Hooray! School is back in session! They start about a week earlier down south than they do in NJ and NY. In NJ, I drove Lily to and from school, or sometimes walked her weather allowing since we lived so close. But, this year, she’s taking the bus, and she’s loving it!
Today is her third day, and I’m at home right now, awaiting her return but also happy for the peace! Her first and second days were a success, as she came home all smiles and declared, “I loved it!” when we met her at the top of our driveway.
We met her teacher together last week at an open house, and she seems very nice and fun. The school is also way bigger than Lily’s little primary school in NJ was; the elementary school she attends here has grades K-5th, while in NJ her school only went up to 2nd grade.
We’re looking forward to new experiences and challenges with this change, and meeting them all with a positive attitude!
For her special first day dinner, she requested this interesting yet crowd-pleasing dish that I adapted from Better Homes and Gardens, “Bucatini Corn-Bonara”. I made it in July a couple weeks after we moved in, and everyone liked it! I used spaghetti instead of bucatini, though, because I didn’t find any at the local grocery store, so you can use whichever if you try it.
1 lb spaghetti
4 corn cobs, shucked
1 cup cream or half-and-half (I tried it both ways, taste best with all cream!)
2 egg yolks
1 tsp cracked black pepper
10 oz. bacon (classic, turkey, or other sub works just as well)
3 cloves minced garlic
½ cup shredded or grated Parmesan
¼ cup sliced scallion (optional)
For the corn, you could cook it one of two ways, I tried both: you could either cook the cobs whole for about 5 minutes on high, allow to cool, then slice kernels off the cob, OR you could slice the kernels off first, then cook them for about 5 minutes on high. I just recommend you absolutely use fresh corn rather than frozen as long as you are able to get your hands on some, which shouldn’t be hard since it is currently in season. Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to package, reserve about ½ cup of pasta water then strain the rest, and put aside. Add a little olive oil to keep it from getting sticky.
Next, start cooking the bacon on medium-high in skillet. While that’s cooking, you can go ahead and combine the cream or half-and-half, egg yolks, and black pepper in a small bowl to have ready for the sauce. Once bacon is done frying, place on paper towel-covered dish to dry, and then drain the pan of all but about 1-2 tbsp of grease, depending on how fattening you want it to be. Return pan to stove on medium-low heat and fry the garlic in the bacon grease for about 30 seconds while stirring, then mix in the reserved sauce mixture to pan, plus the ½ cup of grated parmesan cheese. Once it starts to bubble, add the corn and crumbled bacon, and extra pepper if so desired. Stir together, remove from heat and add to pot of pasta to combine. Serve immediately topped with extra Parmesan, ground pepper, and/or scallion.
A totally delish and filling, yet light-tasting dish for these late summer days. Also, fairly easy despite the amount of steps and ingredients involved, so those who are more novice chefs should not be deterred!
I hope everyone is still enjoying what remains of summer, and also enjoying getting these kids back in school!