Tag Archives: Italian food

Pasta with Peas/ Pasta e Piselli

Pasta e Piselli/ Pasta with Peas is one of my childhood favorite dishes, one of those dishes that my mom used to make for me and my siblings weekly. My mom is from Naples and Pasta with Peas or Pasta and Potatoes or Pasta with Bean or Pasta with Lentils were a staple in our family. Every time I eat one of those dishes I immediately go back in time when I was a kid. I still remember the good old days when me, my siblings and my neighbors used to play outside all day. My mom used to call us around 6.30/7 pm and its still so vivid in my mind the amazing smell that my house had. I particularly remember when Pasta with Peas was on the stove because peas have such a fragrant sweet smell that is difficult to forget.

This recipe is very easy to follow. I used frozen peas but you can use Fresh or peas from the can. I added Guanciale but if you don’t have it its fine, you could substitute it with Pancetta or Bacon (bacon will give a little bit more of smoky flavor) or Ham. Either way is going to be an amazing dish. The final result is going to be like a soup but more thick. The pasta that I really like to use is small tube/ tubetti they are small and the go perfectly with peas that are small, but you can use any pasta you prefer. My mom used to use Pasta Mista that is a mixed of different cut of pasta, very popular in Naples. Don’t add too much pasta otherwise it won’t be such a pleasure to see and to eat; you need to balance your ingredients and go with the flow. Also very important keep a pot with a little bit of hot water to add in case you need to. My mom used to Enjoy and Buon Appetito

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of peas
  • 150 grams Guanciale or Pancetta or Bacon
  • 2 tablespoon of Extra Virgin Oil
  • Half Onion
  • 340 grams Pasta Ditalini/ Tubetti or Pasta Mista
  • Salt and pepper
  • Love
  • 3/4 cups of water warm
  • Parmiggiano Reggiano

Method:

In a pot put the oil, let it warm up and add the onion finely chopped. When the onion has a gold colour add the guanciale or Pancetta and cook it for few minutes until its crispy. Now its time to add the peas, stir them and let them cook for 5 minutes on medium heat. Add 1 cup of warm water and cook everything for 10/ 15 minutes with lid on ( I like to put a wooden spoon between the lid and the pot so it will cook nicely). When the peas are done add the rest of the water and the pasta. Give a nice stir and cook it until is ready ( my tubetti took 10 minutes). If it gets too dry add more warm water. Taste your pasta and check if there is enough salt. Plate your amazing dish made with love and add Fresh Parmigiano Reggiano. Enjoy

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Quick Bread

I discover this bread recipe few years ago on my favorite Italian Blog “Le ricette di Mysia”. I’m not a baker and this recipe was a really good introduction to the bread world.  

The recipe is really easy to follow, it doesn’t require any kneading, any folding and it takes just few hours for the bread to rise.

I made this bread so many times already and I’m glad lots of people are doing it too now, there is nothing more awarding than making bread from scratch.

I served it with some good extra virgin olive oil, some good cheeses and cold cuts, also after dinner we had it with some Nutella.

This recipe will definitely be added it to my cooking classes in September. Follow me on social media channels and let me know the recipe for your favorite bread http://www.bellacibo.ca http://www.instagram.com/bellacibo

Ingredients:

  • 500 grams/3 cups and half Flour
  • 370 ml water lukewarm
  • 8 grams or 1 sachet of dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 10 grams Salt
  • Love

Method:

In bowl put 200 ml water, add the yeast and honey (If you don’t have honey use sugar). Mix well. Add the flour and mix with a wooden spoon. Finally add the salt and the rest of the water, knead quickly with the wooden spoon. The dough must be sticky, soft and grainy. Dust the surface with flour and cover with plastic wrap.

Let the dough rise in the oven turned off with the light on for 1 hour and a half or 2 hours. You can also leave it to rise longer.  After that take the dough and slide it gently on a baking sheet with a spatula previously floured. Gently, with the spatula, divide the dough into 3 parts and move them spaced apart. You will need to get 3 loaves. You can also make just 2 bigger loaves or one big. Bake at 410 degrees for 30 minutes. The result of this bread is simply exceptional. Buon Appetito

Cooking is fun

It has been so long since my last post on my blog. Sometime is difficult to be a full time mom, wife, chef, Social Media expertise, photographer, taxi driver,  school volunteer.What I really would like to do is just COOK. Behind every classes there is so much work, the prep time sometime is more hard then the 2 /3 hours of teaching.

I like what I do, I like to teach, share my Italian heritage and inspire people to cook real healthy food. Food brings people together, in the kitchen you can build the best precious memories.

Here some pictures of the 8 weeks Cooking course that I had in my kitchen in October and November! It was so much fun, I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to do what I do.

 

 

WINE TARALLI

Taralli are typical of southern Italy. Like all Italian foods, several regions of the south have their own version of Taralli with varying shapes and different flavors which include fennel seeds, black pepper and red pepper flakes.  Taralli can be sweet as well with a sugar glaze on top,in Italy they are often enjoyed deep in wine or coffee. I love to deep them in my afternoon coffee.  They are almost like a cracker, bread stick but way better. This recipe is very simple, no sugar and no yeast but instead Wine. I got the inspiration from an Italian Blog that I follow http://blog.giallozafferano.it/loti64/ . The result was awesome, these Taralli will be perfect  for the goodies bag that I m preparing for the fundraiser next Wednesday. I love to deep them in my afternoon coffee.

Ingredients:

  • 500 grams flour
  • 200 ml white wine
  • 130 ml oil evo
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • fennel seeds
  • a sprinkle of love

Method:

  • In a bowl put the flour, the fennel seed, the wine, the oil and the salt and mix everything{ if you have a mixer I suggest you to use it}. Mix very well until the dough is nice and silky.
  • Cover it with plastic paper and let it rest for 20 minutes. Now its time to roll out your Taralli and I suggest you to call your kids, its a fun activity for them plus you build precious memories.
  • Take a small piece of dough and, using the palms of your hands and applying gentle pressure, roll the dough into a rope of approximately 1 cm wide. Pinch both ends together to form a circle. The rope has to be 3/4 inches long more or less.  Place the Taralli on your board. Now they need to be boil; put 10 Taralli at the time in a boiling water, when they float pick them up with a scoop colander and placed them on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Before to cook them its better to let them dry out for few hours or better until the day after. For mine I let them  dry for 5 hours and then cook them for 30 minutes at 400 until they are nice and gold. For mine oven the last 10 minutes I cook them on broil.
  • Buon Appetito
  • taralli-2

Why you should come to my cooking class?

From having a fun night, get inspired; learn about Italian culture to find the inner chef that is in you, there are many good reasons to take my cooking classes here few.

  1. Cooking is fun: Preparing meals is a necessary part of life, but you can make it fun. Coming to my classes turns an everyday task into a great social outing for you, your family and your friends!
  2. You get to know me: who doesn’t want to be friend with an Italian mom? Italian mom loves everybody, and the most important they like to feed everybody. They, also, keep you in the heart forever.
  3. Unique date night: tired of movie and dinner?Cooking classes are very unique idea; you get to learn while you have fun and at the end you enjoy the food that you made sitting down on a table tasting La Dolce Vita.
  4. Create family time and bounding:  this is my Mantra, cooking together create special bounding and precious memories that you will remember forever.
  5. Get inspired: you will get inspired from my passion for cooking and from the love that I put into it.
  6. Learn about Italian tradition and Italian Culture:Italian Culture is amazing, we have so many traditions that I like to keep alive and I love to share them with my friends.For sure you will start your own tradition after you met me.
  7. Find The inner chef that is inside you: I know cooking can be intimidating but I will teach you in a such a simple, fun way that you will surprise. You will get inspired from the simplicity and the fresh ingredients that I use.
  8. Cook nutritional meals for your family: Cooking from scratch is theBest that you can do for your family and for yourself.
  9. Encourage your local farming community: I follow Slow Food philosophySeasonalLocal and Simple. I like the fresh ingredient to speak for the dish. Support local business they have the best products.
  10. You get to know my secret ingredient:there is always a secret ingredient that nobody tells you. Come to my classes and you will find out.

 

 

Soft Nutella Cake

I m a Nutella lover, I grew up in Italia and one of my absolutely favorite snack was bread with Nutella. The best memories of my summers, when I was a kid, are eating bread with Nutella with my cousin by the beach or a bed time snack! Said that, I always like to make dessert with Nutella so the other day I had company for dinner and I decided to make this delicious cake.

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs room temperature
  • 150 grams sugar
  • 120 ml oil
  • 100 ml milk
  • 300 grams flour
  • 3 teaspoon of Baking power
  • 6 tablespoon of Nutella
  • A sprinkle of love
  • sprinkle of icing sugar

 

Method:

  • Beat the eggs and the sugar with the hand-mixer until they are nice and fluffy.
  • Add the oil and milk mix very well with a spoon or spatula t this point, and at the end pour the flour mixed with the baking powder and mix very well.
  • Get you cake pan, I used a 9 inch round, greased with butter or oil, and pour the cake batter in. Shake a little bit and put the 6 table spoon of Nutella on the top of you mixture. You don’t need to shake. Bake at 350 for 30/40 minutes.Sprinkle some icing sugar and delicious. This cake is perfect the day after to dip in your milk at breakfast.
  • Buon appetito

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RICOTTA GNOCCHI

 

Gnocchi are a must in every Italian family! There are so many kinds of gnocchi like: potato gnocchi, beet and potato, pumpkin gnocchi, gnocchi made with bread, durum wheat gnocchi and cheese gnocchi! My family absolutely favorite are the classic potato and flour with a nice meat sauce or butter and sage sauce.

The other day my son, the gnocchi lover, he woke up and the first thing he said to me was; “mamma, can you make gnocchi for me today? Pretty please with cherries on top”? Of course I could say no but I had just one small problem, I ran out of potato but I opened the fridge and I found some ricotta so I decide to make ricotta gnocchi for him, well for the family!

Ricotta gnocchi are very delicate and way easier to make, they don’t require any too much work and you can make them in 15/20 minutes!Yup..not too long so what are you waiting for? Follow this recipe and challenge yourself, make them for your family or friends.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 500 grams of ricotta
  • 1 egg
  • 100 grams parmigiano cheese/parmesan 2016-07-19 11.15.27-1
  • 200 flour
  • Salt
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • A sprinkle of love

Method:

In a bowl put the ricotta, the parmesan cheese, egg, nutmeg, the sprinkle of love and start to mix with your hands or a spoon! Add the flour not all at once but a little bit at the time, add the salt and mix until the dough is nice and firm{it will take just few minutes}.

When the dough is done place it on your working surface, get a small piece and with your hands start to roll it out, very gently without pressing down! When you are ready you can start to cut the gnocchi out with a knife! Put them in a plate and sprinkle some flour so they won’t stick together.

Cook the gnocchi in salted water for 1 or 2 minutes, when they float they are ready.

Finish cooks them in a nice butter and sage sauce or tomatoes sauce.

For the butter and sage sauce: in a frying pan put some butter, let it melt and add the sage! Stir fry for minutes or two and add the gnocchi in. Sautee’ for a minutes and add more cheese if you like.

Buon appetito

If you wanna see the video of this recipe click on this like from my Facebook page

 

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SPAGHETTI WITH CHERRY TOMATOES

Italian cuisine is all about simplicity using just few fresh, simple, ingredients and this plate is one of the most simple, healthy, fast dish that you can make.

I m going to share today, one of  my family favorite recipe and I really hope that you will try to make it, Im sure you will impress your family or friends.

 

Ingredients for 4 people:

  • 350 grams spaghetti
  • 300 grams cherry tomatoes
  • 1 glove of garlic
  • Oil
  • Salt
  • Basil (if you do not have its ok)
  • a sprinkle of love, do not ever forget that its important
  • Handfull of breadcrumbs toasted if you like them

Method:

  • Fill your pasta pot with water, add some salt and turn it on to boil. Toss the pasta in when the water boils.

    In the meantime, wash the cherry tomatoes and cut them in half.
    Put some oil in your fry pan, and when the oil is warm, add the garlic.
    Stir fry the garlic until is nice and golden.
    Now add the tomatoes, sprinkle some salt and with a fork squish few tomatoes so the juice will come out.

    Let them cook until the pasta is ready (15 minutes or more depends on your taste)
    After that, drain and rinse the pasta but reserve a cup of the pasta water.
    Put your cooked spaghetti in the fry pan with the tomatoes.

  • Mix everything for a minute; if it’s too dry add some of the water that you put aside previously.
    Put some spaghetti with cherry tomatoes in a plate, and sprinkle with some Parmiggiano, some love and some breadcrumbs if you like.
  • Buon Appetito
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