Food & Wine

Meat

Chicken legs with Barbera grapes

Not as unusual as this recipe may seem. meat and grapes perfectly bind together. For this recipe, the grape used is Barbera. Barbera is an ancient Italian grape dated back to 17th century; naturally high in acidity with  strong black cherry flavors. For its acidity, the flavor must be balanced with a little honey and sweet wine or liqueur during cooking. Obviously you can replace Barbera with any other type of grapes. If your grapes are sweet, simply remove the honey from the ingredients.

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Ingredients for 2 persons:

4 chicken legs

800 gr Barbera grapes (oviously you can choose any other type of grapes. If your grapes are very sweet, remove the honey from the ingredients) Barbera grapes is an ancient Italian grape dated back to 17th century; naturally high in acidity with strong black cherry flavors

Fresh thyme – Fresh sage – salt – pomegranate seeds

Half glass pomegranate liqueur (or alternatively  half a glass of red sweet wine)

1 tbsp honey

4 tbsp olive oil

1 teaspoon corn flour

Method:

Preheat oven 200°C / 392°F

1.Heat  4 tbsp  oil in a non stick pan.  Add the chicken legs and cook until browned all around. Add the salt.

2. Add the grapes to the skillet, the herbs, the pomegranate liqueur (or alternatively  half a glass of red sweet wine) and 1 tbsp of honey over the grapes.

3. Bake in the preheated oven for 50 min.

4. When ready  transfer the chicken to plates. Filter the liquid from the pan, add 1 teaspoon of corn flour and boil (in a small saucepan) for 1-2 min until it becomes a creamy and glossy sauce. Pour on the chicken legs. Decorate with fresh herbs and pomegranate seeds.

Serve with fresh Barbera wine

 

See step by step the gallery below

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Goat Leg Oven Roasted with Hasseback Potatoes

The simplest and easiest recipe with goat meat. The simpler it is, the more it retains its flavor. Only herbs, vegetables and very little olive oil make this dish a real delicacy.

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Ingredients

  • 2 legs of lamb about 1.5 -2 kgr
  • 1 bulb garlic
  •  bunch of rosemary
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 onions
  • potatoes
  • olive oil

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C / 392°F

  2. Use a small, sharp knife to make some  slits all over the lamb. Peel two garlic cloves and slice them into shards. Roughly squash the remaining garlic and put into the bottom of a large roasting tin.

  3. Push a few slivers of garlic and small sprigs of rosemary down into each slit in the lamb and season with plenty of salt and pepper.

  4. Prepare the Hasselback potatoes *
  5. Put the carrots, the onions and the potatoes into the roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Lay the lamb on top and roast in the preheated oven for about 60 min , until cooked to your liking.

  6. When cooked, remove the lamb from the oven and transfer to a board. Cover with foil and leave to rest for 15- 20 minutes.

 

*Hasselback potatoes. See how to cut them step by step here>> https://enogastronomista.com/tag/hasselback-potatoes/

 

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Steak Grilled Over Fire

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients for the steaks: 

2 boneless beef steaks 6 – 7 cm thick

salt + oregano mix

Ingredients for the dressing:

3 tbsp mayonnaise – 3 tbsp extra virgin oil – 1 lemon juice and lemon jest (In a glass jar add all ingredients together, cover tightly and shake)

Method:

  • Remove the steak from the refrigerator.  Let it reach room temperature — around 1 hour.
  • Cut outer edges of fat on steaks, diagonally at 4-5cm intervals with a knife.  Use a paper towel to absorb the moisture from the meat.  Dry meat forms the best crust.
  •  Sprinkle the mix of salt and oregano over the steaks into each sides.  Massage well all over the meat.
  •  Build  up the fire until you can have a deep coal bed large enough to cook your steaks on.  (About the size of your grill rack). 
  • Set the steaks on the grill.  Let them sear on one side,  once it’s acquired the Maillard reaction* color golden brown.  After 7 min flip it,  let it do the same on the other side.  (For thinner steaks, about 3 – 4 minutes per side for medium rare it’s ok, but a 6 cm steak takes at least 7 minutes) 
  • Remove the steak from the heat, cover it with aluminum foil, and let rest for at least 3-4 minutes. This tip will allow the juices (myoglobin)  to redistribute into the meat.

Serve with lettuce salad,  top with the dressing.

Recommended wine: Chianti Clasicco. Typical Tuscan Red Wine – DOCG – Controlled and Guaranteed Denomination of Origin. 


 


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Tips, tricks & info’s

  • The blood red color liquid in the steak is not blood at all. It’s myoglobin, a protein that only found in muscle tissue and delivers oxygen to an animal’s muscles; contains a red pigment- which why muscle tissue is red.  As a steak is cooked, the myoglobin darkens- which is why the more “well done” the meat is, the grayer it looks. So rare* meat isn’t bloody, it is just cooked to a lower temperature
  • *Rare. This refers to a steak that is been cooked for a very short period of time — leaving the centre  red in colour. It’s just a stage up from raw meat — but cooked on the outside. Steak doesn’t contain parasites that chicken and pork do — eating it rare doesn’t pose any health risks
  • *The Maillard reaction is a chemical reaction between an amino acid and a reducing sugar, usually requiring the addition of heat. Like caramelization, it is a form of non-enzymatic browning.

 

  • You can use a digital instant-read meat thermometer.  Check the temperature of the steak while it’s still on the grill. Grill the steak to your desired taste:

55°Celsius (130°F) for rare

57°Celsius (135°F) medium-rare

63°Celsius (145°F) medium

65,5 Celsius (150°F) medium well

and 71° Celsius (160°F) for well done.

 

 


Wild Boar Ragu’ cooked in clay pot with mushrooms, Greek olives & Gragnano pasta / Αγριογουρουνο ραγου με μανιταρια, μαυρες ελιες και ζυμαρικα Νοτιου Ιταλιας (Gragnano village)

 

Wild Boar is a natural meat very low in bad cholesterol, low in sodium and an excellent source of monounsaturated fats and zinc. No added hormones, no antibiotics, no steroids, no additives.

Very high in proteins. Proteins are made up of amino acids. Our body use them to build and maintain our bones, muscles, cartilage skin and blood. Protein is also what the body uses to repair damaged tissue. The benefit of wild boar meat is it contains ALL the essential amino acids (proteins) our body requires.

Wild boar is rich in Iron, Selenium,  Zinc. Rich also in Thiamine (B1), Riboflavin (B2) Niacine (B3) ,Vitamine B6. Our body does not produce these vitamins naturally so they must be obtained from the food we eat. These vitamins are used by our bodies to convert the food we consume into energy. This improves our metabolism. A person’s nervous system and brain function are also dependent on these vitamins beacause they improve our immune systems, help regulate our moods and reduce stress.

 

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 INGREDIENTS:

  • 500 g wild boar
  •  Gragnano pasta or other of your choice
 Marinade
  • 1 onion peeled and halved
  • 1 carrot washed and cut into large pieces
  • 1 celery stalk washed and cut into large pieces
  • bay & rosemary leaves
  • 2 tsp juniper berries
  • 1 lt red wine 
For the sauce
  • 2 lt tomato passata 
  • 1 onion peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 carrot washed and finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk washed and finely chopped
  • 3-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 glasses red wine (room temperature)
  • salt 

METHOD:

Instructions for marinade:
  1. Wash the wild boar meat, cut it into pieces. Put it in a large bowl.

  2. Add the onion (peeled and cut in quarters)  the carrot and the celery in large pieces,  the bay leaves, the rosemary, the juniper berries.

  3. Cover with red wine and mix.

  4. Cover the container with plastic wrap or a lid and allow to stand in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

  5. Once the necessary time has passed, drain the meat and eliminate the wine, the vegetables and the herbs.

How to make the ragu:
  1. Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan or skillet and fry very slightly the garlic, carrot, celery and onion

  2. Add the wild boar meat and brown it on all sides.

  3. Add the red wine (3 glasses), lower the flame and cook for about 10 minutes so the alcohol can evaporate.

    4. Add the tomato pulp, a pinch of salt  and cook with the flame reduced to a minimum for about 1.5-2 hours. Stir occasionally and add some  water if the sauce seems dry.

    After 2 hours, cook the pasta al dente, add the paccheri pasta into the ragu’ and mix carefully. Serve immediately.

     

     

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    GRAGNANO PASTA

The first secret of this amazing pasta is the land where the wheat is cultivated. Situated at the foot of Monte Lattari, Gragnano village (near Naples/Campania) benefits from a microclimate made of the right mix of  dry wind from the mountain, sun, and humidity from the sea. It was for this reason that, in the 18th century, the king of Napoli decided that only two places were suitable to cultivate the wheat for the rest of the population: Naples and Gragnano. The pasta also must be made by mixing durum wheat with the calcium-poor water of Monti Lattari.

The second secret is the carefully-developed process, which continues to be regulated by a strict standard of production. In 2013, the European Union declared PGI (Protected Geographical Indication): the pasta made under the name “Pasta di Gragnano” must be produced in a legally defined area that still corresponds to the territory indicated by the king of the Napoli about two centuries ago.

Finally, the dough must be extruded through rough bronze forms and, once it has taken shape, dry at low temperatures in the mountain air. The result of this long and traditional process is one of the finest pastas in the world.

excerpt from the article “WHY PASTA DI GRAGNANO IS SO DELICIOUS”  (Eataly)

 

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Wild Boar Ribs with Barbeque Caramelized Sauce

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Ingredients:

  • 1,5 -2 kg wild boar ribs
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup honey
  • sweet paprika (optional)
  • barbeque sauce of your choice

Method:

  1. Brush and massage the ribs with the brown sugar and let sit for 15 minutes.
  2. Next massage the meat with the honey and sweet parika.
  3. Seal the container and let marinate in the fridge overnight
  4. Place the meat into a oven tray  lined with parchment paper. Seal it with alluminiun foil and (slow) cook the ribs at 160°C for 90 minutes.
  5. At the 90-minute mark, brush them with your barbeque sauce
  6. Return to the oven for another hour. Brush them frequently with the bbq sauce (every half hour it’s ok,  but you can repeat it every 15 min too)
  7. Set your grill on low, brush  the ribs one more time with the bbq sauce then place ribs on grill . Let the ribs cook a minute or two so the sauce can caramelize.

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See step by step in the gallery below

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Lemon, Garlic, Greek black olives Roasted Butterflied Chicken

 

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Ingredients: 1 chicken 1,5 kg , 3-4 lemons sliced into 2 cm rounds , 2 bulbs garlic halved horizontally, black Greek olives, 2 tbs olive oil , salt.

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 220°C (425°F).
  2. Arrange the garlic and lemon on an oven tray . Top with the chicken, breast-side up.
  3. Brush the chicken with the olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
  4. Roast for 50 – 60 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
  5. Towards the end of cooking add the black olives

TIPS
 Butterflying a chicken allows it  to roast more quickly and evenly *
 Placing the chicken on a ‘bed’ of lemon and garlic infuses it with amazing flavour as it roasts.

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*How to butterfly a chicken. Step by step guide here:

How To Butterfly A Chicken | Step by Step Guide

 

 

 

 

 

 


Rigatoni Pasta Pie

Trasform an Italian classic pasta dish into an attractive cheesy pasta pie. Just stuff rigatoni with sauce, layer with mozzarella and bake it for few minutes. Nothing simpler, nothing more delicious & succulent. Bon appétit!3-2018-05-1431-2018-05-14

Ingredients:

500 gr rigatoni pasta

500 gr ground beef meat

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 bottle (500ml) tomato sauce
  • Butter, for pan
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 250gr grated mozzarella cheese

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F (200°C). Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add salt. Add pasta; cook until slightly underdone.
    Drain, rinse in cold water, and drain. Toss pasta with 1 tbs oil to coat.
    Set aside.
  2.  Heat 1 tbs oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add meat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Cook 2 minutes more.
    Add tomatoes; simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes.
  3. Butter a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan. Toss pasta with Parmesan cheese. Tightly pack pasta into pan, standing each piece on end.
  4.  Spread meat sauce on top of pasta, pushing it into holes. Bake 15 minutes. Sprinkle mozzarella on top.
    Bake until cheese is pale golden, 10 to 15 minutes more.
    Remove from oven, and let stand 15 minutes.
    Run a knife around edge to loosen; unmold.
    Cut into wedges & serve with fresh Rosso di Aprilia DOC red wine

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Beer roasted pork knuckles / Hasselback potatoes

Pork knuckle is the joint between the tibia/fibula and the metatarsals of the foot of a pig, where the foot was attached to the hog’s leg. It is the portion of the leg that is neither part of the ham proper nor the foot or ankle, but rather the extreme shank end of the leg bone.  This cut of meat can be cooked with potatoes, greens or in sauces. Beer roasted knuckle is easy, super tasty and juicy/ fork tender dish with a very crispy and flavory skin. Serve it hot with some delicious golden Hasselback potatoes. 1-Snapseed8

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Ingredients: 1 knuckle/person (about 1 kg) – 2bottles dark beer

salt -pepper (optional) – thym (optional) – grated garlic (2 cloves/knuckle) – 2 onions/knuckle,  salt, black pepper (optional)

Method: 1. Peel and slice into rounds 2 onions, lay them in a roasting pan

2. Season knuckles with salt , black pepper, grated garlic, thym. Sit the knuckles on top of the onions. Add a cup of beer (300 ml). Cook in the oven for 30 min (220°C)

[Meanwhile prepare the hasselback potatoes as you desire (empty or with bacon/cheese)]

4. After 30 min pour another cup of beer (300ml).  Place the potatoes around pork knuckle. Roast an additional 1h and lower the temperature to 180°C. After the skin has started to crisp, baste with beer about every 30 minutes or so

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Hasselback potatoes

Ingredients:

 For the empty version: Potatoes, olive oil or melted butter (2 tbsp/ potato) , 2 tbs/potato grated pecorino or parmesan, 2 tbsp/potato dry bread crumbs (optional)

In a bowl mix together grated pecorino romano or parmesan or another grated cheese of your choice,  seasoned dry bread crumbs (optional),  salt , black pepper (optional) , thym (optional)

With cheesy bacon filling: Potatoes, olive oil or melted butter (2 tbsp/potato), bacon,

cheese, grated pecorino or parmesan, salt, pepper (optional), thym (optional)

Method: see below the gallery step by step

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Roast beef with mushrooms & white wine sauce

Roast beef . Great for a Sunday lunch and why not for a Christmas menu’. Enjoy a juicy and tender roast without feeling guilty.  Low in fat , rich in proteins, vit B12 & iron.  The secret is in the time cooked. 30 min at 200°C / 392°F

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        Ingredients for the beef:   

  • 1.2kg prime beef fillet
  • Sea salt
  •  A handful of rosemary leaves
  • 10-15 garlic cloves
  • olive oil – salt
  • 2tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp mustard
  • 500 gr mushrooms of your choice

Ingredients for the sauce: 

1 glass white wine – 500 ml heavy cream – 1 tbsp butter – 200gr grated parmesan

 

Method:

Preheat the oven to 200°C/392°F/  Take the beef out of the fridge 30 minutes before you want to cook it and allow it to come up to room temperature. Salt generously

1.Mix together chopped rosemary leaves and garlic witha tbs of olive oil. Stir to combine and reserve

2.Heat a non-stick frying pan with extra virgin olive oil. add mushrooms , salt , pepper and saute’ for 4-5 min or until tender

3.Remove mushrooms from the skillet.

4.Heat the same skillet and when is hot add the beef. Sear for 2-3 min on each side until browned all over

5. Brush roast with mustard , then spread herb-garlic mixture all over

5 Transfer the beef to the skillet over mushrooms, add the butter on the top of the beef and place it in the oven. Roast for 30 min for medium rare

Transfer the fillet to a warm platter. Cover with a double layer of tin foil  . Leave to rest for 10 min. Serve it warm or at room temperature with the mushrooms and some wine sauce. Slice it thickly and overlap the slices on a serving platter

WHITE WINE SAUCE : In the same skillet used to roast the beef and the mushrooms, add the wine and simmer for about 4minutes until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the butter & the cream .Bring to a boil .add the parmesan or  another cheese of your choice such blue cheese, grana etc. Reduce heat to low and simmer until thickened.

 

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Herb crusted rack of lamb

Extremely inviting , flavorful & delicious rack of lamb. Green crust outside, juicy pink inside. A colorful idea for Easter. Incredibly easy recipe in 4 simply steps. Enjoy!1-CARNE58-002

 

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Ingredients: 2 large racks of lamb cut in half with their bones per serving

salt – ground pepper – olive oil – 2 tablespoons Dijon or other mustard of your choice

For the crust:

  • 1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • sprig of parsley
  • sprig of mint
  • sprig of thyme
  • sprig of rosemary
  • sprig of basil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • CRUST: Place all ingredients for the crust  into a blender and pulse several times until is homogeneous green. Set aside.

Method:

Preheat oven to 200°.

  1.  Sprinkle lamb with salt and pepper. Heat some olive oil in a large non stick skillet over medium-high heat.

    Add 1 lamb rack to pan and “seal it “. Cook few minutes (about 4min) on each side enough to develop color. Remove lamb from pan. Repeat with remaining lamb rack.

    2. Brush Dijon mustard over every side of each rack ,

    3. Then press green breadcrumb mixture all over.

    4.Transfer the pan with the lamb into the oven and bake for 7-8 min.

    Let stand 10 min, then cut into chops. Serve with herb  roasted baby potatoes, stuffed mushrooms and a fresh glass of Leone Rosso wine, doc Orcia 2010 (By Donatella’s Cinelli Colombini factory). Enjoy a happy Easter!

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Marinated Greek lamb souvlaki

Delicious , succulent , crispy outside – juicy pink inside – lamb souvlaki previously marinated in olive oil , oregano , thyme, onion, lemon or lime  juice, coriander , garlic , salt and pepper

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Ingredients for 3 souvlaki 

250 gr lamb leg or shoulder cut into 2cm cubes

1 red onion

1 red pepper

Marinade: Olive oil,  1 lemon, mediterranean herbs such oregano,  thyme, mint, coriander. Onion,  garlic, salt & ground pepper

Method:

  1. Cut the meat into 2 cm cubes
  2. In a large bowl mix all ingredients for marinade.
  3.  Put the lamb pieces into the bowl with the marinade, cover with a plastic wrap. Refrigerate the lamb for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight.
  4. After 4 hours (or after one night) peel and cut the onions, chop the peppers into 2cm pieces and assemble the lamb souvlaki alternating lamb, wedges of onion and pieces of pepper.
  5. Brush the lamb with olive oil and cook over hot grill for about 8-10 minutes,  until cooked to your liking.
  6. Serve with hot Greek pita bread,  tzatziki sauce and fresh Retsina of Attica “Kourtaki” (Greek resinated – with pine resin – wine)

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MEATBALLS WITH APRICOT DIPPING SAUCE

Great for an appetizer or served with cheese , rice, toasted bread, fry or oven roasted potatoes, these  meatballs are served with a sweet apricot, mustard & chilli dipping sauce. 1-carne38

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INGREDIENTS FOR THE MEATBALLS:

1/2 kg ground beef, 300 gr white bread previously soaked in milk and squeezed dry, 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, 1 egg , salt , pepper

1. Heat oven to 200°C /400°F. Line a pan with parchment paper

2. In large bowl, mix all ingredients. Shape mixture with your hands into meatballs. Place in pan.

3. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes 

INGREDIENTS FOR THE APRICOT  SAUCE

1 can (350gr) apricot jam

2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

  1. In a large skillet mix  all ingredients together
  2. Cook the mixture for about 1 min on low heat
  3. Add (previously cooked) meatballs in a single layer and cook 2 minutes.

Serve immediately. This mixture is suitable for dipping kebabs, meat or veggie balls and it also makes a great sauce for burgers. Enjoy!

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BLUEBERRY BARBECUE MEATBALLS

Simply to make. Glazed , sticky, oven roasted meatballs with a super easy sweet bbq sauce. They require only 2 ingredients. Jam & a barbecue sauce of your choice. I have used blueberry  jam because i had it from last summer but really work great with whatever preserve you have. If you desire you can add chilli  or tabasco , you can add more than 100 gr bbq sauce. Depends on your personal taste. I use more jam because i like  sweet flavors but if you desire more bbq sauce you can add it. No limits for your fantasy. Serve hot with cheese, fry potatoes , rice or simply as an appetizer.1-carne361-carne43-001

INGREDIENTS FOR THE MEATBALLS:

1/2 kg ground beef, 300 gr white bread previously soaked in milk and squeezed dry, 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, 1 egg , salt , pepper

1. Heat oven to 200°C /400°F. Line a pan with parchment paper

2. In large bowl, mix all ingredients. Shape mixture with your hands into meatballs. Place in pan.

3. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes 

INGREDIENTS FOR THE BBQ SAUCE

1 can (350gr) blueberry jam

100 gr barbecue sauce of your choice

  1. In a large skillet mix well blueberry jam & barbecue sauce
  2. Cook the mixture on low heat until bubbly and looks like dark caramel
  3. Add (previously cooked) meatballs in a single layer. Stir to coat completely
  4. Let cook -always on low heat – for about 4-5 minutes

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Roast leg of lamb with mint sauce / Ψητο αρνισιο μπουτακι γαλακτος με γλυκοξινη σαλτσα δυοσμου

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Ingredients for the sauce :                                  

  • 1 bunch mint (chopped)                               2 kg quality leg of lamb,  salt
  • 200 ml white wine vinegar
  • 200 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 tbs brown sugar

Method:  In a large bowl mix together all ingredients for the sauce ( chopped mint, vinegar, olive oil . brown sugar) Stir to combine.

Score the leg with a knife. With a pastry brush, rub part of the mint mixture all over the leg. Sprinkle all over with salt. Refrigerate for 1 hour to marinate.

Preheat oven to 200°C / 400°F . Roast for 1 hour – 1 h &15 min for a mediun rare.

Serve with the mint sauce and a fresh Merlot wine.

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Wild boar ragù with pappardelle/Ραγου αγριογουρουνο με παπαρδελες

A traditional recipe of Tuscany (a region in central Italy) is wild boar ragù with pappardelle (Ragù di cinghiale con pappardelle).

Boars are highly widespread throughout the region, especially in the Maremma, where it has became a local symbol. In Tuscany, wild boar hunting is both a tradition and a passion.

With pasta or in a stew, there are countless Tuscan specialties made with wild boar and you can taste them all at many food festivals (sagre del cinghiale), maybe accompanied by some other local delicacies, such as “tortelli” or “pappardelle” . Here  a 4 steps recipe from “Jamie’s Italy” cook book by Jamie Oliver. Enjoy with a fresh red “Chianti lo Sterpo”

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Sugo di Cinghiale di Mercatello (Jamie Oliver recipe)

2 1/4 lb wild boar cubed, trimmed of fat and sinew
2 large carrots, peeled
2 onions, peeled
6 stalks of celery
a handful of sage leaves
1 tsp juniper berries
1 bottle red wine
4 pieces of pancetta, black olives
2 – 3 small dried chilies, to taste
1 1 1/2 lb tomato puree
olive oil
sea salt
freshly ground pepper

1.Put the meat into a large sealable bag. Roughly chop half of the carrots, onions, and celery. Add to the meat in the bag. Bash up the sage with the juniper berries and toss with the meat and vegetables.Season with salt and pepper. Pour in half of the bottle of wine, topping up with water if necessary. Seal and place in a large bowl in the refrigerator overnight.

2.Remove the meat from the marinade, discarding the liquid and vegetables. Decide how you wish to serve your sauce and cut the meat accordingly

3.Heat a splash of olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Fry the pancetta and chili until the pancetta is golden and crisp. Chop the remaining carrot, celery, and onion, add to the pan, and cook slowly for 10 to 15 minutes. Turn the heat to high and add the meat to the pan. Cook until nearly all of the liquid has cooked off – this takes some time but will intensify the flavours.

4.Pour in the remaining wine. Stir together and continue cooking until; the liquid has nearly gone, then add the tomato sauce, black olives and a little water (if necessary). Season well with salt and pepper,  turn the heat to low, simmer gently for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, adding more water if the sauce gets too thick.

Cook pappardelle in boiling salted water, drain it, reserving some of the cooking liquid. Toss the pasta with the sauce, adding a little of the reserved cooking liquid. Divide it amongst the plates and sprinkle with Parmesan.   Enjoy with a fresh “Chianti lo Sterpo” red wine from Tuscany.

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A.Put the meat into a large sealable bag. ( I use a large Pyrex glass bowl). Roughly chop half of the carrots, onions, and celery. Add to the meat in the bag. Bash up the sage with the juniper berries and toss with the meat and vegetables.Season with salt and pepper. Pour in half of the bottle of wine, topping up with water if necessary. Seal and place in a large bowl in the refrigerator overnight.

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B.Heat a splash of olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Fry the pancetta and chili until the pancetta is golden and crisp. Chop the remaining carrot, celery, and onion, add to the pan, and cook slowly for 10 to 15 minutes.

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C.Turn the heat to high and add the meat to the pan. Cook until nearly all of the liquid has cooked off – this takes some time but will intensify the flavours.

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D. Pour in the remaining wine. Stir together and continue cooking until; the liquid has nearly gone, then add the tomato sauce, black olives and a little water (if necessary). Season well with salt and pepper, turn the heat to low, simmer gently for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, adding more water if the sauce gets too thick.

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Great food in a typical Florence taverna

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Pistachio crusted rack of lamb /Καρε’ αρνακι με κρουστα φυστικι/ Carrè di agnello in crosta di pistacchi

1-christmas 2015151-christmas 201513-0011-1-Collage191-christmas 201514-0021-christmas 201516Ingredients: 1 rack of lamb , thyme , lavander ,rosemary, salt , black pepper , 1 cup chopped pistachio , 50 gr melted butter , mustard, oil 1 cup

Method: Preheat oven to 400° F (200°C)

1.Mix all herbs (fine chopped) , salt , pepper and melted butter -all together. Season lamb with the mix

2. Heat oil in a large skillet. Cook lamb on all sides until is brown.Take meat off the heat

3.Spread mustard on a rack and put pistachio on top of mustard

4. Bake it until crusty (about 20- 25 min)

Serve with blue potato mash , grated tangerine peel and fresh “Villa Antinori Rosso” wine 1-christmas 201510-001

Blue potato mash

Ingredients: 4 blue potatoes “Vitelotte” , 200 gr Philadelphia cheese,

  100 ml hot milk , herbs , salt 

Method: Place potatoes in a saucepot. Cover with water and bring to boil.

Cook until tender.

Slice the potatoes in half  and remove the peel

Stir in the hot milk , Philadelphia , chopped herbs  and mash everything together well, until you have  a smooth and homogeneous violet mash.  Season to taste

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Chicken à la Facebook :)

pollo-bruciato 1

Ingredients

1.Chicken

2. Wifi connection

Method:

  1. Heat the oven to 400°F
  2. Rub the pan with olive oil.(This prevents the chicken from sticking)
  3. Put the chicken in the pan
  4. Trasfer the chicken to the oven
  5. Log in to Facebook
  6. That’s all! Enjoy! 🙂


Chefs tips and tricks: Remember :You can try the same simply recipe with beef, ragù sauce, muffins, strawberry marmalade, vegetables. There are no limits to your fantasy! Take some great ideas down here. E bon appétit ! 🙂pollo bruciato 4pollo bruciato 2


Greek Moussaka’

1-CUCINA 242-002
1-CUCINA 246 1-CUCINA 245-001 1-20150711_134925Moussaka is an eggplant– (aubergine) or potato-based dish, often including ground meat, in the cuisines of the countries of the former Ottoman Empire, with many local and regional variations.Most versions are based primarily on sautéed aubergine (eggplant) and tomato, usually with minced meat. The Greek version includes layers of meat and eggplant topped with a Béchamel (“white”) sauce, and baked.

Ingredients

Meat sauce

  • 2 pounds ground lamb or beef
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 4 chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • Zest of a lemon
  • 2 Tbsp or more of lemon juice
  • Salt to taste

Bechamel sauce

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

The moussaka

  • 3 large globe eggplants
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 cup grated greek feta cheese
  • Olive oil

Method

Prepare the meat sauce

1 Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and brown the ground meat. By the way, the meat will brown best if you don’t stir it. Add the onions about halfway into the browning process. Sprinkle salt over the meat and onions.

2 Once the meat is browned and the onions have softened, add the garlic, allspice, cinnamon, black pepper, oregano and tomato paste. Mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes.

3 Add the red wine and mix well. Bring the sauce to a simmer, reduce the heat and continue to simmer gently, uncovered for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat. Taste for salt and add more if needed. Add the lemon zest and the lemon juice. Mix well and taste. If the sauce needs more acidity, add more lemon juice.

Set the sauce aside.

Prepare the eggplants

4 Mix the 1/2 cup salt with the 8 cups of water in a large pot or container. This will be the brine for the eggplants.

5 Slice the top and bottom off the eggplants. Cut thick strips of the skin off the eggplants to give them a striped appearance. A little skin on the eggplant is good for texture, but leaving it all on makes the moussaka hard to cut later, and can add bitterness, which you don’t want. (Some moussaka recipes leave the skin on and have you slice the eggplants lengthwise, which is an option if you prefer.) Slice the eggplant into 1/4 inch rounds and drop them into the brine.

6 Let the eggplants sit in the brine 15-20 minutes, then remove them to a series of paper towels to dry. Place a paper towel down on the counter, layer some eggplant on it, then cover with another sheet of paper towel and repeat.

7 To cook the eggplant, broil or grill the rounds. You could also fry the eggplant rounds but they tend to absorb a lot of oil that way. To grill the eggplant rounds, get a grill very hot and close the lid. Paint one side of the eggplant rounds with olive oil and grill 2-3 minutes. When they are done on one side, paint the other side with oil and flip. When the eggplants are nicely grilled, set aside. To broil, line a broiling pan or roasting pan with aluminum foil. Paint with olive oil. Place the eggplant rounds on the foil and brush with olive oil. Broil for 3-4 minutes until lightly browned on one side, then flip them over and broil for a few minutes more. Set aside.

Prepare the béchamel

8 Heat milk in a pot on medium heat until steamy (about 160 degrees). Do not let simmer.

9 Heat the butter in a small pot over medium heat. When the butter has completely melted, slowly whisk in the flour. Let this roux simmer over medium-low heat for a few minutes. Do not let it get too dark.

10 Little by little, pour in the steamy milk, stirring constantly. It will set up and thicken dramatically at first, but keep adding milk and stirring, the sauce will loosen. Return the heat to medium. Add about a teaspoon of salt and the nutmeg. Stir well.

11 Put the egg yolks in a bowl and whisk to combine. Temper the eggs so they don’t scramble when you put them into the sauce. Using two hands, one with a whisk, the other with a ladle, slowly pour in a couple ladle’s worth of the hot béchamel into the eggs, whisking all the time. Slowly pour the egg mixture back into the béchamel while whisking the mixture. Keep the sauce on very low heat, do not let simmer or boil.

Finish the moussaka

12 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Layer a casserole with the eggplant slices (use just half of the slices).

13 Cover the eggplant slices with the meat sauce. Then layer remaining eggplant slices on top of the meat.

14 Sprinkle half the cheese on top. Ladle the béchamel over everything in an even layer. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top.

15 Bake at 350°F for 30-45 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned.

Let the moussaka cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Source: http://www.simplyrecipes.com

Enjoy with fresh Retsina  (Traditional Greek pine-resinated wine)



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