An old friend of mine from Aquavit, Dennis Chrysanthopoulos, was one of the first people to introduce me to Astoria, the Greek enclave in Queens, New York. One ingredient always on hand in his household growing up, Dennis says, is feta, a salt cured cheese that should be aged for at least 40 days. I like to meld feta and other Greek flavors with lobster and orzo, an Italian rice-shaped pasta traditionally used in soups, to create a light and lovely pasta salad.
In southwest Louisiana, countless spring evenings are filled with thick, humid air and the heft y aroma of backyard crawfish boils. Everyone gathers around picnic tables shrouded in newspapers, and nearby, a colossal pot slowly churns away with spices that permeate the air and clear the sinuses. Family and friends spend hour aft er hour whipping
Crawfish Pasta 1 pound fresh pasta (rotelle is preferred, but use your favorite shape) 1 stick butter (do not use margarine) 1/2 cup chopped onions 3 to 10 cloves garlic, chopped (to your taste) 1 pound crawfish tails, boiled and peeled 1 pint half-and-half 1 to 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning