Category Archives: antipasti – starters

An italian chef in London

Do you want to treat yourself ? What about an amazing dinner cooked by a chef… at your place?

I’m sure you can’t say no! What about if the chef is italian and all his italian dishes are strictly made following the truly italian traditions? Peroni has decided to offer all this …and some beers to some lucky winner of a competition!

I have for you a little preview of the dishes prepared… have a look here and get inspired for your next party. I’m sure Mario will be happy to help.

Canape’: Polenta and wild boar salami, radicchio leaves with potted lobster and bruschetta.

Starter: buffalo ricotta and lemon ravioli with Radicchio di Treviso sauce.

Main: beef fillet, wild mushroom, celeriac pure’, red wine sauce.

Pudding: vanilla panna cotta, roasted spiced plums, orange biscotti.

And here the last picture: I present you Mario… in action!

Cheesy nights!

Do you want a secret to make any dinner or night with friend top? Just buy cheese and wine.

Never like in the last months I met so many people in love with cheese and wine: french and italian of course, but also english, east european and australian too! The combination of good cheese, crackers, grapes or apples and a great red wine is always a winner.

So what I lately received is a beautiful cheeseboard with some vouchers to try some danish cheeses: Castello.

I normally buy cheese in the supermarket more than in delis, but mainly for a matter of time. Some of the supermarket cheeses are great anyway also if I miss lots of italian cheeses.

Castello cheeses are great for a classic cheeseboard: mainly blue cheeses but with taste and consistencies really different between them and great!

When I went to look for them, I was a bit disappointed to find in the most common supermarket just the 2 different blue cheeses , the danish blue and the creamy blue, and the reserve Herrgard, but when I tried them they were really different and great for the purpose: one milder and harder, the other one slightly different and extremely creamy that with the nutty taste of the Herrdgard … Made anyone happy!

And the cheeseboard where you can write the name of each cheese and dispose all the stuff in the most perfect way, it’s gorgeous!

I really liked and enjoyed my Castello night…and i think you can see it in these pictures!

Ricetta Calve: Rotolo di frittata tonnata

PROMO 1: Oggi mi sono inventata una ricetta e dato che e’ stata un successo, e’ rapida, economica e puo’ essere usato in vari contesti (finger food, pic nic, pranzo veloce, light dinner, antipasto etc) ho pensato di aggiungerlo tra le mie ricette come una ricetta numero zero. Come in ogni vacanza che si rispetti gli ultimi giorni si tenta di usare gli avanzi in frigo, da svuotare prima della partenza. Cosa c’era nel mio?

Un sacco di pomodori (sempre utili in estate) 3 uova una scatoletta di tonno, un po’ di maionese Calve’ residua ed un po’ di formaggio. Ed ecco che mi sono inventata il rotolo di frittata tonnata!

Ho aperto il tonno, l’ho scolato e messo in un piatto con la maionese Calve’ rimasta e un po’ di sale. Da un’altra parte ho sbattuto le uova con il formaggio rimasto grattato e con un po’ di sale.

Ho cotto la frittata e nel mentre o svuotato I pomodori dal centro acquoso e li ho tagliati a pezzettini piccoli e aggiunti al tonno. Quando la frittata si e’ cotta l’ho lasciata raffreddare e poi l’ho ricorperta di un bello strato di tonno, mayonese e pomodori.

Ho creato il rotolo e poi ho fissato degli stuzzicadenti per delimitare le fette e mantenerle intatte.

Ho tagliato le fette e le ho servire con uan bella insalatina fresca.

Che ve ne pare? Io vi posso dire che era buonissimo questo rotolo ☺ e ho fatto la felicita’ di mia mamma svuotandole il frigo!

Minestrone soup

Recipe 1: Considering I’m arrived at the end of my challenge, I needed to have a light recipe just to try to reach my target ( ok it’s impossible but why not try) and so the last recipe it’s minestrone. That’s something I always use to eat when my mum does it because is something hot, fullfilling and healty. With a bit of parmesan on top then is delicious!

I love also the blended version also called in french ‘potage’. That’s my favourite! It’s always good to have some of it in the fridge and take it out when you don’t really know what to eat.

The ingredients my mum uses for 3 people are:  a little piece of celery, 2 carrots, 2 courgettes, half onion, a quarter of cabbage, 1 potato, some parsley, a garlic clove, 150 gr beans 130gr chopped tomatoes, 1 stock and water.

The process is a bit long but easy: place some olive oil in a pan and hot it up. Then add the finely chopped onion, garlic cloves and parsley. When the onion starts to become goldish, add the peeled tomatoes sauce and the beans already drained by the water.

Mix it all and let it cook. In the meantime cut the cabbage in thin slices and then in half again. Add it to the saucepan and pour a good quantity of water. Mix all the ingredients every now and then to avoid them to stick to the bottom of the pan.

Wash and cut in cubes the courgettes, the carrots and the potato, and then add them too to the pan. Let it cook for around 20-30 minutes and then have a try to know if it’s missing some salt, pepper or anything else.
When the Borlotti are cooked, add the pasta if you want: the right pasta shape for this dish are little tubs but quite thick.

Let the pasta cook in the same pan with the soup so the starch released will give taste and thickness to the minestrone. When ready, serve it hot with some grated Parmesan, parsley or simply olive oil if you like it.

PS. Mamy il minestrone m’e’ venuto benissimo un po’ piu’ denso e meno verde del tuo, sospetto per la verza che era bella grossa e l’ho usata tutta… ah che bello finalmente posso fare anche io il minestrone qui!!! Come sono contenta!

Christmas menu’: it’s missing just one month at the end!

Now i will present you the Christmas menu i created with some of the last recipes I miss to include in this blog. You have to consider we don’t eat meat in Christmas Eve, so i needed to cook fish!

Starter: Crispy bread with Lobster pate’

Pasta: Spaghetti with Smoked Salmon and cream of courgettes

Main dish: Grouper fish fillets with Grilled potatoes pie

Dessert and fruit: Cinnamon apples, panettone, pandoro and classic Christmas nougats.

PS. Mamy direi che non ne e’ uscito un brutto menu’ no???

Fiori di zucca fritti – Fried courgettes’ flowers (- 10 weeks)

Recipe 23: This is a recipe that it’s quite difficult to realize in UK, just because it’s almost impossible to find the courgettes’ flowers in here. By the way it’s so typical, so good and i wanted to try to do it so much that i wait a week that i was back in Italy to try it. This as well couldn’t miss on my blog!

Ingredients: buy 2-3 courgette’s flower per person. Probably you can find them in spring in Borought Market also if they will be a bit more expensive than in Italy. Then buy 2 mozzarella cheeses, some anchovies under oil, salt, pepper, some flour and olive oil.

Wash the flowers and let them dry. Cut the mozzarella (my mum had bufalo mozzarella… just amazing) and the anchovies in pieces big enough to enter in the flowers.

Open them a bit, insert the cheese and the anchovies add some salt and pepper and close them as you can. Prepare now the Pastella, a mix of flour and water.

You will need the pastella to cover the flower before to fry them, so i can’t really give you teh quantity of flour and water. Just mix a big quantity and if it’s to liquid you can always add more flour or pass the flower in more flour after (as i did). However thicker it is and more crunchy and crispy are coming the flowers.

Then place them in boiling oil and wait for them to cook, turning them every now and then. When ready and colored, take them off and place them on an absorbing kitchen paper before to serve them still hot!

It will be a success! Buon appetito!

PS. Mamy che te ne pare? alla fine ci sono venuti benino no? Io avrei fatto la pastella piu’ corposa, ma era cosi tanto che no  li mangiavo che tra la mozzarella di bufala ed il fatto che in casa rimangono piu’ leggeri, me li sono proprio goduti!

Fiori di Zucca fritti

The witch’s Halloween souffle’ (-12 weeks)

Recipe 28:This Halloween i really didn’t have the time to organize a fancy dress party and not even a real Halloween menu, but i have still invited some friends at home. So i simply decided to stick to the orange as an Halloween theme and i made pasta with pumpkin and mushroom, and this double color souffle that i always loved.

Very delicate in the taste, it’s made by vegetables and besciamella sauce mixed together. Here are the ingredients: 500 gr. of frozen chopped spinach, 250 gr of carrots, 50 gr of butter, 3eggs, 30 gr Parmesan, 50 gr flour, 300ml of milk, salt, nutmeg.

Wash, peal and boil the carrots. When ready cut them finely and place it in a pan with 25gr of butter. In the meantime, boil also the chopped spinach and when ready, drain them and leave it in one side to cool down.

Add to the carrots 25gr of flour and 125ml of milk and mix it all for around 10 minutes, or until it gets thick. You will create in this way a light besciamella that you will need to let cool down after adding the 15gr Parmesan, the salt and nutmeg.

When the spinach are cold, add a yolk egg  and mix. In another pan you will prepare some more besciamella also for the spinach: 25gr butter with 25gr flour and around 150-200ml of milk. Stir all until it get thick and when a bit cold, add it to the spinach with 15gr Parmesan and some salt.

Add to egg yolk to the carrots too and put all the white parts of the egg to whip up in the mixer. 2 parts of this will need to go in the carrots and one part in the spinach.

Now let’s prepare the backing pan putting some butter on the inside, covered in flour to don’t make the souffle’ stick. Place the spinach mix first and then the carrots one.

At this point my mum use to cook this in teh oven but a “bagno maria” so in another conteiner with boiling water. In this way the souffle is not in direct contact with the hot. I didn’t have any other big container so i place it in the oven at 200 degree for one our with a bit of pieces of butter on the top. It was really good anyway…maybe a bit harder than a souffle’, but still easy and nice.


When the souffle’ is cooking, don’t open the oven or it will collapse. When you think is ready, try a tooth pick in the inside and if it’s dry, you can directly turn it on a plate and serve it. If you will wait it will collapse again.

So serve it hot straight away. I added some Parmesan but also without it’s very good. Enjoy!

PS. Beh  mamy non m’e’ venuto male anche se non l’ho cotto a bagno maria no? Il problema e’ che per farlo staccare dal recipiente ho aspettato e come volevasi dimostrare mi s’e’ ammosciato e la parte arancione quasi non si vede. Ma che buono!