Porcini Mushroom Risotto

Risotto is a classic Italian rice dish made with rice and hot stock with several different ingredients (such as mushrooms, seafood, and so on). It is particularly popular in northern Italy because that area is suitable for cultivation of rice. The best risotto should be creamy, rich, and with a just right consistency (enough cooked, but not mushy). Normally people cook risotto with special short-grain rice which contains a lot of starch and can absorb enough liquid. Those varieties include: arborio, vialone nano, carnaroli, and so on.

Porcini are one of my favorite ingredients especially for risotto because they have a unique woody flavor and aroma – though I love all mushrooms. It is easier to find dried porcini rather than fresh ones. If so, you can use not only the mushroom but also the soaking water as stock for your cooking. There is nothing to throw away. Cool, isn’t it?

Making risotto is not difficult, but it needs time. Anyway, you need to know the basic steps and some best practices. If you’ve never cooked risotto before, that’s fine. However, I suggest to read my tips and the additional links below as they will help you to better understand. Once you know how to cook risotto, you will be able to make it not only with porcini but also with other ingredients with minor modifications. Let’s see how!

Porcini and carnaroli rice

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Spaghetti Aglio Olio e Peperoncino

Spaghetti aglio olio e peperoncino is one of the simplest, fastest and classic Italian dishes. I fall in love with Italian food with this dish: I was amazed how the right amount of ingredients can bring out a very distinct flavor. It has already been my favorite Italian dish since long ago. However, when I was in Italy, I noticed that it did not require a lot of olive oil and garlic as I had seen in many recipes. As you know, too much is as bad as too little! You will need only a few ingredients – spaghetti, garlic (aglio), oil (olio), chili (peperoncino) and Italian parsley – in the right amount.

Spaghetti, garlic, chili and Italian parsley

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Mini Italian Easter Pie

It’s already been two weeks since Easter, and now it looks like too late to still talk about it. However, learning how to make an Italian Easter pie could be good for the next year!

Easter is one of the biggest holidays in Italy. In Italian Easter is Pasqua and the Italian Easter pie is called torta pasqualina. A traditional Easter pie consists of 33 (as the age of Jesus Christ) very thin layers and is filled with ricotta and either chard or artichoke. My mini Italian Easter pie, however, was made with only 4 layers and was baked in a souffle dish instead of a pie pan. That’s because I wanted to serve it as an individual dish to my guests with no leftovers eventually! I have made this mini pie in several ways. For example, I have tried both frozen and fresh spinach (it did not matter so much, even though fresh ingredients are always my favorite choice), regular eggs and quail eggs (regular ones were visually more appealing on the top of the pie) and different amounts of ingredients such as ricotta, marjoram, and so on. I will show the recipe which gave the best result. Let’s look at the main ingredients!

Fresh spinach, nutmeg, onion, eggs, marjoram, parmesan, ricotta and organic flour

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Italian Bread

Do you know what “Italian Bread” means? Italian bread is typically known as unsweetened, yeast-leavened, and baked into a thick oblong loaf with tapered ends. Recently, I have been baking this Italian Bread  twice a week. After constantly practicing for more than 10 times, the result turned out very good and I even got full approval from my Italian friends.  So what are you waiting for? You are going to have so much fun with this!

Wheat flour, salt, fresh yeast, sugar, lukewarm water and extra-virgin olive oil

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Spinach Feta Pie

Simple dinner Spinach feta pie

Spinach used to be my less favorite when I was little. One day my mother showed me this episode “Popeye the Sailor in Gopher Spinach . Believe it or not 10 years later spinach became my favorite vegetable!

Spinach Feta Pie

Spinach, feta cheese, chopped leek, onion, salt and some puff pastry dough

Spinach Feta Pie

Thank you mom! You knew how to raise your kids very wisely! Miss you

Speck with Arugula

Speck with arugula

My favorite light is absolutely natural sunlight but, unfortunately I am living a house does not get a lot of sunshine. So this was my lunch the other day. I opened a big window then my left hand was holding this lunch plate outside and the other right hand was trying to get beautiful shot of Speck with arugula.

Tagliatelle

Making homemade tagliatelle

I was going to make Lasagna dough the other night but, suddenly changed my mind to tagliatelle.The reason? I don’t know maybe that’s because the dough came out pretty good than I expected.

Tagliatelle nests

If you are familiar with tagliatelle, probably you know it is not cheap at all. The ingredients are nothing special though. It only needs some flour, eggs and a pinch of salt. quite simple! I made porcini mushrooms tagliatelle but, unfortunately I didn’t have Italian parsely at home for garnish so could not take some pictures. I do care too much about food style and presentaion.

4 tagliatelle nests

Promise next time!