Classic Italian Dishes
One of the things I love about Italian cuisine is there are many variations of famous dishes made with more than one central ingredient. For example one of the best know of Italian dishes are the ones featuring parmesan cheese and marinara sauce over a crunchy main ingredient this can be eggplant, veal, or chicken they are all lovely on their own and all have a special place in the culinary world and I would not necessarily replace one with the other rather this way they, lend to what kind of mood you are in sometimes one will out shine another and then on another day just the opposite is true.
Saltimbocca is more commonly known for being made from veal but like so many dishes and I am not sure if this is our side of the pond lending itself to the dish or not but chicken is a wonderful substitute in this recipe. Both meats are very mild and lend well to the accent of the prosciutto and in this one a bit different to almost like a cordon bleu it has a slice of Swiss cheese incorporated into it along with fresh sage in and out so you are sure to get that distinct sage taste in every bite. If you want to be a more of a traditionalist you can opt to leave the cheese out although I think it adds a nice element to the dish that is missing otherwise.
Slowly but surely I am trying to fill out the classic dishes category and I am focusing on something other than pizza and lasagna as I think you know those have kind of a skewed representation on the site as both were seeding sites that I merged into this one. It has been a long journey to this point and I am so excited that the network has almost fully integrated the rebranding and consolidation into the core sites from its former self. It is a much more useful network of food sites I believe and I love the mix of topics and love that we are finally at a point of growing the database again. It has been a challenge but one that I feel has been a positive for both me as a webmaster and you as users. Can’t wait until I see what I come up with next any ideas or suggestion leave me a comment. Continue reading
I thought for today’s Italian recipe I would offer up a basic entrée that is also a much loved Italian recipe by many. Now chicken is a common ingredient in many recipes weather they are Italian or not and some are more involved and then there are recipes like this that are really straightforward and just simple to make. There are a few steps to it but the basic dish is fairly easy to make and delivers great results.
I wanted a dish that is mainly made in the oven as you can set it in there and walk away as where the stovetop requires a bit more attention usually. Now the sauce is made on the stovetop but after the first few minutes it is mainly simmering and you can just walk by every now and then and give it a stir or send one of the kids to help out with a friendly stir of the pan. When the sauce and chicken is done baking just pour it over back to the oven for a bit to make sure everything is warm and vole you’re done.
Now if you want you can make some pasta to serve this over linguini would be a good choice or even spaghetti almost any long noodle will work. To round it out make some nice fresh Italian bread with melted butter and minced garlic in it and you has a full meal in a fairly short amount of actual kitchen time. I love meals I can let work on their own in fact you could wrap the bread in foil and place it in the oven to cook until warm with the chicken in the last reheat of everything. Continue reading
As all my sites use a fairly standard format that leaves me at this point with what I always tackle last the recipe intro. See the recipe is always first I mean if I don’t deliver on the food doesn’t matter what I say here you’re most likely not going to be back. So first part of the process is give you a recipe I hope you will not only like but love. Now I am never going to please everyone but I do aim to give you a pretty good footing to start and yes by all means tweak to your own likes if you please.
My recipes are meant to give you a good starting point hopeful they are spot on but everyone is a bit different so I take no offense if you make personal choices and expand upon what I give you. This recipe is pretty basic and it is also very few ingredients so not a lot of room for wiggling. See I have an old family recipe I taught my husband when we first were married almost twenty-seven years ago and he said oh it needs this or that and it was absolutely gross. See the recipe is three ingredient plain and simple (and yes one is bacon) go figure and what makes it work is its simplicity.
See I have found that the fewer ingredients and the simpler the recipe the less room for tweaking. It is often the simplicity that makes them work trying to make them more complex just ruins them. So when I set out to do this one I wanted to keep the recipe a few simple ingredients and not try and overcomplicate it by adding too much. You are going to love the polenta ingredient I found for you I can only describe it as magic corn – cooks like instant but it is the real deal and organic on top of it. I like my polenta to have a bit of a richer flavor so it has a few things in it for flavor and creaminess that are not the way many make it but I think you’ll like it. Continue reading
In Italian cooking there are a few different dishes you can make that are all very similar that involve marinara sauce and parmesan cheese smothering a breaded and fried something. This is usually chicken, veal, or in this case eggplant and although they are all put together basically the same all three have very different taste. Now today being Good Friday I thought it only appropriate to do the vegetarian one of the three so I have delicious fried eggplant smothered in sauce and cheese and baked up so the cheese is all hot and melting with each bite.
This is a meal that the kids may or may not like depending on their thoughts about eggplant mine are about half and half but for me and my husband this is a wonderful hot lunch when the kids are in school. It takes a bit of time to fry up all the eggplant prior to baking but the end result is well worth the effort. The combination of the crisp breading with the cheese and sauce is a taste trifecta.
I wonder what if you combined all three into one dish a stack of chicken, veal and eggplant, Mhh or am I breaking some cultural law in Italy? Well that is for a day when I have strange experiments day and not a day for when I am trying to get you a delicious dinner for a day when many go meatless. I know many will opt for fish but why not try a veggie alternative instead. It is ok even for the most diehard carnivore to skip meat for a meal or dare I say two, quiet the kids are home and I don’t want them to catch wind of that one or they’ll be having me for dinner, lol. Continue reading
One thing is for certain no matter how you make your gnocchi there are as many different ways in Italy to do it as there are regions in the country and each varies from the next from everything that goes into them to the cooking process with many being boiled and some even being done in the oven. In some areas they are made with spinach in the mix while in other areas they are served up with truffle oil on them giving them a very rich taste.
It is one of Italy’s true ancient dishes dating back to the Roman era and most likely originating in the Middle Eastern region although it is not totally certain. A more modern adaptation of the dish is the use of potato in the mix this is not as old and didn’t become a variation until the potato was introduced into Europe. The French also have their own variation of this called “gnocchi à la parisienne” which is a hot meal made of gnocchi formed with pastry dough and served with a Béchamel sauce.
In this dish I serve it with a rich and hardy meat and mushroom sauce with the addition of garlic and onions just because I think all these ingredients go so well together. It is then formed into a rich creamy sauce that the gnocchi gets covered in. In Italy this is normally served in place of the soup curse but it could easily be served in larger portions as the main meal itself with the simple accompaniment of a nice light garden salad with a nice vinaigrette dressing. Although general rule is red wine with beef I actually like this dish with a glass of nice Italian white wine, personal preference I say. Continue reading
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