In our house I am a self proclaimed master of weird, yet always yummy risottos. The first one I´ve ever done was a green risotto with mashed avocado and smoked salmon and it absolutely killed. Next I ventured into more simple mushrooms risottos, then went exotic for a colourful risotto with octopus, and as the cold season came my mother in law taught me how to do a pumpkin risotto, and one of my favourite Italian restaurants near my house inspired me to make a drunken pear risotto, which is a fantastic Christmas meal idea! As for this #homemadeMonday, I thought of showing you all how to make a curry risotto with chicken breast, apples and walnuts. It´ll warm your rainy autumn days right up, trust me.
Before you tell me peanuts on a pizza sound weird, let me just stop you there. This pizza flavour is seriously one of the best ones I´ve ever tried. Nothing new about combining chevre with honey and even arugula. The innovation here comes from replacing the traditional tomato sauce on the base of the pizza with (wait for iiiiiiit) fajita sauce. Genius or idiotic, I don´t know. But I swear by it. And then the crushed peanuts on top – omg. Don´t even ask me how we came up with this combo, part of it was a fortunate accident, part just sheer madness. But it works. And you need to try it. So here goes.
For my first ten years of eating pizza, I always, always, always went for the prosciutto e funghi option. I guess that´s not so unusual for a kid, to find THE pizza and stick to it until adulthood. Maybe a bit more unusual (to not use the word sad), is that once I reached teenagehood, I found myself a new pizza I stuck with for about ten years, and that was Hawaii (outrageous, I know). And now, in adulthood, I´ve been stuck on Diavola. So essentially, it´s been three pizza flavours defining my life, and I rarely strayed from them. Recently, though, I found myself twice (and that is a lot!), choosing pizzas with figs in them, a combination I never thought would work. And boy, did I like it. I liked it so much that after doing some testing at home, I came up with an own prosciutto and fig pizza recipe, which I´m happily sharing with you this #homemadeMonday. I promise that even if it doesn´t sound like your cup of tea (or slice of pizza), you´ll be amazed by how good this combo tastes.
To me, all dishes I end up loving carry with them the story of when, where and with whom I first had them. When it comes to minestrone, I wish I could tell you I had it on a narrow Italian street as I was visiting that beautiful country, but the reality is, I first tried minestrone on a dark day, in a tiny Italian restaurant in the middle of Berlin, with my friend Sam. I loved it instantly but it wasn´t until years later that I finally tried doing it myself at home. And now, after much testing and tasting, I bring you this recipe (inspired by Magnolia´s Table). Minestrone is an ancient soup, literally dating from B.C. times, in what was the Roman empire. And while you can technically throw in it any veggies, I find that there are a few “cannot miss” ones – like celery and carrot. Anyway, read on to see how I make minestrone for the whole block.
You know those recipes you return to over and over again? This is one of those. I initially started making penne all´arrabbiata after Jamie Oliver´s recipe, but as per usual we started adapting it to our liking. An Italian might even be outraged to hear we added corn to it! But after regularly making this again and again, on a weekly basis, and it becoming André´s favourite dish, I thought it was time to share it on a #homemadeMonday. Hubby insisted I call it penne alla traviata, instead of all´arrabbiata, as the original Roman dish goes. So here you go. You ca thank me later.
Living in Portugal with easy access to great seafood really makes me realise I have no excuse for not adding more seafood recipes on here. The truth is, I let the Portuguese boyfriend do most of the seafood (and red meat, and fish) cooking and so I don´t always put those recipes on here. So this time I decide to at least photograph and film him as he made a delicious seafood pasta recipe for this week´s #homemadeMonday.
You know all the jokes they make about mother in laws. Well they might be partially true, but all I can say of mine is that she is lovely and kind of goofy, and boy, can she cook! She always improvises, always changes something about perfect recipes, sometimes accidentally ruining the meal (and what a tragedy it is when said meal is the new year´s eve meal!), but she also has some signature dishes which just melt in your mouth – one of them, this pumpkin risotto. Now I´ve been cooking risottos for a long time, but this one is indeed something special. For once, the rice is only added towards the end and does not get “drowned” in wine, as per usual. This results in a super creamy and cheesy risotto, with a very poignant pumpkin taste. Secondly, it implies some herbs I am not used to add to risottos – like ginger or bay leaves! Thirdly, well, you´ll discover it yourself as you read through this #homemadeMonday´s #guestchefseries…
Gnocchi – my love and the star of this #homemadeMonday recipe. I discovered gnocchi way too late in life and am making up for it by eating them regularly and twisting and turning them into a million different recipes. In today´s recipe they´re creamy, come with mushrooms and sundried tomatoes and are seasoned with nothing else but salt and pepper. Not exactly revolutionary, I know, especially since this does not teach you how to make the gnocchi themselves, but they are to-die-for. Read along for the full recipe.
This #homemadeMonday brings you a rather unusual pasta dish for me, in the sense that I am not a big fan of two out of its main three ingredients, but if you mix them all together I love it. The two culprits are spinach and ricotta. I personally find ricotta an embarrassment to all other cheeses and the only green I hate more than spinach must be arugula. And yet… mixing them together, along with some cherry tomatoes, roasted pine nuts and truffle oil, and adding them to the right pasta sort, it just works! It´s perhaps one of the simplest recipes I´ve shared here, but has an outstanding outcome.
Last night I ate some of the best pasta of my life. You can find them at one of Sibiu´s best restaurants – Max. Just order the tagliatelle paglia e fieno in salsa di tartufo e misto di funghi. The name alone makes me drool. I actually wanted to attempt making them at home today, for this #homemadeMonday, but truffles are really difficult to find in my hometown and as much as I loved the dish, I am not sure my teenage brother would have. So I asked him what pasta to make and he immediately told me about my dad´s amazing spaghetti with sausage and mushrooms. We´ve been eating Italian in our home for as long as I can remember since my dad often went on business to Italy. I think I remember this particular dish from when I was little but I wasn´t quite sure. So I bought some things, took some tomato sauce from our cellar and watched my dad in action. We cooked as a family and what came out were some super easy to make spaghetti to comfort your rainy days.