Recipes

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Antipasti: Cannellini Beans & Sage

Ingredients
- 1 Pound dried cannellini beans, cooked (please refer to page 24 of The Tuscan Sun Cookbook
   for bean cooking instructions)
- 3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 8 to 10 Fresh sage leaves, chopped, plus more whole leaves for garnish
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 Teaspoon salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon pepper
- Prepared Bruschette or Crostini (Please see page 41 in The Tuscan Sun Cookbook for preparing bruschette and crostini)

By hand or in the food processor, lightly chop the bean, add the olive oil, sage, garlic, salt and pepper, being careful not to turn the mixture into a pur’ee. Spread on the bread and garnish each with whole sage leaves.

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Antipasti: Olives, Three Ways

“Olives are fine on their own, but here are three twists on the usual – one spice, one lemony, and one stuffed and fried.”
You can find this recipe on page 55 in “The Tuscan Sun Cookbook” by Frances Mayes & Edward Mayes

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Primi: Baked Pasta with Sausage and Four Cheeses

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients
- 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional, for the baking dish
- 1/2 Pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed, meat cut into small pieces
- 1/2 Pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed, meat cut into small pieces
- 1/2 Cup of red wine
- 2 Teaspoons fresh oregano leaves or 1 Teaspoon dried
- 1 Cup Soffritto (Page 20 in The Tuscan Sun Cookbook)
- 1/2 Teaspoon salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon pepper
- 8 Tomatoes or | 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, juice included, chopped
- 1 Pound rigatoni
- 1 Cup (8 ounces) whole-milk ricotta 
- 8 ounces fontina or taleggio, cubed
- 8 ounces mozzarella, cubed
- 1/2 Cup (2 ounces) grated parmigiano-reggiano
- 1/2 Cup fresh breadcrumbs, toasted

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Bring the pasta water to a boil and add salt.
In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium heat and cook the sausage, breaking it up as it browns, about 5 minutes. Add the red wine, turn the het up to boil, and cook until much of the liquid has reduced, about 10 minutes. Add the oregano, soffritto, seasonings, and tomatoes along with their juices. Simmer the sauce for at least 10 minutes, or until thick and savory.

Cook the rigatoni a minute less than the time required on the package (since it will continue cooking in the oven), then drain, reserving a bit of the pasta water. In a large bowl, mix the ricotta with the fontina and a splice of the pasta water, then add the drained rigatoni and continue mixing. Add the sausage mixture and mozzarella, tossing to mix well. Oil a 9 x 13 inch baking disch, and then pour  in the pasta. Sprinkle the Parmigiano and breadcrumbs on top. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes or until golden flecked and hot.

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Secondi: “Finger-Burner” Lamb Chops

Serves 4

Ingredients
- 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/3 Cup red wine
- 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves or 1 1/2 Teaspoons dried
- 1 Teaspoon salt
- 1 Teaspoon pepper
- 16 Lamb loin chops, from 2 racks of lamb

In a deep glass container with a lid, mix the olive oil, wine, thyme, salt, and pepper. Add the chops and shake well. Cover and
refrigerate for 5 hours, shaking once in a while.

Heat a grill, if using. Remove the chops and discard the marinade. Grill the chops over a hot fire or a strong flame, about a minute or so on each side. They should be well browned on both sides and pink inside. (If you’re using a stovetop grill pan, over medium-high heat, cook the chops for 2 minutes on each side — the meat will be pink inside, and at 2 1/2 minutes, slightly pink.) Cut into a chop to check for how you like it.

Serve while finger-burning hot!

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Dolce: Ricotta Tart

Serves 8

Ingredients for the Pastry
- 1/2 Cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 Cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 1/3 Cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon ground cinnamon

Ingredients for the Filling
- 2 Cups whole milk
- Zest of | lemon or orange
- 4 eggs
- 2/3 Cups of sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 1 Tablespoon flour
- 2 Cups (1 Pound) fresh ricotta (preferably from sheep or goat milk)
- 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract

Make the pastry. Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Add the egg and beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add 1 cup of the flour, the salt, and cinnamon, stirring to combine well. Sprinkle in the rest of the

flour, and mix until the dough is easy to handle. Turn it out onto a floured surface and knead briefly. The dough will be very soft. Shape it into a round disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Make the filling. In the bottom of a double boiler, bring water to boil and then turn the heat down to a good simmer. Put the milk in the top of the double boiler with the zest, and heat thoroughly; do not let it boil. Set aside.

Combine 3 of the eggs with the sugar in a large bowl and whisk until a thick ribbon forms. Incorporate the salt and the flour. Add a small about of the milk into the egg mixture to temper it, then slowly beat the egg mixture into the milk. Cook it over the simmering water, stirring, for about 10 minutes, or until it is
thicker than heavy cream but not as thick as sour cream. Remove form the heat; pour it into the bowl to cool. Roll out the dough to fit a 12-inc tart pan. Line the pan and prick the bottom and sides with a fork. Bake for 10 minutes and then remove it from the oven.

In  a small bowl, whip the ricotta with a fork. Fold it into the filling. Mix well, and then stir in the remaining egg and the vanilla. Beat thoroughly. Pour the filling into the prepared pastry shell. Bake for 35 minutes, or until the filling is firmly set.

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Dolce: Lemon Hazelnut Gelato

“Super rich, this gelato makes me want to give up my citizenship and decamp permanently. Even people who claim not to like ice cream slip into a swoon over this one.” You can find this recipe on page 183 in “The Tuscan Sun Cookbook” by Frances Mayes & Edward Mayes

 

 

Official dinner sponsor, Castello di Casole, invites you to enjoy Endless Tuscan Summer at the newly opened Hotel Castello di Casole.