Monthly Archives: June 2010

Cotoletta alla Milanese – Cutlet in Breadcrumbs (-30 weeks)

Recipe 65: This is an italian classic… probably the meat everyone likes and eat with pleasure, especially the kids! And it’s in fact a dish that normally remembers the childhood when your mum or grandma were cooking it for you! i had still 1 or 2 eggs to use so this seemed the best dish to prepare.

Ingredients for 2 people: 2 chicken breasts or veal cutlets, 2 eggs, breadcrumbs, a bit of flour, olive oil, salt and lemon. Nothing more for a simple and delicious dish.

In my case i used 2 chicken breast because easier to find in London: i cut them in half and then i press them a bit because more thin they are and more tasty will be the dish.

Put a good quantity of oil in a pan and wait until it boil. It doesn’t need to cover the meat, but still needs to allow you to cook it from both the sides. In the meantime prepare a plate with the flour, one bowl with one or 2 eggs and another plate with breadcrumbs.

Take the meat and pass it in the flour until totally covered. Then pass it in the bowl with the eggs until it’s totally dump and finally place it in the breadcrumbs. You will need to create a very crunchy surface, so be sure all the meat is fully covered.

Place the meat in the pan with boiling oil and cook the meat. It will take around 4 minute per side to get ready, so then turn until both the side are cooked, colored and crunchy.

When the meat is ready, take it out from the fire and place it on a plate with some kitchen papers to absorb the oil in excess. Then serve it with salad or any other vegetable, just adding a bit of salt on top and half of a lemon. The lemon with any fried food it’s just the top!

PS. Mamy hai visto che mi sono fatta? ci credi che non avevo mai cucinato la cotoletta prima? Proprio non mi era venuto in mente e visto che invece avevo ancora delle uova da usare Francesca mi ha suggerito la cotoletta! Che buona! Certo il fritto non e’ il massimo per la dieta, ma una volta nella vita…. e come non pensare a zia Lidia mentre le cucinavo???

Asparagi alla salsa d’uovo – Asparagus with eggs sauce (Product testing)

Recipe 66: Today a quick recipe that i created looking for a way to use the egg yolks left from the previous recipe. So i found this easy and nice sauce, that can be used instead of mayonnaise and that is very good with asparagus… and maybe even a bit lighter!

Ingredients: asparagus, 2 egg yolks, white vinegar, a little spoon of english mustard or two of the dijon mustard, some cappers and finally some spoons of Olive Oil (i used an amazing sicilian extravegin olive oil “274“, thanks to Aprile brothers that i discovered in Identita’ London a festival about the good italian cuisine)

It’s very easy to make this sauce, especially if you have a mixer: while the asparagus are boiling for some minutes in salty hot water, place in the mixer 2 egg yolks, 1 spoon of vinegar, 5 spoons olive oil, a little spoon of mustard, some cappers. Mix it all and try, to know if it’s the case to add some salt and peppers.

When ready, drain the asparagus and place them in the plate with the sauce on the top and i hope you will enjoy them!

PS. Mamy, mi sono scoperta una vera appassionata di asparagi, sara’ per il sapore particolare e delicato … non so, ma per non mangiare sempre le stesse verdure, sono perfetti. E dato che stavo cercando di utilizzare il rosso delle uova che mi era rimasto dal dolce precedente, ho trovato questa salsina che dicono sta particolarmente bene con gli asparagi ed e’ vero! Una specie di mayonese piu’ leggera e saporita!

Mousse di pesche – Peaches mousse (-31 weeks)

Recipe 67: The summer is here and that’s the time of the good fresh fruit and ice creams! During the week i was desperate for some sweet stuff but i have been eating and drinking so much lately that i could not thing in anything then fruit and i remembered the nectarines with sugar my mum used to prepare when i was little. So i went online and i looked for something similar and i found an amazing recipe, very ligh, fresh and really good! I just made some little changes and here it is!

Ingredients for 2 people: 4 peaches, a spoon of tequila or Amaretto di Saronno if you like almonds taste, 3white eggs, 60gr of sugar, some biscuit or amaretto for the decoration.

The recipe is super easy: wash 3 peaches, cut them in half, take of the skin and the stone and put them in a blender in little pieces. Add 40gr sugar and a spoon of liquor. Mix it all until all gets liquid and place it in a side.

At this point you need to whip up the white of 3 eggs. For me that was always something very difficult to do, but with the new machine it was very easy. However the recipe was suggesting to put some drops of lemon juice in it and it’s something i never seen before, so maybe was also for this reason that it came particularly well.

While you are mixing the whites, add 20 gr of sugar little by little until it becomes a mousse. Then add this to the peach juice you created before and after mixing, serve in glasses and place in the freezer for some hours.

Half an hour before to serve it to your guests cut the remaining peach in slices and marinate it with a bit of sugar and a little spoon of the liquor you have previously used. Then take out from the fridge the glasses with the mousse and wait around 20 minute for the mix to defrost a bit.

Finally add the peaces slices with the sugar on top and some little pieces of biscuits or amaretto or almonds!


PS. Mamy gironzolando online e pensando alle tue pesche con lo zucchero ho trovato questa ricetta meravigliosa. Non contiene ne’ burro, ne’ latte…praticamente nulla se non un pochino di zucchero ed e’ fresca e buonissima! Super dietetica! Provala provala e fammi sapere!

Word Cup dishes: Pasta with courgettes and prawns

Recipe 68: I cooked this pasta long time ago for a dinner with an italian friend of mine, who for long time asked me if i knew this recipe. So i did it and i really think it’s quick to prepare and very nice to serve during the word cup matches.

Ingredients 3 people: garlic, 300gr pasta, 3 courgettes, a portion of king prawns already pilled (200-250 gr), white wine, salt, chilli and lemon if you like.

Put some olive oil in an hot pan and after then add some chilli and garlic cloves: you can crush them before to let them release more flavor, or they can be entire and you will take them out once they becomes goldish.

Cut the courgettes in fine slices and place them in the pan with the rest waiting for them to cook. In the meantime place some water for the pasta on the fire.

When the courgettes will be a bit cooked you can add the prawns and some withe wine to cook them better and giving them a bit more taste. Put the pasta in the water as soon as this boil, and wait for 8 minutes for it too cook. In the meantime, keep on mixing the rest of the ingredients in the pan, until well cooked and a bit more colored.

When the pasta will be ready, just drain it and place the pasta in the pan. Mix all and serve on plates with some extravirgin olive oil. We don’t use to put any Parmesan on pasta with fish, because to strong and dangerous for the fish taste.

Buon appetito!

PS. Mamy finalemente ho fatto la pasta che tanto mi chiedva Anna. Zucchine e gamberetti sembra essere un’accoppiata vincente ed in effetti stanno bene insieme. Forse avendoli ci avrei aggiunto i fiori di zucchina, ma qua e’ impossibile trovarli. Comunque un’altra pasta per un’altra partita e dita incrociate.

World Cup dishes: Penne with olives and tomato sauce (-32 weeks)

Recipe 69: First round of the matches for the word cup and first dish cooked in a friend’s flat in Germany! The problem was she didn’t really have anything at home to prepare a nice dish…or at least that is what she tough! Instead we cook a really nice pasta with tomatoes and olive sauce!

Ingredients for 5 people: 500gr pasta, 200gr of pitted olives (green or black is the same), 1 passata or 1 and 1/2 can of chopped tomatoes, onion, salt, chilli, and Parmesan or another mature cheese!

This is a very easy recipe that you can cook for how many people you want and it’s so quick that you won’t miss the beginning of the match!

Just put some olive oil in a pan and when hot, you can add some garlic until it become gold, or onion. Depend by your taste. Cut the olives in little pieces and add them to the pan and let them cook a bit. In the meantime put the water for the pasta on the fire.

Now you can add the passata or the tomato sauce with chopped tomatoes. Add some salt, pepper and a bit of chilli. Let it cook for 10-15 minutes until the sauce is well mixed with all the other ingredients.

When the pasta is ready, just add the sauce and some grated Parmesan or mature cheese. Mix everything, serve in the plates and add some other Parmesan on top if you like it. Enjoy!

PS. Mamy questo e’ il piatto che ho preparato per il primo girone dei mondiali l’altro weekend in Germania. Helga e’ stata cosi felice anche perche’ era convinta di non avere nulla a casa e non sapeva che cucinare, invece un bel sughetto alle olive e’ stato facilissimo da preparare e giusto in tempo per l’inizio della partita!

Pasta al sugo di carne – Pasta with the meat sauce (Product testing)

Recipe 70: After all the hard work with the veal and considering the good quantity of sauce it came with, i couldn’t resist to cook one classic italian recipe: pasta with the meat sauce… and when this is white, so without tomato sauce, i prefer it even more.

For the ingredients i can just tell you to follow the previews recipes and keep some sauce on a side in a container. The buy some good pasta, salt, Parmesan and the dish will be ready!

Speaking about pasta i just come back from Identita’ London, the International Chef Congress, and everyone was just speaking about this new shape of pasta called Calle, created by Pastificio dei Campi and the chef Gennaro Esposito… so i needed to try it!

It’s a very  high quality pasta made in Gragnano, following old traditions and with an high level of protein that maintain the pasta “al dente”. It’s also particularly rough, outside and inside, to keep better the sauce and give you a totally different experience.

The recipe it’s very easy: you will just need to boil the pasta for the time indicated, and hot up the meat sauce in a pan, waiting for it to become a bit thick and not too liquid.

Add the pasta to the sauce 2 minute before the cooking time, and finish to cook it in the pan. Here the pasta will have the time to suck the sauce and your dish will be ready.

Just add some Parmesan and Buon appetito!

PS. Mamy il tuo sugo di carne in bianco non lo supera nesuno, ma devo dire che anche quello che ho fatto con il vitel tonne’ non era niente male. Poi ho usato questa nuova pasta che ho scoperto in questi giorni, che oltre ad essere bella spessa e consistente ‘e anche particolarmente ruvida, e con il sugo di carne ci stava proprio bene. Che te ne pare?

Crostini alle alici – Anchovies crostini (-33 weeks)

Recipe 71:  Perfect as a starter, but also as a family maincourse, especially if you have children at home… they will love it. My mum used to do it often because it’s very easy, cheap and i just couldn’t stop to eat them. In the weekend i invited an italian friend at my place and when i gave her the crostini, she was just so happy! It a classic also in her house!

Ingredients 2 people: 6 slices of bread, 2 or 3 anchovies in olive oil, 1 mozzarella, and some butter. Nothing else!

Cut the bread in little squares. You can also cut the borders if you want. Put them under the grill with a little piece of mozzarella on top and wait for 5-10 minutes.

In the meantime take the anchovies and cut them in little pieces. Put some butter in a pan and on a low fire and add the anchovies. Let the butter melt and in the meantime, with the help of a little spoon, press the anchovies and mix them with the butter. After a bit this will take the consistency of a cream. If you want and you have it, you can also add some “anchovies paste”, but then put just one anchovy.

When the mozzarella will be melted and the bread will be crunchy, take them out of the oven and just place on all of them a bit of the anchovies and butter cream!  OK maybe the look it’s not amazing, but the taste you can believe me it’s really good!

Just try! It’s so easy…and leave a comment here after please!

I hope you will enjoy!

PS. Mamy te li ricordi i mitici crostini di alici che mi piacevano tanto??? avevo comprato le alici per il vitel tonne’ e non ho potuto resistere! Anna ed io ci siamo leccate i baffi! Penso siamo ritornate indietro di 20 anni!

Vitello tonnato – vitel tonne’- veal with tuna sauce

Recipe 72: This is a classic dish of the summer because is a delicious plate to serve cold and so it’s perfect for summer parties too! For how much could sound strange to put together meat and fish, this 2 tastes together are just amazing!

Ingredients for 3-4 people: 600gr of round of veal (of course in england it’s not so easy to find this cut so i bought a shoulder piece), carrot, celery, onion, olive oil,  and white wine 1 or 2 glasses. Then for the sauce you will need 250 gr of tuna, 125 gr mayonnaise, some cappers, 1 anchovy fillet in olive oil.

Let’s start from the meat cooking process: there are lots of different systems, you can boil it, you can marinated the night before (like my mum use to do) and cook it on a very low fire the day after, but because  i have never enough time to do all this and I’m very scared the meat can become too dry or too hard, i decided to follow another way, that now i will show you.

First of all put some olive oil in a pan and wait to reach the frying temperature. In the meantime clean you carrot, celery and onion and cut all of them very finely to create your “soffritto” (i used my amazing new machine for that). When this is ready pour it in the oil, turn the eat down and let gently fry for 10/15 minutes, until the blend of vegetables is light brown in color.

Then add some white wine and increase the fire. Let everything cook until the wine is evaporated and place the meat in the pan and brown it all around. This operation that i ws thinking was going to be very quick, it will instead take a bit of time, so if you see the soffritto gets dry and close to burn or stick to the pan, add some water and wait for the meat to get a bit colored, turning it every now and then.

When the veal is colored, pre-heat the oven at 1500 C, cover the pan with an aluminum sheet, then put it in the oven for about 50-55 minutes. Check periodically, and add water to keep the meat soft. The roast should be a bit brown outside, but pink in the middle.

While the meat is in the oven, you can prepare the sauce. As you could have seen i didn’t add any salt to the dish because the sauce it will give all the taste the meat will need.

Just put all the ingredients together and mix them: tuna, mayonnaise, some cappers and the anchovy without any fishbones. Use a mixer to do the sauce and if you see the ingredients are still to hard to mix, add some sauce form the meat. You will have a creamy and really tasty sauce!

Let the veal cool in its broth, then cut it in very thin slices ( please use a very sharp knife because the slices need to be really thin… of course i didn’t have any but i manage at least to cut it). The best is using a meat cutter.

Cover each slice with a good amount of sauce and add some cappers just to give the final touch!

Buon appetito!

PS. Mamy finalmente e’ arrivata un po’ d’estate anche qui ed io non vedevo l’ora di fare il vitel tonne’. Ok devo dire che me lo aspettavo piu’ rapido da cucinare, mentre invece la carne ha i suoi tempi, pero’ che buono. L’unico problema e’ che mi devo attrezzare cin coltelli piu’ fini perche’ con questi non riuscivo proprio a tagliare nulla!