09/07/10 Bolognese Meat Sauce

"A caval donato non si guarda in bocca." (Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Adriana's Italian Bakery!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Bolognese Meat Sauce
  -Broccoli Rabe Sauteed
  -Bean and Swiss Chard Soup

Enjoy this week's recipes!

Arrivederci e a presto!

Yours Truly,              
Adriana Ciccarello       

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 Recipe: Bolognese Meat Sauce

Bolognese Meat Sauce
Ragu Alla Bolognese


1 and 1/2 oz (40 grams) butter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery stick, chopped
1 onion, chopped
9 oz (250 grams) ground beef
1 tablespoon concentrated tomato puree
Salt and pepper


Heat the butter and olive oil in a small sauce pan and add the carrot, onion, celery, and ground beef.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Mix well and cook over a low heat for just a few minutes until the vegetables have softened and the beef starts to cook and turn brown.

Mix in the tomato puree with a little bit of water to dilute it and add to the sauce pan.

Cover and cook over a very low heat for 1 and 1/2 hours, adding a little hot water if the sauce appears to be turning dry.

Note: The ragu may be made with mixed meats. Excellent for tagliatelle pasta. Serves 4.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Broccoli Rabe Sauteed

Broccoli Rabe Sauteed
Broccoli Rabe Saltata


2 lb broccoli rabe
3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced lengthwise
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt (preferably sea salt), or to taste
Lemon wedges


Cut off and discard 1 inch from stem ends of broccoli rabe.

Cook broccoli rabe, uncovered, in 2 batches in a 6 to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes, transferring with a slotted spoon to a large bowl of ice and cold water to stop cooking.

Drain well in a colander.

Cook garlic in olive oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until garlic is golden, about 5 minutes.

Add broccoli rabe and cook, tossing to coat with olive oil, until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes.

Toss broccoli rabe with salt. Makes 8 servings.

Note: Broccoli rabe can be boiled and drained 6 hours ahead, then chilled, covered. Bring to room temperature before proceeding.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Bean and Swiss Chard Soup

Bean and Swiss Chard Soup
Zuppa di Fagioli e Bietole


1 lb dried white beans such as Great Northern, cannellini, or navy (2 cups), picked over and rinsed
1/4 lb sliced pancetta, chopped
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 fennel bulb (sometimes called anise), stalks discarded and bulb chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 cups chicken stock or broth
4 cups water
One (3 by 2-inch) piece Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese rind
1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 lb Swiss chard (preferably red or rainbow), stems discarded and leaves halved lengthwise, then thinly sliced crosswise
1 teaspoon salt


Soak beans in cold water to cover by 2 inches in a bowl at room temperature at least 8 hours, or quick-soak.*

Drain in a colander.

Cook pancetta in olive oil in a wide 6 to 8-quart heavy pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 5 minutes.

Transfer pancetta with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain.

Cook onion and fennel in olive oil remaining in pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 6 to 8 minutes.

Add garlic and cook, stirring, 1 minute.

Add beans, stock, water, cheese rind, bay leaf, and pepper and simmer, uncovered, until beans are tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Discard cheese rind and bay leaf.

Stir in Swiss chard and salt and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until chard is tender, 8 to 10 minutes.

Season soup with salt and pepper. Makes 4 to 6 main-course servings

Notes: Beans can be soaked up to 12 hours. ·To quick-soak beans: Cover beans with cold water by 2 inches in a 5 to 6-quart pot and bring to a boil, uncovered.

Boil beans, uncovered, 2 minutes, then remove from heat and let stand, uncovered, 1 hour.

Soup is best when made 1 day ahead (to give flavors time to develop).

Cool completely, uncovered, then chill, covered. Reheat and, if necessary, thin with water.

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:

Send A Text Message To The Pope

Rome - May 8, 2010 - Roman Catholics can send now text messages of support to Pope Benedict XVI, Italian public television said Saturday, as the Church faces an international pedophile scandal.

The mobile phone service was launched by Rai television's Sunday weekly religious program, ahead of a gathering organized by lay groups in Saint Peter's Square on May 16 to show their backing for the pontiff.

All messages sent to the special number (+39 335 18 63 091) will be passed along to the pope by the end of May, the broadcaster said. They will be shown from Sunday during the television show "In His Image".

"It's a truly unique event, because with this number everyone can show their solidarity without being physically present in Saint Peter's Square," said Rosario Carello, the chief of the program on the Rai Uno channel.

Folks, feel free to send the following messages of solidarity to our good Pope:

Dear Pope, it's not working. What happened? There's a circus going on in that Vatican. Remember the biblical Calabrian saying, "Fatti i cazzi tuoi, ca campi cent'anni." (Mind your own business, and you'll live 100 years.)

Jesus says to John come forth, I'll give you eternal life. John came fifth. He won a toaster. LOL!

The basic difference b/w God and Human? GOD; gives, gives, gives and 4gives. HUMAN; gets, gets, gets and 4gets.

God made daylight n called it the SUN.
God made entertainment n called it FUN.
God made night light n called it the MOON.
God made you n called it CARTOON.

Dear Pope, would consider coming to one of my Protestant services where they are doing healings, and people are running up and down the aisles and passing out? It's a hoot! PS. How's the weather in Rome?

Pope, may you bless the person who wrote these words of wisdom, "Dai nemici mi guardo io, dagli amici mi guardi Iddio!" (I can protect myself from my enemies; may God protect me from my friends!)

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