Soup meets pasta
Posted: Friday, Dec. 13, 2013
Chef Troy Gagliardo
Chef Troy Gagliardo is a self-taught chef that has parlayed his years of kitchen experience into many other culinary ventures. Including designing and developing his all-grilled restaurant concepts, a proprietary spice line, cook books, commercials, food styling, cooking/restaurant columns, endorsements, cooking classes, and live appearances. Troy has been voted as one of the Charlottes Top Five Chefs two years in a row by Creative Loafing readers and competed in the Iron Fork competition both years. Chef Troy has appeared in two national commercials with NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. and joined him for a media tour day just days before Dale Jr. won his second Daytona 500 to start the 2014 NASCAR season.For the past seven years, Chef Troy has appeared each week on Charlotte's morning show WCCB News Rising, cooking his way through "Troys Everyday Eats". Filmed live each week at the WCCB Charlotte studios, Chef Troy teaches his unique style of food with a simple approach directed toward the home-cook/viewer.His feature on Rising began in August of 2007, and since has become the most anticipated part of the show. During that time Troy has prepare over one thousand of his creative original recipes live on-air and has made several cooking appearances on the night time show, WCCB News Edge. Chef Troy teamed up with The Fresh Market as a sponsor for Troys Everyday Eats" in April of 2011. Troy shops each week at The Fresh Market for the ingredients used on the show, he says, "The Fresh Market sponsorship is something I have pursued for a long time. I love shopping at their markets because everything is always so fresh. They have a large variety of organic and sustainable food options. As a consumer and chef, I couldn't ask for anything more". Warren publishing recently signed Chef Troy to publish his new cookbook entitled Pseudo Southern-a playful twist on the art of southern cooking, which has been endorsed by Top Chef Alum and best-selling author Fabio Viviani and also star of A Chefs Life Vivian Howard. Fabio said of Pseudo Southern, "Southern food is my second home. It's as close to my heart like Italy is, and that is why I love Troy's recipes so much. They remind me of the childhood I would have had if I was born in the south. Vivian had this to say, Troys take on southern food is just left of center, fun, and refreshing. His recipes are approachable that even the most jaded cook will be intrigued to try. Chef Troy is also a free-lance food writer for the Charlotte Observer and Examiner.com and lives in Mooresville, NC with his wife Tracy, of twenty-three years, and their two daughters, Ally and Isabella. He can be seen every Tuesday morning from 7-9 am on WCCB News Rising.
Winter weather has been sporadic, but there is always room on the dinner table for something cozy and hearty. Time is always a factor during the holiday season so a hearty one bowl meal can be a time saver. Enter the sousta; what I am calling a cross between a soup and a pasta dish that makes a complete meal all in one dish.
Start to finish this white bean and tomato sousta can be made in less than an hour; the perfect amount of time to enjoy a cold beer or glass of wine. Use whatever is in the pantry or fridge to save a trip to the store and make it your own.
The key to this dish is the white beans. Smashing half of the beans will provide the smooth creaminess to the dish once it all comes together. The remaining beans are added whole along with the pasta, kale and tomato for a perfect soup/pasta texture. A splash of vinegar will brighten up the flavor added a subtle twang to dish.
Serve in a bowl with a nice of bread and top with grated parmesan cheese and enjoy your sousta.
White Bean and Tomato Sousta
2 Tablespoons-Unsalted Butter
1 Tablespoon-Olive Oil
½ Cup-Carrot-fine dice
3 Cloves-Garlic-chopped fine
1-15 Can-Dice Tomato-drained, reserve liquid
To Taste-Kosher Salt/Black Pepper/Crushed Red Pepper
2-15 Ounce Cans-White Beans-drained
2 ½ Cups-Chicken Stock
1 Tablespoon-White Balsamic Vinegar-or apple cider vinegar
1 Cup-Kale-stem removed, rough chopped
½ Pound-Ditolini Pasta-(or any small pasta, or spaghetti broken into pieces) cooked, drained, cooled
To Garnish-Parmesan Cheese-grated
1. Melt butter with oil over medium heat in stock pot.
2. Add carrot, onion and cook until onions are clear, 2-3 minutes.
3. Add garlic cook for one minute and add drained tomato/thyme, stir to combine.
4. Place half the beans in a bowl, smash with the back of a fork and add to pot.
5. Add remaining beans, stock, vinegar, season with salt/pepper/crushed red and bring to a strong simmer.
6. Lower heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
7. Add kale, pasta, stir to combine and remove from heat.
8. Remove thyme sprigs and discard.
9. Portion in bowls, to with grated parmesan and serve.
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