Saturday, September 24, 2016

CARBONE








CARBONE




by Daniel Bellino Zwicke




copyright 2016


Friday, August 12, 2016

How to Make STUFFED ARTICHOKES

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STUFFED ARTICHOKES

     Stuffed Artichokes are another of my very first remembrances of Italian food. We are of Sicilian ancestry and Artichokes (Carciofi) along with Eggplant (Melanzane) are a very prominent part of the Sicilian Table. And as far as Italian-Americans go, when it comes to Artichokes and their preparation, stuffing them was the preferred way to go. Yes, every now and them we might have a Artichoke Frittata, or Pasta con Carciofi, but 98% of the time, when Italian-Americans get Artichokes at the market, you’re going to get them stuffed. There’s a reason for that, it’s the tastiest and most whimsical way to go. Yes whimsical, or so I always thought so, especially as a young boy, whenever my mom made them, I’d get quite excited, there’s nothing quite like a Stuffed Artichoke. All my life I’ve always viewed them as a very special treat. Stuffed with breadcrumbs that are flavored with garlic, oregano, parsley, and grated Pecorino or Parmigiano, yes these crazy looking vegetable are always a special treat, for eating a stuffed artichoke is unlike eating anything else. When making a stuffed artichoke you have to cut the spikey tips on the end of the leaves, and remove the center choke that you fill them with the tasty a breadcrumb stuffing, which also goes in-between the leaves. You then cook them with garlic and olive oil and a bit of water until done, and then the fun really begins, eating it.    Eating your Stuffed Artichoke is a great adventure, and there’s nothing quite like it in the whole wide culinary world. These baby’s look like some sort of Medieval Weapon or something, spirally with layers and layers of thorny tips. And now you’re going to dig into it. You have your Artichoke before, all hot and steamy and stuffed with that tasty breadcrumb filling in the middle, stuffed and overflowing between the leaves. You pull off you first leave, that’s cooked tender and juicy and has a bit of the stuffing upon its surface. You put the artichoke leave in-between you upper and lower teeth and the bite down onto the leave. Then you must pull the leave from back to front, all the time biting down on the leave and this way you will scrape that little bit of artichoke meat on the leaf, along with the breadcrumbs into your mouth for that little savory treat of one leaf of your stuffed artichoke. You will continue the process of eating the leaves one at a time until they are all gone. Well, you don’t actually eat the whole leaf, but you are scraping off that little bit of the edible flesh of each leaf, and breadcrumbs one-by one until they are all gone. That was quite fun and tasty to boot, and now your are left with the special prize of the Heart of the Artichoke, and any breadcrumb stuffing that is left. There’s some braising liquid as well. You’re in for the last special treat of your prized Artichoke and yes it is oh so very good. Better than good, it fabulous. This is the story of Stuffed Artichokes and the memories of eating them. Have you any? If not, then you should do so soon, and you’re in for a special treat.    A Stuffed Artichokes is a special treat Italian have been eating for years. Italian immigrants to American have been eating them for more than one hundred years now. They are one of our most prized items and are especially beloved in Italian-American enclaves all over the country. We love them in New York, New Jersey, Boston, and Baltimore, but no more so than in the great southern city of New Orleans, Louisiana where the popularity of the Stuffed Artichoke is at its zenith. Why? Well, there are no Italians who love and eat Stuffed Artichokes more than the Sicilians. The Stuffed Artichoke is mostly of the south of Italy, around Naples and Puglia, but at its strongest in the great region of Sicily, where artichokes were most likely imported into Sicily by the Arabs and later spread through other parts of Italy.    Yes, if you go down to New Orleans you’ll see Stuffed Artichokes all over the place. They are a popular deli item, especially if the owners are Italian-Americans you might see a tray of Stuffed Artichoke at the counter, cooked and ready to go. They are so popular in New Orleans that they have spread to the whole populous, becoming favorites of not just the Italians, but all other ethnic peoples of the great city of New Orleans. Artichoke, stuffed, they’re a special indulgence. If you’ve had them you know why. It’s time to indulge in one of your own.     Excerpted from Daniel Bellino's newest forthcoming cookbook ; Mangia Italiano   RECIPE : Ingredients: 4 large, full-size artichokes 1 lemon, halved 1 3⁄4 cups dried breadcrumbs 1 cup grated pecorino 1⁄3 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves 2 tsp. kosher salt 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper 8 cloves garlic, finely chopped 10 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil Using a serrated knife, cut off artichoke stems to create a flat bottom. Cut top quarter off artichokes, pull off tough outermost leaves, and trim tips of leaves with kitchen shears. Fill a large pot with water and 2 tablespoons of salt and bring to the boil. Put artichokes in the pot. Once the water comes to the boil, cook the artichokes in the boiling water for 5 minutes. Remove artichokes from water and set aside. Open artichoke leaves with your thumbs to make room for stuffing; set aside. Heat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, combine garlic, breadcrumbs, 3⁄4 cup pecorino, parsley, salt, pepper, half the olive oil, and 6 tablespoons of water. Take each artichoke and spread leaves apart in order to fill with breadcrumb stuffing. Working with one artichoke at a time over bowl, sprinkle one-quarter of breadcrumb mixture over each artichoke and work it in between leaves. Once all the artichokes are filled with the bread stuffing, transfer the stuffed artichoke to a shallow baking dish. Drizzle each artichoke with 1-tablespoon oil. Pour in boiling water to a depth of 1" .. Cover pan and artichokes with foil. Bake Artichokes until a knife easily slides into the base of an artichoke, about 35- 40 minutes. Remove foil, sprinkle tops with remaining cheese. Turn heat up to 400 degrees and bake for 8 minutes more.   .   fd0ac-screen2bshot2b2014-09-152bat2b12-06-192bpm   .   .  

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Pasta Jersey Crab Sauce

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JERSEY SHORE CRAB SAUCE

There are plenty of Maryland Blue Crabs down on the Jersey Shore, as well as plenty of Italian-Americans. The two go together, and this Crab Sauce for pasta is a specialty of Jersey Italians who love seafood, along with their Brooklyn and New York neighbors. They all love it! So will you.   12 Hard Shell Blue Crabs 12 tablespoons Olive Oil 12 Cloves Garlic, 1 for each Crab, peeled and chopped 1 Small Onion, peeled and chopped fine 1 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes 1 – 28 oz. can whole San Marzano Tomatoes 1 – 28 oz. can Crushed Tomatoes 1- 16 oz. can Tomato Puree ½ teaspoon dry Basil ¼ cup chopped fresh Italian Parsley 1 pound Lump Crab-Meat, fresh frozen or canned 1 pound imported Italian Spaghetti or Linguine   Put olive oil in a large pot and heat to high. Place the Crabs in the pot and sautĂ© at high heat for 10 minutes. After browning the crabs, remove from pan and set aside. Put onions in pan and cook on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper to pan and cook on low heat for 3 minutes. Add whole tomatoes to pan and cook on high heat for 4 minutes whole stirring with a wooden spoon. Add crushed tomatoes and tomato puree. Add the Crabs back to the pot. Cook for 90 minutes on low heat. Remove the crabs from pan and let cool on the side. Remove all the meat from the crabs and discard the shells. Add crab-meat to sauce with your extra pound of lump crab-meat and simmer on low heat for 10 minutes. Cook pasta according to directions on package. Drain pasta and put back in the pot it cooked in with 8 tablespoons of reserved pasta cooking water. Sprinkle pasta with a little olive oil and mix. Add 2 cups of crab sauce and half the parsley to pasta and mix. Plate the pasta with sauce on 4 plates in equal portions and top with some more sauce and some parsley.   Notes: Do not serve with cheese! Italians never have cheese with Seafood Pasta. This is enough sauce for 2 to 3 pound of pasta, or about 12 portions, so after you make this Pasta with Crab Sauce with 1 pound of pasta, you still have plenty left over for another day.   Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 1.32.45 PM.png   .   .Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 1.34.47 PM  

Finished Sauce

"Yummm" !!!

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Pasta with Jersey Shore Crab Sauce

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JERSEY CRAB SHORE SAUCE

and Other Great Recipes

in

SEGRETO ITALIANO

by Daniel Bellino Z

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Monday, July 4, 2016

Ragu Napoletana Sunday Sauce Gravy

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"Vinnie don't put to many Onions in The SAUCE" 

Big Paulie (Paul Sorvino) warns Vinnie (Charlie Scorsese) in son Martin Scorsese & Nicholas Pileggi's GOODFELLAS ...

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GRAVY

aka SUNDAY SAUCE

Gravy? Some call it Sunday Sauce, or Sunday Gravy. Whether you cal it Gravy or Sunday Sauce, this dish eaten every Sunday by a million Italian families across America is the Supreme Dish of Italian-America .. The dish stems from the famed Neapolitan sauce known as Ragu Neapolitan in it's native city Napoli (Naples) in Italy  ... This famous Neapolitan Ragu varies in it's preparation from neighborhood to neighborhood in Napoli as well as family to family in this capital city of Campania as well as Sicily and all over the United States with Italian-American families in Brooklyn, New York, New Jersey, Boston, Providence RI, Baltimore, New Orleans, and all over the country.

Yes, in America, some families call it Gravy and others Sunday Sauce, Ragu Neapolitan or simply Ragu in Napoli. And in America some families eat the entire sauce with the meats on  a plate with maccherroni (short Pasta) while others do as they do in Naples and eat some of the Sauce without the meat with maccheroni as one course and after the eat the pasta with sauce they'll have the main course eating a little bit of each type of meat in the ragu along with some greens or boiled potatoes .. No matter how you like to eat the dish with the meats and pasta toghether or in two courses, this dish is always a tasty succulent treat that everyone loves .. Get some nice Italian Wine, put on some Sinatra, and all will be good in your world. Enjoy, be well and God Bless...

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Sophia Loren

"Mangia la Pasta"

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BRACIOLE

The meats inside any given Neapolitan Ragu or Sunday Gravy will vary depending upon who is making the sauce and their family's recipe .. Many Italian-Americans make it with; Suasage, Meatballs, & Braciole, others may make it with just Meatballs & Sausages, and some will make it with Meatballs, Sausages, & Pork Spareribs .. You can also put in chicken thighs, Pig Skin Braciole (Coteca), beef or pork neck and other various meats.

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Rigatoni e Ragu

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Meatballs

"Always a Prized Item of the Italian-American Table"

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GRANDMA BELLINO'S ITALIAN COOKBOOK

by Daniel Bellino Z

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Sophia Loren making Neapolitan Ragu

aka Sunday Sauce

aka Gravy

Recipe in Daniel Bellino-Zwicke 's SUNDAY SAUCE

available in Paperback and Kindle on AMAZON.com

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Saturday, June 25, 2016

Sunday Suace Italian Gravy

SUNDAY SAUCE ITALIAN MEAT GRAVY

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Sunday Sauce aka Gravy, the Supreme dish of The ITALIAN-AMERICAN TABLE  .. Sunday Gravy, GRAVY, SUNDAY SAUCE, "LEARN HOW to MAKE SUNDAY SAUCE" ........................ SUNDAY SAUCE GRAVY alla CLEMENZA "GODFATHER STYLE" SPAGHETTI MEATBALLS BRACIOLE .... SUASAGE & PEPPERS,  MEATBALL PARM SANDWICH  .. GRANDMA'S SECRET SAUCE ...

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Recipe Limoncello Caprese from Capri


   


         

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Bottles of Homemade LIMONCELLO




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My PAL Vincenzo Manzo at His Lemon Farm VILLA MARIA
MINORI ,  ITALY
On The AMALFI COAST





 

RECIPE :  LIMONCELLO CAPRESE

  INGREDIENTS :
  • zest of 6 or 7 large organic lemons
  • 1 litre or quart of pure grain alcohol or vodka
  • 5 cups (1250 ml) water
  • 3 cups (700 gr) sugar
Preparation : Peel the zest from the lemons with a vegtable peeler and place them into a large glass jar.  Try to avoid the bitter white pith of the lemon skin, under the yellow zest. Add the alcohol to the jar with the lemon zest. Cover the glass jar with plastic wrap and store it in a cool place for 7 days 
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 On the sixth day: Boil the water and add the sugar to the boiling water. Stir the sugar until it is fully dissolved in the water. Set the sugar syrup aside to let it cool over night. On the seventh day: Strain the lemons peels from the alcohol and discard the peels. Pour the sugar syrup into the glass jar with the alcohol and stir well. Serve chilled, from the refrigerator or freezer.










 Peel LEMONS with VEGTABLE PEELER

Place Lemon Peels in JAR with Grain Alcholo or VODKA


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LEMONS   ... Agroturismo Villa Maria, Minori





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COOKING ITALIAN
GREATEST HIT COOKBOOK
by Daniel Bellino Z
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VILLA MARIA
MINORI





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Me & The LIMONCELLO LADY , CAPRI




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MINORI, Italy




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SOPHIA LOREN





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SUNDAY SAUCE
When Italian-Americans Cook
Daniel Bellino-Zwicke







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Sunday, June 19, 2016

Capri Provolone Aperol Spritz

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View of Marina Grande CAPRI with Sorrento in the distance, from Anacapri



Provolone, for many Italian-Americans it’s their favorite cheese. Case in point, its mine, my favorite cheese, as is with my sister Barbara, we both love it. The love of Provolone is more prevalent with Italians who are over forty years of age. The younger generation is more apt to go for Burata, something that didn’t exist in America previous to the past 15 years or so. Growing up in a 60’s 1970’s Italian-American household there were a few Italian Cheeses that most everyone ate and used in cooking their favorite dishes, put on antipasto platters and in sandwiches. There was Ricotta that went into making Lasagna and Manicotti or Stuffed Shells, Cheesecake, Cannoli, and other items. You normally didn’t eat Ricotta on it’s own as you might Mozzarella or Provolone, the ricotta was usually in cooked dishes, however I always loved taking a couple tablespoons, eating it fresh out of the container, all smooth and creamy. Yum! For many years Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano were the most popular cheeses as they were grated over pasta and used in various recipes. Mozzarella came in third in popularity in Italian-America. Mozzarella is most famous for being a topping of millions upon millions of Pizzas, or in the popular Insalata Caprese, a thing of simplistic beauty and taste. A Caprese Salad looks lovely and fresh and just like an Italian Flag, the colors are the same, the Red of the fresh Tomatoes, the creamy white Fresh Mozzarella, and bright green fresh Basil comprises the classic Insalata Caprese, which of course is drizzled with a little bit of Italian Olive Oil to complete this wonderful dish, that’s simple, yet perfect, and based on the best top quality fresh ingredients. All this being said, using the Mozzarella in this way wasn’t the most popular way of getting this cheese in an Italian household. Mozzarella in Italian-America is most popular when it is cooked (melted) into a multitude of Italian dishes like; Lasagna, Manicotti, Stuffed Shells, on Chicken and Veal Parmigiano, in Baked Ziti and on Pizza. Yes we would have a Caprese Salad now and then, but more often if we were eating fresh uncooked Mozzarella it was usually on a sandwich or in the ever popular Antipasto-Misto platter of which the ingredients would vary according to who was making it, but most often it would consist of Salami, fresh Mozzarella and or Provolone, Roast Peppers, Olives, and fresh Celery. Provolone, always my favorite cheese when I was growing. It was my sister Barbara’s favorite as well and whenever we went to Barcelona’s Restaurant we always ordered a plate of Provolone along with Mussels Marinara, Baked Clams, and all our other favorites. Yes, Mozzarella was fine, but for my sister Barbara and I it just couldn’t keep up with the big bold flavor of Provolone.  







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Girl Making My PANINO



   I used to love walking into Belevedere Salumeria around the street from our house. The place had large torpedo-like Provolone (weighing 40-50 lbs.) hanging from the ceiling, along with Sopresseta, Prosciutto, and various types of Salumi. The smells dominated by the Provolone when you walked through the door were intoxicating. My friends and I, when we had a couple extra bucks we would treat ourselves and run over to Belevedere Italian Deli and get an awesome sandwich of Gabagool (Capicola), Salami, and Provolone, one of the world’s great sandwiches. Oh my God it’s making me hungry just thinking of it! I want one now! So along with those boyhood memories of eating a piece of sharp Provolone off the antipasto platter or on one of those great Belvedere Sandwiches, I now have some more fond memories of Provolone Cheese. They come from my latest trip to Italy. I was down on the Amalfi Coast for the first time in a few years, and got a nice panino at a Salumeria one day. I was looking in the refrigerated glass case of Salumi and Cheese looking over their products. I decided on and ordered a panino made with Sopresseta and Provola Afumicata (Smoke Provolone). The counterman made my sandwich and when I ate that baby, boy the combination was absolutely amazing. I couldn’t believe it. I never had this combination before and I just loved it. Simple, just some Sweet Sopresseta and Smoked Provola, the combination was out of this world. It was simple, but each wonderful ingredient of perfectly cured Sopresseta Salami and wonderful Smoke Provolone on a nice Italian Roll, it just made for a great tasting sandwich. What more can I say? I ended up eating about 6 of those sandwiches from various salumerias on Capri, in Sorrento, and on the Amalfi Coast on that trip. I’d get a sandwich or an Arancini to hold me over between meals, if I was going to the beach or taking a boat ride from Amalfi to Capri, or whatever. The sandwiches were all so very tasty and an unexpected pleasure that I hadn’t expected at all. So now after eating all those tasty Panini I now I go to Faicco’s Pork Store around the block and buy some nice Sweet Sopresseta, Smoked Provola and get a loaf of Italian Bread, and I’m all set, right back there on Capri, eating my special Panino di Provola Affumicata e Sopresseta. This brings me back to Capri, Amalfi, and memories of a trip. A trip of beauty, tasty food, and recollections, the beauty of Capri and the Amalfi Coast, eating Vongole, Pasta, Arancini, and Provolone. I tell you folks, “it just doesn’t get much better than that.”  








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Panino di Proval Affumicata e Sopresseta, Minori



  Now talking of these things, the Sopresseta, Provola, Capri Sorrento, and Napoli, I’ve got to bring up one more pleasure of that trip, the Aperol Spritz and Summer on the Amalfi Coast. It’s not that I’d never had an Aperol Spritz before. No, the first time I had one was way back in 1995 in Venice, the place where the Aperol Spritz was invented. I was on my exploratory trip of Venetian Wine Bars (Bacari) when I had my first Spritz. One evening I was walking around doing the Venetian Wine Bar tour. While walking on the Strada Nuova in Canareggio I dashed into a Bacaro I had spotted. I made my way up to the bar and surveyed the scene a moment before ordering. As I stood there I notice people drinking this particular drink. I asked the barman what they were drinking and he told me that it was a Spritz, “Prosecco with Aperol and soda.” OK, I said, “I’ll take one.” The barmen made me one in no-time flat, and that was my first Spritz, and I’ve had a number of them since then. Now getting back to that Summer 2015 on Costiera Amalfitana and the Aperol Spritz, they were everywhere, glasses of Aperol Spritz one after the other, bar after bar, caffe after caffe, table after table, everywhere you looked people were drinking this refreshing cocktail, the locals and tourists alike. Well I’d come back from the beach on my way back to my hotel, and as usual when on the Amalfi Coast when done at the beach for the day, I head to a nice bar or caffe for an Espresso, a glass of local White Wine, a Campari, or some other cocktail. Now all of a sudden it seemed that the Spritz had moved into high gear. The drink was quite popular, and as I’ve said, it was everywhere and everyone was drinking them. So I headed to the Piazza Umberto one day after a day at the beach (Faraglioni) as I usually do. There’s a few very popular caffe’s there, and it’s just a matter of picking one to spend your time at. I chose one of my favorites, the Bar Tiberius. I took a seat at a table outside and waited for the waiter to come over. The waiter came and I ordered an Aperol Spritz. He came back a few minutes later with a refreshing looking Spritz and a little bowl of peanuts for me to munch. Yes, it was good. My Aperol Spritz, Capri, the Piazza Umberto and all that goes with it, like a scene in a movie, set on the beautiful Isle of Capri. And you’re in it. Now that’s something. So, I ended up drinking a good number of Aperol Spritz’s on that trip. I had them in Capri, Positano, in Sorrento, and at caffĂ© in the piazza in Ravello. It’s a great drink that’s light and refreshing and a great way to start any evening, slow and easy, that’s the Aperol Spritz, it eases you into the evening with its lightness and refreshing taste. Enjoy one some time, I do. So there you have it, the Provolone of my youth with those great Provolone & Gabagool Sandwiches at the Italian Deli Belveder, the Aperol Spritz, Capri, Napoli, Sorrento, and my Provola Panini on The Amalfi Coast. That’s Italy, Italian-America, Italian Food and memories of this blissful never-ending journey of Italian Food, the culture, people, places, and events. It’s all quite wonderful. Don’t you agree?     



Excerpted from Daniel Bellino 's forthcoming book  MANGIA ITALIANO, 







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