12/01/09 Linguine With Mussels alla Diavola

"Chi parla in faccia non traditore." (He who speaks to your face is not a traitor.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Adriana's Italian Bakery!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Fried Mozzarella with Anchovies, Capers, and Garlic Sauce
  -Linguine With Mussels alla Diavola
  -Veal Cutlets with Sauteed Baby Artichokes

Hope all our readers are getting ready for a happy and healthy Christmas Holiday Season. Enjoy this week's recipes!

Arrivederci e a presto!

Yours Truly,              
Adriana Ciccarello       

 Italian Cookies for Christmas Holidays

Cookies have always played an important part in Italian cuisine, whether you have them for breakfast with a cappuccino, or nibbled with a quick cup of espresso at a mid-morning or afternoon break. It is at holiday time however, particularly Christmas, when cookies truly shine. In almost any Italian home, whether it be in Italy, or in North America, most families treat themselves to traditional cookies each Christmas, and often these cookies are from recipes that have been handed down through their families for generations.

If you are interested in ordering your own Italian cookie tray this Holiday season for your family or close friends, you might be interested in the following deadline:

All orders must be placed by Saturday, December 12, at 12:00 PM EST. Click here to order!

 Recipe: Fried Mozzarella with Anchovies, Capers, and Garlic Sauce

Fried Mozzarella with Anchovies, Capers, and Garlic Sauce
Mozzarella Fritta con Salsa di Acciughe, Capperi, e Aglio


Two 8-ounce balls fresh water-packed mozzarella cheese, drained, each cut into four 1/3 to 1/2-inch thick rounds
All purpose flour
1 large egg, beaten to blend
3 cups fresh breadcrumbs made from crustless French bread (about 8 ounces)

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup (packed) fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup drained capers
One 2-ounce can anchovy fillets, drained
1 and 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice


Coat cheese in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs.

Place on baking sheet.

Cover and refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours.

Meanwhile, melt butter in small skillet over low heat.

Add garlic; saute about 3 minutes.

Transfer mixture to processor.

Add parsley leaves, 1/4 cup olive oil, capers, anchovies, and lemon juice.

Blend until coarse paste forms.

Season with salt and pepper. (Cheese and sauce can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover separately; chill. Rewarm sauce slightly over low heat before serving.)

Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in large skillet over high heat.

Working in batches, fry cheese until brown, about 2 minutes per side.

Transfer fried cheese to plates.

Spoon warm sauce over cheese. Makes 8 first-course servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Linguine With Mussels alla Diavola

Linguine With Mussels alla Diavola
Linguine con le Cozze alla Diavola


12 garlic cloves, minced (1/3 cup)
1 and 1/2 teaspoons dried hot red pepper flakes
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 (28-oz) can whole tomatoes in puree
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons dried oregano, crumbled
1 teaspoon dried basil, crumbled
1/4 cup drained bottled capers (1 and 1/4 oz)
1/2 cup Kalamata or other brine-cured black olives (3 oz), pitted and chopped
1/3 cup dry red wine
1 lb dried linguine
3 lb mussels (preferably cultivated), cleaned


Just before cooking, clean mussels by scrubbing them well with a brush under cold water and scraping off any barnacles with a knife. If beard is still attached, remove it by pulling it from tip to hinge or by pulling and cutting it off with knife.

Cook garlic and red pepper flakes in olive oil in a deep 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until fragrant but not browned, about 2 minutes.

Add tomatoes with puree, tomato paste, herbs, capers, olives, and wine and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally and breaking up tomatoes, until sauce is thick, about 15 minutes.

Cook linguine in a 6 to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente', then drain in a colander.

While pasta cooks, increase heat under sauce to moderately high and add mussels, then cook, covered, until mussels just open wide, checking frequently after 3 minutes and transferring to a bowl. (Discard any mussels that remain unopened after 6 minutes.)

Serve linguine with mussels and sauce. Makes 6 main-course servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Veal Cutlets with Sauteed Baby Artichokes

Veal Cutlets with Sauteed Baby Artichokes
Costolette di Vitello con Carciofi Piccoli Saltati


1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
12 baby artichokes

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, minced
6 large ripe plum tomatoes, each cut into 6 wedges
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

Six 4-ounce veal cutlets (each about 1/4 to 1/3 inch thick)
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


Fill large bowl with cold water; add lemon juice.

Cut off stem and top quarter from 1 artichoke.

Bend back dark green outer leaves and snap off at base until pale green and yellow leaves remain.

Quarter artichoke lengthwise; remove any purple-tipped leaves from center.

Place in lemon water.

Repeat with remaining artichokes.

Cook drained artichokes in large pot of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, about 8 minutes.

Drain well; set aside.

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

Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add artichokes and saute 5 minutes.

Add tomatoes and crushed red pepper.

Cook until tomatoes soften, about 5 minutes.

Stir in basil and lemon peel.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature. Rewarm before using.)

Sprinkle veal with salt and pepper.

Melt butter in large nonstick skillet over high heat.

Working in batches, add veal and cook until brown, about 2 minutes per side.

Transfer veal to plates.

Sprinkle with parsley.

Serve with artichoke mixture. Makes 6 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:

Italy's Heavy Metal Monk Shuts Off His Mike

Milan - November 13, 2009 - Italy's "Brother Metal," a 63-year-old monk who became famous for singing in a heavy metal band (habit and all) is hanging up his microphone, saying the devil made him too much of a celebrity for his own good.

The white-bearded Cesare Bonizzi, a Capuchin who recorded CDs for a punk label and was the lead singer for the band Fratello Metallo (Metal Brother), said the devil was up to his usual mischief.

"The devil has separated me from my managers, risked making me break up with my band colleagues and also risked making me break up with my fellow monks. He lifted me up to the point where I became a celebrity and now I want to kill him," the monk said in his farewell video.

The video shows one of the monk's band members shaving off Bonizzi's long mane of white hair as a sign of his turning a new leaf on life.

For years Bonizzi performed at concerts wearing his traditional Franciscan brown robe, sandals and white rope around his waist.

His second heavy metal CD was called "Mysteries," and was inspired by a group of southern Italian women who sang about the Virgin Mary.

Bonizzi, who fell in love with heavy metal when he attended a Metallica concert some 15 years ago, says fame had put him on the wrong path. But he still thinks heavy metal can be a means to spread the gospel message of pace and love.

"I think that metal is the strength of music itself. Metal is a brother," he said in the video.

"Dio mio", if only the vast majority of remarkably untalented celebrities followed his logic.

We can't believe he has a fan club. If he does they probably meet in a confessional.

"The devil has separated me from my managers, risked making me break up with my band colleagues..." Hmmm... It appears the good monk was being led astray by the "Devil of Solo Careers".

Devil: "Come on, let yourself go. Did Springsteen need the E Street Band?"

And we would love to meet the possessed record producers who thought a heavy metal CD, inspired by southern Italian religious women, would be a chart busting smash. "Minchia, I think we have a hit on our hands."

Too bad the good "Angel of Record Sales" didn't think so.

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