Sicilian fennel Salad

fennel_saladLong time since my last post. First of all I want to thank Seema (here her blog http://www.coffeemakerslist.com) for all the love and support she showed me, pushing me to come back. Since we moved in Germany (around November), I had so much colon-pain every afternoon till nights, which often turned out into an emergency bathroom call. Since 7th April I kind of changed my everyday nutrition into a more “veganish” way of eating, I still eat fish though. The reason was mainly my pain, which now is reduced significantly. I would say that 90% of time I am fine. Anyway long story short: I got kind of depressed and had a lack of creativity since now milk, eggs, cheese and other stuff don’t belong our fridge anymore. But now I am slowly rearrange my everyday meals…

This recipe is a traditional recipe, very very refreshing, you can make it completely vegan skipping anchovies. Some family serves it at the very end of the meal, to “wash” your mouth thanks to the citrus and help digestibility through fennel nutrition properties or could be served between two important and heavy courses to lighten them up.

Time: 15 minutes + 10 resting

Ingredients: 

  • 4 orange ( better quality without seed)
  • 3 fennel
  • 2 spring onions
  • 10 black olives
  • oregano, salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • fresh parsley
  • Optional: 3-4 anchovies cut in small pieces

1. Cut oranges skin out.: you need to completely remove the white skin part and cut in small chunks.

2. Put orange in a big bowl with spring onions finely cut, 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and oregano.

3. Wash and  remove the external shell of fennels. I like to cut them fine but not too much: I do love the crunchy side of fennel. Add to the bowl with 3 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and some parsley.

4. Add olive( I like to cut them in smaller circle) and *anchovies, which will add some salty background taste.

Let it rest for 10 minute and then taste it:  the orange sweetness should be in contrast with the raw spicy hint of spring onions. Now you can adjust with more pepper and salt if needed.

Buon Appetito!!!

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My Sicilian Pesto ~ Recipe

sicilian_pestoAs you’ll read below I wrote a general name as “salty cheese”, because now that I live abroad, I know how hard is to find all Italian cheese, such us ‘ricotta salata‘ or ‘primosale” etc, so I simply adapted this recipe with any kind of salty cheese I am able to find. I tried with Feta, and it taste amazing!This recipe is inspired by the famous ‘pesto alla trapanese‘, but I changed it a little bit to my own taste. Trapani is a beautiful sea city in the west Sicily.

Easy and quick, with few ingredients.This is my favorite dressing of a quick pasta recipe ever! Yumm… In this picture I was using ‘spinach pasta’, but with a regular kind of pasta it is as tasty.

Note: You will need an electric chopper/blender.

Time:  7 minutes

Ingredients:  [ for 2 person]

  • 1 big tomato or
  • 50 gr any salty cheese ( better of course is with ‘ricotta salata‘..but also Feta is good)
  • 15 leaves fresh basil
  • 2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • pepper ( good amount)
  • pine nuts (20 gr ca.)
  • almonds (6 -7) ( you can skip them)

1. Just toss everything in the blender and push the bottom!

2.Keep always one glass of boiling water from your pasta and add it in the sauce in order to make it creamier.

Buon appetito!!!

 

Russian Salad ~ Recipe

russian_saladIn Italy we call this recipe ‘Russian salad’, but now that I live in Germany I found out that here it is called just ‘potatoes salad’. However, the taste is quite different.  We use to make this dish as starter during holidays, for example for Christmas or New Years Eve, because it is easy to bring to someone’s else home and because it is usually presented scenic decorated with tons of pickles and more mayo on the top. I saw many time this salad adorned as porcupine, with carrots stick as spines.

This is my version of this recipe: the common recipe among Italians include also tuna and more mayonnaise. I like to put also a lot of fresh basil and one green apple inside, to give a more “summer” touch and freshness to the dish. Just adapt the recipe to your own taste :))

Little advice: this recipe is good and convenient to be prepared one day before being served.

Time: prep 1 hour + at least 2 hours resting

Ingredients:  for  15 portions

  • 1 ½ boiled potatoes
  • 1 fresh cucumber
  • 1 green apple
  • 250 gr frozen peas
  • 250 gr ( 1 jar) pickled carrots
  • 250 gr ( 1 jar) pickled celery
  • fresh basil
  • pepper, salt
  • 1 tube light mayonnaise

1. Let’s start peeling and washing the potatoes. Bring them to boil til they’re fully cooked. Boil also your frozen peas. You can always use a can of peas, but I find the taste not the same.

2. In the meanwhile, wash your pickles to get rid of extra vinegar in it. Peel, wash and cut in tiny cubes the fresh cucumber and the green apple. Mix everything together in a big bowl with mayonnaise and little pepper.

3. When your potatoes and peas cooled down for a while, add also them together with a lots of fresh basil leaves. Be carefully while stiring not to smash too much your potatoes.

Keep in fridge for at least two hours. It always better to take it out at least one hour before your guests come in.

Buon appetito!

Rice Salad ~ Recipe

rice_saladTime: 20

ingredients:

The ingredients quantity can be altered up to your taste. You can also skip some ingredients you don’t like and adjust to your own favorite pickles. Each family has its own mix of ingredients in Italy, this is my daddy’s recipe.

  • 500 gr rice ( short grain one)
  • 20 cherry tomatoes
  • tuna can ( 150 gr)
  • 20 green olives
  • roasted peppers 400 gr ( I usually buy them ready to be eaten)
  • peas can ( 280 gr)
  • corn can ( 200 gr)
  • oregano and fresh basil
  • 3 spoons olive oil
  • 1 spoon balsamic vinegar

1. Boil the water with some salt in it and cook the rice following the directions in the box. Arborio or Carnaroli rice usually takes about 20 min to be fully cooked.

2. In the meanwhile, open all the cans and toss what they contained in a strainer and wash everything with cold water. Grab a big bowl and cut the tomatoes, peppers and olives in smaller pieces. Seasons everything with some oregano and fresh basil,3 spoons olive oil and 1 spoon balsamic vinegar. Add the rice, mix everything and it’s ready!

If you keep the bowl inside the fridge, it will last up to thee days without problems.

Buon appetito!