Pasta con la mollica (Pasta with Breadcrumbs)

FrankBasilicata, Calabria, pasta, primi piatti, Puglia, Sicilia27 Comments

Pasta con la mollica (Pasta with Breadcrumbs)

All over southern Italy, breadcrumbs were considered the “poor man’s cheese”. Those who couldn’t afford the luxury of the usual grated pecorino—or throwing away stale bread—would sprinkle toasted breadcrumbs over pasta and other dishes. Cucina povera in the literal sense. And yet, as it so often turns out, necessity gave … Read More

Tiella di patate e funghi (Potato and Mushroom Casserole)

FrankBasilicata, Calabria, contorno, Puglia41 Comments

Patate e funghi al forno (Potato and Mushroom Casserole)

Southern Italian cookery, in particular the cooking of Puglia, Basilicata and Calabria, is rife with baked vegetable casseroles . They are often called tielle after baking dish in which they are cooked and then served, much like the word “casserole” in English. We’ve featured the iconic tiella pugliese, a veritable one-dish … Read More

Zuppa di cicerchie (Grass Pea Soup)

FrankLazio, Marche, primi piatti, Puglia, Soups, Toscana, Umbria38 Comments

Zuppa di cicerchie (Grass Pea Soup)

Yes, autumn is well and truly here. There’s a definitely chill in the air, the leaves are turning color, pumpkins have been placed on doorsteps, and logs are piled high on back porches, ready for the fire. I don’t know about you, but when the temperatures drop, I start to … Read More

Fave e cicoria (Fava Bean Purée with Chicory)

FrankBasilicata, Puglia33 Comments

Fave e cicoria (Fava Bean Puree with hicory)

La cucina povera, or the cuisine of the poor, has become quite fashionable in recent years. Based on ‘humble’ ingredients (some of which have ironically become quite expensive) and simple cooking techniques, these traditional peasant dishes were born out of necessity. And yet they still appeal to us today, partly out … Read More

Cialledda (Bread and Tomato Salad)

Frankantipasti, Puglia29 Comments

Cialledda

One of things I find fascinating about Italian cookery—cookery in generally, really—is how you can take a culinary idea and, with a few subtle changes in ingredients or technique, get very different results. The frugal idea of mixing stale bread with chopped up tomatoes to make a salad, for example, gave … Read More

Agnello e piselli (Lamb and Peas)

FrankCampania, Puglia, secondi piatti26 Comments

Lamb and Peas

I love second courses that pair meat and vegetable in a single dish. Not only is the combination invariably delicious, but it saves the cook from making an extra dish. In this speciality from Puglia and Campania, lamb—the ne plus ultra of spring meats—is paired with peas—one of the classic … Read More

Taralli pugliesi

Frankantipasti, Puglia, snack32 Comments

Taralli pugliesi

It is said that the three pillars of Puglia’s agriculture are wheat, wine and olives, and all three make their way into this simple but tasty Puglian snack. Flour, white wine and olive oil are mixed to make a simple dough, formed into rings and, much like bagels, briefly simmered and … Read More

Bucatini alla pizzaiola

FrankCampania, pasta, primi piatti, Puglia21 Comments

Bucatini alla pizzaiola

Most of us don’t much like to use the oven in the dog days of summer, but you might want to make an exception for bucatini alla pizzaiola, a delicious baked pasta dish that sings all the favorite flavor notes of southern Italy. It’s styled alla pizzaiola, literally “pizza style”, for … Read More

Tiella di patate, cipolle e pomodori (Potato, Onion and Tomato Casserole)

Frankcontorno, Puglia17 Comments

I really like baked casserole dishes. You can assemble them at your leisure, then pop them in the oven and serve them when you’re ready to eat. It’s cooking at its most relaxing. The people of Puglia, the region at the heel of the Italian boot, are particularly casserole dishes … Read More

Pasta con la ricotta (Pasta and Ricotta Cheese)

FrankCampania, pasta, primi piatti, Puglia56 Comments

Pasta con la ricotta (Pasta and ricotta)

Pasta and ricotta make for a perfect impromptu meal or weekend dinner. The mellow flavor combination of tomato, ricotta and a bit of parmesan cheese is vaguely reminiscent of southern-style lasagna. But unlike lasagna, it’ll be done in less than 30 minutes—the time it takes to bring the water to … Read More

Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe (Orecchiette ai broccoletti)

FrankFall, pasta, primi piatti, Puglia, Winter39 Comments

Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe

A quick pasta dish with vegetables that you can whip up in less an 30 minutes, Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe makes for a fine meatless dinner, with cheese and fruit for dessert. It’s pretty typical of the kind of thing we like to eat in our house on a weeknight when there’s … Read More

Calzone di cipolla alla pugliese (Puglian Onion Pie)

Frankantipasti, Puglia59 Comments

Puglian Onion Pie

This dish brings back some of my fondest childhood food memories. Calzone di cipolla, or Puglian onion pie, is one of the signature dishes of the cuisine of Puglia. My grandfather Lorenzo hailed from a small town outside of Bari, the capital of Puglia, called Grumo Appula. His sister, whom … Read More

Funghi in pastella (Mushroom Fritters)

Frankantipasti, contorno, Puglia, snack26 Comments

Funghi in pastella (Mushroom Fritters)

I was so very pleased to read in the paper the other day that frying need not to be bad for you, especially if you fry in olive oil. The news didn’t come as a surprise—I had always figured if Angelina managed to live to be 98 eating fried foods … Read More

Polpette di melanzane (Eggplant Meatballs)

Frankantipasti, primi piatti, Puglia, snack, summer33 Comments

Eggplant Meatballs

The cooking of Puglia, the region that encompasses the ‘heel’ of the Italian peninsula on the Adriatic Sea, deserves to be much better known. It practically defines the Mediterranean diet, with a strong focus on simply prepared fruits of the sea and fresh produce like fava beans, cime di rape … Read More

Angelina’s Green Beans with Onions and Mint

FrankCampania, contorno, Puglia13 Comments

Although our favorite way of having green beans when we were kids, especially in the summer, was in umido, or stewed with tomatoes, Angelina had another nice way of making green beans with sautéed onions and mint. As it turns out, at least according to this article, the recipe is … Read More

Agnello e patate al forno (Oven-Roasted Lamb and Potatoes)

FrankCampania, piatti unici, Puglia6 Comments

Oven-Roasted Lamb and Potatoes

Lamb and potatoes have a natural affinity, as we saw in the elegant côtes d’agneau Champvallon. Here is a more rustic dish, made with seasoned chunks of lamb and potatoes baked in the oven until nicely browned on top. Simple, hearty and satisfying. Ingredients Serve 4-6 1 kilo (2 lbs) … Read More

Tiella pugliese (Puglia Potato and Mussel Casserole)

Frankpiatti unici, primi piatti, Puglia, Risotto and Other Rice Dishes12 Comments

Tiella pugliese

Even though my paternal grandfather was from Grumo Appula, a small town outside Bari in the southeastern Italian region of Puglia, I don’t remember eating much pugliese food growing up. Other than a few dishes—orcecchiette with cime di rape (also known as broccoletti), that wonderful calzone di cipolla (onion pie) … Read More