Orecchiette With Fresh Tomatoes & Pecorino

Author: kel15  //  Category: Dinner, Everyday Italian Recipes, Lunch, Pasta Italiano, Quick & Easy

This is really an easy and delicious pasta dish. And you will be amazed with how tasty it will be when you are done. Tomatoes of each description are accessible locally at this time, and I decided to use cherry tomatoes rather than the chopped plum tomatoes. It is better to prepare the tomatoes a couple of hours prior to cooking your pasta as the tomatoes will break down a bit, releasing their juices which helps to create a sauce.

You can use any firm Italian cheese that you prefer, but I used a nice Pecorino Romano in my dish. This dish works greatest if the cheese is freshly grated using a box grater so when the little slivers of cheese meet the hot pasta they melt into the pasta. Be sure to taste the pasta prior to adding salt as the cheese is fairly salty on it’s own.


Serves 4-6
1 Pound Orecchiette Pasta

2 Pints Ripe Cherry Tomatoes (Or About 3 Cups Ripe Plum Chopped Tomatoes)

2 Large Garlic Cloves, Minced

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

Sea Salt

Cracked Black Pepper

Red Pepper Flakes

1/4 Cup Fresh Basil, Finely Chopped

3 Cups Freshly Grated Pecorino Cheese

Cut the tomatoes into quarters, and mix with the garlic, olive oil, a pinch of salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and fresh basil in a bowl. Let rest for at least two hours before you are ready to cook the pasta.

Cook the orecchiette in a large pot of boiling water until it is al dente. Drain, keeping a small cup of the pasta water. Mix the tomatoes and cheese into the pasta, tossing to combine. Add a little of the pasta water if the pasta seems dry and mix well. Taste, and season with additional salt if needed and additional cracked black pepper. Serve hot.

Fresh Peach Gelato

Author: kel15  //  Category: Desserts, Ice Cream


I love a fantastic fruit flavored gelatoand I was seeking for a simple recipe that wouldn’t take hours to produce when I remembered seeing a fantastic Apricot Gelato recipe on Matt Bites blog. He posted this recipe for Summerfest 2009 and it originally came from David Lebovitz’s book The Best Scoop which is a wonderful ice cream cookbook if you’re seeking for 1! The recipe was fast and straightforward and peaches would work just along with the apricots in this recipe. I considered roasting my peaches 1st which actually creates a scrumptious flavored gelato, but my peaches had been actually too best to play around with. I made this gelato twice this year, as well as the second time I added some diced fresh peach to the gelato mixture prior to I froze it and discovered it scrumptious.

Serves 6-8

1 Pound Very Ripe Peaches (I Used 6)

1/2 Cup Water

1/2 Cup Sugar

1 Cup Heavy Cream

1 Tablespoon Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice


Slice the peaches in half and remove the pits. Coarsely chop the peaches and place them with the water and sugar in a covered medium, nonreactive saucepan over medium heat until tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

Once cool, purée the peaches and any liquid in the pot in a blender or food processor until very smooth. Press the mixture through a mesh strainer or sieve to remove any pieces of skin or fibers. Stir in the cream, and lemon juice. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Store in an airtight container in your freezer.

Note: I found this gelato was best eaten within a day or two of making it. If kept too long in the freezer it did lose some of it’s creaminess and became a bit icy.

Bruschette con Funghi (Mushroom Bruschette)

Author: kel15  //  Category: Italian Appetizers


With a cold nip in the air and Thanksgiving right around the corner, mushrooms are a natural appetizer for a party or family gathering. Here is a guest recipe from Mark Leslie, author of Beyond the Pasta: Recipes, Language & Life with an Italian Family and the popular Italian food and travel blog “Beyond the Pasta.” Mark lived with an Italian family in Viterbo, Italy where he studied cooking from the grandmother (Nonna) and language from her daughter. The book includes recipes that he learned from Nonna, but as a treat to Italian Recipes, Mark has given us one of Nonna’s recipes not featured in his book ~ a very special pre-holiday bonus! Buon Appetito~

I love the woodsy flavor of mushrooms. Here is a simple way to enjoy mushrooms as an appetizer. I tend to use cremini, shitake, and button mushrooms in this recipe—but why limit yourself? Use a combination of your favorite mushrooms to make this dish truly yours!

For the topping:
½ ounce dried porcini mushrooms
1 pound mixture of fresh mushrooms (Use any two,
three, or four combination of: cremini, button, shitake, chanterelle, woodear, oyster.)

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large clove garlic, finely minced
½ cup white or red wine (your preference)
1 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the bruschette:
8 ½-inch-thick slices of artisan bread (Tuscan boulle,
ciabatta, or similar)

1 large clove garlic, peeled, with stem end removed
Additional extra virgin olive oil for drizzling

Reconstitute the dried porcini mushrooms in a small bowl by adding 1 cup very hot water and allowing to soak for 15 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, using a paper towel, clean off any dirt from the mushrooms and cut into ¼-inch-thick slices.
(* Note: If using shitake mushrooms, remove the stems and discard before slicing—the stems are notoriously tough and really unusable.) Set aside.

With your hand, remove the porcini mushrooms from their soaking liquid and squeeze any excess liquid from the porcinis back into the soaking bowl. Place the squeezed porcinis on the cutting board and roughly chop into smaller pieces. Set aside. Strain the soaking liquid through a fine sieve, or coffee filter, and reserve for use.

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat and, when hot, add the olive oil and garlic. Cook the garlic briefly for 15 to 30 seconds, making sure the garlic does not burn. Quickly stir in the sliced fresh mushrooms and stir continuously until the mushrooms start to release their own liquid, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the chopped porcini mushrooms and stir until well combined, cooking another 3 to 5 minutes, until the mushrooms natural liquid has almost evaporated.

Add the wine and cook until it has reduced by half. Stir in the reserved porcini soaking liquid, salt, and black pepper. Continue cooking an additional 5 to 7 minutes until the liquid has almost evaporated. You want the mushroom mixture to be loose, but not too wet or too dry. Remove from heat and set aside while you prepare the bread.

Heat a grill pan over medium-heat heat, and when hot, place the bread on it to toast. Toast both sides, turning to make sure both have nice dark brown grill marks. If you don’t have a grill pan, you may toast the bread in a 450-degree oven or in a toaster.

Remove the grilled bread to a platter and while hot, rub the cut end of the garlic clove over the top surface of each grilled slice. The heat of the bread will “melt” the garlic into the crunchy surface.

Top each slice with a large spoonful of the mushroom mixture, making sure to distribute evenly between all slices. Drizzle the slices with additional extra virgin olive oil. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 8 full slices or 16 ½-slices.

Beef Rolls In Red Wine Tomato Sauce – Beef Braciole

Author: kel15  //  Category: Authentic & Traditional Italian Recipes, Beef, Dinner, Everyday Italian Recipes, Gourmet Italian Recipes, Italian Food Online, Italian Meat Recipes, Lunch, Quick & Easy, Sauces

These delicious, tender beef rolls are cooked in a powerful tomato and wine sauce. They go perfectly with a side dish of Risotto Milanese, garlic mashed potatoes, or polenta.


Serves 6

1 1/2 Pounds Top Sirloin, Cut Into 12 Small Thin Slices

2 Cloves Garlic, Finely Minced

2 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary

6 Thin Slices Of Prosciutto, Cut In Half

1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

1/3 Cup Olive Oil

1 Cup Dry Red Wine

1 Carrot, Finely Chopped

1/2 Onion, Finely Chopped

1 Celery Stalk, Finely Chopped

2 Cups Chopped Canned Tomatoes

Salt & Pepper

1/4 Cup Chopped Fresh Parsley

Pound each piece of the beef into thin slices. Spread a little bit of the minced garlic, chopped rosemary and grated cheese over each slice. Cover this with a slice of prosciutto, and roll up into a small bundle, securing each with toothpicks.

Heat the oil in a large skillet and brown all of the bundles well on all sides, about 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a separate dish, and add the onion, carrots, and celery to the skillet. Cook until the vegetables are tender. Add the wine, and cook up until it is reduced by half, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Add the tomatoes, and season with salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, until the sauce has begun to thicken, about 5 minutes. Remove the toothpicks from the bundles, and return them to the skillet. Add the fresh parsley, and cook until heated through, about 3-4 minutes. Serve hot with a side dish of your choice.

Holiday Seafood Salad – Antipasti di Mare

Author: kel15  //  Category: Authentic & Traditional Italian Recipes, Dinner, Everyday Italian Recipes, Gourmet Italian Recipes, Healthy Italian Recipes, Italian Appetizers, Italian Food Online, Low Fat, Lunch, Quick & Easy, Salads, Seafoods, Side Dishes/Snacks

This is really a fantastic Christmas Eve appetizer but is delicious all year round. This seafood salad normally contains octopus as well as shrimps, scallops, and calamari, but in case you prefer, it is possible to certainly leave the octopus out. The octopus takes a much lengthier cooking time, so should you decide on to include it, you’ll need to add an extra hour or so to your preparation time.


Serves 6

3 Cups White Wine

5 Bay Leaves

2 Cloves Garlic, Crushed

2 Lemons

1 Pound Calamari, Cleaned And Cut Into Rings

1 Pound Medium Shrimp, Cleaned And Deveined

1 Pound Scallops 3 Cups Cooked Octopus Cut Into 2 Inch Pieces

1 Cup Black Olives (Optional)


1 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/2 Cup Lemon Juice

3 Large Garlic Cloves, Thinly Sliced Br/>

1/4 Cup Chopped Parsley

Dash Red Pepper Flakes

Salt & Pepper To Taste

In a stockpot, combine 3 quarts of water, the wine, bay leaves, and crushed garlic. Slice the lemons in half and squeeze the juice into the mixture. Drop the lemons into the pot. Bring the mixture first to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low.

First cook the shrimp, cook 2 minutes and remove from the pot. Cook the calamari 1 1/2 minutes and remove from the pot as well. If you are cooking scallops, cook in the same manner for 2 minutes. Mix the seafood together and set aside. If you are cooking octopus, add it to the pot, and cook it for about 45 minutes to an hour or until it is tender. Remove it from the pot and let it cool. Remove the skin and suckers, and cut it into bite sized pieces. Mix the octopus with the other ingredients.

Place the seafood in a bowl and add the chopped celery. Add the dressing ingredients and mix well. Cover and let marinade a minimum of 12 hours. Just before serving, adjust the seasonings, and add the black olives if you are using them. Serve.

Rigatoni With Sausage Cream Sauce

Author: kel15  //  Category: Authentic & Traditional Italian Recipes, Dinner, Everyday Italian Recipes, Lunch, Pasta Italiano, Quick & Easy, Sauces, Sausages, Side Dishes/Snacks

This is really a bona fide simple Italian recipe and a quickie to make. The sausage could be cooked and cut a couple of hours before as well as the sauce may be prepared while the water for the pasta is boiling. This recipe
may also be created using a tomato sauce rather than the cream sauce.



1 lb sweet Italian sausage (with fennel)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Freshly grounded black pepper
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese
1 lb Rigatoni
2 tbsp minced parsley leaves


1 – Place the sausage in a saucepan with 1 1/2 cups water. Cover, bring to a boil and turn heat down to low. Simmer, covered for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let sausage cool to room temperature. Remove casings from sausage and chop finely.

2 – In a medium skillet, melt 1/2 cup butter over medium heat. Add heavy cream, turn heat to low and cook until mixture is well blended and slightly thickened, stirring once or twice with a wooden spoon. Stir in sausage, nutmeg, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper and cook for 1 minute. Stir in Parmigiano cheese and remove from heat.

3 – Cook pasta in 6 quarts boiling water with 1 tbsp salt until al dente. Drain in a colander, transfer to a bowl containing 1 tbsp softened butter and toss quickly. Mix 3/4 of the sauce with the pasta and spoon remaining sauce on top. Garnish with minced parsley and serve with additional freshly grated Parmigiano cheese.


Serves 4 to 6

Seafood Manicotti

Author: kel15  //  Category: Authentic & Traditional Italian Recipes, Dinner, Everyday Italian Recipes, Gourmet Italian Recipes, Italian Food Online, Lunch, Quick & Easy, Seafoods


An Italian traditional recipe for your next get together with friends and family or for that up coming big special occasion! Enjoy!


1 quart whipping cream
20-30 Manicotti
2 lbs large raw shrimp, peeled, deveined, and chopped
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 garlic clove, minced
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 lb fresh Crab Meat, drained
1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese


1 – Combine whipping cream, salt, pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper in a saucepan and cook over medium-high heat for 30 minutes or until thickened and reduced to 2 cups; set aside. Cook the manicotti according to the package directions; drain and set aside.

2 – Heat butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat; add onion, 3 tbsp butter, chopped green bell pepper, garlic, and chopped celery. Cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes or until tender. Add the shrimp and crab meat, and cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes or until shrimp turns pink. Cool for 10 minutes, and drain well.

3 – Combine the seafood mixture and the whipping cream mixture. Fill the manicotti shells, and place in 2 lightly greased 11×7 inch baking dishes. Sprinkle with cheeses, and cover with foil. Bake at 350F for 15 minutes.

4 – Uncover and bake for 10 additional minutes. Serve immediately.

Serves 6 to 8

Minestrone Soup

Author: kel15  //  Category: Authentic & Traditional Italian Recipes, Everyday Italian Recipes, Healthy Italian Recipes, Quick & Easy, Soups, Vegetarian


My family loves this soup. It’s easy, it cleans out the cabinets as well as the fridge, and it truly loads an awful lot of fiber and vegetable-goodness into each and every bowl. A traditional Italian vegetable soup loaded with flavor. Give this Italian recipe a try!


3 garlic cloves
3 large onions
2 celery sticks
2 large carrots
2 large potatoes
3 1/2 ounces green beans
3 1/2 ounces zucchini
4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup olive oil
2 ounces bacon, finely diced
7 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 bunch fresh basil, finely chopped
3 1/2 ounces chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato paste
3 1/2 ounces Parmesan cheese rind
3 ounces dried spaghetti, broken up
salt and pepper
frshly grated Parmesan cheese, to serve


1 – Finely chop the garlic, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, beans and zucchini making use of a sharp knife.

2 – Heat the butter and oil together in a huge saucepan, add the bacon and cook for a couple of mins. Add the garlic and onion and fry for a couple of mins, then stir inside celery, carrots, and potatoes and fry for 2 mins longer, stirring the vegetables occassionally.

3 – Add the beans towards the saucepan and fry for 2 mins. Stir inside zucchini and cook for two mins longer. Cover and cook all of the vegetables, stirring frequently, for about 15 mins.

4 – Add the stock, basil, tomatoes, tomato paste, and cheese rind and season to taste. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for one hour. Remove and discard the cheese rind.

5 – Add the spaghetti pieces towards the pan and cook for 20 minutes. Serve sprinkled with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Servings: 8 to 10

Juicy Lamb Chops With Mint Pesto

Author: kel15  //  Category: Dinner, Everyday Italian Recipes, Italian Food Online, Lamb, Lunch


Lamb chops are essentially delicious when cooked correctly, and make a great exceptional dish for entertaining or for a fantastic Sunday dinner with family. The inclusion of the mint pesto creates just a little variation on the usual mint gravy or jelly. We are lucky enough to have lamb chops available to us to purchase which are already boned, but bone in lamb chops are surely just as tasty.


4 Meaty Lamb Chops (About 2 Inches Thick)

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

Salt & Pepper to Taste

Mint Pesto:

1/4 Cup Whole Blanched Almonds, Lightly Toasted

1/3 – 1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

3/4 Cup Fresh Basil Leaves, Washed And Patted Dry

1 1/4 Cups Fresh Mint Leaves

3 Medium Cloves Garlic

Salt And Pepper

1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese (Optional)

To Make The Pesto: Put the almonds, cheese (if using), and the olive oil in a food processor and pulse until pureed. Add the basil, mint, and garlic and process to a smooth texture, adding additional olive oil until the mixture is the consistancy of a thick sauce. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour for the flavors to meld. Taste for salt and pepper and add if needed. Serve the pesto or refrigerate up to 24 hours, bringing it back to room temperature before serving.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Remove lamb from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature. Rub with olive oil, and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Place the lamb in an oven proof heavy frying pan and sear on one side until golden brown. Turn the chops and place in the preheated oven. Cook for about 10 minutes, or until medium rare (125 degrees internal temperature tested with a meat thermometer). To serve, drizzle each chop with a good helping of the mint pesto over each.

Baked Alaska Recipe

Author: kel15  //  Category: Desserts, Ice Cream


Ice cream is really a traditional Italian treat. Squeezed between homemade sponge cake and a fluffy meringue topping, it turns into a fantastic British dessert: Baked Alaska.

Sponge cake smothered with ice cream and topped with a layer of meringue – baked Alaska is 1 of those retro puddings that everyone loves, even if it’s not chic to say so. But now it’s coming back into fashion – even Michelin starred chef Heston Blumenthal has a recipe for baked Alaska, though he does serve his on dry ice for added drama. It is not the simplest dish to make, but is well worth the effort. This recipe, for a chocolate baked Alaska, which appears here with permission, comes from Masterchef presenter Gregg Wallace’s cookbook Gregg’s Favourite Puddings (Octopus £17.99). Gregg uses chocolate ice cream to give a twist to this traditional pudding – should you can get hold of some very good high quality Italian ice cream it will make the dish even a lot more delicious.

Ingredients (serves 10)

For the Sponge:

* 50g (2oz) unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
* 50g (2oz) caster sugar
* 1 egg
* 40g (1 ½ oz) self-raising flour
* 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
* 15g (½oz) cocoa powder
* 2 tablespoons coffee flavoured liqueur

For the Topping:

* 1 litre (1 ¾ pint) round tub chocolate ice cream
* 250g (8oz) plain chocolate, broken into pieces
* 75g (3oz) unsalted butter
* 4 egg whites
* 250g (8oz) caster sugar
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