martedì 27 novembre 2012



Pandoro is the other typical Italian cake for Christmas. Its name means "golden bread", it has no fruits and comes with a bag of confectioner's sugar. Its texture is so light that this cake will melt in your mouth.
Prepare this cake at least 1-2 hours before serving it, in order to allow all flavors to combine.

For custard:
4 eggs
4 tbsp Italian 00 flour
4 tbsp sugar
4 cups milk

1 bar dark Italian chocolate (about 3 oz)

1 Pandoro

1 cup crumbled amaretti cookies

1/2 cup chopped almonds

First of all, prepare the custard. Warm milk without letting it boil. In a saucepan, with heavy bottom, combine sugar, flour and eggs, whisking to prevent knots.

On low-medium heat add the warm milk in a slow stream, always whisking and bring to boil, whisking continuously; it will take about 5-8 minutes (the warmer the milk, the quicker the cooking). Never stop stirring, otherwise your custard will stick to the bottom and burn, giving it an unpleasant taste.

Divide the custard evenly in 2 parts, add chocolate to one of them and let it melt. Set aside and allow it to cool down to room temperature.

Mix chopped almonds and crumbled amaretti.

Slice Pandoro horizontally in 6 parts.

Arrange Pandoro bottom on a big serving platter, top with custard and sprinkle with the almond-amaretti mix, top with another slice of pandoro (retaining the shape), chocolate custard, almond-amaretti mix, and repeat until you finish the pandoro slices. End with Pandoro top. Refrigerate until 30 minutes before serving it.

Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar right before serving it (confectioner's sugar is inside the Pandoro box).

- You can use a mascarpone based custard.
- You can mix some sugar-free cocoa powder to the confectioner's sugar and some chopped hazelnuts to the almond-amaretti mix.

mercoledì 21 novembre 2012


Pasta entree - Vegetarian - Lactose and gluten free (see notes at the end)

1 lb Italian fusilli corti bucati
2 slices sword fish, diced
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 14-oz Italian San Marzano peeled tomatoes, roughly crushed
2 tbsp Italian capers, packed in salt, rinsed and squeezed
1/8 cup Italian dry black olives
3 tbsp Italian extra virgin olive oil
Salt, hot pepper flakes

In a large saucepan with lid, over medium-high heat, warm 3 tbsp of olive oil and sautee onion and garlic until onion is translucent, then add sword fish. Sitr and sautee for about 3-4 minutes.

Add wine and let alcohol evaporate. Add tomatoes, capers, olives, salt and hot pepper flakes. Stir, lower heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

In the meantime, bring a large pot of water to boil; when it boils, add salt and pasta, stir and cook until al dente (this shape will take 10 minutes, more or less).

Drain pasta, reserving some of the water, and transfer it to the saucepan with the sauce. Toss well to coat and cook about 2 minutes. If the sauce thickens too much, add some of the reserved water (little by little) to thin it.

Serve immediately, sprinkled with freshly chopped parsley.

This recipe serves 4-6

- You can add 2 anchovy fillets or 2 tsp of anchovy paste, if you like it.
- Don't serve this dish with Parmigiano, please. It would cover the fish flavor.
- If you use Italian corn pasta, this dish will be lactose and gluten free!
- Except for fresh onion parsley and garlic, and swordfish, we carry all other ingredients (we do have a mix of dried garlic, hot pepper flakes and parsley!!)

lunedì 12 novembre 2012


Salad - side dish - lactose and gluten free - vegetarian

1 lb carrots
1 lb potatoes
1 bunch Italian parsley
1/4 cup Italian extra virgin olive oil
1/8 cup Italian balsamic vinegar

Peel potatoes and carrots and boil them until tender. Drain and let cool down.

Slice carrots in thick rounds and transfer in a bowl; cube potatoes and add them to carrots.

Finely chop parsley leaves; in a small bowl combine salt, balsamic vinegar and oil and whisk until salt dissolved and the seasoning is "fluffy".

Sprinkle vegetables with chopped parsley, drizzle with the Italian vinaigrette and toss to coat.

Serve immediately

Serves 8-10 people

- You can wash your potatoes, poke the skin and cook them in the microwave: it will be faster.
- You can use a very good balsamic glaze, instead of a regular balsamic vinegar.
- Don't throw away parsley stems: freeze them and use in a broth or a soup at a later time.
- You can add minced garlic to your dressing, if you like it.

lunedì 5 novembre 2012


Soup - Lactose free (no Parmigiano) - diet

2 cups diced onions
2 cups diced carrots
1 jar Italian super-fine peas, drained and rinsed
6 cups boiling broth, at least
2/3 cup Italian farro
2/3 cup Italian barley
Italian extra virgin olive oil
sage and rosemary, tied together
Grated Parmigiano Reggiano

In a large saucepan with lid, over medium heat, warm 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil and sautee onions and carrots for 2-3 minutes. Then add grains and herbs and stir.

Add 6 cups of hot broth, lower heat to simmer and cover with lid. Cook for about 35 minutes, stirring frequently. Add broth if the soup gets too thick.

Season with salt, if necessary, and add peas. Cook 5 more minutes and serve.

Serve drizzled with very good Italian extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with Parmigiano.

This recipe serves 4-6

- Farro and orzo (the true translation of barley) cook in the same time. If you prefer, you can use tagliatelline or tagliolini (both egg based), instead, and add them to the soup together with the peas.
- You can also add 1/2 cup of Italian peeled, crushed San Marzano tomatoes to your soup (at the beginning)
- We do carry both grains, egg pasta and Italian peas, if you want to try this soup.