Pollo al mattone (Chicken under a Brick)

Franksecondi piatti, summer, Toscana37 Comments

Pollo al mattone (Chicken under a Brick)

Pollo al mattone, which I would translate roughly as “chicken under a brick”, is an ingenuous way of grilling chicken. The bird is butterflied, flattened and weighed down so it cooks quickly and evenly over hot embers. It sounds astonishingly simple—and it is—but by some sort of sorcery I can’t … Read More

Spaghetti con la bottarga

Frankpasta, primi piatti, Sardegna, Sicilia, summer26 Comments

Spaghetti con la bottarga

Bottarga—cured fish roe typical of Sardinian and Sicilian cookery—is an unusual but tasty treat. It has a unique flavor that reminds me of a cross between caviar and anchovy but more delicate than either. Like a good, aged Parmesan or pecorino cheese, bottarga lends itself beautifully to grating over pasta. There … Read More

Gelo di melone (Sicilian Watermelon Pudding)

Frankdessert, Sicilia, summer24 Comments

Watermelon Pudding (Gelo di melone)

Sicilian Watermelon Pudding, or gelo di melone, is made from watermelon juice, perfumed with cinnamon and jasmine blossoms, thickened and mixed with bits of chocolate—cut into little bits so they resemble watermelon seeds—and chilled until set. Served in dessert bowls or unmolded on to a plate, the pudding is then topped with ground … Read More

Eggplant Cordon Bleu (Cordon bleu di melanzane)

Franksecondi piatti, Sicilia, summer26 Comments

Eggplant Cordon Bleu

Eggplants may be my favorite summer vegetable. Perhaps that’s because I have such fond food memories of my grandmother’s parmigiana di melanzane, or Eggplant Parmesan. The parmigiana is a lot of work, though, a dish for special occasions, so I’m always looking for different ways to prepare eggplant. One of the … Read More

Insalata di patate e tonno (Potato Tuna Salad)

Frankantipasti, contorno, summer23 Comments

Potato Tuna Salad

Potato salad is a summer staple on American tables, but if you’re interested in a different take, here’s an idea for you: Potato Tuna Salad. At its most basic, Potato Tuna Salad is a close cousin to that staple of Italian buffet tables, fagioli e tonno. You take slices or cubes … Read More

Sorbetto di limone (Lemon Sorbet)

Frankdessert, summer27 Comments

Sorbetto di limone

Along with gelato, sorbetto is *the* classic Italian frozen dessert. And perhaps the most basic. Sorbetto di limone is essentially frozen lemonade: Simple syrup is made by simmering sugar and water together, to which lemon zest is added and allowed to infuse its flavor. When this flavored syrup cools completely, it … Read More

Caponata napoletana

Frankantipasti, Campania, summer33 Comments

Caponata napoletana

Italian cookery can be confusing. As we’ve talked about before, it’s highly regional and even local, so much so that some people say that there is no such thing as Italian cuisine. I don’t agree, but it is true that there are amazing differences between regions, especially as you travel … Read More

Homemade Limoncello

Frankbeverage, Campania, summer28 Comments

Homemade Limoncello

Everyone likes limoncello. For me, just a sip brings back memories of summer and sand and seafood by the shore. The best limoncello exquisitely balances the pungency of lemon zest and the sweetness of sugar, with just an intriguing hint of bitterness. The quality of commercial limoncello can vary wildly. (I know … Read More

Tomato Tonnato

Frankantipasti, secondi piatti, summer42 Comments

Tomato tonnato

Vitello tonnato (Tunnied Veal) is one of my favorite summer dishes, but I had never thought about other uses for tonnato sauce until I saw a Facebook post by fellow blogger and Tuscanycious honoree Judy Witts Francini. (You definitely shouldn’t miss her fabulous Divina Cucina website.) Judy’s post mentioned she was going … Read More

Grigliata mista di carne (Mixed Grilled Meats)

Franksecondi piatti, summer36 Comments

Grigliata mista

If you want to make a big impression at your next cookout, try a grigliata mista di carne, a platter of mixed grilled meats including fresh and cured cuts of beef, veal, pork, lamb and chicken or other poultry. Italians love to grill just like other folks, but the Italian approach to grilling is … Read More

Cotolette di melanzane (Eggplant Cutlets)

Frankantipasti, contorno, secondi piatti, summer14 Comments

Eggplant Cutlets (Cotolette di melanzane)

We all know that breaded cutlets and chops, whether veal, pork, lamb or—that all American favorite—chicken, make for awesome eating. But did you know that vegetables can prepared as cutlets, too? And if you ask me, eggplants are the perfect veg for the purpose; they turn out round perfectly round cutlets, … Read More

Pesche al vino rosso (Peaches in Red Wine)

Frankdessert, summer9 Comments

Sometimes the simplest things are the best. And today we are featuring peaches in red wine, a dessert that takes practically no effort to make. The fruit is softened a bit with a mixture of sugar and lemon, then bathed in red wine. That’s really all there is to it. However simple … Read More

Zucchine «a scapece» (Piquant Fried Zucchini)

Frankantipasti, Campania, contorno, summer33 Comments

There are four quintessential Italian summer vegetables: tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and zucchini. Of these, zucchini seems to get the least respect, maybe because zucchini plants are so incredibly prolific. New zucchini can literally sprout from one day to another, and the production can really get out of hand. I remember that … Read More

Insalata caprese all’americana (American-Style Caprese Salad)

Frankantipasti, summer13 Comments

Long time readers of Memorie di Angelina know that we pretty much stick to tried-and-true traditional Italian home cooking on this blog, but every once in a while, I get the urge to be creative. This week’s post is one of those rare occasions. Here’s an American style variation on a … Read More

Carbonara vegetariana (Vegetarian Carbonara)

Frankpasta, primi piatti, summer40 Comments

As a longtime resident of Rome, carbonara is one of my very favorite pastas, but in the warmer weather it can be a bit heavy. One way to lighten things up is to make a vegetarian carbonara: substitute the pancetta (Italian bacon) with a vegetable, typically zucchini, which has a natural … Read More

Insalata di cozze (Mussels Salad)

Frankantipasti, summer8 Comments

Mussels Salad

It’s hard to think of an easier way to prepare mussels than this one. The mussels are steamed in white wine, shelled and then dressed with a lightly seasoned variation on the classic Italian oil and vinegar salad dressing. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes, if you like a … Read More

Melanzane a funghetto (“Mushroom-Style” Eggplant)

FrankCampania, contorno, summer16 Comments

Melanzane a funghetto

Don’t let the name of this dish fool you, there are no mushrooms in melanzane a funghetto, also known by its Neapolitan dialect name, melanzane «a fungetiello» The name refers to the way in which the eggplant is cooked, reminiscent of the classic sautéed mushrooms. Like so many of the … Read More

Pollo all’ischitana (Ischia-Style Chicken)

FrankCampania, secondi piatti, summer36 Comments

Ischia Style Chicken

After last week’s look at gnocchi alla sorrentina, Sorrento’s classic gnocchi dish, let’s travel across the Bay of Naples to the lovely island of Ischia. During our years in Rome, Ischia was one of our favorite spots for a getaway from the city. A bit less touristy and more rustic than … Read More

Gnocchi alla sorrentina (Potato Gnocchi with Tomato Sauce and Mozzarella)

FrankCampania, gnocchi, primi piatti, summer40 Comments

Potato gnocchi are pretty filling, the kind of food you may associate with the cooler weather. But, in fact, you can enjoy gnocchi all year ’round. They are delicious with pesto, for example, or with a simple tomato sauce. In fact, one of the classic Campanian summer dishes is gnocchi … Read More

Authentic Bruschetta: A Basic Recipe

Frankantipasti, snack, summer22 Comments

Authentic Bruschetta

Bruschetta is a dish of such astonishing simplicity that you might say it’s not even worth blogging about. After all, the basic recipe for authentic bruschetta is nothing more or less than grilled bread, rubbed with garlic and drizzled with olive oil, seasoned with a sprinkling of salt. And besides, there are … Read More

Spiedini e arrosticini (Italian Kabobs)

FrankAbruzzo, secondi piatti, summer8 Comments

Arrosticini (Spiedino)

Summer may be drawing to a close here in the Northern Hemisphere, but there’s still time to get in some more grilling. In fact, grilling is a lot more pleasant in the cooler temperatures of the late summer and early fall than at the height of the summer—standing over a … Read More

Coniglio allo spiedo (Spit-Roasted Rabbit)

Franksecondi piatti, summer16 Comments

Spit-Roasted Rabbit

Rabbit is one of the most under-appreciated types of “fowl”. Many people have a visceral negative reaction to eating rabbit, since in some countries rabbits are more likely to be pets than a dinner item, but in Italy and other countries, rabbits are highly esteemed for their culinary value and, in these days of … Read More

Astice alla griglia (Grilled Lobster)

Franksecondi piatti, summer12 Comments

Grilled Lobster

It seems I can’t get enough of grilled seafood! We’ve already featured grilled fish, grilled mollusk and grilled cephalopod, so let’s complete the series with grilled lobster, which may be the most delicious of them all. Here in the US, we are blessed with an abundance of lobster and, much … Read More

Quick Note: Vongole alla brace (Grilled Clams)

Frankantipasti, Sicilia, summer10 Comments

Grilled clams

I don’t know about you, but even for an inveterate cooking enthusiast like myself, the dog days of summer take their toll. I like to keep time spent over a hot stove to a minimum, so I turn to lots of quick and easy dishes that need little or no … Read More

Bollito di verdure (Italian Mixed Boiled Vegetables)

Franksecondi piatti, summer15 Comments

Mixed Boiled Vegetables

Grilled vegetables are fantastic, but almost equally popular for a light Italian summer meal are mixed boiled vegetables (or even better, steamed) allowed to cool and simply dressed with olive oil and seasoned with salt, or—for a richer taste—homemade mayonnaise. If boiled vegetables sound boring to you, then you need to think … Read More