feasting with friends

The Novice Gardener: (Not) Sunday Shout-out to Nancy!

Today marks another guest post here at feasting with friends. It comes to us via Angie of The Novice Gardener. If you’re a frequent visitor here, you know Angie well. Not only is she the brains and host behind Fiesta Friday and the newer Fiesta Friday Challenge, I’ve featured some of her recipes as well. Shrimp Etoufee and Apple Crepes were two recipes I featured in Sunday Shout-Out posts. Angie shares many delicious recipes. How about a mouth watering Roasted Poblano and Corn Chowder? Or maybe you want something sweet…perhaps a delectable Nutella Roll is more your speed. I think it’s impossible to go wrong with Angie’s recipes…they are both delicious and dependable.

When I started this blog, it was basically a way to catalog recipes. Making blogging friends wasn’t even on my radar in those early days. But then it happened. People showed up. There were “likes” and “comments”. Angie was one of those first people. She oozed support and encouragement. She brought me out of my shell. Over the last few months, that support and encouragement has stretched into my personal life as well. She is family now…part of my blogging family. I can’t thank Angie enough for all of the love, support and encouragement she has sent my way. She has soothed my road to recovery in more ways than one. She’s a compassionate soul, to say the least. I’m better for knowing her.  ❤

Angie is one busy lady. That didn’t stop her from saying “yes” to doing this post. I’m flattered she chose a feasting with friends recipe. THANK YOU, Angie! I’ll now hand the microphone over to you…take it away!

angel hair timbaleThis is a Sunday Shout-out to Nancy. Except it’s not Sunday. So, once again, this is a (not) Sunday Shout-out to Nancy. (In my defense, I did make this on Sunday.)

Those of us loyal followers of Nancy know about her Sunday Shout-out series. If you didn’t know about it, then consider yourself a disloyal follower. In this series, Nancy features and cooks other bloggers’ recipes, thereby giving them a shout-out. What a wonderful and generous idea by Nancy. Which is hardly surprising, considering she is a wonderful, generous, and supportive person any blogger is lucky to call a friend.


angel hair timbaleI include myself in that lucky group. Nancy has always been there for me and my Fiesta Friday, always encouraging, always helping. Writing a guest post for her is just an itsy, bitsy, teeny, weeny way for me to express my appreciation, and to return the favor.

Nancy’s own recipes, by the way, are exceptionally outstanding in their own right. Why else would I keep bookmarking them? My digital archive of Feasting With Friends recipes has ballooned to the point where my iMac is ready to pop. So, I thought it best to start relieving the poor thing by actually cooking them. Starting with the attention-grabbing Angel Hair Timbale. Next up, Chou Farci. Then, Shrimp Diablo… The list is long.

So, even though it isn’t Sunday, it is a shout-out nonetheless. A reverse shout-out to Nancy, from a fan and a friend. A Fiesta Friday Fan Friend of Feasting with Friends. Nancy and I love the eff words, it seems.

Please refer to Nancy’s Angel Hair Timbale for the original recipe, which I follow pretty closely. The only thing I did differently was to layer the different components of the filling, just like making a lasagna.

making timballo

making timpano

Angel Hair Timbale

angel hair timbale
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large eggplant, cubed  [about 2 cups]
2 small zucchini, cubed [about 1½ cups]
1 small yellow squash, cubed [about 1 cup]
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
½ cup onion, small dice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
¾ pound sweet Italian turkey sausage, casings removed [about 3 links]
1/3 cup dry red wine
3 cups tomato sauce [or marinara, see above]
½ – 1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes
8 ounces angel hair pasta
¾ pound fresh mozzarella, diced
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 (17 1/4-ounce) package frozen puff pastry [2 sheets], thawed


•Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash, mushrooms and garlic. Stir to coat in the oil. Salt and pepper to taste, and add the red pepper flakes. Saute about 10 minutes, or until vegetables have softened. I find using a lid on the pan for about ½ of the cook time, helps to speed up the process. Remove cooked vegetables with a slotted spoon and set aside.

•To the same skillet [heat still at medium-high], add the sausage and red wine. Using a wooden spoon, break the sausage into smaller pieces and cook until wine evaporates and sausage is no longer pink. Remove from skillet using the slotted spoon and add to the cooked veggies.

•If you’re prepping this recipe ahead of time, refrigerate veggie/meat mixture until ready to continue [allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes if it has been refrigerated]. When you’re ready…on to the next step…

•Cook the angel hair pasta in a pot of salted, boiling water for ½ of the time indicated on the package instructions. Drain and in a large bow, toss with the veggie/sausage mixture and the 3 cups of tomato sauce [marinara]. Stir well. Set aside, and allow to cool.

•Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare the pastry crust: On a lightly floured surface, roll out 1 sheet of the puff pastry to a 13½-inch square. Transfer to a 9-inch springform pan, allowing excess pastry to hang over the edge.

•Add the diced mozzarella and grated Parmesan cheese to the cooled filling, toss well to combine. Spoon the mixture into the pastry lined pan.

•Roll out the 2nd sheet of puff pastry to a 13-inch square. Place the pastry over the filling. Pinch the edges of the puff pastry together to seal. Trim the “overhang” of pastry sheets to within 1-inch of the pan. Fold the edges in to form a crust/decorative border. Cut a slit in the top crust to allow steam to escape.

•Bake until the pastry is browned and puffed on top, about 1½ hours. Let stand for 20 minutes. Remove the pan sides, and serve.

This Angel Hair Timbale is surprisingly easy to make, and would make an impressive dinner entrée. For that, it receives two thumbs up. Excellent recipe, Nancy!

Humongous THANKS to you, Angie! Your guest post is greatly appreciated. I’m honored you choose to make your version of the timbale.

Don’t forget to pop on over to visit Angie at The Novice Gardener…you’ll be so happy you did!


  1. Such a beautiful dish, Angie and Nancy! So impressive. It is hard to believe something like that could be easy to make. I love all the ingredients. And anything covered in crust – perfect in my book! It must taste incredible. Thanks to both of you for sharing!

  2. Now isn’t this just a beautiful thing?? Angie…how sweet of you to “shout out” for Nancy!! I LOVE that….and I especially love that you chose her absolutely deliciously gorgeous timbale!! I love everything about this post… the love, the food, the friendship, and Angie and Nancy. Much love to you both! Wonderful post… ❤ Nancy, I'm thinking of you and hope that you're doing better and better and better…. ❤

    • And you complete the friendship, Prudy! I feel like I’ve known both you and Nancy forever. We just clicked from the start. I feel so blessed. ❤ You should give this Timbale a try, Prudy. I highly recommend it. Just so good, and it's one of those special dishes that get immediate attention. I have a feeling fussbudget will have a hard time refusing it! 🙂

  3. Aww, Nancy, you are such a gracious lady! I must have done something right in my previous life to be blessed with you as a friend. I feel privileged to be able to do a guest post for you. Btw, I’m sending you another photo. Oopsie on my part, giving you the same photo twice! Ay ay ay! ❤

  4. I love this, it looks fab and the idea of pasta within a pie great, i have had alot of Bajan food seeing as half my family is from there and often there is a mash up of pasta within things especially macaroni, mmm yum and angie was my first ever follower, she is just great, naughty but nice! xx

  5. Ooo gorgeous! I agree with Sonal, I’m tickled pink by this collabo between two of my favorite bloggers! Nancy, I wish you the best as you heal, and Angie, thank you for this amazingly done shout out!

  6. Love that Angie picked a feasting with friends recipe for the post, and such a showstopper recipe at that. This timbale is on my list of things to make. I mean, it has pastry crust and noodles and cheese! Oh and those veggies look great too. 🙂 Lovely post and hope you are recuperating well Nancy.

      • The first time I saw you make this timbale, I really really wanted to make it, but with just two of us, I couldn’t imagine making such a large dish. Seeing this again just made me realized I have to throw a dinner party so I can make and enjoy this. I told my husband and we’re doing it in a few weeks! 🙂

  7. 2 of my favorite bloggers together. What a fabulous idea Angie, to choose from Nancy’s recipes to showcase and pay her gratitude. Fantastic. Re the recipe, Nancy, bookmarking it to try at my end in veg version :). Thanks ladies!

    • It’s one of the best dishes I’ve ever made, Sonal. You can easily make this vegetarian. I didn’t even put that much meat in, just a layer of sliced sausages. But you can substitute them with mushrooms or peppers or more zucchini. It would still be extremely delicious. It looks so special the way it’s put together, but is quite easy to do. Thanks to Nancy for an outstanding recipe! ❤

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