Roundup

Recipe bookmarked from Mysore Style Cooking.


Recipe bookmarked from  Simple Bites.


 3. Manicotti
Recipe bookmarked from Recipes from our Kitchen


Anneli (Delicieux)
Recipe bookmarked from Stacey Snacks.



Recipe bookmarked from Vegan Richa.


Jacqueline (Tinned Tomatoes)
Recipe bookmarked from Hamlyn's QuickCook Low Fat.


Recipe bookmarked from Madhur Jaffrey's Indian Cooking.


Recipe bookmarked from Demuths Restaurants Positively Vegetarian: Recipes for Life.


Simona (Briciole)
Recipe bookmarked from the December 2012 issue of Food & Wine.


Recipe bookmarked from Rose Elliot.


Choclette (Chocolate Log Blog)
Recipe bookmarked from How to Cook Good Food.


12. Cream Scones 
Recipe bookmarked from Martha Stewart.


Recipe bookmarked from the Goodness Direct newsletter.


Recipe bookmarked from Technicolor Kitchen.


Recipe bookmarked from Nigellissima.

16. Fig Cake with Greek Yogurt
Kate (Turquoise Lemons)
Recipe bookmarked from Leon's Baking & Puddings.

Here ends the first Bookmarked Recipes of 2013.

January is off to a flying start with all these delicious entries.
February's Bookmarked Recipes is open for business.

If you would to add a post, just go to the linky at the bottom of this post. 
  1. Please remember that bookmarked recipes must be suitable for vegetarians, in line with this blog. 
  2. Please link to this post and state where you bookmarked your recipe from.
  3. Three entries only per blog.
You can find the guidelines, current challenge and past roundups here
 Bookmarked Recipes February will be open until Saturday 23 February 2013.
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