lunedì 24 febbraio 2014


Appetizer - Lactose and gluten free

6 eggs, hard boiled
1 can Italian tuna in olive oil (or high quality one)
3-4 Italian anchovy fillets, in olive oil (or 1 1/2 tbsp anchovy paste)
2 tbsp Italian capers, packed in salt and rinsed
1/2 cup mayonnaise (or more, depending on need)

Put the eggs in cold water and bring to boil, then cook for 8-10 minutes depending on the size.

Drain the tuna from the oil and smash with a fork.

When the eggs are done, drain them from the hot water and cool them under cold water. Cut them in half lengthwise and let them cool down completely. Carefully remove the yolk.

Blend together yolk, anchovies, capers with half of the mayonnaise. Transfer to a bowl, add tuna and the remaining mayonnaise; mix well to create a smooth cream.

Use this cream to stuff the eggs. Refrigerate until it's time to serve them.

- You could add fresh, chopped parsley to the tuna cream.
- For a smoother cream, blend tuna with alla other ingredients.
- Adding some wine vinegar to the water when you cook the eggs will prevent the exit of the albumen during the cooking.
- This recipe is gluten and lactose free

giovedì 20 febbraio 2014

How to prepare Italian Carnival fritters: Crogetti and Crostoli

Here is the video on how to prepare crogetti and crostoli, 2 of the million fritters prepared in Italy during carnival time.... The written version is here below.

lunedì 17 febbraio 2014


Dessert - Traditional - Lactose free
These are two of the typical fritters made during carnival time in Italy!!!!

For crostoli:
1 1/3 cups 00 Italian flour
1 extra large egg
1 tbsp Italian extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp Italian white wine vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp grappa

For crogetti:
2 cups 00 Italian flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp baking powder
2/3 shot grass of vin santo (we used limoncello here)
grated lemon zest (2/3 - 1 lemon)

Oil to fry
confectioner's sugar

1 Start working on the crogetti.

In a bowl, quickly mix flour (sifted with baking powder), sugar and lemon zest, then add eggs and vin santo. Mix a little more to minimize the "mess".

Transfer on a floured surface and knead until you obtain a smooth dough: it will be really sticky, so keep your hands and surface floured.

Wrap in FLOURED plastic wrap and let it rest for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

2 In the meantime, get your crostoli started.

Mix sifted flour and sugar in a bowl, then create a well and add egg, oil, vinegar and grappa; mix all ingredients then transfer onto a surface and knead until you obtain a smooth dough.

You may need 1 extra tbsp of oil and grappa, if your dough is too dry. Wrap in plastic and let rest for 30 minutes.

3 Remove crogetti dough from the refrigerator and roll it with a rolling pin to about 1/4" thick. Do this onto floured plastic wrap (you can check my video to see how I do it), always dusting with flour so the pin won't stick too much.

Dust with flour again and cover with some more wrap. Set aside, until ready to fry.

4 Get back to crostoli

Roll out as thin as possible, if you use a pasta machine, go to the thinnest possible.

Cut dough in squares, make three cuts in the squares and have sides fold into the external cuts.

5 Warm up olive oil in a deep saucepan and fry them.

Crogetti will puff up in the oil, thanks to the baking powder. Turn them once or twice, to get them golden on both sides. Try not to have your oil too hot or they won't cook inside without burning the outside.

Crostoli, being very thin, it won't take long, flip them once or twice in order to become golden on both sides. I usually start with crogetti, but you can do as you please.

Transfer them on paper towel to absorb excess oil, then arrange on a platter and sprinkle with confectioner's sugar.

These quantities will make about 40/50 pieces each, depending on thickness and size.

- Vinegar will NOT be tasted, it will only give more crispness.
- The thinner you roll crogetti out, the faster the frying will be (absorbing even less oil).
- Don't keep your crogetti too thick or they may not cook completely.
- They are both lactose free (if you don't use milk).
- If you are interested in Crogetti only, follow steps 1-3-5; if you are interested in Crostoli only, follow steps 2-4-5

lunedì 10 febbraio 2014

How to prepare bucatini all'amatriciana

Here's the video of our weekly recipe: we hope you'll try it!!!!



1 lb Italian Bucatini
4 oz pancetta, diced
1 14-oz can Italian peeled San Marzano tomatoes, roughly chopped, with their sauce
4 tbsp pecorino romano, grated
1 pinch hot pepper flakes
1/4 cup dry white wine

Bring a big pot (better taller than wider) with water to a boil.

In the meantime put a big saucepan on high heat and sautee the pancetta with hot pepper flakes for about 2 minutes, than add wine and let the alcohol evaporate.

Add tomatoes, lower the heat to medium, cover with a lid and cook for about 10 more minutes.

When the water boils, add salt (Italian coarse sea salt is better, because you'll use less) and pasta; cook for 8-10 minutes.

Drain pasta and reserve a few tablespoons of the cooking water; toss the pasta in the skillet with the sauce and sautee for a couple minutes. If the sauce is too thick, add some of the reserved cooking water. You can also take it out of the water as I do in the video, and transfer directly into the saucepan: this way, most likely, there will be enough humidity on the pasta.

Serve drizzled with grated pecorino romano.

This recipe serves 4 people.

- This recipe is the original from Amatrice, town in Rieti province (not far from Rome) and should be prepared with guanciale (cured pork cheek). I've never been able to find it here in the U.S. so I prepared it with pancetta. Also, this pancetta is the rolled one, then diced at the source: the actual pancetta should be flat (like bacon but way less fat).
- I like onion, so I added 1/4 cup of roughly chopped onions, that I sauteed with pancetta and hot pepper flakes at the beginning.
- In case your pancetta is not too fat, use 1 tbsp Italian extra virgin olive oil, I did it
- Always cook pasta al dente, NEVER overcook it: it will raise your blood sugars more and it will be more difficult to digest.
- If you don't like pecorino, you can use Parmigiano reggiano (even though the purists will not like it ;-))

lunedì 3 febbraio 2014

How to prepare pork chop pizzaiola style

and here is the video of our weekly recipe!! We hope you'll give it a try... the written version is in the post here below



Entree - Lactose and gluten free

3 pork chops, about 1/2" thick (at room temperature)
1 14-oz can of Italian peeled San Marzano tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 cup Italian strained tomatoes
2 tbsp Italian black olive spread
1/3 cup red wine (I used Merlot)
3 anchovy fillets
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp oregano
2 tbsp olive oil

For an even cooking, have your meat at room temperature.

In a big saucepan put olive oil, anchovies and garlic. Sautee them for a couple of minutes (there will be a lot of sputtering ;-) ), then, add tomatoes, stir in olive spread and cook for another couple of minutes.

Add wine and, as soon as the sauce starts boiling, add the chops too. Lower to medium heat and cover with a lid. Flip chops once during cooking. The cooking time depends on how thick the chops are.

Serve immediately with the sauce.

This recipe serves 3

- This sauce is also perfect for pasta, especially if you have too much.
- You can add Italian capers packed in salt and rinsed, if you like them. Add them to the sauce together with olive spread.
- You can substitute olive spread with Italian dried black olives and anchovy fillets with 1 tbsp of anchovy paste.