orecchiette con cime di rapa

orecchiette are a traditional home made pasta …very popular in Puglia which is one of the italian region (in the south)

They are simply made  with semolina flour ( hard wheat flour) lukewarm water and salt.

I can’t explain how you can give it the traditional shape…you have to watch it, so I suggest to look for a video on you tube ..even tough it is in italian doesn’t matter beacause all you need to do is to watch the movemet….

I made a variation of the traditional recipe because I used half smolina and half whole wheat flour.

it was very tasty, not to mention that whole weat flour is helthier…

as topping I used turnip tops (cime di rapa)

procedures and ingridients

wash the cime di rapa and put in a bowl of boiling water, let it cook for 10 minutes

in the meantime put in a pan over low heat some extravirgin olive oil,  minced garlic,  hot peppers and 1 or 2 anchovy fillets, rinsed and minced.

once the cime are ready, add them to the pan.

in the boilong water (where you have cooked the cime) cook the orecchiette for 2 or 3 minutes

Then add the orecchiette to the pan, and 1 tbs of bread crumbs, mix well…. enjoy!

Pasta tuna and beans

i’m so busy with studying for exames and preparing my final dissertation that i didn’t had time to go to to supermarket and buy some food!…unfortunately here thare are no wallmart open overnight, so I had to figure out something with the few ingridients I had left in the store room.

It came out with a delicious 10 minutes pasta…

Ingridient and procedures. Serving 2

Bring some water to boil.

In the meantime finely chop together half blond onion, 4 black olive such as kalamata or gaeta, and some parsley.

Put 2 tsp of olive oil in a pan and let sautèe the chopped onions, olives and parsley.

Add 1 can of white beans and mash half of them with a fork.

Add 1 can of tuna, garlic powder and hot chili powder.

while you are cooking pasta bring some of the water from the casserole (a couple of tbp) and put into the pan, the water where pasta is cooking  is rich in starch and that will helps the tuna/beans topping to be more creamy.

Once the pasta is ready put into the pan and stir  in 1.4 oz of cream cheese.


Sorry about the ugly pic….

pasta al forno (pasta in the oven)

Well, this is a classic saturday lunch meal in the south of Italy.

I have to say, this not something I use to cook…but my mom (which still lives in the south)  does it very often, so I asked her to make a pic so I can post the recipe to you!

She was very enthusiast about  having something she made on the internet…even though she barely knows what internet is and of course she does’t speack a single english word…so let me thank her in italian….GRAZIE MAMMA PER LA RICETTA!

here is the recipe!


800 gr (1.7 pound) pasta ….fettucine or pappardelle

500 gr (17 oz) ricotta cheese

500 gr (17 oz) smoked mozzarella

500 gr (17 oz) ground beef

3 kg  ( 6.6 pounds) tomatoes sauce

4 tsp olive oil

white wine

grated parmesan cheese


smoked mozzarella cheese we buy here is fresh and full of milk, it is not dried…so it is heaviest.

If you use dried smoked mozzarella I guess you’ll need less then 17 oz!


1) in a large pan heat the oil and add the beef.

let it stir and then add some wine and let it evaporates.

add the tomatoes puree and let it cook for two hours.

2) Cook pasta a couple of minutes less then pack instructions.

Once is cooked put  in a large bowl and mix a little amount of the beef sauce, and the ricotta. Mix well

3) take a big baking pan and put some sauce on the bottom

Place one layer of pasta across the entire bottom of the bakin

Put the beef sauce on it and sprinkle some greted parmesan, add shredded smoked mozzarella cheese.

cover with another layer of pasta and finish with remaining sauce and grated parmesan

4) put in the oven at 200 C° 390 F° for 20/30 minutes

better if prepared in advance…



Ok, it’s not summer…. but here is so sunny and warm, it seems like I can smell summer already….

The best way to welcome the sun is preparing home made pesto…it sounds difficult but in truth is  one of the easiest e most delicious thing you can prepare.

The good thing is that you can make  a big amount of pesto and freeze it in little portions ( i use the yogurt container)


fresh basil

1.5 oz parmesan cheese (not grated)

6 tsb extra virgin olive oil

pine nut





the tradition wants to make pesto using mortal and pestel (is that right in english?)

but let’s face the truth….we don’t have too much time ….

So I use an electric blender….it takes less then 1 minute to have homemade fresh pesto!!!

Put everything togheter…. and blend!

Don’t use too much garlic…actually I use only  one tiny slice  which I cut from the clove







There are many ways to eat pesto….today I went for pasta!