Linguine with king prawns, lemon and almonds

Linguine al profumo di limone e mandorle from Campania Since my last post focused on Italy as the country of  luuuuurve I thought it would be appropriate to share with you guys one of the courses I cooked for Valentine’s day this year. Valentine’s day has become incredibly commercial, kitsch and above all EXPENSIVE here…

Pasta potatoes and courgettes

Or pasta, potatoes and zucchini, as you prefer. Yesterday was one of those days. You know, the days you really, really don’t want to go to the shops but you don’t have anything in the fridge that looks like it will make up a whole meal. I had been fancying pasta with courgettes for a…

Just Carbonara

Say you are in Italy. Say you want comfort food. You know, the kind of food that feels like “hugs on the inside”, all warm and tasty and makes you feel drowsy and contented after consumption… What do you choose? Why carbonara of course… You might notice it doesn’t look very liquid. That’s because it…

It’s not just pasta…

Penne. Tagliatelle. Spaghetti. Fusilli. Farfalle. Rigatoni. Linguine. Lasagne. We all know what these are, more or less. But what about… Capelli d’angelo, lagane, mafalde, pizzoccheri, scialatelli, fideuà, trenette, ruote, stelline, cavatelli, gigli, lumache, ricciolini, strozzaprete and trofie? Yes, they are all still pasta.     Ok, so why are there so many different kinds? Well…

Friggitelli

Friggitelli are all over the place at the moment. It is exactly the right time of year for them – the end of summer / beginning of autumn as the days begin to shorten but there is still enough heat and sunlight to not feel like putting your woolies on yet… although in all honesty…

Orecchiette pasta with turnip tops

Orecchiette con le cime di rapa from Puglia I was on the telephone to my Gran the other day talking about the availability of certain ingredients in the UK and in Italy, and she was reminiscing about certain foods that were available in wartime Britain but which have now all but disappeared from the market…

Tagliatelle with langoustines and fresh tomato sauce

Tagliatelle ai scampi e pomodoro fresco Think Italian food, and you think messy spaghetti in tomato sauce (not as messy as in Naples perhaps, but still). Think classy and you think seafood. So this, my friends, is the perfect combination of classic Italian pasta and elegance. Not to mention tasty. Fish: also known as “the…

Rich man’s carbonara

Carbonara con salmone affumicato Sorry it’s been a bit slow again over the past few days, I’m really not feeling well at all to tell the truth – sore throat, no voice, impacted wisdom tooth… the list of my health woes goes on, but that isn’t what anyone wants to read so now I’ve got…

Pasta with cream of avocado and lime

They say that necessity is the mother of all invention, and nowhere is that more true than in the kitchen. When the fridge was almost empty and I suddenly realised at 10pm that I was hungry… well rather than calling for a pizza (again) I decided to rack my brains for something to make. I…

Pasta, Parmesan and Parma Ham

La Vecchia Taverna in Oliveto Citra As some of you will no doubt have realised by now, many of my favourite restaurants in Italy are truly rustic. This is because, in my experience and humble opinion, the most rustic restaurants are the ones which tend to serve the best food, created with the freshest, top…

Summer spaghetti – zucchini e fiori di zucca

Summer is here and it is hot hot hot, so the last thing that you want to do in 40°+ heat is spend ages in front of the stove cooking some elaborate dish. Firstly because it would be torture. Secondly because in this heat you probably wouldn’t even enjoy eating it anyway. The solution is…

Paccheri with swordfish and aubergine

It’s been over a month since I published anything, and I’m quite ashamed of that fact. Therefore I am making a promise to myself and to anyone who sees this to publish ten articles this month. There. I have to do it now… Paccheri con pesce spada e melanzane from Sicily I am a huge…