Sunday, August 4, 2019

Pancetta, Zucchini, and Pasta


Wow. Zucchini season is here!! Time for my favorite summer pasta dish. This time there was a suggestion of adding pancetta and cream to the sauce. An excellent addition I must say.

Dice the pancetta and saute. Add sliced onion, I used red onion. Saute in a little olive oil for about 5 minutes on low heat. Add the sliced zucchini. Saute for about 7 to 10 minutes. You want the zucchini to get a little jammy. Add some white wine and let that cook down. Add some cream, I used one cup of heavy cream. Simmer for about 5 minutes. Salt, pepper, parsley, thyme, and basil.

Cook the pasta. Once it is al dente add it to the saute pan along with some of the pasta water. Simmer for a few minutes. Add some parmesan cheese and a little butter if you like.

Now about the pasta. This would have been over the top delicious with homemade pasta. But there are only so many hours in the weekend. I found Ronzoni Homestyle Penne at the store. 2 ingredients. Flour and egg. The taste? Not bad. Not bad at all. It was a lighter pasta than the usual boxed pasta. We both went back for seconds.

Did I ever tell you the story about the time the Ronzoni Brothers visited my Mom?

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Rose Del Deserto

Please allow me to introduce you to the newest cookie in our line up. Rose Del Deserto. The recipe is from Italian Sons and Daughters of America. The recipe reminds me of my Mom's Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. But this one is rolled in Corn Flakes or Special K in this case. The taste, really good. Not too sweet. Almost like a cannoli cookie. Yeah, this will be in heavy rotation.


Recipe for Rose Del Deserto, get the food scales out for this one!

Ingredients-
130 g (⅔ cup) granulated sugar
120 g (4.3 oz ) unsalted butter (at room temperature)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
240 g (1 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour
5 g (1 teaspoon) baking powder
Pinch of salt
180 g (1 cup) chocolate chips
200 g (7 oz) approx., cornflakes (like Special K) or similar
Powdered sugar


Method-
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350 °F)
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in a medium-sized bowl with an electric mixer
  3. Add the eggs and the vanilla extract
  4. Mix the flour and the baking powder in a small bowl
  5. Add the flour mixture to the creamed butter
  6. Stir in the chocolate chips
  7. Roll teaspoon-sized balls of dough in a bowl of cornflakes
  8. Place the cookies, well-spaced (about 3-4 cm), on a greased cookie sheet
  9. Bake about 10-12 minutes
  10. Remove from pan and cool on a rack
  11. Cover with powdered sugar sprinkled on top, just before serving.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

A Sneak Peak of What I Am Making For Dinner

I have a feeling the next two weeks are going to be busy at work. One thing I will not have to worry about is what we are having for dinner. Today I made a few meals, some for this week and some for the freezer. I did all this in 3 1/2 hours.


We have meatballs in sauce, yes homemade sauce. Baked chicken which we can either heat up on the grill or add to a salad. Stuffed Zucchini. And Bacon, Tomato and Zucchini Galatte. 

Stay tuned for the recipes.






Saturday, July 27, 2019

When There is Zucchini- Frittelle di Pasta Cresciuta Con Zucchine

Frittelle di Pasta Cresciuta Con Zucchine. This recipe is from Memorie di Angelina. This is one of my favorite blogs. The recipes remind me of my Mom's cooking.

Oh, I just love this recipe. Chris loves this recipe. The result is small balls of fried bread with zucchini. Real easy, you do need to let the dough rise. The zucchini was from my sister's garden. More zucchini recipes to come later this week.

I think this might be a good Christmas Day appetizer...

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Something For Dessert – No-Churn Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream


Ice Cream? I do not have an Ice Cream Maker. This recipe does not require one. I found this recipe on PureWow.com.  No-Churn Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.


The flavor was spot on mint. I did not use the green food coloring that the recipe called for. I also made 1/2 the recipe, just in case it did not work out. Next time I will make the full recipe. Only 6 ingredients. Have you read the ingredient list of a carton of ice cream?

ingredients-
For a Pint of Ice Cream
1 1/4 cups (567g) heavy cream
1 (15g) fresh mint
2 ounces (63g) finely chopped dark chocolate
1 tablespoon coconut oil
7 ounces sweetened condensed milk
1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract


Method-
1. Infuse the Cream
In a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer over medium heat. Turn off the heat, add the mint and cover the saucepan. Let the mixture steep for 20 minutes.


2. Using a fine-mesh strainer set over a medium heat-safe bowl, strain the mixture, reserving the cream and discarding the mint. (Make sure to press hard on the mint leaves to get all the cream out of them.)
3. Transfer the cream to a shallow heat-safe dish (such as a 9-inch square baking pan) and chill in the refrigerator until it’s cold at least 1 hour and up to overnight.
4. MAKE THE CHOCOLATE CHUNKS: While the cream chills, melt the chocolate and coconut oil together (either in a medium heat-safe bowl over a medium saucepan of simmering water or in 15-second bursts in the microwave). Stir the mixture until it’s combined, then pour it onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and spread it into an even layer about ¼-inch thick. Transfer the baking sheet to the refrigerator to chill until the chocolate is firm, about 15 minutes.
5.  Remove the chilled chocolate from the fridge and roughly chop it to create chunks. Hold the chocolate chunks in the fridge until ready to use.
6. When the cream is cold, transfer it to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whip attachment and whip it to medium peaks. Add the sweetened condensed milk in a slow, steady stream and whip until it’s incorporated. Beat in the peppermint extract.
7.  With a silicone spatula, gently fold in the chocolate chunks by hand, then pour the mixture into a loaf pan. Cover it with plastic wrap and freeze until the ice cream is scoopable at least 3 hours and up to overnight.



Breakfast! Banana Blueberry Muffins

The blueberries were only $1.77 a pint this week. And I had some bananas that were getting close to overripe. I google Banana Blueberry Muffins and found this recipe on PlatingCravings.com.

Wow! Delicious!! Moist and super easy to make. I had a dozen muffins completed from start to finish in less than one hour! And they are only 170 calories each! Excuse me but I think I might have one more...

Click here for the recipe and to visit PlatingCravings.com.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Lobster Cacio e Pepe for Two

I found an article in the latest Bon Appetit that explained how to make perfect Cacio e Pepe. I have tried to make Cacio e Pepe at home a number of times and each time the cheese gets clumpy.

When I saw this recipe for Lobster Cacio e Pepe on MyRecipes.com I was ready to give the pasta another try. I used the Bon Appetit recipe for the sauce so the MyRecipes.com was not followed completely.

The result, even following the Bor Appetit recipe, was still clumpy. I admit not as clumpy as previous attempts but not as smooth as described in the article.

But the taste was quite good. I think I heard the word "delicious" being used from across the table.
I had the seafood person steam the lobster, one less thing to feel guilty about.


The dish was good but I will stop trying to make Cacio e Pepe at home.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Lobster Oreganata



There is something about having to kill your dinner before you cook it. I have no problem killing a lobster. Well, I do feel bad about killing it but they taste so good. That being said this dinner received rave reviews. Easy to prepare, except for the killing part.

This recipe is from the book Cooking With Nonna Celebrating Food and Family. The lobster was on sale for $6.99 a pound at Shop Rite. It was delicious.

Back to the lobster prep. There are a lot of videos and tutorials on how to kill the lobster. I would recommend googling the subject and finding one that you are comfortable with.


Ingredients-
2 live lobsters
6 tbsp. plain bread crumbs
2 tbsp. grated cheese
2 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp white wine
3/4 cup water

Method-


Place the lobster, belly side down on a kitchen towel on a cutting board, when you cut the lobster it will leak. Using a sharp knife, split the lobsters in half, straight down the middle, beginning with the point of the knife in the middle of the head and running it down the tail. Remove the eggs and the innards. Transfer the lobster halves cut side up to a rimmed baking sheet. Remember to remove the rubber bands around the claws after you kill the lobster.

Preheat the oven to 400˚F.


Mix thoroughly bread crumbs, parsley, cheese, parsley, and olive oil. Sprinkle evenly over lobster. Drizzle each half with the wine.


Pour water into the bottom of the baking sheet. Cover the sheet with aluminum foil and bake until the shells are red and the meat is firm about 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 minutes more.
Serve with lemon wedges and melted butter.

Cannoli Cookies



It was a Cooking With Nonna type of day. Tomorrow I am going to a party at my nephew's house. His son received his Confirmation and they are also celebrating my brother's 70th birthday. What does that mean? I have to bring cookies. It is what I do.

I had the recipe for Cannoli Cookies bookmarked in the Cooking with Nonna cookbook. I am so glad I finally made this recipe. Absolutely delicious!

Ingredients-
1 cup unsalted pistachios
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 orange, zest only
1 large egg, room temperature
8 ounces whole milk ricotta, room temperature
1 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
For Glaze-
2 cups confectioners sugar
3 tablespoons milk, plus more if needed
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
For Topping-
Chocolate Sprinkles

Method-
Place the pistachios in the bowl of a food processor and process until coarsely chopped, about 15-20 seconds.
Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment combine the sugar, butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and zest.
Beat on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes.
Beat in the egg and the ricotta.
Add in the dry ingredients little by little until a dough forms.
Mix in the pistachios and chocolate chips.
Using a tablespoon, roll the dough into balls and place 2 inches apart on the baking sheet.
Bake for 10-12 minutes.
The bottoms of the cookies should slightly brown.
Cool completely before glazing.

To make the Glaze:
In a bowl mix together the confectioners sugar, vanilla, and milk until a smooth glaze forms. Add less milk for a thicker glaze or more for a thinner glaze. Top with chocolate sprinkles.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Veal Mattese




This weekend I was going through old recipe files. I found the recipe for Veal Mattese from a class I took at Quattro's in Guilford a few years ago. One of my husband's favorite meal at Quattro's in Guilford is Veal Mattese. This was quite good. I served the veal along with a side mashed potatoes, just like they do a Quattro's.


Ingredients-
1  lb. of veal scaloppini
salt and pepper
flour2 tbsp butter
8 large shrimp, cleaned and deveined
3 oz. white wine
1 tsp. marinara Sauce
1 cup chicken stock
1 lb. fresh spinach, blanched
6 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced
2 tbsp chopped scallions, chopped


Method-
Dust the veal in flour, salt, and pepper.
In a saute pan melt the butter.
Sear the veal, 3 minutes per side. Add shrimp, white wine and marinara sauce.
Place blanched spinach on top of the veal along with the shrimp and mozzarella cheese. Let the sauce reduce in half and cover the pan to melt the cheese.