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Orecchiette alle Cime di Rapa

Bike TripOn the 11th of November, in Italy, San Martino day is celebrated. In commemoration of the holiday, many families hold a big party to officially welcome the fall season. The festivities are accompanied by traditional dishes and samples of vino novello, the new wine of the year. The following orecchiette alle cime di rapa recipe is a classic main course on San Martino day and it comes strait to us from Puglia. For those of you who have been on one of our Puglia Biking Tours, it might seem familiar. It’s the recipe that VBT Trip Leader, Debra’s Grandmother uses. Buon appetito!

Ingredients

    Truffle Gnocchi

    The onset of fall prompts an abundance of harvest festivals throughout the world.  From California’s “Crush” (wine grape harvest) to Munich’s Oktoberfest, there is no shortage on ways to celebrate colder temperatures and the gathering of crops.  If you find yourself in Northern Italy this fall, however, you might notice that interest in leaf-peeping, olive pressing, and even wine-making pales in comparison to the excitement of Truffle Season.  Exclusive to Northern and central Italy the arrival of the prized white truffle means that the small delicacy dominates the dinner table, and we thought we’d join in with this great recipe for Truffle Gnocchi.  The recipe calls for black truffles, but to really get a taste for the season we recommend substituting with white truffles. Buon appetito!

    Travels with a Gourmet

    Gougeres

    Ingredients

    • 1 cup hot water
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
    • 1 cup flour
    • 4 eggs (approximately)
    • 2/3 cup grated Gruyere cheese
    • 1 teaspoon dry mustar
    • Cayenne

    Cooking Directions

    1. Combine the water, butter, salt and sugar and heat until the butter is melted. Add flour and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until the dough forms a firm ball and breaks away from the edges of the pan.
    2. Remove the dough from the pan and beat in the eggs, one by one. If the eggs are very large, you may not need 4, if they are small, you may need more. Use enough to make the pâte à choux firm, smooth and waxy.
    3. Add the cheese, mustard and a few grains of cayenne to the pâte à choux and blend thoroughly. For a stronger flavor, you might add a bit more cheese.
    4. Butter a baking sheet and drop the dough by spoonfuls, or force it through the plain tube of a pastry bag, making small round mounds on the sheets.
    5. Sprinkle with a little additional cheese and a little cayenne or a few dashes of Tabasco.
    6. Bake in a 375°F oven for 35 to 40 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow the gougères to dry out in the oven for ten minutes before removing them. Don’t open the oven door during cooling.
    7. Enjoy hot or cold!

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