Mark Thomas/Stewart, Tabori and Chang
Cointreau-spiked caramelized onions, sweet oranges and tart dried apricots create a multilayered pasta dish.
Just like Puccini's Il Trittico this marvelously unusual dish is made of three main parts. Cointreau-spiked caramelized onions and sweet oranges are complemented by the slightly tart dried apricots to create a multilayered flavor.
You and your guests will love this dish, which is based on an Italian Renaissance recipe.
1 pound linguine
1 large purple onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup, 1stick, unsalted butter
1/3 cup Cointreau
1 1/4 cups fresh squeezed orange juice
8 to 10 fresh or dried apricots, sliced
1 tablespoon light brown granulated sugar
2 tablespoons minced best quality candied orange peel, optional
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup almond slivers
Zest of 1 orange
Cook the linguine in plenty of salted water according to package directions.
Meanwhile, saute the onion in the butter in a large skillet over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Carefully add the Cointreau and simmer until reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of the orange juice, the apricots and sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves.
Slowly add the remaining orange juice and simmer until the sauce turns golden, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the candied orange peel, if using, and generously season to taste with black pepper.
Toss the sauce with the drained linguine and top with nutmeg, Parmesan, and almonds. Garnish with the zest.