An Italian Cooking Abroad

Struggling to preserve the Italian culinary tradition oversea

Category: Entrees (page 1 of 5)

NEW POTATOES TATIN

INGREDIENTS

cherry tomatoes 1 1/2 cups / olive oil / salt and pepper / 500 g new potatoes (the small ones) / 1 large onion / 3 tbsp sugar / 2 tsp butter / oregano / goat cheese / 1 puff pastry sheet

Preheat the oven at 200 C, halve the tomatoes and place them skin-down on a baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in the oven to dry for 45 minutes. Meanwhile cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for 25 minutes. Drain and let cool. trim off a bit of the top and bottom of each potato, then cut into 3 cm thick discs. Sauté the sliced onion with the olive oil for 10 minutes. Once you have prepared all the vegetables, brush a cake pan and line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper. In a small pan cook the sugar and butter on a high heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to get a semi-dark caramel. Pour the caramel in the cake pan and tilt it to spread evenly over the bottom. Scatter the oregano on the caramel. Lay the potato discs close together, cut-side down, on the bottom of the pan. Gently press onions and dry tomatoes into the gaps and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Spread the slices of goat cheese evenly over the potatoes. Cut a puff pastry disc that is larger in diameter than the pan. Lay the pastry lid over the tart filling and gently touch the edges down around the potatoes inside the pan. Preheat the oven at 250 C, bake the tart for 25 minus, reduce the temperature to 200 C and continue baking for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, let settle for 2 minutes. Hold an inverted plate firmly on top of the pan and carefully but briskly turn them over together, then lift off the pan.

MAC’N’CHEESE

INGREDIENTS

250 g maccheroni / 50 g butter / 50 g flour / 300 mL milk / 100 mL fresh cream / 200 g pecorino / 200 g gruyere / nutmeg / paprika / salt / pepper

In a small pan melt the butter over medium heat, add the flour and cook, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. The pour in the pan the warm milk, slowly, keep stirring and let it simmer for 3 minutes so as to have a béchamel sauce. Remove from the heat then add the cream, nutmeg, salt and pepper, 3/4 of the gruyere and the grated pecorino. In the meantime, cook the maccheroni and drain them “al dente”. Mix the pasta with the cheese sauce in a bowl, then pour everything in a baking dish, cover with grated gruyere and pecorino, a pinch of paprika, and cook in the oven at 180 degree for 20 minutes.

SATAY SWEET POTATOES AND KALE CURRY

INGREDIENTS (2 servings)

2 sweet potatoes / 1 tbsp coconut oil / half a onion / salt and pepper / 2 tsp garlic-ginger paste / dried chili flakes / 2 tsp tomato pure / 1 tsp ground cumin / 3 tbsp peanut butter / handful kale leaves / 1 lime / spoonful coconut yogurt / coriander

Boil the sweet potatoes, peel them and cut them into cubes. Melt the coconut oil in a saucepan. Slide in the sliced onion with a pinch of salt and cook for 5 minutes until softened. Stir in the garlic-ginger paste, chili, tomato puree and cumin and cook for 2 more minutes. Tip the sweet potatoes in the pan, give everything a good stir and add 500 mL of boiling water. Stir in the peanut butter, then use the back of a fork to loosely break up half the sweet potatoes (to thicken the curry). Season with salt and pepper. Let the curry simmer then stir in the kale after removing the stalks. Cook until the kale is just wilted, then take off the heat and squeeze in the lime juice. Spoon into bowls then top with the coconut yogurt, coriander leaves and few more chili flakes.

GINGER AND GARLIC RICE BOWL

INGREDIENTS (2 servings)

fresh ginger / 2 cloves of garlic / 1 shallot / 2 tablespoons of honey / juice of 1 lemon / 5 tablespoons of olive oil / salt and pepper / 60 g cashew nuts / 300 g pre-cooked wholegrain rice / 1 avocado / 1 cucumber / coriander

Grate the ginger and garlic into a small bowl, add the shallot, honey, lemon juice and olive oil. Whisk the dressing together then season to taste. Toast the cashew nuts in a pan over medium heat then allow to cool and roughly chop. Ping the rice in the microwave, tip into your serving bowl and stir in the ginger and garlic dressing. Lay the avocado slices and the cucumber peeled lengthwise in the bowl. Scatter over the coriander and cashew nuts.

THAI GREEN AUBERGINE CURRY

INGREDIENTS (2 servings)

2 tablespoons coconut oil / 2 spring onions / 2 small aubergines / 2 tablespoons Thai green curry / 1 lemongrass stalk / 400 ml coconut cream / pinch of sugar / green beans / 2 tablespoons soy sauce / 1 lime / basil leaves / 1 tablespoon cashew nuts

Mel the coconut oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the diced spring onion and fry for 2 minutes. Dice the aubergines in small cubes and chuck the cubes in the pan, mixing everything. Fry for 4 minutes until they begin to soften. Stir in the curry paste and lemongrass, cook for 1 minute then spoon in the coconut cream. Re-fill the empty can with water and pour that into the saucepan. Stir in a pinch of sugar, then turn up the heat and leave the curry to cook for 5 minutes. Chuck in the green beans, halved. Cook for 5 more minutes. Remove the curry from the heat, season with soy sauce and lime juice. Cut the remaining lime in wedges for serving. Spoon the curry in a bowl, removing the lemongrass stalk. Scatter over the basil leaves and the toasted cashew nuts. Serve with the lime wedges and rice.

AROMATIC ROLLS

INGREDIENTS (6-8 servings)

600 g fresh lasagna / 500 g ricotta cheese / 100 g grated parmesan / 400 g béchamel sauce / 20 basil leaves / fresh thyme / 1 egg / half a glass of milk / extravirgin olive oil / nutmeg / salt and pepper

Blend together the thyme with the basil leaves and 2 spoonfuls of olive oil. Pour the mixture in a bowl, add the ricotta, grated parmesan cheese, the egg yolk, a pinch of salt and grated nutmeg. Spread one lasagna dough with the ricotta mixture, roll it and cut it in small cylinders 1-2 cm long. Continue the same way with the remaining ricotta mix and lasagnas. Pour half the béchamel sauce in a baking tin, position the standing pasta cylinders on top of it, one next to each other, cover everything with the remaining béchamel sauce diluted with the milk. Cover with grated parmesan and cook in the oven at 180 C covered with tin foil for 25 minutes. The uncover the baking tin and let the pasta rolls grate for 10 more minutes.

GREEK SPINACH AND FETA QUICHE

INGREDIENTS

2 rolls of puff pastry / 350 g feta cheese / 1 kg fresh spinach / 3 onions / 3 eggs / extravirgin olive oil / salt

Dice the onions and let them brown in a pan with olive oil. In a large pot add the spinach and a glass of water, cover with a lid and let them steam for few minutes. Then drain them and press them so as to lose the water. Add them to the onions in a bowl, together with the eggs and a pinch of salt. Dice the feta cheese and add the cubes to the bowl. Mix everything together. Roll the first puff pastry on a baking tin, with a fork make tiny holes in it, then pour the filling of feta and spinach.Level the filling and cover with the second puff pastry, pinching together the edges. Bake in the oven at 180 C for 50 minutes.

SALTY CARROT CAKE

INGREDIENTS

puff pastry / 400 g carrots / 200 g soft cheese (crescenza or burrata) / 50 g parmesan cheese / thyme / extravirgin olive oil / slat and pepper

Unroll the puff pastry in a baking tin. In a bowl mix together the soft cheese, the grated parmesan, pepper and thyme. Spread this cream on the bottom of the puff pastry with a spoon. Slice the carrots with the veggie peeler and cover with them the top of the cake. Add a sprinkle of oil and salt. Cook in the oven at 180 degree for 25 minutes.

PAELLA

INGREDIENTS (4 servings)

6 chicken drumsticks / 2 onions / 1 celery / 1 carrot / 1 g of saffron / 300 g mussels / 300 g clams / 1 clove of garlic / white wine / 200 g shrimps / 200g calamari / 200 mL strained tomatoes / 1 hot pepper / 1 bell pepper / 8 cherry tomatoes / 200 g sausage / 300 g paella rice (arroz bomba) / 200 g frozen peas / 1 spoonful of paprika / extravirgin olive oil / pepper

Boil 6 chicken drumsticks in hot water with an onion, a celery and a carrot for 45 minutes. Take one spoonful of the cooking water and pur it over the saffron. When the chicken is ready, de-bone it and reduce the meat in small pieces. Cook the mussels and clams in a pan with garlic and oil, simmer with a glass of white wine. Keep the cooking water, clean half of the mussels and clams (the other half keep the shell). In a paella pan brown the shrimps, remove them, add some oil in the pan and brown a sliced onion with the calamari. Cook for 10 minutes, add the strained tomatoes and hot pepper. Dice the bell pepper to the calamari pan, let it cook for 10 minutes. Add the cherry tomatoes, the crumbled sausage. Add the paella rice, season with salt and stir. Add 700-900 g of water (broth+the mussels cooking water+water), the frozen peas, let it cook for 10 minutes. Then add the saffron, paprika, mussels and clams, the shrimps and the pieces of chicken: stir everything together and continue cooking without stirring, mixing or moving the rice till the water is completely reabsorbed. Once ready, take away from the fire, let it sit for 10 minutes, add the parsley, some olive oil and pepper, and serve.

PAD THAI

INGREDIENTS (2 servings)

125 g rice noodles / half a red pepper / 3 little onions / fresh ginger / 2 carrots / 2 zucchini / 70 g sprouts / 80 g green beans / extravirgin olive oil / salt / 2 eggs / coriander / soy sauce

In a pan with oil, brown the red pepper, the onions and the grated ginger. Dice the carrots and the zucchini in little sticks and add them to the pan. Add the sprouts and the boiled green beans as well. Season with salt and continue cooking. For the omelette, whisk the eggs with the minced coriander and a spoonful of soy sauce: pour in a different pan with a drop of oil and let it cook. Once ready, put the omelette in a plate and slice it in small stripes and add them to the vegetables in the pan. Cook the noodles in hot water (off the stove, just 4-5 minutes), drain them and saute them in the pan with the veggies, adding more soy sauce.

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