Cookbook club tries comfort recipes

  • —Courtesy

For the Monitor
Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Do you love cookbooks and trying out new recipes? The Book Bites Club at the Gilford Public Library meets once a month to discuss some of their favorite cookbooks and try their hand at new recipes.

Tracey Petrozzi, a Gilford library patron and fabulous cook, leads an exploration of the library’s many cookbooks. Each month, Petrozzi selects a theme that relates to the current season or seasonal ingredients and builds a tasting menu around the theme that typically consists of an appetizer, main course, and dessert. Previous themes have included apples, cookout, strawberries, and fresh from your garden.

The next Book Bites Club meeting will be Tuesday from 5 to 6 p.m., and will focus on comfort foods. The cost for this program is $5 per person and space is limited so participants are encouraged to sign up at the circulation desk.

For more information, contact the Gilford Public Library at 524-6042 or by email at library@gilfordlibrary.com. The library is located at 31 Potter Hill Road in Gilford.

Try out this recipe on your own! Petrozzi said that this is one of her favorite comfort foods. The recipe is from Mark Bittman’s book How To Cook Everything.

Pasta Carbonara


2 large eggs and 2 large yolks, room temperature

1 ounce (about ⅓ packed cup) grated pecorino Romano, plus additional for serving

1 ounce (about ⅓ packed cup) grated Parmesan

Coarsely ground black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

6-8 ounces of pancetta or bacon, sliced into pieces about ¼ inch thick by ⅓-inch square

12 ounces spaghetti (about ¾ box)

2 cups frozen petite peas, steamed

Place a large pot of lightly salted water (no more than 1 tablespoon salt) over high heat, and bring to a boil. Fill a large bowl with hot water, and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, yolks and pecorino and Parmesan. Season with a pinch of salt and generous black pepper.

Set the water to boil. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, add the pork, and sauté until the fat just renders on the edge of crispness but not hard. Remove from heat and set aside.

Add pasta to the water and boil until a bit firmer than al dente. Just before pasta is ready, reheat pancetta in skillet, if needed. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water, then drain pasta and add to the skillet over low heat. Stir for a minute or so.

Empty serving bowl of hot water. Dry it and add hot pasta mixture. Stir in cheese mixture, adding some reserved pasta water if needed for creaminess. Mix in steamed peas and serve immediately, dressing it with a bit of additional grated pecorino and pepper.