11/17/15 Cannelloni with Chicken, Veal and Pork

"Se vvoi vivri sanu mangia pocu e camina jchianu. (If you want to be healthy, eat little, walk slowly.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Adriana's Italian Bakery!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Fennel Salad with Oranges, Arugula, and Olives
  -Cannelloni with Chicken, Veal and Pork
  -Plum Gnocchi

"Pronti per il giorno Thanksgiving?" Can you believe Thanksgiving is only a few days away? We're still wondering where the summer season went! Regardless, postpone the worries and the drama for life is too short. For this Thanksgiving Holiday...cook slowly, laugh out loud, live truly and try to forgive quickly.

Arrivederci and grazie again!

Yours Truly,              
Adriana Ciccarello       

 Cookie of the Week: Almonds and Amarena Cookies

"Almonds and Amarena Cookies: A cookie that has started a trend here in Sicily! They are round cookie almond balls made exclusively from our own home grown natural almonds, the freshest farm eggs, an amarena cherry center, flour, and sugar. No preservatives, additives, artificial colors, nor flavors. Serves 5-7.

900 grams (2 lbs.) is only 15.99 Euro (16.75 - 17.25 U.S. Dollars) + Shipping.

Example Order: One order to anywhere in the USA costs 15.99 Euro plus 8.70 Euro for Global Priority Mail shipping (7-8 days) for a total of 24.69 Euro (26.00 - 26.50 U.S. Dollars).

 Recipe: Fennel Salad with Oranges, Arugula, and Olives

Fennel Salad with Oranges, Arugula, and Olives
Insalata di Finocchio con Arance, Rucola e Olive


2 cored, halved, trimmed medium fennel bulbs
3 blood or navel oranges
2 bunches trimmed arugula
1/4 cup oil-cured black olives
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp red vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper


Trim off and discard peel and all of the white pith from oranges.

Slice crosswise into thin rounds and set aside.

Mix together extra-virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar in a large salad bowl.

Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Tear arugula into large pieces and arrange in the salad bowl.

Slice fennel bulbs into long strips.

Toss salad just before serving.

Adjust seasonings.

Arrange orange slices and black olives on top. Serves 4.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Plum Gnocchi

Plum Gnocchi
Gnocchi di Prugne


2 large ripe plums, pitted
3 large russet potatoes
2 cups flour
6 tbsp butter
2 cups coarse dry bread crumbs
1 egg
1 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
3 tsp ground cinnamon


Place potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.

Cook potatoes, partially covered, until tender, about 30-35 minutes.

Drain and set aside until cool enough to handle.

Peel potatoes.

Press through a potato ricer onto a clean surface.

Spread in a thin layer to cool completely.

Gather potatoes into a mound.

Form a well.

Add egg, salt, and nutmeg, and beat together.

Knead dough, gradually adding about 1 and 1/2 cups flour, until smooth and slightly sticky.

Roll out dough on a floured surface to 1/4-inch thick.

Using a 4-inch round cookie cutter or a glass, cut out 30 circles.

Gather scraps together to roll out again, if necessary.

Cut plums into 30 3/4-inch pieces.

Place a dough circle in palm of your hand.

Place a piece of plum in center, then sprinkle with 1/2 tsp sugar.

Gather dough up and around plum and press to seal, pinching dough together if it tears.

Shape into a smooth, even ball.

Place on a lightly floured tray.

Repeat with remaining dough and filling.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.

Add bread crumbs and toast, stirring constantly, until deep golden brown, about 7-9 minutes.

Remove from heat and add cinnamon and remaining sugar.

Cook gnocchi in small batches in a large pot of boiling water over high heat.

Stir gently to prevent sticking.

Cook until dough is tender and slightly translucent, about 20-22 minutes.

Lift gnocchi from boiling water with a slotted spoon.

Drain well.

Roll each in the bread crumbs to coat well.

Arrange on a serving platter and sprinkle with any remaining bread crumbs.

Serve warm. Makes 30.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Cannelloni with Chicken, Veal and Pork

Cannelloni with Chicken, Veal and Pork
Cannelloni con Pollo, Vitello e Maiale


For the Tomato Sauce:
One 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and halved
4 tbsp butter
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the Filling:
6 oz boneless, skinless chicken thigh, chopped
6 oz ground veal
6 oz ground pork
1 chicken liver, chopped
1 small yellow onion, peeled and minced
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pinch freshly ground nutmeg

For the Balsamella Sauce:
2 cups hot milk
4 tbsp butter, cut into pieces
1/4 cup flour
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

For the Pasta:
12 sheets fresh pasta, 4 inches by 5 inches each
2 tbsp grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 tbsp butter, cut into small pieces


Prepare the Tomato Sauce:
Place tomatoes, onions, and butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Simmer, stirring often, until sauce thickens, about 30 minutes.

Remove and discard onions.

Prepare the Filling:
Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.

Add onions and garlic and cook, stirring often, until onions are soft, about 5-6 minutes.

Add chicken livers and mash to a paste with the back of a wooden spoon.

Add chicken, veal, pork, and salt and pepper to taste.

Cook, stirring often, until meat is cooked through, about 10-12 minutes.

Transfer meat to a cutting board and chop until texture is very fine and meat begins to hold together.

Transfer meat to a medium bowl.

Stir in nutmeg, and set aside.

Prepare the Balsamella Sauce:
Melt butter in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat.

Add flour and whisk for 2 minutes.

Gradually add milk, whisking constantly.

Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir constantly until sauce is as thick as heavy cream, about 15-17 minutes.

Add cheese.

Add 1/2 cup of the sauce to the meat filling and set remaining sauce aside.

Prepare the Pasta:
Preheat oven to 375?.

Add a generous pinch of salt to a large pot of boiling water over high heat.

Cook pasta several sheets at a time until tender, about 30 seconds.

Dip briefly in a large bowl of cold water.

Lay sheets out on clean, damp kitchen towels.

Cover with another damp towel.

Working with one sheet of pasta at a time, spread 2-3 tbsp meat filling along wide edge.

Roll up.

Repeat with remaining pasta and filling.

Spread a thin layer, about 1 cup, tomato sauce over bottom of a large baking dish.

Lay cannelloni, seam side down, in a single layer on top of tomato sauce.

Spread another thin layer of tomato sauce over cannelloni.

Spoon remaining balsamella over tomato sauce.

Sprinkle with cheese, and dot with butter.

Bake until sauce is bubbling, 15-20 minutes.

Brown under broiler for 3-4 minutes. Serves 4-6.

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:

What Berlusconi's reduced community-service sentence can teach you about life

Milan, February 2, 2015 - A Milan judge ruled that ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi should be able to end 45 days early the one year of community service he has been serving in relation to a definitive conviction for tax fraud (368M Euros or $412M USD).

Although the media magnate and political leader will still be banned from holding or running for political office the community-service discount was hailed by his allies as "great news" and a reward for his "good behavior".

Since May Berlusconi has been helping out with Alzheimer's patients at the "Cesano Boscone" care home near Milan, after his August 2013 conviction for tax fraud on the trading of film rights at his Mediaset empire. Prosecutors had opposed granting Berlusconi the early end to the community service which will be March 8th.

Berlusconi recently vowed to be "back in the field in March", anticipating the verdict.

In the tax-fraud case, his only binding conviction, and a string of other legal problems, Berlusconi has always been adamant that left-wing elements in Italy's politicized judiciary have been waging a 20-year campaign to drive him out of public life.

The tycoon-turned-politician was acquitted on appeal last year of paying for sex with an underage prostitute, on the grounds that he did not know she was only 17.

He is currently facing trial for allegedly bribing a businessman who allegedly provided him with escorts not to talk about it.

Other pending cases include allegedly bribing senators to change sides and involvement in the publication of an illegally obtained wiretap that hurt a rival.

Ok, you might want to strap yourselves tightly into your seats while we go through these lessons on the President of Pepperoni, our hero. "Porca trota," this is something that should be on Barbara Walters.

Math: Defrauded Italian government 368M Euros ($412M USD). Sentenced to 4 hours of community service per week for 10 months.
That's 1 one hour of service for every 2M Euros defrauded. Our news staff had to figure this one out on our fingers and toes because we kept smashing our calculators every time we came up with the same number.

Medicine: Several late-stage Alzheimer's patients at the care home declared their memories had somewhat miraculously returned after experiencing close encounters with Silvio, which usually involved lame and sexist humor.
The big wise-ass packed in a little body should be nominated for a Nobel Prize in Medicine.

Religion: Every time the Italians are presented with the yearly opportunity to eliminate Silvio, his so-called "opponents" in Italy's Center-Left Party and the judiciary system create the loopholes to save him and his media empire.
Those "figli di puttane", sons of bitches, did a more impressive job of resurrecting the creator of Bunga-Bunga than Jesus did with Lazarus.
we can't wait until he returns to his TV channels and speeches, promising the Italians he'll part the Red Sea.

Social Studies: March 8th is International Women's Day; a celebration of respect, appreciation and love towards women, along with their economic, political, and social achievements.
He will also be celebrating with many women on this day...for March 8th is his last day of community service.

"I have always highly valued women because I genuinely believe that they are one step ahead of men: they are better at school, college, they are smarter, more capable, more responsible. So, I have always made sure that every woman has felt, let's say...special." (Silvio, Ansa, February 14, 2011)

"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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