04/09/13 Linguine with Mixed Tomatoes

"Tra il dire e il fare c'?di mezzo il mare." (Between what one says and does is an entire sea.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Adriana's Italian Bakery!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Potato Salad with Basil Oil
  -Linguine with Mixed Tomatoes
  -Pizza with Sausage, Tomatoes and Basil

"Ci siamo!" Just a quick note of many thanks for being a part of our growing Italian community. We're over 10,000 members now. Remember, you started it. Enjoy this week's recipes! More on the way in just a couple of days.

Arrivederci and grazie again!

Yours Truly,              
Adriana Ciccarello       

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 Recipe: Potato Salad with Basil Oil

Potato Salad with Basil Oil
Insalata di Patate con Olio al Basilico


1 cup (packed) whole fresh basil leaves
3 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 and 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/4 cup chopped red onion
2 pounds medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled


Blanch whole basil leaves in boiling water for 1 minute.


Run under cold water.

Drain and squeeze out any excess water.

Place basil in kitchen towel and squeeze out water.

Transfer basil to processor.

Add 1/2 cup olive oil.

Process until basil is very finely chopped.

Transfer to small bowl and season with salt.

Whisk vinegar and mustard in small bowl to blend.

Gradually whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Stir in red onion and 3 tablespoons thinly sliced basil.

Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

Place potatoes in large saucepan.

Add enough water to cover potatoes by 1 inch.

Bring to boil.

Reduce heat to medium, and simmer until tender, about 17 minutes.


Let potatoes stand until just cool enough to handle.

Cut into 3/4-inch cubes and place in large bowl.

Drizzle dressing over warm potatoes and toss gently to coat.

Pour basil oil over potatoes.

Toss gently to coat.

Serve potato salad warm or at room temperature. Makes 6 servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Linguine with Mixed Tomatoes

Linguine with Mixed Tomatoes
Linguine con Pomodori Misti


12 ounces linguine
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
4 cups seeded red, yellow, and orange cherry tomatoes (about 2 pounds), diced
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
1 large bunch watercress, trimmed
1 cup finely grated Parmigiano cheese plus additional for serving


Cook linguine in large pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente', stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat.

Add garlic and crushed pepper.

Stir 30 seconds.

Add cherry tomatoes.

Saute just until heated through, about 2 minutes.

Mix in vinegar.

Season sauce with salt and pepper.

Drain pasta and add to skillet.

Add watercress and 1 cup Parmigiano cheese.

Toss until watercress wilts and sauce coats pasta.

Transfer to bowl.

Serve, passing additional cheese separately. Makes 4 servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Pizza with Sausage, Tomatoes and Basil

Pizza with Sausage, Tomatoes and Basil
Pizza con Salsiccia, Pomodori e Basilico


For the Dough:
1 and 1/4 cups all-purpose enriched flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt
Vegetable oil cooking spray

For the Topping:
1 pound red and yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 pound sausage, cooked and thinly sliced
1 cup grated part-skim mozzarella cheese
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes


Mix flour, yeast and salt in a bowl.

Gradually add 1/2 cup warm (110?F) water until a soft dough forms.

Divide dough into 4 portions.

Using hands, roll dough into balls.

Coat with cooking spray, cover with plastic wrap and set aside to rise, 30 to 45 minutes.

When ready to cook, place each ball of dough on a piece of wax paper and flatten into a 4-inch circle.

Coat grill with cooking spray and heat on high.

Gently place dough onto grill and cook until dough puffs and underside stiffens (about 30 seconds).

Flip and reduce heat to low.

Mix topping ingredients, then divide among crusts.

Cover grill.

Cook until cheese melts, 5 to 6 minutes more.

Slice and serve. Makes 4 servings.

That's it!

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 Only In Italy!

"Only In Italy" is a daily news column that translates & reports on funny but true news items from legitimate Italian news resources in Italy. Each story is slapped with our wild, often ironic, and sometimes rather opinionated comments. And now, for your reading pleasure:

Pope Sets Up Criminal Investigative Crack Team To Stop Vatican Leaks

Vatican City - March 18, 2012 - The Pope has taken the unusual step of setting up an internal, criminal investigation to identify the source of damaging leaks of compromising Vatican documents.

The inquiry will seek to punish the insiders who leaked the papers, whom the Vatican hierarchy regard as "disloyal and cowardly".

Pope Benedict XVI had been hurt by the leaks, said Archbishop Angelo Becciu, the Vatican's deputy secretary of state and third most powerful Vatican figure.

Documents leaked to the Italian press over the last few weeks have shed light on dark power struggles between senior cardinals, alleged corruption and nepotism in the running of the Vatican administration, and a mysterious prediction that the 84-year-old pontiff would die within a year, possibly as a result of an assassination attempt.

Msgr Becciu described whistle-blowers as "cowardly" and "deeply disloyal" and warned that they would face the full force of the law from Vatican prosecutors. They had abused the trust placed in them by leaking the documents, he said.

The investigation will be conducted by a tribunal and will probe all departments in the Vatican administration.

Msgr Becciu also defended the reputation of the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy, saying it was wrong to depict it as a hotbed of "plots and careerism".

The investigation will draw on an inquiry already opened by the Vatican's own police force, the Gendarmerie, into how the leaks happened.

The Pope also decided to launch a special commission into the affair, composed of cardinals whom he had chosen personally, in order to re-establish "trust" within the Holy See.

"TOP SECRET" For Pope's eyes only:

1. There could be life on other planets:
In 2006, Father Jose Funes, director of the Vatican's observatory, states that the Vatican acknowledges that life on other planets is theoretically possible. (However, whatever the life forms would be, the Vatican feels that they would be one of God's creations...vulnerable to spiritual blackmail and bribery, especially if they are Communist aliens running for office or Supreme Leader.)

2. Vatican Post Office is remarkably efficient, fast and profitable:
Beyond the many tourist souvenirs, the postage stamps contribute to the largest export of the Vatican serving as one of the primary sources of internal revenue. (Romans and tourists also find that the Vatican mail system is faster and more efficient than the typical Italian postal office...where they're used to dealing with postal workers who have spent more time together than the 12 Apostles but still have trouble remembering each other's name and the cost of mailing a postcard to Chicago.)

3. Vatican Radio waves covers the world twice over:
Located in a tower inside the Vatican Gardens, the Vatican has a radio station that broadcasts in 45 different languages across the world. In 2010 a court-ordered study has found that electromagnetic waves beamed by Vatican Radio leave residents living near the station?s giant antenna towers at a higher risk of cancer. (The radio?s director, Federico Lombardi, disputed the report, saying: "Vatican Radio is astonished to hear the news on the results of the study." And so was Tom Hanks with "Wilson" on that deserted island. "Am I going crazy or am I picking up the Third Sermon of Lent on a volleyball?")

4. Turn water to wine, taxes to donations:
Instead of paying their taxes to the Italian government, Italians are allowed to donate 8% of their yearly taxes to the Vatican. (Makes you want to pour your marinara sauce over your head, doesn't it?)

"Only In Italy" Subscribe today and you'll discover why the last improvements to Italy were made by Julius Caesar and why it's been downhill ever since!  Click Here to Subscribe!

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