Polpette: Italian meet balls

This weekend my sis was at home so sunday I did some italian food to celebrate her arrival, we watched The godfather, of which we know all the lines by heart. The theme of the evening being Italy, I cooked polpette for us. These are Italian meatballs, I hope you like the recipe.

Ingredients:

• 2 slices of stale bread, crust removed, cut into pieces
• 1 cup of milk
• 500g of premium minced beef
• 1 egg
• 1 handful of chopped parsley leaves
• 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
• 40g grated parmesan
• 2 teaspoons of salt
• 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
• 1 brown onion, chopped
• 1 garlic clove crushed with the back of a knife
• 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
• 150 ml of red wine
• 2 cans of crushed tomatoes
• 250ml of water
• 1/4 bell pepper, in one piece
• salt to taste

preparation:

  1. Soak bread in milk for about 10 minutes.
  2. In a bowl, mix the ground beef with 1 egg, salt and pepper, the chopped parsley, the tip of a teaspoon of grated nutmeg and the grated Parmigiano (or Grana Padano). Use a spoon if you fancy touching raw meat, but in my opinion, hands are your best cooking tools.
  3. Squeeze the milk from the bread, add it to the meat mixture and mix.
  4. Using the palm of your hand, roll the polpette the size of small tangerines and set aside in the fridge to firm up for 15 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, sauté the chopped onion and garlic in a little olive oil until the onion is tender and translucent.
  6. Add your meatballs and brown them on both sides, then add 1/2 cup red wine. Let the alcohol evaporate, then compose 1 bay leaf, a piece of green or red pepper (pepper) two cans of tomatoes and water. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer covered for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Adjust with salt and pepper. Add the basil leaves and serve with bread, mash or al dente pasta

A simple and original accompaniment for grilled meats: Zucchini, Corn and Parmesan.

This afternoon, I eat with dad and my grandparents. In the program I prepared a roast chicken and to accompany it instead of the traditional mashed potato I planned this little side dish.

Zucchini, Corn and Parmesan

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 zucchini, diced
  • 1 cup corn kernels, canned or roasted
  • 1/4 tsp. dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. dried thyme
  • Salt and pepper
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, or more

Preparation:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute.
  2. Add zucchini, corn, basil, oregano and thyme. Cook, stirring occasionally, until zucchini is tender and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes;
  3. seasoned with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in lime juice and cilantro. Serve immediately, sprinkled with Parmesan.

Take care of yourself and your loved ones and see you soon!

Zeppoles for an aperitif with friends

Today, with the arrival of sunny days and the desire to get together with friends, I have a salty Zeppole recipe for you for an aperitif, but in my own way. Normally Zeppoles are a kind of salty or sweet Italian donut. My secret to making my donuts tasty is the potato.

Ingredients:

  • 500g potato
  • 2 eggs
  • 7g of dry yeast
  • 80ml of milk
  • 500g flour
  • Anchovies or pitted olives for the stuffing
  • Salt
  • frying oil

Preparation:

  1. Boil the potatoes and mash them once cooled
  2. Add the eggs, yeast, milk, salt and flour.
  3. Knead until you obtain a smooth dough (the more the dough is moist, the softer the Zeppoles will be) it’s up to you to add milk or flour to obtain the desired consistency.
  4. Cover with a tea towel and let it rest for 2 hours until it doubles in size.
  5. Stuff them with anchovies, olives or both (or whatever you want I also do with slices of sausage with herbs) then fry them in the deep fryer for 3 to 4 min.

Enjoy your meal.

Italian almond cookies!

Tonight I’m invited to a little engagement party for one of my best friends. We all had to bring something to eat, I took care of the dessert.

I missed Italy a bit so I was inspired by one of their recipe to create their sweet treats, which I hope will delight my friends as well as your taste buds.

Ingredients:

  • 180 g almond meal or blanched ground almonds
  • 110 g caster / superfine sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon zest (1 lemon)
  • 3 drops natural almond extract (or vanilla extract for me)
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 60 g dried cherries , chopped (or chocolate chips)
  • 2 egg whites , at room temperature (from 2 large eggs)
  • 2 tsp honey

Almond coating:

  • 1 Extra egg white
  • 150 g flaked almonds

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 190°C/375°F (170°C fan). Line 2 trays with baking/parchment paper.
  • Combine Dry Ingredients: Place the almond meal, sugar, zest, almond extract and salt in a bowl. Whisk together until zest and almond extract is evenly distributed. Add the cherries and set aside
  • Beat eggs whites: Using an electric mixer or a whisk, beat the egg whites and honey to soft peaks (Note 5). About 2 minutes on Speed 8 of a handheld beater, or 1 1/2 minutes on Speed 6 of a stand mixer.
  • Fold the beaten egg whites gently into the almond mixture. You will seemingly knock most of the air out of the meringue, that’s ok! (You actually haven’t 🙂 ).

Forming and coating cookies:

  • Place Extra egg white in a small bowl and whisk with a fork until foamy. Place flaked almonds in another bowl.
  • Form 2.5cm/1″ balls: Scoop up about 1 tablespoon of the mixture and shape into a rough ball (2.5cm/1″ ball). I do this using 2 eating spoons – we don’t need perfect balls here.
  • Coat in egg whites: Drop the ball into foamy egg whites. Use 2 forks to turn to coat, then pick up and place in the flaked almonds.
  • Almond coating: Coat cookies with the almonds, pressing them on to cover as completely as you can. Don’t worry if you get some double layers or pieces sticking out – no need to be neat or thorough here!
  • Bake 13 minutes: Place on prepared tray 2.5cm / 1″ apart. Bake for 13-15 minutes until golden brown. Start checking at 12 minutes to be sure the nuts aren’t burning
  • Cool: Transfer to rack to cool completely before serving.
  • Store: Store in an airtight container. They last up to 10 days in a storage container or can be frozen

To serve them, I provided vanilla ice cream

I hope you’ll like it guys!

Italian tomatoes soup

At this moment summer returns, the temperatures rise and soon the garden tomatoes will arrive on our plates.
Here is a fresh entry that will delight your taste buds.


Ingredients :

  • 1 kg of tomatoes
  • 150g of fresh goat cheese
  • Oregano;
  • Sugar
  • Basil leaves
  • Salt and pepper.

Preparation :

Cut the tomatoes in 2 and place them on parchment paper on the baking sheet.

sprinkle generously with oregano and sugar (it will break the acidity of the tomato), add the salt and bake for 40 min at 150 ° if you have a good oven otherwise you can go up to 180 ° (it should not be that ‘they color)

Once cooked mix them in a bowl, add half of the goat cheese and adjust the seasoning as desired. (if the amount of soup seems a bit tight, you can add a little water, but be careful not to dilute it too much otherwise you will lose the benefit of having your tomatoes roasted!)

For the service :

Pour the soup into bowls, add diced fresh cheese and add some basil leaves for the decoration!

Notes :

Traditionally, it is a soup that is eaten either cold or lukewarm. In Italy I have already seen it served with ice cubes, it’s up to you, but it is also very good hot in bad weather.

Easy cooking with Pia and Nilsa: Italian chicken!

It’s been five days since we came back from Italy and yet we miss her already! To console each other and to share some of our trip with our loved ones, Pia and I tried to copy a recipe that we savored over there, and I must say that it is rather well done! ^^
And now I share our recipe, to make you travel too, hoping that you like it.

for 4 people, we will need:

  • 800 g pieces of chicken (thigh)
  • 1 large red pepper (or 2 medium)
  • 600 g peeled and crushed tomatoes (fresh or canned)
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 branch of thyme
  • 1 branch of rosemary
  • 100 g pancetta (or other Italian cold cuts)
  • 1 small glass of white wine (optional)
  • 1 pinch of sugars

Serve with:

  • some fresh basil leaves
  • a little grated Parmesan cheese
  • 400 g pasta

Beforehand:

We will start by preparing the ingredients. First, if you have fresh tomatoes, plum them and remove it, if you do not have access to tomatoes, prefer their canned tomatoes. Let’s take a look at our cloves of garlic. Let’s also cut your peppers into strips.

For cooking:

we cook 1/3 of the pancetta in a casserole with a little olive oil. While cooking it will release a little fat, and become crispy. Then add the chicken pieces in this fat to brown them. If you have taken thighs, put them to the side of the skin to make it look good. Add our onions and garlic, then crushed tomatoes, peppers and finally sugar (which will break the acidity of tomatoes). Let’s come back for ten minutes with thyme and rosemary.

Preheat our oven to 180 degrees and bake for about 1 hour, taking care to put the chicken on top, skin up.

For the service:

Once the sauce has reduced enough, (all must be a little like a jam, a little thick) we return in a hot pan the rest of our Italian sausage to make it very crispy.

Buon appetito!