We are back into the full swing of things this week with work back to normal after such a long break over Christmas and New Year. Even though our break wasn’t entirely relaxing (my mum underwent breast cancer surgery and Isaac’s dad suffered a terrifying heart attack and cardiac arrest) it was still nice to be able to take time away from work and have the flexibility to focus on our families. Time away from work, no matter the circumstances, is something I usually struggle with being a natural workaholic but I can’t tell you how needed the down-time was once I actually did stop. I think towards the end of the year last year, I had seriously burnt myself out too. Because I do love my work, I don’t often take time off. And I’m not one for resolutions as such, but this year I am trying to find a bit more balance in my life and take weekends off and make sure I have some screen-free time too. So far so good! Do you try to take some time away from screens on your days off?
Anyway thanks to my time off, my love for cooking has been re-invigorated somewhat with lots of time spent cooking things I wanted to, rather than what I had to for work and different projects I’m working on. I spent lots of time flicking through my cookbooks which I hadn’t done in forever and started baking again now that I have a new oven and kitchen. I guess that’s why I was burnt out too. I continued working full-time through our full kitchen renovation, using a camp stove and hopping from my parent’s to my in-law’s houses for their ovens and hauling my backgrounds, props and camera gear along with me. Now that I think about it, it was truly exhausting. But SO worth it. I’ll be sharing a before and after blog post on our kitchen reno very soon too so you can see how we gutted and rebuilt the most frustrating small kitchen into a purposeful, practical space perfect for entertaining and working alike.
In all my ‘cooking-for-love’ over the Summer, I put together a few rough recipes for dinners and lunches that we loved. One of them being this broad bean, lemon and parmesan bucatini. It’s kinda like a fresh ‘cacio e pepe’ style pasta using pasta water and parmesan cheese as the base for a thick, pale coloured sauce that coats and covers each strand of bucatini perfectly. The broad beans are so fresh and slightly sweet if you’re lucky enough to find small-ish ones. The lemon just lifts it all up and ties it all together into a perfect package (or bowl!) of pasta!
I will say that you need to shell your broad beans. I personally think their leathery skin is really unpleasant to eat and it’s easy enough to pop them out and only takes a few extra minutes once you get on a roll. The chorizo is optional too, I’ve made it with and without and it’s beautiful either way.
Enjoy this one guys, and if you’re celebrating Valentine’s at home or with friends, I can highly recommend this one to win over everyone. Serve with a pinot noir or pinot grigio for something extra special.