Categories
Dessert Italian Food

Mini Coconut & Berry Bundt Cakes

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Roses are red, Violets are blue, Will you make a bundt cake just for us two? Valentine’s Day is just around the corner or as we say here in Italy San Valentino. This delightful berry and coconut treat can be served as an afternoon sweet snack or a light mono portion dessert.  What’s great about this recipe is that you can even feel good about yourself eating it!  It is free of any dairy products with the substitution of coconut milk and vegetable oil instead. This dolce will have you falling in love with it’s fluffy sponge like cake and perfect balance of sweet berries and exotic coconut flavours and best of all home-made-ness. A perfect match for the whole family to enjoy together! 

Categories
Italian Food Pasta

Healthy Pasta – Going Green

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Happiness on a plate with fish filled rigatoni pasta and sweet pea cream!   This recipe will make you ready to feel spring in the air but not only that!  You’ll impress your dinner guests with an elegant dish that is healthy and will make everyone feel good after eating a plate of pasta!

Categories
First Course Italian Food

Warm Italian Lentil Veggie Salad

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An excellent winter salad, that will help you fight your winter blues!  This recipe is healthy and filling and a total no fuss meal prep! Another great aspect of using lentils is that you can throw in any vegetables you prefer to make it rich, colourful and tasty to your liking!

Categories
First Course Italian Food

Colourful and Creamy Shrimp Risotto

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When the weather becomes cold and everything seems grey outside it isn’t always easy to stay motivated with your healthy.  Sometimes a warm and gooey comfort food dish makes everything just right!

Categories
Dessert Italian Food

Mini Nutella Brioche

One word. Nutella! And we’re saying Nutella at breakfast! Oh yes!

I’m pretty sure your mouth has already started watering by just reading the word Nutella, it’s almost impossible not to!  Our beloved creamy chocolate delight is just the best guilty pleasure there is. But you won’t feel so guilty eating a mini portion for breakfast to get your wheels moving in the morning. Needless to say just the utmost perfect coffee or espresso combo as you’re running out the door to work.

Categories
Dessert Italian Food

Gelato Panettone Cake

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What is better than panettone, chocolate and gelato? Gelato Panettone Cake! This is the dolce recipe of all dessert recipes for your holiday get together or even a fun recipe to make with the kids!

Categories
Appetizer Italian Food

Appetizers for the Holidays

Need a quick fix for your Christmas or New Year’s menu?  Here are a few simple appetizers that are beautiful to serve with cocktails or at the table to kick off your holiday dinner.

Categories
Italian Food Second Course

Veal Roll Up

Looking for a delicious meat dish for a dinner party or just a quick solution to your week night menu – this recipe is for you. Veal, prosciutto and parmesan sure tastes like Italy and it all put together will leave you licking your fingers.  We promise this dish is a no brainer to make at home!

Difficulty :  Medium    Prep Time : 15 minutes   Cook Time : 1 hour

Ingredients

Veal

Spinach

Olive oil

Garlic Clove

Prosciutto Cotto

Parmesan

Bread crumbs

Salt / Pepper

Carrot

Celery

White wine

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Instructions

  1. Cook spianch in a frying pan with olive oil and garlic and salt.  Once spinach is cooked, remove from frying pan and drain excess water.  Then place spinach back in frying pan and toss on low heat for about 2 minutes with 2 tablespoons of grated parmesan cheese.
  2. Lay out veal and salt and pepper all sides.  Add a layer of spinach, then a layer of 2-3 prosciutto slices, bread crumbs and the last layer grated parmesan cheese to your pleasing.
  3. Roll up with veal and secure it with cooking thread or toothpicks.
  4. In a large frying pan heat up olive oil and add the carrot and celery finely diced.  Add veal roll up to frying pan and cut on each side for about 2 minute.  Once all sides have been browned add half a glass of white wine, place heat on high and let the meat cook until most of the wine is evaporated. Then place the heat on low and let cook for 40 minutes, occasionally turning.
  5. Serve hot, and with it’s cooking juices and a nice glass of Italian wine! We recommend a nice red wine from the Northern Italian region like Nebbiolo, or Barolo.

Eat Bene!

Categories
Appetizer Italian Food

Pumpkin Armaretti and Parmesan Bowl

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This is a scrumptious aperitivo Italian “dip”.  There a nice touch of sweet and salty coming from the armaretto cookies, grated paremsan, bread crumbs and pumpkin. This appetizer dish is a lovely touch as indiviual size portions with small pumpkins, or even as, a center piece dish where guests can all dive in together and greet one another with holiday cheer.  The pumpkin will be a familiar smell with a sensation of Italy all over it, from the first bite of pumpkin and parmesan to finish off with a sweeter side of armaretto.  A glass of processo for a “brindirsi” – cheers –  is a perfect pairing for this inviting appetizer. This is a winner for your holiday entertaining if you’re looking for something quick and elegant presentation with of course that touch of Italian we all know and love!

PUMPKIN ARMARETTO PARMESAN BOWL

Difficulty : Easy  Prep Time : 15 minutes  Cook Time : 1 hour

Ingredients:

1 large pumpkin (or smaller individual size number depending on dinner guests)

1 cup bread crumbs

1 1/2 cups grated parmesan cheese

1/2 cup crushed armaretto cookies

2 eggs

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon sea salt

Instructions :

  1. Cut open the pumpkin and remove the insides – the seeds you can save to roast with olive oil, sea salt, and rosmary.  Drizzle olive oil inside the pumpkin and sea salt and wrap with aluminium foil.  Cook in oven for 25/30 minutes at 300F / 180C.
  2. While the pumpkin cooks in the oven, in a frying pan on medium heat brown the bread crumbs in the rest of the olive oil – 3 tablespoons – adding first the armaretto cookies, eggs and last the parmesan.
  3. Mix the bread crumb mix together over the heat for about 6 minutes, making sure the mixture becomes creamy from the cheese added.  If needed add a tablespoon more of olive and a 1/2 a cup more of parmesan cheese if you notice the mixture is not creamy enough.
  4. Take the pumpkin out of the oven and fill it with the bread crumb mixture.  Place the top of the pumpkin back on to cover the mixture inside the pumpkin and place in the oven for another 40 minutes until pumpkin has soften.
  5. Remove pumpkin from oven.  With a fork gently around the pumpkin so the cooked pumpkin breaks off the outer part to mix into the bread crumb mixture, serve warm.

Eat Bene! 

Categories
Italian Food

Risotto Zafferano, Typical Milanese recipe

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RISOTTO ZAFFERANO

You may not have heard of it but we’re sure if you’ve seen it you wouldn’t forget it! Risotto zafferano is one of the brightest risotto dishes out there and just brings a colorful joy to any plate or table! This dish is THE dish of Milan cuisine.  Everyone who visits the Italian fashion capital of the world, can’t help themselves from stopping to get a colorful and traditional taste of what Milan really is, and more often than not it is also referred to as risotto alla milanese.

This vibrant yellow comes from the saffron spice.

This rice dish goes hand in hand with another classic Milanese dish, ossobucco (marrowbone/braised veal).  

 Risotto Zafferano

Difficulty : medium         Prep Time : 5 minutes        Cook Time : 30 minutes

Ingredients

1 onion

1 carrot

1 tsp. Saffron powder

1/2 glass white wine

320 grams Carnaroli rice

Vegetable broth

125 grams butter

80 grams grated Grano Padano cheese

1 bone marrow

salt

 

Instructions:

  1.  In a frying pan on medium heat, add olive oil and diced onions and carrots as a mirepoix – soffritto –  base for our risotto.  Once the onion and carrot are cooked down add in the dry rice and let it brown – rosolare –  with the soffritto for a two to three minutes constantly stirring.
  2. Add in the glass of wine put on high heat. Cook and stir until wine has evaporated.
  3. Once wine is evaporated add in one ladle of broth and stir.  This process will be repeated until the rice is completely cooked  about 15/20minutes – one ladle at a time stirring the rice until the broth is absorbed and then add in another spoonful of broth.  Make sure the rice is evenly covered with broth at all times – the trick of risotto is that the rice cooks in the broth slowly.
  4. About half way through the cooking time of rice add in bone marrow and stir.
  5. Towards end of cooking add in the saffron powder and stir.
  6. Once rice is cooked place on a low flame stirring in butter and grated cheese.  Stir until rice is nicely mixed together with butter and cheese.
  7. Serve hot as a first course or as a side with braised veal – ossobucco (recipe to follow)

Enjoy a taste of Milan and Eat Bene!!!

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Categories
Italian Cooking 101 Italian Food

Italian Cooking 101: Fiori di Zucca

Zucchini blossoms can be prepared fried, stuffed or as an ingredient for a delicate first course. These zucchini blossoms are delicious and colorful, giving an extra touch to every dish.

This fragile vegetable is the most known and appreciated edible flowers. They grow on both zucchinis and pumpkins, and are characterized by their yellow and orange petals and their large pistils found inside their playful petals. When going to cook these blossoms, don’t be afraid to fry or stuff them and serve as appetizers, or delicately cook them to add to a frittata or salty pies. 

Now these vegetables are fun to pick at the market like a real bouquet of flowers! Here are some tips on how to be well prepared when going to the market to pick the perfect zucchini blossoms.

Categories
Appetizer Italian Food

Menu di Amore

It’s no secret that Italians show and share their love through their cooking.  It is believed that one can not cook well if there is no love in their cooking – amore & cucina – go hand in hand. So who else better than to take a tip from than the Italians on to know how to prepare a menu for an evening full of passion!

If you’re looking to celebrate a romantic evening with your significant other with an aphrodisiac menu to satisfy the palate and ignite the passion, here’s the menu for you…