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Sandrino's Journal

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

10:21AM - Forte dei Marmi

Toscana Mare in Forte dei Marmi

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

11:12AM - Bergamo eats!

Where to go in Bergamo!

Funny, C totally "got" my fascination with the King of Pops gourmet Atlanta popsicle stand after our stop at Safara Soft in the Citta Alta!

Monday, August 3, 2009


NYC mobster banned from his favorite restaurants. If you click on the image, there are more details about the house specialties:


Friday, July 31, 2009


Di Fara Pizza, a Brooklyn Legend, Raises its Price to $5 a Slice - NYTimes.com

(The article includes the ingredients and some description of the process)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

1:55PM - Ragu alla Vitelli

Hi there! I'm new to this community and thought I'd share something basic to start with. Everyone has their own way of making a ragu, so I hope I'm not being redundant by posting mine. I haven't taken photos of my food before, I apologize that they aren't the most professional.

p.s. that piece of html after the cut is driving me crazy...can't get rid of it!

Mangia!Collapse )</div>

Current mood: cheerful

Thursday, October 16, 2008

12:21PM - Lasagna with Fried Eggplant and Zucchini

Lasagna con Melanzana Fritta e Zucchini

This recipe was inspired by a Fried Eggplant in Smothered Onion and Tomato sauce I made a few weeks ago. The Eggplant had
such a 'meaty' quality that I thought it would be a excellent as the primary ingredient in a Lasagna for my Veggie

For the Eggplant -
- 2 large eggplants, untrimmed with skin
- flour on a plate
- breadcrumbs
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup Parmigiano, finely grated
- 4 lg basil leaves finely chopped
- 1 egg
- Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
- Vegetable oil for frying.

For the Sauce -
- 1 can imported Italian Roma tomatoes, chopped with their juices
- 1 med. yellow onion, thinly sliced (to make rings, not chopped) - use a mandolin if available
- Juice from cooked Eggplant (below)
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 med carrot
- 2 celery stalks
- 3 tblsp EVO
- Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

For the Lasagna-
- Eggplant Patties (as prepared below)
- Marinara Sauce (as prepared below)
- 3 balls fresh Mozzarella coarsely chopped
- Fresh Ricotta
- 1 cup Parmigiano, finely grated
- Fresh Lasagna sheets
- 2 zucchinis, thinly sliced
- 8-10 Basil leaves, coarsely torn
- Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
- butter to grease the pan

For the Béchamel-
- 1/2 stick of butter
- 3 tblsp unbleached flour
- 2 cups milk


For the Eggplant-
- Heat the oven to 400 and place both eggplants, untrimmed and with their skins in the top rack. Put a baking sheet in the lower rack to catch their juices.
- Bake for about 40 min. or until the skin separates and you can slide a toothpick easily into the meat.
- Remove from oven. When cool enough, trim and remove skin and slice lengthwise into large pieces.
- Put meat into a colander sitting on top of a bowl to catch the moisture. Put a bowl on top of the meat with a can or two to add weight and help squeeze the moisture from the meat. After about 15 min., remove the bowl and cans and gently squeeze remaining moisture. Save the Eggplant juice for the sauce.
- Chop eggplant meat very fine and put in a bowl.
- Add Garlic, basil, egg, Parmigiano and 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs. Mix well by hand until a consistent mass forms. Add breadcrumbs to soak moisture as needed.
- When firm enough to hold a patty shape, add salt and pepper to taste.
- Tear off pieces of eggplant mixture to form patties about 1 1/2 - 2 in in diameter.
- Add enough oil to a frying pan to cover 1/2 the patty and turn on High.
- When oil is hot, dredge the patties in flour on both sides and add to frying pan without overlapping.
- Fry on each side until golden brown. Remove from oil and set on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil.

For the Sauce-
- Heat EVO in frying pan on Med High and add onions, celery and carrots. Cook until Onions are pale gold.
- Add garlic slices and cook for about 1 minute, or until the garlic fragrance is peaked.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and their juices and stir well. Lower heat to Med and let simmer, stirring occasionally for about 30 min, or until the oil separates from the tomatoes. When this happens, lower the heat to Med Low and add the Eggplant juices. Let simmer until the liquid evaporates. Salt and Pepper to taste.
- Boil Lasagna noodles and set on cloth towel. Make sure they do not overlap or they will stick together (don't add oil to the water - just salt)
- Remove from heat and set aside.

Lasagna Preparation-
- Heat oven to 375.
- lightly grease a baking dish for the lasagna.
- Add a light coating of the sauce.
- Add a layer of the Eggplant Patties, intact so they are about 3/4 - 1 inch apart.
- Crumble generous layer of Ricotta across the entire Lasagna
- Add layer of coarsely chopped Mozzarella across entire Lasagna
- Spoon a layer of Béchamel across entire Lasagna
- Add a single layer of sliced Zucchini so they are about 1/4 - 1/2 in apart.
- Sprinkle coarsely chopped Basil evenly across entire Lasagna.
- Sprinkle liberal layer of Parmigiano across entire lasagna.
- Add a layer of lasagna sheets so that they overlap about 1/2 in.
- Repeat this process until you run out of the Eggplant patties. *If you find yourself short on patties for an entire layer, chop the patties coarsely and spread around evenly for your second to last layer.
- FINAL LAYER - This is the Presentation layer and does not contain the Tomato or the Eggplant. On top of the final layer of Lasagna strips, add the remaining Béchamel. Add the final layer of Zucchini, then the ricotta, the mozzarella the basil and finally the Parmigiano Reggiano.
- Cover Lasagna with tinfoil and bake for 15 - 20 min., or until cooked through. *Note - if you use those stupid 'baking only' noodles, you will have to cook it for at least 50-60 min. Avoid this if possible.
- Let cool for about 10 min. and serve.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

2:46AM - Online Italian grocers

Ciao a tutti :)

I'm looking for a decent online Italian grocer - I'm specifically looking for specialty flours - I am making "le friselle" which calls for, generally, a specific kind of flour, the name of which escapes me. it's durum flour, and most of the recipes i see call for 'unbleached' flour, but i know this isn't correct! a couple of years back I had spoken with a baker in Italy about how to make these really wonderful things and he had told me the kind of flour. i keep wanting to say "integrali grano duro" but i'm not quite sure if i'm getting it bang-on.

anyway, despite my long-windedness... i'm looking for a good online specialty italian grocery! i have not had luck in finding this flour here in the states, more like in the state of washington where i live, but i have been craving frisella with tomatoes and basil like you can't believe...

grazie :)

Monday, February 25, 2008

1:47PM - pasta sauce

This is healthier, tastes better, and is fun to make.

Today I've been playing around with my kitchen appliances and made some pasta sauce.. I used a food processor to get the tomatoes very fine. I know most recipes call for you to skin the tomatoes and de-seed them, but i love the skins and seeds so i just put it all in.

measurements are questionable I kinda just throw things in by my taste you may want more or less of things.

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Thursday, February 14, 2008

3:46PM - got this is my email today, yummmy

A Special Recipe For the Sweetheart in Your Life!

Mary Ann Esposito Cherry Chocolate Tiramisu
Here's a twist on the classic tiramisu: Ladyfingers dipped in cherry liqueur, then layered with cooked cherries, mascarpone cheese, and cream. Make these in individual goblets or wine glasses for a really nifty presentation.

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Monday, February 4, 2008


POLLO RISOTTOZCALDO Charisma HererraCollapse )

Sunday, February 3, 2008

8:18PM - Eggplant Parmesan

eggplant Parmesan
This isn't pretty I'm sorry, tonight I was rushed to feed and so my presentation isn't the greatest.. I think it looks like foot prints with red mush on top.. but regardless it is delicious!!

1 med eggplant
3 eggs
a mix of bread crumbs/ and Parmesan(fresh is best)
black pepper/basil

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Monday, January 28, 2008

8:08PM - my ravioli

pesto and formaggio.. which is obvious i got heavy on mmmmm

(side note, recipe standard dough that you can find on just about any site.. but there is some secret ingredients that only i and the family know)

I don't have pasta machine these are by hand.

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Friday, January 25, 2008

12:03PM - This was my nonno's favorite, Panettone

I made this on Christmas eve so i could have it on Christmas.. everyone loved it!

Usually one would use a round, tall sided panettone pan which can be found at kitchen specialty stores, but almost any casserole or bread pan could be used.(I use a casserole dish)
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x-posted to my lj

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

8:46PM - Gnocchi, my favorite

* 2 pounds of potatoes (2 large russets)
*1/4 cup egg, lightly beaten
* 1 cup of unbleached all-purpose flour
*fine grain sea salt

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Sunday, January 20, 2008

10:32AM - I made this on Chistmas eve

Eggplant rollup!

1 Medium Eggplant
2 Tablespoons Salt
2 Eggs
2 Cups Bread Crumbs
Thin Slices Mozzarella Cheese
Thin Slices Prosciutto or Anchovy Fillets
Sun-Dried Tomatoes Packed In Oil

Oil For Frying

cut the eggplant into 1/4 inch slices lengthwise. Place these slices in a colander with salt sprinkled between the layers. Sit a heavy dish on top of the eggplant, and leave it to drain about 1 hour. Rinse, and pat the slices dry. Dip each slice first into the beaten egg, and then into the bread crumbs. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Heat the oil to 375 degrees F., and fry the eggplant slices until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.

Slice the sun dried tomatoes into long slivers. Lay out each eggplant slice, and then place on this a couple of the sun dried tomato slivers. Place a layer of prosciutto, or anchovy fillet, and finally a slice of Mozzarella cheese, all cut to fit. Roll up the eggplant like a cigar lengthwise, and secure with a toothpick. Once you have completed all the rolls, place them on a slightly oiled baking sheet, and bake 7-10 minutes or until hot. Serve.

I had found this very very tasty recipe on Italianfoodforever.com

Friday, February 9, 2007

2:02PM - Online goodies for Italophiles in England

Good news for all London foodies!  I've had a wonderful relationship with Natoora, which provides yummies from French farm shops to people all over SW England and France.  I have used the unfortunately-named Nife Is Life a number of times for Italian groceries, but while they have a great selection of pastas and cleaning products (love the Sapone di Marsiglia detergent!), they are expensive and lack fresh goods.  Now Natoora is merging with Portobello Foods, which specialises in Italian goods.  Not only do they have lots of hard to find veggies (cavolo nero/black cabbage, artichokes, radicchio, etc) but they also have a newstand section that carries Cucina Italiana.  I'm sold!!

Saturday, September 2, 2006

9:07AM - I'm not in NY but maybe you are...

I get these- I thought I'd pass one on before I unsubscribe myself...

September 2006




TEL: (212) 725-8764 EXT. 15 or 24


There is something special and refreshing about getting a group of friends together and being able to sit down and talk while enjoying a delicious meal. Here is the opportunity to forget your worries and save some money.

Join us with a friend to a chef’s night and you will get 15% discount!

During the month of September, the Italian Culinary Institute is hosting two enchanting evenings of authentic and delicious Italian Cuisine.

On Friday, September 15, ICI will be welcoming Bruno Milone Executive Chef of Brooklyn's Marco Polo Ristorante who will prepare an authentic Italian meal. The menu includes Crispy Polenta with eggplants, Mediterranean Sardine with Onion Jam, Creative Ravioli with Zucchini flowers and shrimp sauce, Mignon of Tuna with orange, lemon and thyme zest and grilled vegetables and a simple dish of Fresh fruit with orange sorbet to close your meal.

Furthermore, on Tuesday 26th, you could be before the onlooker and than to sample the exquisite meal prepared by Keith DiLauro Chef of Keith DiLauro Catering. The menu consists of Trio of Tuscan Crostini (chic pea pate, caramelized onions and roasted eggplant with goat cheese), Farro soup, Fennel and Prosciutto Tart with micro green salad, Open faced herb ravioli with forest mushrooms and mascarpone. Finally, to round off you dinner Fig and brioche bread pudding.

For reservations please call (212) 725-8764 ext. 24 or 15 or log on to www.italiancookingandliving.com

Monday, July 24, 2006

1:10AM - Recipe needed for Torta di Noci (walnut tart)

My boyfriend and I spent some time in Liguria last year, and we ate lots of Torta di Noci which is apparently a very traditional dessert in that area. I've been trying ever since to get a recipe for it, but I haven't managed to find one - internet searches have turned up some recipes with the same name, but they've turned out to be for walnut cakes. What we had was like a tart/pie rather than a cake - a pastry base, with a kind of syrupy-tasting filling and lots of walnuts on top. If anyone has a recipe or can point me in the direction of one (in Italian or English, either is fine), I'd be massively grateful!

Friday, July 21, 2006

9:57AM - A tomato sauce we can thank the prostitutes for.


Rigatoni alla puttanesca.

Puttanesca sauce is an easily-thrown-together concoction of tomatoes, onions, black olives, garlic, anchovies, capers, and oregano, all simmered in olive oil and used to garnish the pasta of your choice. Puttanesca is an adjectival version of puttana or whore. So popular has it become that today it is sold in supermarket chains everywhere in America and many parts of the world. One wonders that if instead of the name "puttanesca", they changed the label to read "whorehouse sauce," that might raise a few fundamentalist eyebrows. The religious right might want to promote a constitutional amendment banning the marriage of this tomato sauce to the decent American family's pasta.

Its exact provenance is disputed. Some say it derives its name from its spiciness. Others say that it was a quick and easy meal that prostitutes in Italy's once-legal houses of ill-repute (or pretty-decent repute) could quickly prepare between customers, using ingredients always on hand...or could offer cheaply to prospective customers as a siren-like enticement. Mamma mia, an aphrodisiac pasta sauce! I love puttanesca, and in addition to using jarred varieties, I have made it from scratch, with excellent results.

In Italy it is served everywhere, including restaurants near the Vatican. I'm sure some of our current and past cardinals and pontiffs have sampled puttanesca and, who's to say? - maybe even the puttane that made it.

For you scholars with an interest in whores or tomatos, Wikipedia provides this research material.

Whore in a bottle.Collapse )

Tuesday, July 4, 2006


Living la dolce vita

Italians stay healthier for longer. So what's their secret? Could it be the long leisurely lunches at home ... or is it simply their refusal to jog? Italian journalist Guido Santevecchi dishes up a little friendly advice [pasta cooking directions included]

Tuesday July 4, 2006
The Guardian

Well, Italy is making the headlines again. And this time it is not Berlusconi saying coglioni (balls), or anything else offensive, to his fellow citizens. Possibly another sleaze story about football, you might think? No. Prince Vittorio Emanuele of Savoia dating a new signorina? No again. Actually, this time, it's a good news story about Italy.

According to scientists at Leicester University, people stay healthier for longer, in Italy, compared with those in other European countries. And the differences in the Euro health league tables are really quite striking.Read more...Collapse )

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