FROM THE OLIVE GARDEN: COOK’S IN BLOOM ROSEMARY RAVIOLI IN TOMATOE PESTO SAUCE

FROM THE OLIVE GARDEN: COOK'S IN BLOOM ROSEMARY RAVIOLI IN TOMATOE PESTO SAUCE There are far different costs associated with cooking in and eatting out. There's price and quality to consider. There's the convenience and the occasion to consider. It boils down, as the Italian's say, to, "Di stagione – in season." The chain Olive Garden does fast food Italian.  There are over 800 restuarants, one in every major city in the United States and it trickles down from there. There are 12, in a 45-mile radius from my house. If you have been to one, you have been to them all. They are programmed by corporate to taste the same. There's no guarantee that what I cook once will taste the same twice. That's my guarantee and this is my recipe. BEFORE: Image YOU WILL NEED: 1. Mediterranean Pine Nuts 2. Rana Ravioli Chicken Rosemary 3. Canned Tomatoes 4. Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese 5. Olive Oil 6. Garlic 7. Chicken Breast 8. Jar Pesto Sauce 9. Onion 10. Cherry Tomatoes 11. Chardonnay, Went Vineyards   Currently at Olive Garden, there is an existing special where two people can eat for $25.00. About the only other places $12.50 gets you a meal is at a chain like McDonalds or in a third-world nation.  The special includes unlimited bread sticks and appetizer followed by a choice between nine entrees. If you skip the appetizer, you can sample one of five desserts. I'm not food-expert. I earn a living as an interior designer in my family business www.tigerlilysgreenwich.com. Home-cooking is a hobby but I think anyone is with-in their right t question the profitability of a meal served for $12.50 a person. What possibly can be the quality of that food source?
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FLAVOR BASE OIL: ONIONS & GARLIC ADD CHERRY TOMATOES
When you cook from home, you cook from scratch. With that comes the unique knowledge that from here on out you know the layers of ingredients that went into the food you eat. That's the benefit. To create a base, I start by flavoring the olive oil with onions, garlic and fresh cherry tomatoes. The seasoned olive oil will be the frying component for the chicken and later the stewed tomatoes, so make it count. Take liberty here with the flavoring.
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DON'T BE AFRAID ADD TO THE MIX
To the existing base, I added pesto and white wine. Let it sweat then add the chicken. A this point the kitchen should smell deliciously like good food is cooking. Hopefully it smells like your mom or grandmother's house. By watching my mother, I learned how to cook.  You are born knowing how to eat. You have to learn how to cook and the only way to learn is to try. If your mom was a good cook, you are too. It is that simple of an equation. When given the choice to eat out, carry-in or cook for a husband and kids. I would cook.
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COOK CHICKEN IN FLAVORED OLIVE OILs
The actual tomatoe sauce is an entirely different thought. Up until now in the recipe, I have not cooked with any dairy.  Jews by religion do not mix meat & dairy. I observe it if possible, but I don't live by that rule. Rules are meant to be broken especially for those who aren't strict practicing Jews. Don't tell that to my maternal ancestors who lived by the Book of Exodus, which forbids "boiling a (kid) goat in its mother's milk." God said that. He goes on to say a lot more about how we should live as humans, which I will leave up to scholarly debate. My point here is to say that cooking comes from tradition and religion as much as anything else. For the purpose of this recipe, I separated the meat & dairy until the bitter end.
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STARTING THE SAUCE ADD TOMATOES TO HOT OIL
In a seperate pan reheat the olive oil-pesto base over high heat. Who ever peeled, stewed and canned tomatoes was genius. Image Stewed vegetables is an old idea when you think about it. It pre-dates metal cans to glass jars and seasonal preserves. The greatest thing about time is if you live long enough the simpliest of ideas comes back again.  The canning provides a distinguished taste and the tomatoes also differ in texture. Once upon a time, families only ate at home. Once upon time there was no Olive Garden. Once upon a time to eat a vegetable in the winter, it came out of jar sealed during harvest months. "In the winter I use canned vegatables. It is the closest thing to what our ancestors got."--Samantha Knapp Image Fry the tomatoes in the heated oil. This process is messy, stand back to avoid being burned by the heat. There is so much water in the canning process that it is absolutely neccessary to keep the heat high to cook off the juice.
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CHEESE MEETS TOMATOES BLEND TOGETHER FOR SAUCE
Here's where we throw religion right out the door. At this point the tomatoes should have cooked down and become stocky in its own liquid. To this add the Ricotta. There are two types of italian cooking and they split on the dairy. Here's where both meet. Use a hand blender to mix the sauce.When complete, let the sauce come together for at least ten more minutes under high heat.
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COOK OVER HIGH HEAT TASTE & FLAVOR
I am not sure how the Olive Garden makes their sauce. I do know that evey menu item is handed down by corporate. The idea is that everything is measured out exactly so that all you have to do is follow the recipe. You don't have to taste it. Image AFTER: I like the restaurant quality that comes with this finished meal. Serve the sauce over Ravoili and layer the chicken on top. If it hasn't been made clear yet, I am proponent when possible of cooking your own food. The benefits are plentiful. You knowthe orgins and you know who's hands made it. It comes from the heart, not corporate.  

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