pasta – Frugal Novice
Browsing Tag


Homemade Pesto Ravioli


Ahh, ravioli. If you read my recent post about our basil fettuccine recipe, you know we love making pasta. That’s probably our favorite, but we like to venture out into trying other recipes, too. The fettuccine was originally shared on my old food blog, as was the ravioli I’m sharing with you here today.

My favorite ravioli has always been four cheese. I mean, combining cheese and pasta – two amazingly delicious things – is pretty much the pinnacle of flavor, right?

Well, we figured out a way to top that.


Yes, my friends, that’s right. Forget spooning pesto on top of the pasta.

That’s for amateurs.

We put the pesto right in the filling.

And it. is. fabulous.

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Homemade Basil Fettuccine Recipe

I’m a little giddy about this recipe because it combines three things I adore – basil, garlic, and pasta. Brian and I have made semolina pasta dough for years now, but hadn’t ever tried flavored pasta until 2014. It was a bit of an experiment, but it worked out beautifully and we now have an addition to our pasta repertoire that we’ll have made again and again.

I shared this recipe first on a food blog I ran for a while, but since most of my focus is on Frugal Novice, it only seemed fitting to share it here, too.

This basil & garlic fettuccine is flavorful – you don’t even really need more than a light butter sauce to go along with it – and the flecks of basil in the dough really make the pasta prettytoo.

As with so many recipes, homemade pasta was one of those things that seemed really overwhelming to me until we gave it a try. Several years ago our friends Kit and Peter came over one Saturday with their pasta machine, and we were immediately smitten with the process (and end result!) of making pasta from scratch. You know you’ve found kindred spirits when you have friends who want to spend the weekend cooking!

Making homemade pasta is something we really enjoy doing, and the kids love to help with it, too. We have a pasta machine we purchased and absolutely love. It’s hand-cranked and easy to set up wherever you’d like to use it – we just mount ours to the dining table – and it comes with an attachment that lets you cut the pasta, too. I would highly recommend buying one if you think you’ll make pasta more than a couple of times (you will, by the way – it’s addicting!).

Here’s what our pasta machine looks like – and you’ll also get a glimpse of our sweet yellow lab/golden retriever, Sally. She likes to hang around under the table when we make pasta because  she knows we’ll inevitably drop a piece here or there. Smart dog.


Making pasta from scratch is really fun to do with friends, too – we make the dough ahead of time and then when friends come over we do the rolling and cutting with them. Fresh pasta cooks really quickly, so we’ll just have the sides, sauce (if we’re using any), and bread all taken care of ahead of time, and then once our group finishes the pasta we can get to cooking it – and eating it – almost immediately.

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Roasted Garlic Stuffed Pasta Shells

Italian food has a special place in our family. Every Christmas we forego turkey and ham, and instead we make homemade pasta. It’s a tradition we love, and I hope one day the kids will cherish those memories of making pasta together, and of the sauce simmering on the stove all day.

We don’t just eat Italian food at the holidays, of course. It makes its way to our table at least once a week, because it’s something our entire family eats well. It’s a treat having a meal each week that we know our kids will eat well without complaint. Family meals around the dinner table are a vital part of our week, and  our kids know that our tradition at these meals is to have them each share the best part of their day and the worst. We get more insight into their days, and they get the opportunity to share, uninterrupted, with the family.

I’m always looking for new ideas to incorporate into our dinners beyond just pasta and sauce (which we do have on a regular basis, since the kids love it so much), and last night I tried a new recipe that was a big hit – roasted garlic stuffed pasta shells.


These are delicious and have a surprise burst of flavor with a hidden clove of roasted garlic. Your family – and guests – will love them! They’re easy, too – here’s how to make your own:

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Menu Plan Monday

I’m trying several new recipes this week to spice things up a little!

Monday: Leftover Abuelo’s chicken fajita tacos with rice, black beans, & salad

Tuesday: Wanchai Ferry Kung Pao chicken – we didn’t end up having this last week. I’m adding in carrots & zucchini, and the kit comes with peanuts & rice.

Wednesday: Eating out with friends

Thursday: Homemade pizza with whole wheat crust. I’m going to use this recipe for the crust, but plan to use all whole wheat flour. We’re going to have one pizza with turkey pepperoni, and then I’m trying a recipe from my friend Alexis. I’ll include the recipe below, if you want to try it too – it sounds SO good!

Friday: Baked lemon pasta with grilled chicken & green beans.Can you believe I’ve {gasp} never tried one of the Pioneer Woman’s recipes before?

Saturday: Zesty BBQ chicken and sweet potato fries. I’ve made this before for sandwiches. This time I’m going to try shredding it a little less and we’ll have it without bread.

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