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 08/24/10 Baked Ziti with Pork and Sausage Ragł

"L'occhio del padrone ingrassa il cavallo." (The eye of the owner makes the horse fat. A business thrives under the eye of its owner.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Adriana's Italian Bakery!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Wild Mushroom Crostini
  -Baked Ziti with Pork and Sausage Ragł
  -Lobster In Tarragon Sauce

Enjoy this week's recipes and the rest of your summer season!

Arrivederci e a presto!

Yours Truly,              
Adriana Ciccarello       


 Cookie of the Week: Traditional Almond Cookies

"Traditional" Almond Cookies: A soft and chewy Italian almond cookie with a crisp outside and tender inside. Made exclusively from our own home grown natural almonds, the freshest farm eggs, flour, and sugar. No preservatives, additives, artificial colors, nor flavors. Serves 5-7.

900 grams (2 lbs.) is only 13.99 Euro ($17.50-$18.00) + Shipping.

Example Order: One order to anywhere in the USA costs 13.99 Euro plus 8.70 Euro for Global Priority Mail shipping (7-8 days) for a total of 22.69 Euro ($28.50-$29.00 U.S. Dollars).


 Recipe: Wild Mushroom Crostini

Wild Mushroom Crostini
Crostini di Funghi Selvatici

Ingredients:

36 1/3-inch thick baguette slices
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup chopped shallots
2 and 1/4 cups chopped oyster mushrooms
2 and 1/4 cups chopped stemmed shiitake mushrooms (about 6 ounces)
1 and 1/4 cups chopped chanterelle mushrooms (about 4 ounces)
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1 cup grated Fontina cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese (about 1 and 3/4 ounces)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Arrange baguette slices on rimmed baking sheet.

Toast in oven until golden, about 9 minutes.

Cool. (Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature.)

Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.

Add shallots; saute 1 minute.

Add all mushrooms; saute until beginning to brown, about 6 minutes.

Stir in garlic; saute 1 minute.

Remove from heat.

Stir in cream, rosemary, and lemon peel.

Season with salt and pepper.

Cool. Mix in both cheeses. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Preheat broiler.

Top each toast with about 1 tablespoon mushroom topping.

Place on 2 rimmed baking sheets.

Working in batches, broil until cheese is melted and begins to brown, watching closely to prevent burning, about 3 minutes.

Transfer to serving platter.

Serve warm. Makes 36.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Baked Ziti with Pork and Sausage Ragł

Baked Ziti with Pork and Sausage Ragł
Ziti al Forno Con Carne di Maiale e Salsiccia

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, chopped
2 lbs Boston butt (pork shoulder), cut into 1 and 1/4-inch cubes
1 lb hot sausages, casings removed
2 cups chopped onions
3/4 cup chopped carrots
3/4 cup chopped celery
6 large fresh thyme sprigs
6 large garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
2 cups dry red wine
One 28-ounce can plum tomatoes in juice, tomatoes chopped, juice reserved

1 and 1/4 lbs ziti pasta
2 cups (packed) coarsely grated whole-milk mozzarella cheese (about 8 ounces)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese

Directions:

Heat olive oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat.

Add pancetta and saute until brown and crisp.

Using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to bowl.

Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper.

Add half of pork to drippings in pot; saute until brown, about 7 minutes.

Transfer to bowl with pancetta.

Repeat with remaining pork.

Add sausage to same pot.

Saute until no longer pink, breaking up with back of fork, about 5 minutes.

Add onions, carrots, celery, thyme, garlic, bay leaves, and crushed red pepper.

Reduce heat to medium-low; saute until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.

Add wine and bring to boil, scraping up browned bits.

Add pancetta and pork with any accumulated juices; boil 2 minutes.

Add tomatoes with juice.

Cover and cook until pork is very tender, adjusting heat as needed to maintain gentle simmer and stirring occasionally, about 2 hours.

Uncover pot; tilt to 1 side and spoon off fat from surface of ragł.

Gently press pork pieces with back of fork to break up meat coarsely.

Season ragł to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated. Rewarm over low heat before continuing.)

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Butter 15 x 10 x 2-inch glass baking dish or other 4-quart baking dish.

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

Drain pasta; mix into ragł.

Season mixture to taste with salt and pepper; transfer to prepared dish.

Sprinkle both cheeses over.

Bake until heated through and golden, about 20 minutes. Makes 8 servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Lobster In Tarragon Sauce

Lobster In Tarragon Sauce
Aragosta In Salsa di Dragoncello

Ingredients:

Two x 1 and 3/4 lb (800 grams) spiny lobsters, boiled
3 and 1/2 oz (100 grams) butter
1 onion, finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
2 fl oz (50 ml) brandy
1 teaspoon herb mustard
1 fresh tarragon sprig, finely chopped
6 fl oz (175 ml) dry white wine
Juice of 1/2 lemon, strained
Salt and pepper

Directions:

Cut open the lobsters and remove the meat, reserving the tomalley and coral.

Melt 2 oz (50 grams) of the butter in a pan, add the onion, celery and carrot and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

Add the lobster meat and cook until lightly browned, then season.

Add half the brandy and cook until has evaporated, then add the mustard and tarragon.

Pour in wine, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove the pan from heat, transfer the lobsters to a plate and keep warm.

Strain cooking liquid into a clean pan.

Chop the tomalley and coral a add to the pan with the remaining butter, remaining brandy a lemon juice.

Cook over a medium heat until slightly reduced, season.

Serve the lobsters covered with the sauce. Serves 4.

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:

One In Four Italian Parents Slaps Their Children Around

Rome - March 26, 2010 - Around one Italian parent in four spanks or slaps their children when they misbehave, a study by Save the Children reported Friday.

Some 2% of the parents polled confessed to resorting to corporal punishment "almost every day" while around 23% said it was a "monthly occurrence". Physical discipline was most common among parents of children between three and five, around 38% of whom said they spanked their children at least once per month.

Parents of teens between 14 and 18 were the least prone to raise their hand, with just 8% saying it happened once every couple of weeks and less than 1% calling it a daily fact of life. Just 19% of parents said they "never hit their children" because they disapproved of physical methods of discipline compared to 57% who simply didn't think they were necessary.

The report was at the center of a convention organized by the global charity in Rome on parenting habits in Italy. Taking away favorite toys or imposing restrictions was the most popular punishment in Italy, with some seven out of ten parents saying that was more effective than a spanking.

Around 21% said that forcing kids to perform unpleasant chores worked the best while around 31% said docking their allowance was enough to get results.

Psychologists at the convention, however, argued that "no punishment is necessarily better than another, what matters most is that they're in proportion to the crime".

"Disciplinary action is only useful it makes children understand what they've done wrong," said Dr. Federico Bianchi.

"That's the only useful message you can send through punishments".

"A spanking by itself can mean 'don't do this'. But a spanking everyday doesn't mean anything," he said.

Did you eat the last cannoli, you little "cornuto"?

"Parents of teens between 14 and 18 were the least prone to raise their hand, with just 8% saying it happened once every couple of weeks..." "Mamma mia", come again? That's why Italian kids today are out of their minds. Just take a look at Italy's public school system. "Minchia", only Siegfried and Roy could clean it up.

Back in our day, all Italian children felt the superhuman wrath of the wooden spoon. We had to take the fall for everything!

"A beating?! What for?! Porca vacca, how is it my fault that all the chickens are sick?"

And not to mention the beastly Catholic school nuns who had custom-made paddles drilled with holes for improved aerodynamics and stinging.

After your ecclesiastical beating these deranged nuns would register the incident it in their holy archives and hand you a note to take home to be signed by your parents explaining to them in detail what you did and that you were punished with a warranted beating. The signed note had to be brought back the next morning to their unbalanced leader, the Mother Superior.

Of course, with all these documented affidavits going back and forth between our homes and the school at lightening speeds, we had no choice but to use our white underwear as flags of surrender.

"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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