Chef Sarah Grueneberg of Spiaggia Shares Her Secrets

Lifestyle and LeisureCookingSarah Grueneberg

Chef Sarah Grueneberg of Spiaggia may have been born in Texas but her inspiration comes from Italy. As a participant in Top Chef season 9, Sarah used both her southern cooking roots and love for Italian food to make it to the finals. She shares one of her dishes on our "Healthy Bites" challenge.

Tagliatelle with Tuscan Kale and Goat Cheese

1 pound fresh whole wheat tagliatelle, recipe below

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 cups of fresh kale, blanched and chopped

½ cup fresh herbed goat cheese

1 Italian finger pepper, sliced thin

2 leeks, white part only, sliced thin

½ cup white wine

1 bunch basil, leaves removed

2 tbsp toasted almonds, chopped

1 lemon, whole


1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

2. Add the tagliatelle to the pot, stirring frequently, until the pasta is al dente.

3. Also, while the pasta is cooking, take ½ cup of the pasta cooking water and place it in a bowl and set aside

4. In a large sauté pan, heat extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add leeks and sweat for 5 minutes.

5. Add finger pepper and kale, cook for 2 minutes, then add white wine.

6. Add cooked pasta and a touch of the pasta water.  Remove from heat, then add goat cheese, mix well and season with salt and pepper.

7. Toss basil leaves at the end.

8. To serve, plate up pasta and garnish with almonds, and using a microplane, grate lemon zest over the top.  Enjoy!


Basic Pasta Dough

1 1/2 cups type 00 flour (or all-purpose flour)

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon salt

4 egg yolks, lightly beaten

3 egg whites, lightly beaten

1/3 cup water


Makes about 1 pound 

Mound the flour on a pastry board or other wood or marble work surface. Make a well in the center and add the salt and the eggs. Using a fork, gradually fold the flour into the eggs, adding the water little by little until you have a soft dough. Knead a few times until smooth, then form the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour. After the dough has rested, roll as needed.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times