Recipes and Ramblings in Italy

Food Blog

Cooking Tip of the Week (February 25, 2016)

Posted by William Abruzzo on February 25, 2016 at 12:05 AM Comments comments (3)

In Recipes that Call for Fried Eggplant, Try Roasting it Instead! 

 

       Frying is a common preparation for eggplant. However, the spongy flesh of eggplant tends to absorb much of the oil during the frying process. This means that many eggplant dishes can be greasy. One solution, of course, is to dip the eggplant in a protective coating of egg and breadcrumbs. But what if your recipe doesn’t call for breading? For dishes such as caponata, ratatouille, eggplant rollitini, and spaghetti alla norma (eggplant and tomatoes), roasting is the solution. Here is how it is done.

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       Slice the eggplant lengthwise into½ inch thick pieces, brush them lightly with olive oil and season them with salt and black pepper. Place the eggplant on a baking tray that has also been lightly brushed with olive oil or sprayed with cooking spray. Roast the eggplant in a preheated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes and then flip the eggplant and continue roasting for another 10 to 15 minutes or until soft and golden on both sides. Then, cut the eggplant slices into cubes and add them to your ratatouille, dress them with your caponata sauce or toss them with spaghetti and diced tomatoes. You can also leave them whole and wrap them up with ricotta in the center for a delicious eggplant rollitini.

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       Roasting the eggplant is quick and easy, alleviates the mess and hassle of frying, and saves you a whole lot of olive oil. It is also a healthy and delicious way to cook. Roasting allows caramelization which brings out the sweetness of the eggplant and develops its wonderful flavor.


Cooking Tip of the Week (February 8, 2016)

Posted by William Abruzzo on February 10, 2016 at 11:55 AM Comments comments (3)


Grated Lemon Peel Adds Bright Flavor to Any Dish

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      The best citrus in the Mediterranean grows in Italy. The region near Sorrento is famous for its lemons, and Sicily is home to vast groves of orange trees. Italians have learned that the peel of citrus fruits is not only aromatic, but full of bright flavor. Finely grated lemon and orange zest is used as a flavoring agent in many sweet and savory Italian dishes. Stirring the finely grated zest of one lemon or orange into your cake batter will add a whole new dimension of flavor. Try doing it with your favorite cheese, pound or sponge cake recipes. A touch of citrus zest also adds brightness to custard and panna cotta.

 

       In savory dishes, lemon zest can be whisked with olive oil and herbs for a salad dressing or marinade for meat and fish. You can also combine the finely grated zest of 2 lemons with a handful of chopped parsley for a gremolata that can be sprinkled over risotto, pasta, baked or grilled seafood or a classic Osso Buco alla Milanese. In Sicilian cooking, finely grated orange zest, garlic, pine nuts and raisins are added to sautéed vegetables such as cauliflower and broccoli for a truly exotic taste sensation. If you want to add zest to a sautéed dish, start by sautéing some garlic and/or onion in olive oil. When the garlic and onion have softened, stir in the zest and then add the rest of your ingredients.


Cooking Tip of the Week (November 23, 2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on November 30, 2015 at 4:20 PM Comments comments (1)


Don't Throw Out Your Day Old Bread, Make Breadcrumbs Instead! 

        In an Italian kitchen, nothing goes to waste -not even bread that has passed its prime.  Whenever I have day old bread, I throw it into the food processor and grind it into crumbs.  Then, I store the breadcrumbs in a ziplock bag in the freezer.  The breadcrumbs will stay just fine for several months.  I then have them on hand whenever I need breadcrumbs for a filler or wish to add a crunchy topping to roasted vegetables or casseroles.  For a crispy topping simply toss the breadcrumbs with grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, fresh chopped herbs, a sprinkle of black pepper and enough melted butter to moisten.  Sprinkle over roasted or steamed vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower or butternut squash, pop in a 425 degree oven for 7 to 10 minutes or until golden and crunchy!   



Cooking Tip of the Week (September 28, 2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on September 28, 2015 at 6:45 PM Comments comments (1)

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Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese Rinds Add Great Flavor to Soups

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       The next time you buy a wedge of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, be sure to save the waxy rind!  The rinds are loaded with wonderful flavor that adds complexity and character to any type of soup.  Simply toss the rinds into your soup and let it simmer as usual.  Then, when the soup is done, fish out and discard the rinds.  I store the rinds in a ziplock bag and keep them in the freezer.  They will keep for many, many months.  Then when I need a few, I have them on hand. For a large pot of soup, 2  three by three inch square rinds are sufficient to impart great flavor.  It is a simple trick and a great way to maximize your use of expensive Parmigiano Reggiano cheese!

 

 

Cooking Tip of the Week (August 10, 2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on August 11, 2015 at 1:10 PM Comments comments (1)

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Cooking with Black Pepper and Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

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        Salt and black pepper are two basic components that bring life to any savory dish. To put it simply, without these ingredients any savory Italian dish will taste flat. In southern Italy, “peperoncino” or crushed red pepper flakes are also added to savory dishes. Crushed red pepper flakes add “heat”, whereas black pepper adds “bite”. When used together, they add great depth and character to any savory recipe. I always add black pepper and crushed red pepper to a sautéed dish while the onions and/or garlic are sautéing in olive oil. Allowing the spices to fry in the oil helps to develop their flavors and releases their wonderful aromas. It also helps their flavors to permeate throughout the dish.

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         For the best quality and flavor, purchase whole peppercorns and pound them in a mortar.  You can also grind them in a peppermill as needed while you are cooking. Pre-ground or pulverized black pepper will lose its bite as it sits for month after month in your spice rack. Hot dried chilies can also be purchased whole and ground with a mortar and pestle as needed.  


Cooking Tip of the Week (July 23, 2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on July 24, 2015 at 12:25 AM Comments comments (1)

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The Dos and Don’ts of Cooking Pasta

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        There are a few simple ways to make sure that your pasta is cooked to perfection. First, always cook your pasta in a large pot with plenty of lightly salted water. If there is not enough water in the pot, as the pasta cooks, the water will become soupy from the pasta starches and it will not cook properly. Bring the water up to a boil before you add the pasta and be sure to stir it well so that the pasta does not stick together or to the bottom of the pot. Once the pasta has been added, continue cooking at a medium boil. There needs to be ample bubbling in the water to keep the pasta moving, but not so much that it will cause the water to froth.

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        The only thing you should add to the pasta cooking water is salt. It will prevent the pasta from tasting flat. Add as much salt as you like to suit your taste. However, the general rule is that pasta cooking water should be lightly salted so that it does not overpower the “condimento” or sauce that you have chosen to dress the pasta. While some cooks suggest adding a drizzle of olive oil to the water to prevent the pasta from sticking, I disagree. Assuming this method is valid, then in theory it should also serve to prevent the “condimento” from sticking to pasta. It only makes sense that if the pasta is coated with a film of oil, then the sauce will not cling to it. Therefore, the better method is simply to stir the pasta frequently.

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        Pasta should be served “al dente” or firm. The best way to tell when the pasta is ready is by tasting it. This is the only way to know for sure whether it is to your liking. Forget about throwing it against the wall to see if it sticks or any other crazy method that you may have heard about. When the pasta is ready, you can use a spider or tongs to transfer it from the pot to a deep frying pan that contains your “condimento”. If you wish, pull the pasta out of the water a minute early and let it finish cooking in the “condimento”. The other option is to strain the pasta in a colander, transfer it to a serving platter and then immediately dress it with the “condimento”. Finally, never rinse cooked pasta under running water. This will remove the natural starches and prevent your “condimento” from clinging to the pasta.   Following these few tips will ensure that your pasta turns out perfect every time. Enjoy!

Fantastic News! (June 24,2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on June 24, 2015 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (10)

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     Recipes and Ramblings -the Cookbooks -Publication scheduled for Spring 2016!

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                         Finalmente! I am very proud to announce that I have partnered with Pelican Publishing Company for the publication of the first of my two regional Italian cookbooks, In the Footsteps of Nonna: Recipes and Ramblings in Southern Italy and Sicily. There are over 150 authentic and original recipes that are easy to prepare abd delicious. This cookbook also contains plenty of wonderful short stories about my family's Italian food traditions, my many travels to Italy, and my colorful friends who live there. It provides wonderful and entertaining insight to Italian food and culture. I will keep you updated as we near the publication date. 

 

        Many thanks to my amazing wife, family, friends and the members of Recipeandramblings.com for all of your support over the past few years! Many thanks also to Nina Kooij, editor in chief, at Pelican Publishing Company, and the entire team at Pelican for sharing my vision and for all of your hard work and efforts over the next few months! Finally, with your continued support, I am hopeful and confident that my second cookbook, Recipes and Ramblings in Northern Italy, Istria and Dalmatia will be available in 2017 or sooner!

 

Grazie mille!


Cooking Tip of the Week (June 22, 2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on June 22, 2015 at 3:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Toast Pine Nuts Before Adding Them to Your Recipes to Bring Out their Flavor

         Whenever a pasta, meat or vegetable recipe calls for any sort of nut, be sure to toast them first. Toasting the nuts develops the nutty flavor, adding more depth and richness to your dish. Nuts can be toasted in a pre-heated oven at 375 degrees. The nuts will toast quickly, anywhere from 3 to 5 minutes, so be sure to keep your eye on them. When the nuts are lightly golden, remove them from the oven and transfer them immediately from the baking pan to a dish.

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         Nuts can also be toasted on the stove top in an ungreased frying pan. Set the frying pan on a low flame, add the nuts and stir them continually. This will ensure that they toast evenly and do not burn. Sprinkle toasted pine nuts, almonds or walnuts on top of roasted or sautéed vegetables for added texture or grind them up and stir them into sauces like pesto for an extra kick of nutty flavor.

Cooking Tip of the Week (June 3, 2015)

Posted by William Abruzzo on June 5, 2015 at 12:15 AM Comments comments (1)


Minced Prosciutto Adds Rich Flavor to Your Dish!

 

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        Prosciutto adds an extra depth of wonderful pork flavor to any seafood, pasta or vegetable dish. The unexpected rich flavor compliments just about anything. Adding some diced prosciutto to sautéed vegetables, shellfish steamed in white wine or even a hearty meat ragu is very simple, and it will surely impress your family and dinner guests.

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         You can purchase prosciutto sliced fresh from the deli counter or pre-packaged. The pre-packaged brands are sliced very thin, and the slices of prosciutto are separated with wax paper. The authentic Prosciutto di Parma and other imported Italian brands, such as San Daniele, tend to be very expensive. If you are adding prosciutto to a dish for flavoring, a good quality domestic prosciutto is all that you will need.

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         If prosciutto is available at the deli counter, ask the attendant to slice it in a slab. Simply dice it up and throw it into the frying pan as you are sautéing aromatics or creating the sauce for your dish. Let the prosciutto saute with the aromatics or simmer in the sauce for a few minutes to extract its flavor. As prosciutto tends to be salty, be sure to season the dish with salt at the very end. If you are using pre-packaged thinly sliced prosciutto, remove all of the wax paper and lay the slices in a pile. Set the prosciutto in the freezer for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. When the prosciutto is semi-frozen, it will be much easier to dice or mince.

 

Cooking Tip of the Week (927/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on September 21, 2011 at 3:15 PM Comments comments (1)


A Few Words About Cooking with Black Pepper and Crushed Dried Chili Flakes


       Salt and black pepper are the two basic components that bring life to any savory dish.  To put it simply, without these ingredients, any savory Italian dish will taste flat. In southern Italy, crushed dried chili flakes called "pepperoncino" are also added to savory dishes.  Crushed dried chili flakes add “heat”, whereas black pepper adds “bite”.  When used together, they add great depth and character to any savory recipe. When using crushed dried chili flakes or black pepper in a sautéed dish, I always add it while the onions and/or garlic are sautéing in olive oil. Allowing the pepper to sizzle in the oil  for a minute or two helps to develop the flavor.

       For the best quality and flavor, purchase whole peppercorns and grind them in a peppermill  as you cook. Pre-ground or pulverized black pepper will lose its bite while sitting in your spice rack. Hot dried chilies can be purchased whole and ground with a mortar and pestle as needed. The pre-crushed chili flakes tend to keep their flavor better than pre-ground black pepper.  However, if it sits in your cupboard too long, it will lose some of its zing.

 


Cooking Tip of the Week (9/6/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on August 9, 2011 at 11:10 PM Comments comments (0)


A Few Simple Tips for Prepping Artichokes


       Artichokes are available in several different sizes. Globe artichokes can be as large as a softball, whereas oblong Tuscan artichokes are somewhat smaller and baby artichokes are no more than 2 1/2 inches long.  Preparing them for your favorite recipes is quite simple.


        For large globe artichokes : Use a paring knife to remove all of the leaves from the artichokes, and then remove the inner chokes. This will leave just the heart and stem. Then, use a potato peeler to remove the stringy outer fibers of the stems, and cut the artichokes in half.


        For baby artichokes: Remove the outer leaves until you reach the soft, pale inner cone, and then cut off the top 1/3 of the cone and peel the stem with a potato peeler.  If you wish, cut the artichokes in half. As the artichokes are small, the chokes are tender and do not need to be removed.


       After you prepare the artichokes, be sure to place them in a bowl of cool water acidulated with the juice of one lemon. this will prevent the artichokes from browning. When you are ready to cook them, simply rinse them under cool running water and then pat them dry.

       

Cooking Tip of the Week (8/29/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on August 9, 2011 at 10:10 PM Comments comments (0)


The Perfect Frying Pan for Frittatas


        Frittata is a traditional Italian omelet. It is started on the stove top like an American or French omelet, and then finished in the oven without being flipped, folded or taken out of the frying pan. The only thing you need to make a frittata is a good oven-proof frying pan. It does not need to be copper, cast iron or nonstick; just be sure the handle is not plastic or rubber coated, as it will melt and create an unwanted mess in your oven.


         I use a non-stick frying pan with a steel handle. The frying pan is equipped with a rubber sleeve that can be slipped over the handle for extra grip. I use the rubber sleeve for stove top cooking and remove it when it comes time to put the fying pan in the oven.  You can find such frying pans at any department store. Be sure to pick one up.

 


Cooking Tip of the Week (8/22/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on August 9, 2011 at 11:10 AM Comments comments (0)


In Recipes that Call for Fried Eggplant, Try Roasting it Instead


        Frying is a common preparation for eggplant.  However, the spongy flesh of eggplant tends to absorb much of the oil during the frying process. This means that many eggplant dishes can be greasy. One solution, of course, is to dip the eggplant in a protective coating of egg and breadcrumbs. But what if your recipe doesn’t call for breading?  For dishes such as caponata, ratatouille, eggplant rollitini, and spaghetti alla norma (eggplant and tomatoes), roasting is the solution. Here is how it is done.


        Slice the eggplant lengthwise into½ inch thick pieces, brush them lightly with olive oil and season them with salt and black pepper.  Place the eggplant on a baking tray that has also been lightly brushed with olive oil or sprayed with cooking spray.  Roast the eggplant in a preheated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes and then flip the eggplant and continue roasting for another 10 to 15 minutes or until soft and golden on both sides. Then, cut the eggplant slices into cubes and add them to your ratatouille, dress them with your caponata sauce or toss them with spaghetti and diced tomatoes. You can also leave them whole and wrap them up with ricotta in the center for a delicious eggplant rollitini.

 

        Roasting the eggplant is quick and easy, alleviates the mess and hassle of frying, and saves you a whole lot of olive oil.  It is also a healthy and delicious way to cook. Roasting allows caramelization which brings out the sweetness of the eggplant and develops its wonderful flavor.


Cooking Tip of the Week (8/4/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on August 2, 2011 at 12:25 AM Comments comments (0)


Roll Out Pie Dough with Ease Using Plastic Wrap 

        Here is an old trick I learned years ago from my mother. The next time you bake a pie, roll out the dough between sheets of plastic wrap. This will prevent the dough from sticking to your rolling pin and will make it easier to transport the dough from your work surface to the pie dish or baking sheet.


        Cover your entire work surface with plastic wrap and sprinkle it lightly with flour. Turn the dough onto the wrap, pat it down to 1 inch thickness, sprinkle it lightly with flour, and then cover it with a second layer of wrap. Roll out the dough to just less than ¼ inch thickness and remove the top layer of wrap. Lift the dough using the bottom layer of wrap, turn it on to a lightly greased pie dish or baking sheet, and then remove the wrap. Its quick and easy!

 


Cooking Tip of the Week (7/24/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on July 27, 2011 at 10:50 PM Comments comments (2)


Zucchini Blossoms are a Unique and Tasty Snack

In Italy, zucchini blossoms are a favorite springtime treat.  At the daily produce markets, they are sold by the dozens in neatly tied bouquets. What a beautiful sight!   Unfortunately, zucchini blossoms are very difficult, if not impossible, to find here in the US. Unless, of course, you have zucchini plants growing in your vegetable garden. If you do, then here are a few tips on how to prepare them.

Each zucchini plant has both male and female blossoms. The female blossoms grow from the end of juvenile zucchinis. The male blossoms grow from long slender stems. Both blossoms are edible. To prepare them, simply remove the pistils from the female blossoms and the stamens from the male blossoms.  Then, rinse the blossoms under gently running cool water. Be sure to handle them with care, as they are delicate and will easily bruise or tear.


There are a variety of  ways to cook zucchini blossoms. They can be shredded and tossed with sauteed zucchini, cooked in an omelet, or stuffed with cheese and then dipped in batter and deep fried.  For a fun snack your children will love, dip them in egg, dredge them in flour, deep fry them until crisp and golden and hit them with a sprinkle of salt. They are hands down better than potato chips or french fries! 

Cooking Tip of the Week (7/17/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on July 21, 2011 at 10:40 PM Comments comments (1)


Frying Tomato Paste Enhances the Flavor and Adds Depth to Your Dish


 

Many recipes tell you to stir tomato paste into a sauce, soup or stew. However, frying the tomato paste first fully develops its flavor and eliminates any raw or metallic taste. It is a quick and easy way to enhance the flavor of your dish.


 

Tomato paste should be added at the beginning of a recipe, rather than at the end. This allows its flavor to marry with the dish. It should be added immediately after the aromatics are sautéed in olive oil or rendered fat. When the aromatics are soft, push them to one side of your pot or frying pan. Place a dollop of tomato paste on the other side, tilt the pot or frying pan to pool the oil around the tomato paste, and let it gently sizzle for about 1 ½ to 2 minutes. As the dollop of tomato paste sizzles, press down on it with the back of a wooden spoon to flatten and spread it out. After the tomato paste has cooked, incorporate it into the aromatics and then add the liquid and other ingredients to complete your sauce, soup or stew.

 

Cooking Tip of the Week (1/10/2011)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on January 11, 2011 at 11:15 PM Comments comments (2)

Know your Mozzarella!

Mozzarella is a traditional cheese from Campania. There are several different varieties.  In the Salerno province south of Naples, the highly prized “Mozzarella Buffala” is made with milk from domesticated water buffalo that graze on the coastal plain of Sele. It is considered to have the best taste and creamiest texture. It is expensive and difficult to find in the United States.  It is best eaten with a slice of fresh tomato and a drizzle of fine extra virgin olive oil.


Elsewhere in Italy and in the US, mozzarella is made with cow’s milk. In Italy, it is called “Fior di Latte.” This is the mozzarella one typically finds on pizza.  When fresh, cow's milk mozzarella or “Fior di Latte” has a high moisture content and is creamy.  It is typically stored in water. Freshly made "Fior di Latte" can be shaped into large balls, twisted into braids or cut into bite-sized nuggets called bocconcini. When commercially produced "Fior di Latte" has a low moisture content and is quite firm, making it the best mozzarella for melting on pizza and baking in casseroles. This is the mozzarella I like to use when making Mozzarella in Carozza. Commercially processed mozzarella is what one typically finds in supermarkets in the US.  Some better known brands are Polly-O, Sargento and Sorrento.  
 

Cooking Tip of the Week (12/13/2010)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on December 17, 2010 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (0)


A Quick Tip On Melting Chocolate


Chocolate dipped cookies or fruits are quick, easy and elegant. Properly melting the chocolate is the key to a perfect chocolate dipped desert. Forget about using the microwave oven, or worse yet, melting the chocolate in a sauce pot set directly on a burner, as it will scorch and stick to the bottom. Instead, always melt chocolate on your stove top using a double-boiler. If you don’t have one, here is an easy alternative. Fill a medium-sized sauce pan about ½ way with water and bring it up to a low boil. Place the chocolate in a wide shallow bowl or pie dish that will fit over the top of the pot, and stir until it is soft and creamy. After you dip your cookies or fruit, set them to dry on a non-stick baking tray or one that has been sprayed with cooking spray to prevent sticking. Enjoy!

 

Cooking Tip of the Week (12/06/2010)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on November 28, 2010 at 12:35 AM Comments comments (1)

Partially Freezing Prosciutto Makes it Easier to Mince

Prosciutto is added to many recipes as a flavoring agent. It can be thinly sliced, diced or minced and then tossed into a recipe. Here is an easy tip for finely mincing prosciutto. Start by asking your deli attendant to slice it paper thin. Set the prosciutto in the freezer for about 45 minutes or until it is quite stiff and then proceed with mincing. Partially freezing the prosciutto will make it much easier to cut with a knife and you will achieve a much finer mince. 

Cooking Tip of the Week (11/29/2010)

Posted by Bill Abruzzo on November 24, 2010 at 11:25 PM Comments comments (1)

Panna Cotta is the perfect "prepare ahead of time" dessert

Panna Cotta is not only quick and easy to make, but it also stores well in the freezer.  It is the perfect desert for a holiday meal or special occasion.  It can be made weeks in advance, stored in the freezer, and then thawed on the day of your special meal.  I use disposable aluminum muffin tins as the molds.  I pour the panna cotta into the molds. Once the panna cotta has set, I cover it tightly with plastic wrap and then place it in the freezer. I take the panna cotta out of the freezer at least 2 hours before serving, allow it to defrost, and then remove it from the molds.  The panna cotta retains its wonderful creamy texture even after freezing, which makes it a great "prepare ahead of time" desert. Your guests will think that you made it that very same day! 

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I offer private cooking classes for up to six people. Cooking classes are held in my home, or if suitable, yours. I specialize in all aspects of Italian regional cuisine, including soups, vegetables, pasta, risotto, meat, seafood and desserts. I will design a cooking class around whatever interests you –whether it is a specific recipe you wish to learn or a skill such as pasta-making. For more details, please go to the "Catering/Cooking Classes" page or take a minute to become a member of my website and contact me via internal email at Recipesandramblings.com . 

Bill's Cooking Tip of the Month


Roll Out Pie Dough with Ease Using Plastic Wrap

This is an old trick I learned years ago from my mother. The next time you bake a pie, roll out the dough between sheets of plastic wrap. This will prevent the dough from sticking to your rolling pin and will make it easier to transport the dough from your work surface to the pie dish or baking sheet.

Cover your entire work surface with plastic wrap and sprinkle it lightly with flour. Turn the dough onto the wrap, pat it down to 1 inch thickness, sprinkle it lightly with flour, and then cover it with a second layer of wrap. Roll out the dough to just less than ¼ inch thickness and remove the top layer of wrap. Lift the dough using the bottom layer of wrap, turn it on to a lightly greased pie dish or baking sheet, and then remove the wrap. Its quick and easy! 

Tips on Italian Ingredients


 Frying Tomato Paste Enhances the Flavor and Adds Depth to Your Dish

Many recipes direct you to stir tomato paste into a sauce, soup or stew. However, frying the tomato paste first fully develops its flavor and eliminates any raw or metallic taste. It is a quick and easy way to enhance the flavor of your dish. Tomato paste should always be added at the beginning of a recipe, rather than at the end. This allows its flavor to marry with the dish. Add it immediately after sautéing your aromatics in olive oil or rendered fat. When the aromatics are soft, push them to one side of your pot or frying pan. Place a dollop of tomato paste on the other side, tilt the pot or frying pan to pool the oil around the tomato paste, and let it gently sizzle for about 2 minutes.  After the tomato paste has fried, incorporate it into the aromatics and then add the liquid and other ingredients to complete your sauce, soup or stew. 

Just Picked From My Italian Vegetable Garden!

 Zucchini Blossoms 

My Italian Heritage

 My Great Grandparents, Vita and Onofrio Abruzzo, from the town of Santa Margherita di Belice, Sicily pictured here with my grandfather Vito "Bill" in the center.

Great reads for the Italophile!

Coming Soon!

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