What recipes did you grow up with? Maybe it’s restaurant dishes or a certain treat that stands out. There are several for me and often those foods are associated with a specific time of year or a person. For example, apple cake or muffins are a must have in January – or any time I need something special for my dad. As Carver tells it he and his sister were virtually raised on recipes from this book. My mother-in-law sent it to us one year and I have gradually added recipes from it to our repertoire. I must admit I was fairly hesitant about the tuna recipe below – Carver has asked for it for months and I have shied away. The original recipe calls for canned tuna which is an absolute NO in my book, and I was unsure of the cream and tuna. It just seemed unappealing to me. Carver finally convinced me to make it for his mom’s birthday this year and it was perfect. It says, “You’re special,” but it isn’t showy or over-the-top. Another quirk about Carver and I is we have a different definition of Strawberry Shortcake. I am of the classic school while Carver associates the dish with angel food cake in place of the shortcake. For this dinner I decided we should stick with what Carver remembered and it turned out very well.
Ahi Tuna with Creamy Pasta
- 2/3 pound ahi tuna steak
- 5 ounces whole wheat pasta
- 1/2 cup heavy cream, room temperature
- 1 lemon – zested and juiced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon capers
- Cook pasta according to package instructions. Before straining reserve 1/4 cup cooking liquid.
- Season tuna steak with salt and pepper. Preheat grill pan over high heat. Sear tuna for 2-3 minutes on each side. Remove to a plate to rest.
- In a food processor, combine heavy cream, lemon and garlic. Pulse until cream thickens – it will look like sour cream and takes less than 2 minutes so be ready! Fold in capers and parsley.
- Add sauce to pasta and mix so pasta is coated with sauce. The cream sauce should be fairly liquid and easily incorporate with the pasta, if it doesn’t gradually add a bit of the reserved pasta water to the mix and stir until you get the desired consistency.
- Slice tuna and serve on top of pasta.
Carver’s Strawberry ‘Shortcake’
- 1 1/2 cup sliced strawberries
- 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 slices angel food cake, cubed
- Add half the sugar to strawberries, stir and set aside for at least 30 minutes. *macerate those strawberries*
- Before serving whip cream on high with a mixer until soft peaks form.
- Once you have soft peaks, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and beat again on high until stiff peaks form.
- Assemble the dessert: a spoonful of berries and sauce, a dollop of whipped cream, a handful of cake cubes, a spoonful of berries and sauce, and a dollop of whipped cream