Archive for the 'vegetables' Category

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Patate Hasselback

Mi lancio nei luoghi comuni. Il tempo è impazzito, non ci sono più le stagioni di una volta… E infatti Laura a Bruxelles mi guarda dallo schermo Skype in canottiera mentre io le rispondo con una bella felpetta a maniche lunghe. Lucina in Inghilterra sceglie dal florilegio del blog tutte le ricette rinfrescanti e io penso a qualche bel piattino caldo per le fresche serate di questa mezz’estate con l’ombrello. Il cielo ha più di 50 sfumature di grigio e la programmata gita in montagna da fare col sole dovrà aspettare, mi sa, dicembre. Ecco dunque questo piatto tradizionale per niente estivo ma che noi abbiamo gradito. Ok, molto burro, ma per una volta… (ahi, mi sa che anche la prossima ricetta che posterò non sarà molto light…). Ah, dimenticavo: pare che Hasselback fosse un ristorante svedese (quindi ecco una ricetta degna di entrare nelle tradizioni di famiglia). E la foto? C’era, c’era ma l’ho cancellata per sbaglio! Continue reading ‘Patate Hasselback’

Verdurine fritte in pastella

verdurine fritte in pastella

Once again I resort to the Italian title which sounds a lot nicer than its English equivalent. Basically these are vegetable strips fried in a light batter. The novelty is that they include courgettes’ flowers (in the picture they are the blobby things in the  bottom right corner). Oh yes! These are a delicacy in Italy and something I have always wanted to try making. You can stuff them, fry them or indeed use them in other recipes. The only problem was they don’t sell the flowers here in the UK (they do in Italy). So imagine my delight when the courgette I planted  and  nurtured this year started growing like mad and producing lots of courgettes as well as flowers! I have never seen anything as big as this plant! It has basically taken over my mini vegetable patch (which I created in an old whisky barrel). Every day I look and another couple of courgettes have sprung up. Unbelievable! Do they all grow as fast as that? Anyway I had 4 flowers to use today so I decided it would be a bit of a waste to make the batter just to fry them, hence the idea of adding other vegetables. I used courgettes (of course), carrots and asparagus. Of course you can try other vegetables too. Peppers would be very nice for example, as well as aubergines or cauliflower. The recipe for the batter, which I thought was very light, came from the Giallo Zafferano website. By the way: you must eat them as soon as you have cooked them or they lose their crunchiness. Needless to say the diet will start tomorrow…ha ha 😉 Continue reading ‘Verdurine fritte in pastella’


Si scriverà poi così? Se si va su Wikipedia c’è da perdere la testa nelle giravolte che fa questo nome a seconda del fazzoletto di terra in cui mangiano questo piatto: un po’ dappertutto nei Balcani, divisi da confini arcigni ma uniti da tante cose in comune, tra queste il cibo.

In questo periodo mi ci sono affezionata e  anche se non fa tanto caldo mi vien sempre voglia di farlo. Oggi me lo sono perfino portata in treno accompagnato da 4 felafel e un pezzo di pane (chissà i susseguiosi vicini della Freccia – in ritardo – cosa avranno pensato). Continue reading ‘Tzatziki’

Lentil and mushroom curry

lentil and mushroom curry

The idea to make this wholesome curry came from my son Tom, who, just like his mother, enjoys experimenting in the kitchen. We often swap ideas and recipes over the phone. I kind of made up this recipe as I went along: I looked at what ingredients I had available and used them so I’m sure you can alter/adapt/add. It’s a very simple dish to make and surprisingly tasty.  It was even nicer the following day. I served it with a home made naan (see recipe here) as you can see from the picture.  By the way I have effectively become vegetarian. I  still eat meat when I go to people’s houses , etc. but I have stopped buying it. I only buy fish. I’m sure I’ll be all the better for it. Anyway, the point is that I have to make sure to eat a balanced diet which doesn’t mean a slice of cake in both hands. 😉 That’s why I like eating pulses: they are a good source of proteins , they are  cheap, low-fat and also contain precious fibre, vitamins and minerals. What more can we want? Continue reading ‘Lentil and mushroom curry’

Baked stuffed aubergines

baked stuffed aubergines

First of May and it is tanking it down here in England!! :-( Well…Hello everyone and sorry for the silence of these past few weeks but firstly I went on holiday during the Easter break so had no internet access and secondly I managed to break my leg on the first day back at work hence I’ve been out of action. In truth, I still am as my leg is in a plaster cast but  at least I finally managed to hobble to the computer. Just BEFORE the accident I cooked this really nice vegetarian dish from the Two greedy Italians cookery book (slightly adapted). I love aubergines and was impressed as to how nice this particular dish was. Really quite delicious (taste wise it reminded me of melanzane alla parmigiana) and not too complicated either. It was really tasty. Definitely one I’ll make again. Continue reading ‘Baked stuffed aubergines’

Roasted ratatouille

roasted ratatouille

I said I would use again the Chocolate & Zucchini book and here I am , true to my promise, sharing a nice, healthy vegetables recipe ( long overdue, after all the cakes blogged recently!).  Everyone will be familiar with the traditional ratatouille. I’ve got to admit I am not a fan: I find it a bit bland, in truth. But not this one! Roasting the vegetables definitely adds to the flavour. Plus it’s even easier to do than the traditional one made on the hob as you put everything in a roasting dish and bang it in the oven, without the need to stir. It can be eaten hot or cold, so it’s ideal if you want to make it in advance. I had some leftover and tossed it in some pasta the following day. It was even nicer! I would definitely recommend it. Continue reading ‘Roasted ratatouille’

Involtini agrodolci di melanzane e zucchini

Ho preso questa ricetta dal sito di Io Donna, il magazine cosidetto femminile del Corriere., cambiandola un po’ ed estendedola anche alle zucchine.  Giusto un modo di acchiappare la coda dell’estate che se n’è andata prima di immergerci nelle mille varietà di cavoli che ci offrono l’autunno e l’inverno. In effetti è molto fresca ed è più adatta alla stagione calda. Continue reading ‘Involtini agrodolci di melanzane e zucchini’

Red lentils dal

red lentils dal

Nothing for ten days and then two recipes all at once? What’s going on? Well….why not, eh? I like living on the edge, me! Seriously, the reason for my absence was simply that I have not been in residence. Like previous years I went to spend a few days in Edinburgh for the fringe festival. Brill! While I was there I met up with my youngest son Tom and , as it’s often the case, we ended up talking about food. Like mother, like son…He loves cooking too and this dal recipe is one of his favourites. So much so that apparently he “inflicts” it on his girlfriend at least once a week (I’m sure she is getting a bit fed up by now, good though it is!).! Anyway, dal is a very common Indian dish made with pulses. This simple but flavoursome version is based on red lentils. What I like about this recipe is that it’s very straightforward and can be used as a base. You can try adding other vegetables to it such as chick peas, potatoes, cauliflower, spinach, tomatoes etc.. I have seen many variations on the internet. Served with the naan bread I have just blogged works really well! :-) Continue reading ‘Red lentils dal’

Roasted roots with mustard, rosemary and honey

roasted roots with mustard, rosemary and honey

At the beginning of January I promised you I would try out a recipe from every cookery book I have got and never used as a new year’s resolution BUT here I am blogging a recipe from the trusted River Cottage Everyday book by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. Oh well! Must try harder next recipe.  I decided to blog a vegetable dish because humble vegetables often get overlooked and people end up cooking them in the same old, boring way. But there’s no need for that. I love roasted vegetables and the combination of mustard, honey and rosemary works really well, I think. I will certainly make these babies again. They are ideal to serve with meat, fish, etc. I have used parnsips, celeriac and carrots but as parsnips don’t exist in Italy you could perhaps use turnips or sweet potatoes instead. Continue reading ‘Roasted roots with mustard, rosemary and honey’

Sformatini di broccoli e nocciole



 Si vede che ho la farina di nocciole da finire nell’armadio, eh?  Continue reading ‘Sformatini di broccoli e nocciole’