La Pizza/ La Pasta restaurant, Eataly, NYC

La Pizza/ La Pasta restaurant, Eataly, NYC

For the second part of my foodie day in NYC, we chose to eat at one of the restaurants in the Eataly, NYC Italian market/ mall.

Even the restaurant plates carry Eataly's logo.

Even the restaurant plates carry Eataly’s logo.

Eataly has seven sit down restaurants with both table and counter seats. Each restaurant is positioned next to the market area that provides its fresh ingredients. Le Verdure is next to the produce market; La Piazza is next to the fresh mozzarella and Salumi and cheese counters. Il Pesce is next to the fishmonger. La Pizza & Pasta is next to the bakery and fresh pasta stations. Manzo is next to the butcher shop. Pranzo is in the cooking school and Birreria is a rooftop restaurant that brews its own cask ales.

Eataly has seven sit down restaurants with both table and counter seats.

Eataly has seven sit down restaurants with both table and counter seats.

We chose to eat at La Pizza & Pasta after being completely fascinated with the fresh breads and pasta being made before our eyes. The restaurant’s menu is divided into three main sections: Antipasti, Pizzas and Pastas. Our waitress explained that the left column within the pasta section is dried pasta selections and the right column represented their fresh pastas items.

La Pasta's menu is divided into three main sections.

La Pasta’s menu is divided into three main sections.

As we continued to peruse the menu, our waitress brought us some of the market’s freshly made Italian bread with their extra virgin olive oil for dipping.

Freshly made Italian bread with extra virgin olive oil for dipping.

Freshly made Italian bread with extra virgin olive oil for dipping.

We decided to start our dining by sharing the Antipasto Misto. The menu stated that it’s a selection of the chef’s daily-assorted vegetables. The waitress clarified the menu and told us that it included four items: assorted olives, roasted peppers, roasted butternut squash and eggplant Caponata with toasted bread.

Antipasto Misto - a selection of the chef’s daily-assorted vegetables.

Antipasto Misto – a selection of the chef’s daily-assorted vegetables.

We are glad we selected this as our starter because every one of the items was delicious and light. It was a perfect starter for our meal.  My favorite was the eggplant.

Keeping with the light theme, Gayle chose the Insalata di Finocchio. It was a beautiful salad that included arugula, fennel, shaved Parmigiano Reggiano with lemon vinaigrette. She loved every bite!

Insalata di Finocchio

Insalata di Finocchio

Terri and I couldn’t resist the fresh pasta selections. I chose the Tagliatelle al Ragu di Manzo. It was house made fettuccini-like pasta with short-rib tomato sauce. The pasta was cooked to perfection. It reminded me of my Nona’s homemade pasta and sauce.

Tagliatelle al Ragu di Manzo

Tagliatelle al Ragu di Manzo

Terri chose the Ravioli di Zucca. It was house made ravioli filled with roasted butternut squash, Grana Padano cheese and almond Amaretti cookies, finished with a light brown butter and sage sauce. It was delicious – I tasted it. It was a perfect dish for the fall season.

Ravioli di Zucca

Ravioli di Zucca

We all really enjoyed our lunch at La Pizza/ La Pasta restaurant. I believe we selected well for our first time to Eataly NYC.  I would recommend getting there on the earlier side of lunch because it is first come first served seating and it was completely full by noon.

I look forward to returning to Eataly NYC and trying another one of the six remaining restaurants!

 

Have you ever eaten at any of the restaurants at Eataly NYC?

What’s your favorite kind of homemade pasta and sauce?

Pasta with sausage, tomato and cream sauce

Pasta with sausage, tomato and cream sauce

When I was a kid, I always knew what was for dinner by the day of the week.  Mondays were always soup and a chicken dish.  Tuesdays and Thursdays were a meat, potato and vegetable meal.  Fridays were always fish – even if it wasn’t lent.  And, Wednesdays were always pasta with homemade marinara sauce, meatballs and sausage.

I’m not sure how the correlation between Wednesdays and spaghetti began.  Maybe it was from the 1969 Prince spaghetti slogan, “Wednesday is Prince spaghetti Day.”  Generations of Americans still recall the company’s memorable slogan and little Anthony running through the streets of Boston’s north end to be home for his momma’s spaghetti dinner. Take a trip down memory lane by watching that commercial at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KlNAYCcxgUw

While I do make my own homemade traditional marinara sauce, I’ve also come to love several variations of the time-honored sauce recipe.

Here’s my recipe for pasta with a sausage, tomato and light cream sauce.  It’s a hearty sauce with a delicate flavor from the turkey sausage and light cream.  Try it for a variation from your traditional spaghetti sauce.

Pasta with sausage, tomato and cream sauce

Pasta with sausage, tomato and cream sauce

Pasta with sausage, tomato and cream sauce

Ingredients:

1 lb. sweet turkey sausage, casing removed

2 tbsp olive oil

1 c. chopped yellow onion

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1, 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes

1, 8oz cans of tomato sauce

2/3 c. light cream (measure it out and set it aside so it’s not too cold.  Otherwise it may curdle when adding into the warm sauce)

¼ c chopped Italian parsley

¼ c chopped fresh basil

1 lb. pasta

Directions:

In a large sized skillet with a lid, heat the oil over medium-high heat.  Add the onion and sauté until the onion is tender.  Add the garlic and continue sautéing for 3 minutes.  Be careful not to let the garlic burn.  Add the sausage and cook until it is no longer pink, breaking it up into small pieces with a potato masher hand kitchen utensil.  Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, parsley and cream.  Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the sauce thickens, about 10 minutes.  Just before adding the sauce to the hot pasta, add in the fresh basil.

Mmm!  The sauce is simmering.

Mmm! The sauce is simmering.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, according to the package instructions. While I’ve used farfalle pasta for this recipe, I recently found this Colavita brand of fettuccini pasta at Walmart’s grocery store.  I think it tastes like homemade pasta.

Colavita brand fettuccini pasta nests

Colavita brand fettuccini pasta nests

Drain the pasta.  Add the sausage sauce to the hot pasta and toss until the sauce coats the pasta.

Makes 4-6 servings, depending on portion size.  I pair it with a simple garden salad and garlic bread.

 

What’s your favorite kind of pasta sauce?

Do you make homemade spaghetti sauce?