Italian-herbed focaccia

April 14, 2014

Italian Herbed Foccaccia

This focaccia is the perfect complement for yesterday’s veal meatballs. If you use happen to have a bread maker to do the heavy lifting on the mixing and kneading, you’ll spend no time at all (okay, well, mere minutes) getting this bread on the table. The bread will be soft, just the right amount of chewy, just the right amount of crispy, with a little bit of spice from the red pepper flakes. If you manage to have any leftover, it makes a great match with my eggs baked in prosciutto the next morning. (more…)

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Another take on Bolognese sauce

February 18, 2013

Bolognese

Bolognese sauce is one of those foods that is always very similar from recipe to recipe, but with slight differences that seem starkly different. A while back I posted my recipe for Lasagne Verdi alla Bolognese, whose recipe was meat heavy and included a bit of prosciutto in addition to the beef, pork and pancetta. It was made with red wine and tomato paste for a rich flavor.

This recipe goes a bit toward the lighter route. White wine, tinned tomatoes, and a bit lighter on the meat portions. Lighter doesn’t mean less flavor, though. It leans on the richness of chicken livers and milk to bring this pasta dish to life. The result is a nuanced sauce that allows the tagliatelle to shine through.
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Sunday Suppers: Lasange Verdi Alla Bolognese

January 20, 2013

Lasagne Bolnese

Continuing to build on the list of cool weather foods I intended to make this winter, I finally decided to tackle lasagne verdi, made with fresh spinach pasta and Bolognese and bechamel sauces. For many years I’ve drooled over the recipe in my Food of Italy cookbook, but it was an article in an issue of La Cucina Italiana magazine that propelled me to figure out the perfect recipe for this dish.

If I had a recipe, why the quest, you ask? Well, funny thing about the recipe in the Food of cookbook. While you could obviously see that the pasta was a spinach pasta, there was no recipe for spinach pasta in the book! A slight oversight. (more…)

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On Making Do

January 17, 2013

Pappardelle with Brussels Sprouts and Pancetta

For the next few months, my husband and I are lucky enough to have the chance to live in London. While there’s a great many restaurants and pubs to eat at, coming off of a 3 week vacation has me hankering for a bit of my own cooking. So one of the first nights here, I decided to whip up a simple pasta meal. Simple, because the place we are staying in had tea, sugar, and a bit of iodized salt, and I needn’t go broke procuring the staples I would need to make a meal. No longer did I have my 80+ spices at hand or condiments galore.

On my first pass through the grocery stores, I had noticed the brussels sprouts looked amazingly good, so I decided to make a simple saute of those with some pancetta and toss it with pasta. I was really craving a homemade pasta, and since the store didn’t have any, I decided just to pick up the flour and eggs and make it myself (plus, bonus, I could have scrambled eggs for breakfast).

All was well until I arrived back at our apartment and discovered there were absolutely no measuring utensils whatsoever. (more…)

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Cool weather comfort foods: Chicken cacciatore

January 9, 2013

Chicken Cacciatore

Back when the weather started to turn cool, I made a list of the various cool-weather foods I couldn’t wait to make, my comfort foods for winter 2012-2013. I promised to post a few new recipes this season, and finally, I’ve gotten around to making a few of my favorites and documenting them. The first is this terribly simple chicken cacciatore served over a creamy, parmesan-cheese-laced polenta that screams comfort food.

Cacciatore is Italian for hunter, thus this is the hunter’s chicken. The preparation is simple, with just a few items that need chopping and sauteing before you let the chicken braise in a tomato-wine sauce. (more…)

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