Saturday, June 1st, 2013

4 Simple Pasta Ideas and NYC Report

Katie’s Pasta Tritato with Fettucini ~ Recipe here

Spaghetti with Tomato, Bacon, Caper and Mint ~ Recipe here

Fresh Pasta Beef Lasagne with Chargrilled Zucchini and Pancetta  ~ Recipe here

Slow Roasted Lamb Pappardelle with Garden Peas and Mint ~ Recipe here

All above photos © Katie Quinn Davies 2013

Ok, let’s face it, it’s been a LONG time between drinks… I am sure people are well sick and tired of looking at that Lemon Gluten-Free Cake every time they head to the blog… I know I am!

I am just back from 4 days in the beautiful Barossa Valley where I was shooting a campaign for South Australian Tourism. We interviewed and photographed a bunch of wonderful individual artisan food and wine producers. I can’t wait to put some of the photos up when the official campaign goes live in about 2 weeks. So more on that a little later on…

What can I say but the past 5 weeks has been one HUGE roller-coaster ride and a fantastic one at that. It has seen me in NYC which, BTW, sent me home with a terrible virus and one I am still trying to fully shake off and which left me feeling dreadfully sorry for myself, utterly shattered and in no mood to go anywhere near a computer, and then I was travelling with work. This all, whilst great for me ~ ok not the sick bit! ~ has sadly prevented me from getting this massively over-due post up on the blog. I think we should all open a bottle of bubbles to celebrate this one finally being uploaded. Believe it or not I shot all these below recipes before I went to the US 4 weeks ago, but alas getting the photos up, along with the recipes (the latter of which can take me half a day+ to type out) was not to be. I spent some of the 22 hour flight tapping away on the computer before succumbing to the wine and movies and putting it on the back-burner…

I am still pinching myself and plaster a big grin on my face when I recall the fabulous night in NYC some almost 4 weeks ago (Ahem ~ WHERE does the time go to??!) when I won the James Beard Award for Photography. I was seriously surprised/thrilled/honoured and super delighted to have won. I almost fell off my chair in shock when they called out my name and I shakily made my way up to the stage and podium to mumble out my acceptance/thank you speech which is one big blur to me to be honest, I know I thanked all the right people, at least I hope I did, but those stage lights and the fact you can see no-one in front of you (and you’re shocked as hell), don’t help too much in the calming stakes… Anyway I kept it short and sweet and was then was promptly whisked away down the back to get my photo taken, not before having a glass of champagne put into my hand ~ that being a hand which was trembling so much from shock and nerves that the bubbles inside almost slopped out of the glass onto the floor…

Megan (from Penguin/Avery in NYC) and myself just after I got back to the table after the photo on the right, minus shaky hands! 😉

Overall it was a brilliant night, albeit the first 2 hours completely full of anxious nerves all of which were exacerbated when I actually got to the awards venue and realised I was there as a finalist (a journey to which by the way incurred a huge f-up initially as I went to the wrong venue half the way up Manhattan island as opposed to be at the correct on downtown! But we got there in the end and just in time ~ that is in fairness, thanks to a very fast moving and agile taxi driver from the Dominican Republic…

The medal is now hanging in my sitting room here in Sydney and I am mighty proud of it. Thanks again to the judges who voted for my book and work. I really am still so terribly grateful.

The two weeks in NYC were fantastic. To be honest when I go to NY now, I do so on a very relaxed level. I tend to stay at a mate’s place in the West Village and just hang out like I would at home. I don’t really do the tourist thing anymore there and just love eating at fun, funky and interesting restaurants and taking it easy catching up with friends and family who live there. To be honest, I have been to NYC more times than Dublin since I moved to Australia, so it almost feels a little more familiar to me at this stage.

As mentioned we stayed at an Aussie mate’s place at Greenwich and Christopher (BTW there’s a great little wine and food bar opened up on that intersection called ‘Charlemagne‘ check it out if you are in the area) but we also stayed for part at the Trump Soho. Ok, I’ll admit, initially the name of this hotel didn’t do a lot for me. i am not one for big chain hotels and it sounded a tad tacky to me on first seeing it online. I had booked into another hotel for 8 nights in another part of SoHo as to be totally honest, I hated it. It was dark, dreary and depressing and just lacked personality for me, so we spent 2 nights there and moved on and into the Trump as the other hotels I was more familiar with were, frustratingly fully booked (The Bowery and Greenwich Hotel), however this turned out to be a blessing in disguise as I can honestly say the Trump SoHo was incredible! I would return in a heartbeat. We were on the 38th floor in a corner suite with the. most. STUNNING almost 270˚ view of Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. My mouth literally nearly hit the floor when I walked in on the first day and saw the magnificent view of uptown and the Empire State laid out, literally right in front of me.

I highly recommend this hotel to anyone looking to stay downtown in NYC. I would give it a 9 out of 10. The only deduction being there is really no bar area downstairs other than in a restaurant. The service, cleanliness, quality of bed and linen and most importantly the staff and their friendliness made for such a memorable and wonderful stay. Also I must add the girls in the spa were brilliant too and made the afternoon before the James Beard Awards a really relaxing experience for me. They all insisted I come back down the following day if I won the award and show it to them 🙂

Without a doubt I think NYC is the food capital of the world. There is so much diversity and options when it comes to this subject in the big Apple.

However I tended to steer away from the OTT degustation meals on this trip, opting for smaller places, mainly in the West and East Village such as:

Empillon Taqueria
El Torro Blanco
Spice Market
The Little Owl
Employees Only ~ fantastic cocktails
Four Faced Liar ~ good Irish style NYC pub
Dublin 6 ~ Good pub food with an amazing slider tasting plate
Wilfie and Nell ~ good atmosphere
Beatrice Inn
Old Rabbit Club

However I did go all out and eat at Eleven Madison Park (now No. 5 on the san Pellegrino Best Restaurant List 2013) where we enjoyed a superb 16 course tasting menu which included divine tasting dishes such as; Surf Clam with Fava Bean, Meyer Lemon and Green Garlic; Asparagus with Custard and Rhubarb; Malt Egg Cream with Vanilla and Seltzer and Celery Root Creme Cake with Apple Sorbet, Walnut and White Pepper Cake.

Frankly, I would never normally be able to eat the amount of courses which I did here, but the portions were perfect and I enjoyed every single one of them. I left with no ‘stonkered/bloated’ feeling, nor were any of us loosening our belts as is so often the case with a lot of top notch restaurants which present degustation menus containing portions which are just too large and akin to a standard starter size. It was a super experience and now I can tick it off my list of “posh NYC restaurants I’ve wanted to eat at”. I will say truthfully though, my favourite restaurant in NYC, based on the food and experience I had there last year (and I am kicking myself I didn’t go back this time) is Wylie Dufresne’s WD50. Again, highly recommend this restaurant if you want a memorable food experience in NYC.

All above photos © Katie Quinn Davies 2013

NYC aside, the theme of this post is everything homemade pasta (as you might have noticed by the top 4 photos) – well almost – one of these 4 dishes actually uses dried spaghetti, but the rest are all prepared using homemade fresh pasta. Before Christmas last year I did an Advertising shoot for Kitchen Aid which consisted of me shooting some of their range of stand mixers and blenders for a series of print adverts to be used in publications around Aus. One of the items they wanted to feature was their pasta making attachment which fits onto the front of their stand mixer and rolls out your pasta dough into sheets and then into various width strips to make spaghetti, fettucini, etc. etc. To be brutally honest when I saw it first I was pretty unimpressed thinking from a typical creative’s mind and how ugly the shot would look with this big silver thing sticking out of the lovely stand mixer (if anyone has my book, you’ll know how mad I am about my trust baby blue mixer which I’ve had now for 6 or so years). Anyway, when the food stylist on the day of the shoot starter motoring up this attachment, honestly I was utterly gob-smacked at just how flipping cool it was… I have an Imperia bog-standard pasta maker which I normally clamp to my worktop, however it’s a nightmare half the time as the clamp keeps falling off and I end up cursing and screaming in the kitchen about how frustrating it is to anyone who will listen – aka normally my husband Mick… It’s also a tad messy and I really only discovered this latter fact when I saw the Kitchen Aid version in action.

People who read WKA regularly know I rarely plug products, it’s not my thing to do so but I do mention in my book a few items for the kitchen which I cannot live without and more importantly just make cooking and in turn, my life, easier. This is one of them. When Mick saw the shots, he said; ‘What the heck is that?!” when I explained he was really intrigued and all ‘Oooh sounds fantastic!’ and the timing was perfect as

A: it was almost Christmas
B: Mick ADORES pasta and making his own, and
C: he’s impossible to buy for, so
D: I thought “Bingo!! Get him a pasta roller from KA”

which I did and he loves it. As do I, so I figured I might mention my thoughts on here. We’ve never used the countertop machine since and there’s been a lot less cursing during pasta making sessions as the screw clamp flies off into the cat’s water bowl. You can read about the machine here. I have the one with 3 attachments, it’s reasonably priced (around $300), however they do also make a rather more expensive option for around $700 which includes a lot more bits and pieces. I can’t recommend it enough.

Finally, seeing as I just spent 2 weeks in the US (!!), I couldn’t not post this too…

This is a recipe I wrote a few weeks ago for a feature surrounding American Comfort Food. I didn’t end up including this recipe and thought it would be good to put it on the blog ~ and no better a time than after my trip to the US. This is my recipe for a good, old US-style/inspired Sunday Pot Roast. It’s my Slow-Roasted Beer and Black Pepper Beef with Root Veg and Pan Gravy. It’s super easy, and you bung it in the oven for 7-8 hours so perfect for a cosy Saturday night meal or Sunday afternoon late lunch with the family.

Katie’s Slow-Roasted Beer and Black Pepper Beef with Root Veg and Pan Gravy. ~ Recipe here

59 Responses to “4 Simple Pasta Ideas and NYC Report”

  1. samantha
    June 1, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    Love all the pics from NY my Uncle lives in Greenwich Village I love it there was there last May I love the Lasagne here that you included the top looks especially good not like all the other pics of Lasagne you see around..

    You looked Fabulous in the LBD for the Beard awards .. great work Katie the dream

    Love your work xx

    • Katie
      June 1, 2013 at 5:58 pm

      Thanks so much Samantha! 🙂 I spent a few days looking for the ‘right dress’ however even before I was nominated for the JB I had seen that dress but really had no reason to wear it anywhere, when I decided to go to NY I knew it was the one to get. It fit so well and due to that, made me feel so confident when I wore it. It’s by Alexander McQueen and even though it didn’t have one, it almost felt like it had an inbuilt corset in it. Was so lovely to wear 🙂 xx

  2. June 1, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    Wow, Katie, what a trip! congratulations again on your magnificent win at the James Beard Awards (so glad you got there – finally!) and all your NYC photos are giving me travel envy as I’ve always wanted to visit, but alas, will have to wait until after our France/London honeymoon later this year before we start saving up.

    Look forward to trying out your pasta recipes, I do love a good pasta (even though I’m gluten free it’s still possible!) and I LOVE my own blue Kitchen Aid too 🙂

  3. Madeleine
    June 1, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Ohh Katie, congratulations again! Your NY trip sounds amazing, I really can’t wait to go one day. Beautiful pasta pics. Miss you!

    • Katie
      June 1, 2013 at 7:06 pm

      Thanks Madeleine! I miss you too! What on earth am I going to do in Oct-Dec without you???!! Are you still staying on until early next year? I am so glad you are having such and amazing time. I can see it in your shots on FB xxx

  4. June 1, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    Fabulous. Didnt you wanna steal that darling stool 🙂

  5. Sini
    June 1, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    Congrats for winning the James Beard Award! Must have been a really special night :)) I love the winner picture with the glass of champagne!

    I bought a pasta maker a few weeks ago so these recipes get me really excited! Especially the lamb pappardelle looks delicious. Will try to find time to make it soon!

  6. Kathleen
    June 1, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    Hey Katie-
    Congratulations on you win! So well deserved.
    Just so you know, I’ve become your unofficial, unpaid, over-enthusiastic, diehard publicist in Boston and beyond. Your book has become “the” gift of the year for my fellow cooks and lovers of beautiful things. Best wishes to you for more succes..

  7. June 2, 2013 at 6:52 am

    Congrats on a well deserved award! Your photography is indeed fabulous. I look forward to trying your pasta recipes, especially the Spaghetti with Tomato, Bacon, Caper and Mint. I have a jar of salted capers that I’ve been anxious to try. I’m happy you love NYC as much as I do! Best wishes for continued success.

  8. June 2, 2013 at 7:06 am

    Congrats Katie! I’ve followed your WKA for just over a year, and however frequently (!) you post, the results are always amazing and worth any wait (and can forgive you the eternal lemon cake, as lemon cake is my fave!).

    I concentrated on your NY part of this post, not the pasta, as we’re heading there in the next months. And as a family (first time with my 10 yr old in tow) as I turn a ‘certain’ age, and was there when preggers with him. So, your pix will make the waiting all the more worthwhile. Love the colours on them, btw. My son can now see what he missed first time he was ‘there’. I am tempted by your all-American beef recipe as despite summer supposedly happening in the Med (Malta unseasonally chill and rainy today on 1st June), I yearn for a real hot dinner not salad. Hope weather recovers for your Italy sojourn in July! Really weird right now. Bring waterproofs at this rate!

  9. June 2, 2013 at 7:50 am

    OK, now I am hungry 😀 😀

  10. Megan
    June 2, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Stunning and mouthwatering as usual! was in NYC last year so really nice to have the trip down memory lane. With three kids in tow we didnt get to all the nice restaurants, but we still experienced the diversity of the food, amazing! Your photography is wonderful just love reading/looking at your blog! xx PS Congrats on your award!

  11. June 2, 2013 at 10:27 am

    Katie, Absolutely gorgeous photos of NYC! Your trip sounded absolutely delicious and your award was well deserved. CONGRATS!!! And keep up the good work. Saw your book on Anthropologie shelves the other day. So awesome!

  12. June 2, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    Congratulations on the award, Katie… it is so well deserved and must have been super exciting… Your book is wonderful and all your shots very inspiring…

    Thank you for the delish pasta recipes… I will be sharing those on My Daily Click..

  13. June 2, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    Big congrats on this massive accolade – well-deserved, of course. And thank you for sharing your rather fairy tale adventure with us: Love the montage, the text and the pasta! I adore my cream Kitchen- Aid standmixer but had no idea one could get a pasta attachment. On my wishlist as of now. If only it came with a gorgeous Italian man to help hold the growing pasta…

  14. Karen
    June 2, 2013 at 6:06 pm

    Congrats on the award!

    Totally deserved.

    And, yes, I too was dubious before I stayed at the Tump Soho, but having been there a few times now it is totally marvellous. The man have bad hair, but he does seriously good hotel.

  15. June 2, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    Congratulations on the award. Certainly well deserved. And thank you for all wonderful photos, especially of NYC. Just wonderful.

  16. Debbi
    June 3, 2013 at 12:29 am

    I have your book and love the recipes! Congrats on the Janes Beard Photography Award! Do you use VSCO by any chance to process the images for the fantastic ‘color and old world’ look? If yes, which is your favorite! Maybe you could write a blog entry on photography? It’s is beautiful!

    How do you stay so thin?

  17. June 3, 2013 at 1:57 am

    Congratulations on your award Katie! Very well deserved! I stumbled upon your blog recently and was immediately hooked! I visit your photography and recipes often! You are truly an artist!

  18. June 3, 2013 at 2:28 am

    Congrats Katie!
    Well deserved! I am a true fan. Thanks for all the inspiration!

  19. June 3, 2013 at 4:44 am


  20. June 3, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Sounds like a great trip, amazing photo’s! Congratulations on your award!

  21. June 3, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    hi katie!
    i simly wanto to tell you that I love your pictures, and your style, and that I am happy for your achievements.

    On the side: you looks great too!! not only your pictures!

    • Katie
      June 4, 2013 at 9:45 am

      Many thanks Gu! And to everyone else who has left a comment here, thanks for the fab words 🙂 xx

  22. June 3, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    The award is so well deserved. My first apartment, circa 1976, was at 87 Christopher Street. A second floor walk-up, measuring 250 square feet and costing $110 a month. There was quite a cast of characters in the building and a very busy leather bar across the street.

  23. Ann
    June 4, 2013 at 3:50 am

    Congrats! Love to see a new post with those beautiful pics!

  24. June 4, 2013 at 5:44 am

    Okay, so I’m the last person on the planet to discover your blog. Congrats on the James Beard Award (my wife won a few years back). It’s a great organization and deserves to be supported. Your pics are fabulous. I can only imagine the size of the barn where you must keep your props. Anyway, great post on New York AND pot roast. Ken

  25. June 4, 2013 at 6:29 am

    What a post! Love Love Love all the NYC photographs! What an amazing experience and well deserved award! Love the dress!

  26. June 4, 2013 at 6:31 am

    Your pictures of NY are amazing !!!

  27. Amanda
    June 4, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    Congratulations on the award Katie. I love the photography on your blog, and it seems, I am not alone. Love the NYC pics too.

  28. Emily
    June 4, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    Glad to have you back Katie! Your photos of NYC are amazing, and I can’t wait to make these recipes 🙂

    • Katie
      June 5, 2013 at 11:02 pm

      Cheers Emily – let me know how you go with the recipes x

  29. June 5, 2013 at 5:02 am

    Congrats! You really deserve it. The website is so beautiful and your photgraphy is amazing. Love the pasta dishes as well… cant wait to try them all!

    • Katie
      June 5, 2013 at 11:02 pm

      Thanks Kristina 🙂

  30. June 6, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    I like pasta dishes a lot. I am fan of tasty and spicy dishes. Thanks for suggesting another hot dish to eat and serve. And photography is also very eye-catchy.

  31. June 6, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Well that was quite a comeback! haha Let me begin by congratulate you on the James Beard award! you probably deserved it! I bought your book here in Dublin about… 3 weeks ago or so. I was anxious to get it, and when i saw it i took it right away… W H O P P E R! such cute photos, and so many great recipes. As a foodie, a chef and a design aficionado let me tell you that your work is amazing in every field and your writing is as well pleasing. I did was surprised that none of me irish friends seems to know about this Irish foodie/chef/photographer i was talking about.

    About the post, i had the luck to spent a month or so in NYC and im totally agree with the statement of it being the food world capital. Such a diversity is very hard to find anywhere else and you’ll find so many cozy and cute places to eat so many different and tasty kind of food that you just want to keep eating all day long.
    When it comes to the recipes well… these are my first months in Dublin so the lamb pappardelle seems to have the irish twist, so i might give it a try!

    Keep writing! cheers.

  32. Evi
    June 7, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    Good to see you today, Katie! Just seen this post, loving the NYC shots and big congratulations on the award!!

  33. Ampersand Design
    June 8, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Congratulations Katie on the James Beard award! So well deserved.

    Sandy K

  34. June 9, 2013 at 3:33 am

    Absolutely gorgeous photos as always. You look lovely- congratulations!xxx

  35. June 9, 2013 at 8:43 am

    Wonderful photos, both of the food (amazing) and New York (intense atmosphere). Congratulations for the award!

  36. June 10, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    Big big congrats Katie! By the way I LOVE your book,and I’m completing a review on it make even mess looks beautiful! Thanks for sharing the shots of NYC, the LBD is perfect for the occassion:-)

  37. June 10, 2013 at 11:07 pm

    Hmm… You shouldn’t look at this pictures when you are hungry. 🙂

  38. Anne
    June 11, 2013 at 3:55 am

    Hi Katie,
    just picked up the German copy of your cook book (could’ve gotten the English copy, but they usually offer alternatives for ingredients you can’t get here)! It is fabulous. You absolutely deserve to win this price. Can’t wait to get in my kitchen and try your recipes. Love, Anne

    • Katie
      June 11, 2013 at 1:47 pm

      Hi Anne! That’s great to hear, I wasn’t fully aware it was actually out and printed and on sale in Germany as of yet – so that’s fantastic to hear 🙂 Thanks

  39. mandy
    June 12, 2013 at 7:23 am

    Hi Katie, I really enjoy your blog and am a NY resident myself 🙂
    Congrats on the James Beard Award, such an honor!!!! Loved your photos of NY and the list of restaus – you picked some great ones, and reconfirmed a bunch on my list that I STILL need to try!!
    Looking forward to more delicious recipes and beautiful photography!

  40. June 16, 2013 at 11:52 am

    Belated congratulations, Katie! The shots from the JBA’s just put a huge grin on my face. What fun that must have been! You award was most well deserved. keep up the great work.

    • Katie
      June 20, 2013 at 12:15 am

      Many thanks Aimee 🙂

  41. June 17, 2013 at 8:51 am

    Just loved your beef lasagne recipe. The chilli flakes are a new idea to me in lasagne – what a warm infusion – ab fab and perfect for a warming winter dish. Thanks so much.

    • Katie
      June 20, 2013 at 12:15 am

      Wonderful! Great to hear it was a winner for you 🙂

  42. Kim
    June 18, 2013 at 12:47 am

    Love the book, and thinking of asking for a little commission from you… at least four of my friends have bought it since me! Well deserved award as the book is a joy to flick through even before you try the recipes.

    Have to say re KitchenAid accessories… as a UK based Kiwi I’m always shocked at what you have to pay for such items at home and in Aus. Try and ask a UK friend to buy bits next time they’re on their way over to see you. The same attachment bought online here would have cost you approx $140AUS!

    Keep posting!

  43. June 18, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Very gorgeous photos.. Love each and every shot..

  44. June 18, 2013 at 11:07 pm

    Hi Katie,
    I so admire your work (and your life in stunning Sydney looks pretty fantastic too). I know there is a huge amount of slog behind every picture and every post but you somehow make it all seem so spontaneous and natural.
    I now own the book, follow your blog and have started a blog myself, all down to a piece I read in The Telegraph back in February. You are an inspiration – well done.

    Jenny (uk)

    • Katie
      June 20, 2013 at 12:11 am

      Thanks Jenny. Yes there is a CRAZY amount of slog in up-keeping a blog like this. To be honest sometimes it all gets on top of me as I do everything myself in my spare time as I have to work Mon-Fri and sometimes when it all gets too much I am so tempted to just shut up shop, but honestly when people like you write what you just did it does keep me going. The blog has brought me great opportunities but OMG they’re not easy to run at times 😉 Good luck with your blog xx

  45. June 19, 2013 at 2:25 am

    I just adore your food photography Katie, so inspiring! I’m going to culinary school next year and hoping to get into food styling myself. Very excited but can’t wait for the career change. And those photos of New York remind me of why I love that city, great place and amazing food 🙂

  46. June 21, 2013 at 2:08 am

    It’s one thing to suspect you’re good at what you do…another thing altogether when strangers confirm it. The award is totally deserved! Your blog is gorgeous. And by the way, you were looking rather smashing at the awards show. Congratulations. 🙂

  47. June 27, 2013 at 12:44 am

    Amazing as usual! Your blog/photography always makes me daydream about moving to a cottage and eating wholesome foods forever… congratulations on all your accomplishments, they are well deserved.

    Please, check out this blog I just started, i promise you’ll like it!


  48. July 24, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Oh goodness how wonderful, all of it. Besides the sick part. What a great update! I am thrilled you won, you looked outrageously gorgeous, and I adore your pasta recipes so yay for this post! Major NYC loving going on here too, I was there 4 weeks ago and man, it just gets to you. I recognise (do I??) Smalls Jazz bar in your pics. Loved that place. Ahhh I miss it.
    Heidi xo

  49. July 30, 2013 at 10:51 am

    I love these photos of NYC! I will definitely give one of these pasta recipes a go, I am done with my summer cleanse and need some spaghetti and bacon dishes in my life!

  50. Cathy
    August 13, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    Your food photography is PHENOMINAL!! I came across you quite by accident this evening and just can’t put it down – even took it onto the treadmill with me! I walked through Italy, London and NYC. LOL Stunning, absolutely stunning and an inspiration. Congrats on the JB Award!! Well deserved! I’m a fan.

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