Friday, February 4, 2011

Candle, Napa Cab Sauv, Amos Lee, Pantry Pasta, & Blogging...

Sometimes on Friday nights, I like to take it easy - I reflect, listen to tunes, and cook.  Such is the case tonight, friends. 

Following a wonderful Restorative Yoga class, I returned home, lit a comfy candle, fired up my iPod, opened a 2007 Rutherford Cab Sauv, and perused the fridge.  Since I just went to TJ's I have the basics - Kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, and garlic.  After a glance through the pantry, I grab the Capellini dry pasta (angel hair) and its on - feta, olive, tomato, angel hair pasta. 

I can't cook without music  - so I turned to an old friend, Amos Lee - beautiful folk, soul, jazz singer-songwriter.  I don't actually know Amos Lee, but I feel like I do when I listen to his music.  I know its a trite sentiment, but he speaks to me.  He brings tears to my eyes, a smile to my face, and I feel what he is feeling through his words.

 In 2008, my previous wonderful boss and friend passed along Amos' debut 2005 album "Amos Lee" because he thought I would like it - and he was right.   Man - that CD got me through some tough times.  I know every word of that album and I found great hope, acceptance, and peace in his words (and yes, I am choked up right now). 

His music speaks for itself:  See below ALL MY FRIENDS off his debut album, and then one of the most passionate songs I have ever heard, ARMS OF A WOMAN also off that same album. 

And in our great fortune, Amos has just released a brand new album that is currently #1 on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart.  Granted it was a horrific week for album sales, but still... Pushing 40k units in one week in these times is reason to celebrate.  Yay Amos!  I just bought the new album "Mission Bell" tonight and listened to it while cooking and then eating my pasta dinner.  One song immediately resonated with me after only one listening - LEARNED A LOT.  The below video is a live performance probably shot by an iPhone and even with that quality, his voice shines through as if he's standing right next to you.   I can't wait until he plays LA.

Now for the Friday night easy relaxation meal:
Kalamata Olive, Tomato, Feta Angel Hair Pasta

What you Need:

- Capellini (angel hair) or any pasta noodle
- Little tomatoes (a handful)
- Kalamata Olives (4 per person)
- Feta cheese (healthy handful)
- Garlic (one clove per serving)
- Olive Oil (couple tablespoons to coat the pan)
- Fresh basil (wish I had some)
- Salt and Pepper

Here is what you do:

Bring boiling salted water to boil, add a little olive oil, and then add the pasta.  Normally, I don't add olive oil to pasta water since it coats the pasta and doesn't allow the noodles to absorb the sauce as well; however, because olive oil is the sauce and angel hair can stick together easily, adding olive oil is a good idea for this dish.  Angel hair cooks very quickly (maybe 5 minutes) so keep an eye on it! Once ready, drain the pasta (but don't rinse it with water).

Chop up the garlic and tomatoes.  Heat olive oil in the same pot as the pasta and then add the garlic. Saute garlic for one minute and then add the tomatoes and saute for an additional minute.  Remove the pot from heat and let stand one minute, then add in the pasta directly to the pot.  The oil will still be a little hot so the noodles will cook for a second in the oil which I like because the noodles get toasty flavored.  Transfer the noodles to a bowl and add the olives, feta, salt, pepper, and fresh basil.  YUMMY and EASY.

Alright - I am now going to watch a bad chick flick, take a bath, and go to bed. 

Hugs and Kisses.


  1. This looks delicious, especially in such a beautiful bowl. Wish I could've joined you-music, carbs, cab, bad chick flick...even the hot bath. ;)

  2. No shame in loving and connecting with Amos Lee. The man's got soul. I'm getting very hungry right now. Going to make some pasta Z style!

  3. I'm gonna check out Mr. Lee's stuff after that delicious endorsement. Speaking of artists named Lee/Li...I'm really digging that new song from Lykke Li, "Get Some." Is she blog worthy? :)

  4. Hey Ladies - Thanks for stopping and your thoughts! Sonz - would love to have you over any time for a little "eat pray love" and some pasta :). El - hope the pasta was good - I know you too are an amos fee - he is soulful like you. Erin - I think i have the old Lykki Li album, but havent heard this song yet. Will check it out and thanks for the tip!