Sunday, October 31st, 2010

Halloween Weekend, 2010 – Pasta, Pumpkin, Chutneys and Chocolate.

Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown Butter Sauce, Toasted Pecans and Sage

All Images © Katie Quinn Davies

One of the holidays I really miss from living in Ireland is Halloween. It was always my favourite annual holiday as a kid and even as I grew up, I always loved the feeling the end of October tended to bring as you realised Summer – or what ‘semblance’ of Summers we’d get in Dublin – was well and truly over, the nights were getting chillier and Christmas was on the way. Now that November 1st has arrived, the onslaught of Christmas marketing 2010 will start taking place in shops all over the globe and perversely here in Oz the weather will really start to warm up – here cometh the Sydney humidity… :(

The Aussies don’t really celebrate October 31st in the same vein that the Irish or American’s do so it felt a little strange to focus on overtly Halloween foods in the past week, rather I decided to make some recipes using the time honoured traditional Halloween food: Pumpkin. I love looking at friend’s photos of the copious amounts of Halloween Pumpkins available in the USA in October as here in Oz you can get them, but they’re not as plentiful and do a serious amount of damage to your wallet (aka = $40 for a 10″ pumpkin! *eeek*)

Luckily on Saturday morning I found a few half decently priced ones at the local Orange Grove Markets up the road from my house, which I’ve mentioned before, so I snapped one up along with a big handful of gorgeous baby vine tomatoes, a HUGE plump organic aubergine and some red capsicums which I used in my first ever foray into chutney and relish making. I am totally smitten now and honestly quite taken-aback at just how good the results were. I am a devil for all things vinegary and savoury and I totally hit the nail on the head with these two recipes. I couldn’t stop eating them by the spoonful from the saucepan as they were cooking. They tasted utterly drool-worthy on a bit of bread with some vintage cheddar… (Nyom, nyom). Breakfast had a German twist this weekend as I spotted a fantastic looking Choccolatine Baguette at Neu’s Bakery at the markets and thought the only accompaniment for such an unhealthy breakfast item was an enormous slathering of Nutella on top (which luckily and rarely I had in the house from leftovers of some cookies which will feature in the upcoming bumper Christmas WKA edition).

This weekend my husband and I spent Saturday and Sunday looking after his two nieces and nephew (10, 8 and 5 respectively) – who are wonderful kids and a dream to look after. I never thought I’d be spending a Saturday night drinking white wine, eating a Kinder Surprise whilst watching…. Hannah Montana…. (!) but there you go, I did and I actually quite enjoyed it (!?)… well at least the drinking wine and eating chocolate bit…

On Saturday we spent the afternoon making homemade pasta which is something I’ve been doing more and more often over the past year or so. It’s such a simple thing to do, takes only basic ingredients and little or no time to make. It’s also great fun to do with kids as they love using the pasta machine and cutting out the ravioli shapes (be prepared for flour explosion/s and a very messy kitchen floor). I know some people say you need (no pun intended…)to knead and knead the pasta dough until you have the butch arms of an Italian grandmother and you need to chill it first for hours before rolling, but I don’t do much of either and I find the result is just as tasty and successful. Once you grab yourself a decent pasta making machine, some eggs and flour that’s all you’ll need to get started, then you can experiment with flavouring your pasta dough with the likes of beetroot or chili or spinach. As pumpkin was on the agenda for the weekend, I decided to make Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown Butter Sauce, Toasted Pecans and Sage, which is a recipe I’ve been making for the past year or so and really is one of my faves as they’re like little explosions of flavour within the small pasta envelopes. It’s also great for a dinner party if you have a vegetarian coming to dine and in addition it can be made a few hours in advance.

I used up the spare pasta sheets and made some hand-cut Taglietelle which I froze overnight then served for dinner on Sunday with paper thin sliced salami and a chili basil sauce. Dessert was a cake which was dug out from the my husband’s ‘recipe box’ – aka a box of recipes he collected over the years from his mum and sister and friends which he used to cook himself years ago during his travels in Europe whilst he was in his 20′s. The one we picked out was a Flourless Chocolate Cake with Frangelico and was to-die-for, especially when served warm with a big dollop of cream infused with a tablespoon of Frangelico and some fresh raspberries.

(Pumpkin ravioli recipe to follow).

71 Responses to “Halloween Weekend, 2010 – Pasta, Pumpkin, Chutneys and Chocolate.”

  1. November 1, 2010 at 7:05 am

    this looks so delicious! yummy!


  2. November 1, 2010 at 7:40 am

    good lord. i just ate and was as full as an egg and now your post has made me hungry again. this is insane! ps as an expat myself, i totally get where you’re coming from with the halloween disappointment… we had 4 trick or treaters yesterday!

  3. November 1, 2010 at 7:41 am

    You’re killing me! Now I’m craving cheddar and chutney…and pumpkin ravioli…and chocolate. I hope you’re happy! *heads off in search of food*

  4. Trissa
    November 1, 2010 at 7:42 am

    Homemade pasta is truly the best Katie! I just love one of the combinations you have for the chili, salami and basil – a very unique combination! Can’t wait for the recipes…

  5. November 1, 2010 at 8:04 am

    WOW!!!! You have absolutely made up with this post! Your styling and photography is just so inspiring. I am so in love with your blog!!!! Truly madly!!!! So glad I found you. Have you released a book yet?

  6. November 1, 2010 at 8:17 am

    Wow! What a wonderful weekend of food! I can’t wait for the recipes.

    My Husband and I celebrate our wedding anniversary on Halloween. This year I made my first ever pumpkin pie (from fresh pumpkin). I’ve never even tasted pumpkin pie before, it’s not really a West Aussie treat.

  7. November 1, 2010 at 8:17 am

    I take my hat off to you, Katie!! You make me look like a slob!! Can’t believe you made all these AND took photos AND blogged about it AND are really really busy with work!!

    I so need to put in more effort…..

  8. November 1, 2010 at 8:45 am

    Welcome back, miss!!! And back with a bang!! Feeling terribly guilty about ordering takeaway tonight after reading your post and seeing your stunning photos! Actually, seeing as you’re only fifteen minutes up the road, maybe you could pop by and whip something up for me instead?! ;)

  9. November 1, 2010 at 8:58 am

    It all looks amazing. I think I have to roast some pumpkin and slather nutella on something ASAP.

  10. November 1, 2010 at 9:20 am

    The flourless chocolate cakes looks absolutely divine. Your photos are just amazing.

  11. Anna
    November 1, 2010 at 9:31 am

    Katie, I love, love, love, love, love your blog. How totally delightful. A real feast for the senses. Thank you!

  12. November 1, 2010 at 9:52 am

    Sounds like really funny weekend!!!And food looks just great as allways :-) .I love fresh pasta and also use to do it with kids..such a fun

  13. November 1, 2010 at 1:23 pm

    I love how spending time in the kitchen bonds the family.
    I’m drooling at the part with the bell peppers and chili peppers. Yum. I love how your weekend began with chocolate (Nutella) and ended with chocolate cake, YUM YUM

  14. November 1, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    I’ll just say I’m glad your back and I realize how much I look forward to your posts. They are very inspiring. Lots of fun ideas running through my head now thanks to you !!! B

  15. November 1, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    Wow! This as visually stunning. Absolutely delicious.

  16. November 1, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    Looks awesome! I can look at your pictures for hours. Love it.

  17. November 1, 2010 at 10:09 pm

    Gorgeous photos – they are so evocative and make it look like you’re in Italy!

  18. November 1, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    Hi guys – thanks for all the wonderful comments. I’ll have all recipes up today. I aim to have them going up with the pics/post but sometimes the amount of work it takes to get everything up at the same time prevents me from doing so and I have to stilt it a little over 24 hours. I’ll have them up ASAP. Thanks again x

  19. November 1, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    I’ve never wanted to eat my computer so badly in my life. :)

  20. November 2, 2010 at 7:10 am

    love it Katie. The pasta shots are awesome but I love that lone shot of the squash. Love the minimalism in that shot. wicked!

  21. November 2, 2010 at 8:00 am

    Oh wow, all of the above look incredibly delicious and the photography is gorgeous.

  22. November 2, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Oh my gosh – every time I thought that the post was done and that there were no more beautiful photos to look at, I was so sad. But I was happy to see that I was wrong so many times! All of these shots are incredible and the recipes sound delicious! I’ve really been wanting to make ravioli lately and I think you may have given me the final push. Thanks for that!

  23. November 2, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    I’m getting really hungry just looking at these photos, would love to try thte handmadw taglietelle and the pumpkin raviolli! :)

  24. November 2, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    Oh my goodness … I’ve been battling a chocolate craving all day and this has just tipped me over the edge … the pumpkin ravioli looks lovely too (especially like the photography on these ones)


    November 2, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    I want to cook everything, EVERYTHING, in this post. What a perfect set of recipes.

  26. November 2, 2010 at 8:55 pm

    I really must must get a pasta m/c! Your meals are killing me!!

  27. November 2, 2010 at 9:06 pm

    Owwhhh, Yummy. Took down the recipe for the Roasted Eggplant & Capsicum Chutney, sounds wonderful, going to make this one for sure.

  28. November 3, 2010 at 8:15 am

    This posting is one of those that I wasn’t sure where to look first! You really understand how to make beautiful food ( both tasting and looking!) You are a food star katie.

  29. November 3, 2010 at 7:55 pm

    I never know what to be more impressed with, your cooking, or your gorgeous photos!

    Everything on here is just perfect!

  30. November 4, 2010 at 2:31 am

    I love the pics with the pieces of squash, and the one with the carrots… and wait, well, I like every one of them! All this food looks so delicious! Congrats Katie!

  31. November 4, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    I continue to be stunned by the beauty of your work! And how are you so prolific? I cannot imagine that you sleep a wink.
    I was wondering, what kind of camera/lens do you use? Are you shooting film? The depth of texture in your images is simple amazing!

  32. November 4, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    You had me at hello aka nutella on bread!


  33. November 4, 2010 at 9:09 pm

    okay, I think I need to make that chutney… right after a nutella fix!!

    love it all!!

  34. November 4, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Your blog is stunning. So happy I stumbled upon it!

  35. November 5, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    everything looks SO good and as I sit here munching on semi-burnt toast with pbj I’m dreaming of transporting into your kitchen for some real amazing eats! great post and the pasta – WOWNESS

  36. November 5, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    You know when you see something that you really want?
    When I look at your blog, the recipes and the pictures take me back when I was a child. I see myself in front of a shop window, almost crying for something inside that I really wanted – even more than wanted – and I couldn’t have.
    Now it’s almost the same, the only difference is that I love cooking and I can experiment your recipes trying to fill that hole that grows while I ‘eat’ your photos :)
    What you do is wonderful, so creative, colored and tasty.
    It’s more than food stylism, it’s really art.
    I love creating and cooking, and I believe making a good plate (for your eyes and for your tongue) is as much difficult as making a good illustration or portrait.
    But it seems you’re great in that.
    Hoping to taste your photos one day, keep creating!

  37. November 5, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    I’m speechless..

    simply simply beautiful.

  38. Anonymous
    November 5, 2010 at 10:03 pm

    Breathlessly awaiting Ravioli recipe… have much pumpkin to use and have been itching to make raviolis. Beautiful, beautiful photography.

  39. November 5, 2010 at 11:34 pm

    Thank you so much everyone for such incredible comments, I am so touched by the words written. I promise on my life to get that ravioli recipe up at some stage today – I am dreadful, I have been meaning to get it up but it’s a long one and time has escaped me until today. I pinky promise I’ll get it up later today ;) x

  40. November 7, 2010 at 1:38 am

    katie — you are certainly a woman after my own heart. combining nutella and squash into one post?! amazing.

    i love everything you do. even though my craft isn’t food-related, i still get inspired by your photography and style each time i visit your blog.

    thank you.


  41. November 7, 2010 at 6:09 pm

    My first time in your pages! What a wonderful experience!
    I can no longer help but look, your pictures are really beautiful! with so much admiration you sign one of my favorites! I’ll be happy to accommodate you by my side whenever you want! See you soon! Federica

  42. November 8, 2010 at 1:31 am

    oh my – this all looks so good! I really want to make chocolate biscotti after looking at the chocolate french bread + biscotti is a lot easier to make gluten free. Love the pumpkin risotto – it’s always a favourite!

  43. November 8, 2010 at 9:55 am

    made the pumpkin risotto yesterday. thanks for the recipe! it tasted like autumn heaven :) and not too greasy like lots of other risotto recipes.

  44. November 9, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    Confession: I don’t cook. I don’t plan to start cooking. And yet I CANNOT stay off your blog! The photography is just breathtaking. A visual feast. Thank you for the constant isnpiration.


  45. November 9, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Oh man, pumpkin ravioli is my absolute favorite. Now I’m craving it like crazy!

    These photos are beyond gorgeous. Just found your blog and I’ll definitely be coming back often! :)

  46. November 10, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    Such a wonderful blog and photography. I have been following for quite some time now and want you to know that your eye composition is truly amazing. I’m learning more and more everytime I look at your photos. Inspiring!!

  47. November 10, 2010 at 8:40 pm

    Your photos are beautiful. I want to eat them more than the food (which looks heavenly). First time on your blog, and certainly not my last.

  48. November 11, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    Amazing, you’re a great photographer and I think a great Chef too: the chocolate cake with raspberries looks so delicious!
    Greatings from Italy!
    bye bye

  49. Anonymous
    November 11, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Great post! I’m looking to make some changes in my own eating habits, so I appreciate your insight a lot! Thank you. I recently stumbled upon this blog like I did yours and I thought your readers may appreciate it:

    I’ve started to look for their stuff more regularly and I think I’m going to add your blog to my list as well. Thanks for the post!


  50. November 11, 2010 at 6:20 pm

    I love the salami and taglietelle. Absolutely gorgeous. You inspire people to take chances, and as a chef, myself, I appreciate that. And Your photography is perfection! Can you please teach a food photography class! In LA!

  51. November 11, 2010 at 6:44 pm

    You take really beautiful pictures too; I really like both your blogs. I love the shot of hands creating a well in the flour, really captures the little moments in pasta-making (or creation of most doughs, for that matter).

  52. November 12, 2010 at 10:32 am

    it really sounds delicious! i somewhat feel like heading to the grocer at 4:30 in the morning because I feel like I need pumpkin ravioli for breakfast!!

  53. November 12, 2010 at 11:57 am

    Oh my this all looks so delicious! Especially those ravioli! YUM!!

    Your photography is phenomenal! So inspiring!

  54. November 12, 2010 at 9:54 pm

    amazing post! i love everything, the photos, the recipes, everything, cheers from london

  55. November 14, 2010 at 1:36 am

    your blog is just…WOOOW! i totally LOVE your blog!!! so glad that i found it:)


  56. November 14, 2010 at 4:49 pm

    great photos and sure looks like great tasty food. Also- can’t go wrong with chocolate.

  57. November 15, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    your pictures are just amazing! the pumpkin pic made me want to eat that for days now, so i finally got myself a pumpkin for tonight’s dinner.

    btw, i made (part of) a post about it/you. if you’d like to see that, it’s the latest entry. i usually don’t write about cooking, but you just inspired me so much. thank you!

  58. November 15, 2010 at 6:36 pm

    wow i can’t believe this is all one post. your blog is amazing katie! it’s like i’m off in another world when i read it…

  59. November 17, 2010 at 3:17 am

    I don’t know which is more amazing…your recipes or your photography

  60. November 17, 2010 at 2:30 pm

    I think I can spend days without food just watching your pictures! u r extraordinary OH MY GOD I’m in love~ I ll go check if you have any posts on photography…I hope u do!

  61. November 17, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    Just stumbled upon your website! Amazing! Truly stunning photos!

  62. November 19, 2010 at 8:51 am

    HOLY YUM. . .mum help me!:)

  63. November 19, 2010 at 11:22 am

    funnily enough, i am allergic to nutella but can’t seem to stop eating it…

  64. November 20, 2010 at 1:05 am

    OMG I absolutely hate beetroot but you have me craving it with that chutney thing on that burger.

  65. December 1, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    what a beautifull blog you have!
    really inspiring, thank you, and i will definitly be following you!

  66. Anonymous
    December 10, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    i just stumbled on your site…LOVE the rustic feel of the photography AND food!

  67. December 10, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    i have such a soft spot for nutella. i eat it straight out of the jar!

  68. Anonymous
    August 4, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Here what i found -> vision correction

  69. January 3, 2012 at 6:55 am

    You have such a lovely blog, and such lovely recipes! I made a big batch of the spicy tomato relish as a christmas present for family and friends, but I added roasted capsicum and fresh chilli. It was such a treat I kept a bottle for myself! :) Thank you for sharing.

  70. Anonymous
    February 2, 2012 at 11:57 pm

    How long would the relish keep in the fridge?

  71. Alan
    February 4, 2013 at 8:17 am

    I just christened my new ravioli mold with your pumpkin sage ravioli. Served it to my wife with a simple little piece of sauteed salmon and we agreed it was one of the best dinners in a long time. Thanks for posting the recipe.

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