I spotted this “Cheese Dog” painting on Bowery near Spring Street. I put the “#Cheese NYC” Tag into Google but all I got were pictures of cheese or tasty cheese food products found in NYC – which makes sense, but still.
Hello and welcome to the second installment of Cooking with Gail: the series that is all about me making a meal from whatever I can find in my house. This week, I was very busy making the scene and had no time to grocery shop. So, Friday evening found me at home, famished and looking through my pantry for foods I could combine into some kind of tasty meal without having run out to the store or resort to ordering in.
Fortunately, I had a new jar of La Famiglia DelGrosso pasta sauce, specifically Aunt Cindy’s Roasted Garlic Gala (check out their awesome website and you can see that each sauce variety is named for a family member, cute)! When you open the jar of this sauce and have a little taste, it tastes like a fresh tomato sauce with a bunch of good stuff in it, which is what I like. I really do not care for those brands of jarred sauces that have so much corn syrup in them that they taste like candy (makes a face). No, thank you. Here are the ingredients in this fine sauce: Imported Whole Italian Plum Tomatoes, Crushed Tomatoes, Imported Olive Oil, Fresh Onions, Roasted Garlic, Sea Salt, Basil, Natural Garlic Flavoring, Black Pepper and Parsley. No sugar added! And you can even see the little chunks of garlic right through the jar! It is like sauce you would make in your home if you were not lazy, like me.
Of course I had some spaghetti pasta at the ready, but needed cheese to top the dish, and I was out of the cheese I normally would add to pasta. What to do? Well, as luck would have it, I also had in the fridge a newly acquired package of Emmi Gruyere Cheese.
You might recall that I wrote about Emmi Cheese Fondue a while back, which is when I became a fan. Gruyere cheese is really a kind of Swiss cheese, which one does not normally associate with red sauce pasta dishes. But since Gruyere is also hard cheese with properties similar to Parmesan, I figured it would grate up well, and I was right. The slightly salty, nutty flavor also went really well with garlic in the sauce, and it melted nicely on top of the hot pasta. Very delicious! Here is a photo of the finished dish.
I’m not suggesting that everybody is going to get behind putting Gruyere cheese on their pasta, but I would encourage you to step outside the box and get a little bit creative when you are trying to make dinner with what you have on hand. Emmi Cheese is a great product which paired harmoniously with the DelGrosso sauce in this case. I recommended both products be kept on hand in your pantry or fridge for all culinary emergencies, or just for everyday use!
All Photos By Gail
If you enjoy the idea of combining delicious foods with fun and easy home entertaining, then you should probably consider having a fondue party. I was recently introduced to Emmi brand Fondue, a product of Switzerland that you can buy now in the States. The idea of making fondue in your home probably seems like a hassle, but Emmi makes it so easy! I will tell you how easy right now.
First of all, I would like to thank my friend Lauren and her lovely teenage daughter Sophia for hosting the Fondue Party in their home, and helping with the minimal prep work. Here is all you have to do to have a fun, easy and delicious dinner party!
Emmi cheese fondue is made with natural Swiss cheese, white wine, kirsch brandy, salt and other spices to give it the authentic taste of Fondue that you would enjoy in a fine specialty restaurant. All you have to do is squeeze the fondue from the foil packet (which keeps it shelf fresh for months) into a fondue pot or enamel sauce pan and heat it up.
While the fondue heats under a watchful eye, prepare the food items that you will dip into the cheese. We had a crusty loaf of bread, which I cut into cubes.
We also chose lightly steamed fresh broccoli and baby carrots as dippers. The Emmi fondue package lists other appropriate dippers, but you can get creative according to your tastes. We were thinking that maybe next time we will choose some cubed ham.
The Fondue was hot in under ten minutes and ready to enjoy! Emmi Swiss Fondue has an excellent consistency – thick but not gloppy – and a rich cheese flavor enhanced by the wine and kirsch. One package easily feeds two hungry adults.
After a short period of rest, it was time for dessert!
Emmi makes an amazing Swiss Chocolate Fondue which was even easier to prepare than the cheese fondue. Do you see two packages there? Each serves two people. We made them both.
Over low heat it melts very fast! Smooth!
Reccommended dippers for the chocolate fondue are cut up fruits, cookies, marshmallows or cubes of pound cake or angel food cake. We cut up a couple of fresh pears, an apple and some bananas. Confession: we dipped the bread left over from the cheese fondue into the chocolate also. It was insane. Lauren noted that the melted chocolate perfectly enrobed each piece of fruit.
This pot may look empty but, trust me, we scraped it clean.
So, there you go: Delicious. Easy. Fun. Emmi Fondues sell for between $8 – $10 depending on the vendor. Lauren and I definitely agree that they are super convenient and an excellent value. Why not put an Emmi Fondue Party on your To Do List right now!?