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Thread: An Italian Christmas

  1. #26
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    Here's some food from today:





  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    Here's some food from today:




    This is why I only put out a few platters of appetizers; otherwise, people don't eat the main meal.

    I'm taking a break before I clean my kitchen (which looks like it was hit by a hurricane), and because I can't look at food anymore, and here I am talking about food. :)

    I see you guys like mortadella too. My ancestors will be rolling in their graves to hear me say this, but I think I like it better than prosciutto. Is that fried cauliflower at the bottom? I love that. Or is it fried baccala? I see the salad.

    I think Neapolitans are great cooks. I learned everything I could from my husband's grandmother. She was amazing

    @Salento,

    Vice nice gift.

    As I'm typing I'm having a cup of decaf coffee and some panettone. Our tastes are the same: Bauli for pandoro, and Balocco for panettone. Sile is right, I think the Motta has changed, or at least the one they sell here has changed. It's the same thing with Nutella. I didn't buy it all that regularly because I just don't have much self-control when it's around, but God it was good. Now, my son bought a jar and it's been in the fridge for two weeks and we've barely eaten any. It's just gross. I even asked at the import store and they said they changed it for the American market.


    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    This is why I only put out a few platters of appetizers; otherwise, people don't eat the main meal.
    I'm taking a break before I clean my kitchen (which looks like it was hit by a hurricane), and because I can't look at food anymore, and here I am talking about food. :)
    I see you guys like mortadella too. My ancestors will be rolling in their graves to hear me say this, but I think I like it better than prosciutto. Is that fried cauliflower at the bottom? I love that. Or is it fried baccala? I see the salad.
    I think Neapolitans are great cooks. I learned everything I could from my husband's grandmother. She was amazing
    Actually it's fried shrimp; you're right, it's baccala in the the silver bowl above it.

    I passed out on the couch while everyone had lasagna later on.

    I love mortadella, but I also love prosciutto too. The other day I had a prosciutto, mozzarella, and olive oil in Italian bread, sandwich.

  4. #29
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    We also played tombola, and I took a picture of the board. But some of the illustrations on it might be a little too ridiculous to post on the forum though.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salento View Post
    Got This Present, I think it’s Cool.
    A real coin of Empress Faustina Jr, wife of Marcus Aurelius.

    You should sell that to a museum, you might make a lot of money
    mmmmmmmmm dooouuughhhnuuuutz

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    We also played tombola, and I took a picture of the board. But some of the illustrations on it might be a little too ridiculous to post on the forum though.
    Besides Tombola we also play Sette e Mezzo, it’s similar to Blackjack (not exactly), but is played with Carte Napoletane.
    🕷️

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    Quote Originally Posted by davef View Post
    You should sell that to a museum, you might make a lot of money
    “I Like Money” lol
    but I wouldn’t sell a present that I like.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Salento View Post
    “I Like Money” lol
    but I wouldn’t sell a present that I like.
    I understand, if you want it around, then by all means keep it around :)

  9. #34
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    Some Italians do spend Christmas at an agriturismo or hotel, although I don't personally know anyone who does.

    They're giving the meal away in the Lunigiana.

    [IMG][/IMG]

    Cured meats with sgabei (fried bread squares)
    Flan of pumpkin and ricotta with crumbled amaretto cookies on top
    Savory vegetable tarts
    Bruschetta with cannellini and capperi cream
    Eggplant filled with cream of filbert
    onions in sweet and sour sauce



    Sformato di zucca e ricotta


    Torta di verdura


    Bruschetta con crema di fagioli:


    Melanzane ripiene
    [IMG][/IMG]

    Cipolle agrodolce:


    Primo Piatto

    Pumpkin Ravioli and Florentine Crepes

    Pumpkin Ravioli with butter, sage, pistachios


    Crespelle alla Fiorentina-Crepes filled with spinach and ricotta, topped with bechamel and dotted with meat sauce (or plain tomato sauce).



    Secondo Piatto

    Zampone or Cotechino Sausage with Lentils-this is a New Year's dish so maybe they have a "holiday" menu.



    Roast duck with orange sauce and roasted potatoes



    Panettone with Chantilly sauce, fresh berries, dried fruit, water wine.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salento View Post
    Besides Tombola we also play Sette e Mezzo, it’s similar to Blackjack (not exactly), but is played with Carte Napoletane.
    When my father and father in law where alive they always played Trappola ...........else its Bestia for the rest of us ..........or Chess with my father
    .
    Every christmas since I remember, we had only these deserts......a typical Pandora Panettone, Tira mi su or Pavlova ...........
    .
    meals have always been .......entry of seafood , prawns, oysters, crayfish, etc
    main meal was roast Pork .....I rarely saw a turkey
    and plenty of different vegies
    Also drinks always began with a Prosecco , many different wines and beers.............and ended with a Tawny
    có che un pòpoło no 'l defende pi ła só łéngua el xe prónto par èser s'ciavo

    when a people no longer dares to defend its language it is ripe for slavery.

  11. #36
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    We just finished making, and eating fried calamari, fried baccalà, and polpo salad for our christmas eve lunch.

  12. #37
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    Christmas Eve:



    I barely got a picture of the remaining grilled shrimp appetizer; the cold seafood salad disappeared while my back was turned. :)
    [/IMG]
    Baccala-first fried and then the finished product:






    I forgot to take a picture of the risotto with asparagus, carrots, peas, and lobster chunks. It was just too chaotic even with the small group; they were starving. :)

    Anyway, a big green salad ended the meal.

    I had room for the traditional tangerine, a few nuts, and some roasted chestnuts, and that was it. The desserts we ate on Christmas Day.

    I can't eat the way I used to....

    It was nice, but I missed the big gatherings of 20 or more, even though it's a killer to put on. Will we ever get back to normal?

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    I'm fortunate to now live 3 minutes away from a very good Italian import store, that have everything.


    They have Sicilian rum babas, and many other nice things I want to buy for our Christmas dinner.

  14. #39
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    Tortellini in brodo is the traditional first course in many Northern Italian households on Christmas Day, or at least it used to be. It's an incredibly laborious task, but worth it.

    Here an Australian woman married to a Tuscan makes them (and he helps, which never happened in our house unfortunately). She does a good job, I think, although she's pretty slow and the filling shouldn't be a ball. (Our recipe is also a bit different as we don't put as much beef; in Bologna I think they use only the capon for the meat portion of the broth.) She made 400. Given the size of my father's family, we often made 800 and more, but we had a couple of women doing it, and through long years of practice their fingers were very nimble. :)



    More precise measurements from pasta grannies:


    Master Chef Bruno Barbieri of Bologna arguing with his mother and her friend trying to get them to reveal their recipe. They do so only under duress. :)


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    My wife's side does a lot of tortellini and brodo, but regularly as a meal. I'm not sure if I remember having it before like that with my family, but certainly not as often. We did a lot of brodo with that flaky pasta. At any rate, I really enjoy tortellini and brodo. For other meals, we both try as much as possible to keep our provincial dishes alive in our house.

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    I wish I had more of my grandmother in laws Neapolitan recipes. She got Alzheimer's shortly after we married, and my husband doesn't cook at all. It's a pity because she was a fantastic cook, and I love Neapolitan cuisine, more even than does my husband.

    I did get the Rao's cookbook and make a lot of dishes from there.

    Italian cuisine doesn't completely dominate in our household. I once did a lot of cooking from Julia Child's classic French recipes, especially for parties. They were very in vogue then. It wasn't the days of blogs or whatever, unfortunately, so I was never able to capitalize on it. Now, I prefer French bistro style cooking and I do branch out into it once in a while, and into Portuguese and Spanish cooking as well. Absolutely NOT for Christmas, however. I'd have a revolt on my hands :)

    Reminds me to get my baccala. It will keep in the garage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    I wish I had more of my grandmother in laws Neapolitan recipes. She got Alzheimer's shortly after we married, and my husband doesn't cook at all. It's a pity because she was a fantastic cook, and I love Neapolitan cuisine, more even than does my husband.
    I did get the Rao's cookbook and make a lot of dishes from there.
    Italian cuisine doesn't completely dominate in our household. I once did a lot of cooking from Julia Child's classic French recipes, especially for parties. They were very in vogue then. It wasn't the days of blogs or whatever, unfortunately, so I was never able to capitalize on it. Now, I prefer French bistro style cooking and I do branch out into it once in a while, and into Portuguese and Spanish cooking as well. Absolutely NOT for Christmas, however. I'd have a revolt on my hands :)
    Reminds me to get my baccala. It will keep in the garage.
    We like to expand out of Italian cuisine too, when we can. We like to do the baccala in the Portuguese-style; baked with the hard-boiled egg slices, and onion.

    My wife's cousin showed us this really tasty but completely decedent recipe. Basically you take a whole wheel of brie, put walnuts, raspberries, blueberries, and maple syrup on top; and then bake it till its soft and warm. It's a good one for the holidays.

    My wife also cooks pasta with melted brie and chopped tomatoes and basil. It's fantastic.

    People who like to cook are always pleased with me, because I like to eat everything.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    We like to expand out of Italian cuisine too, when we can. We like to do the baccala in the Portuguese-style; baked with the hard-boiled egg slices, and onion.
    My wife's cousin showed us this really tasty but completely decedent recipe. Basically you take a whole wheel of brie, put walnuts, raspberries, blueberries, and maple syrup on top; and then bake it, till its soft and warm. It's a good one for the holidays.
    My wife also cooks pasta with melted brie and chopped tomatoes and basil. It's fantastic.
    People who like to cook are always pleased with me, because I like to eat everything.
    Me too. I hate picky eaters. :)

    Do you wrap the brie in tented aluminum foil or something? 350 degree oven?

    I absolutely love brie, and camembert as well, and gruyere. Well, I love all cheese, the Sardinian maggot cheese being the exception, but those are my favorite French cheeses, along with Roquefort.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    Me too. I hate picky eaters. :)

    Do you wrap the brie in tented aluminum foil or something? 350 degree oven?

    I absolutely love brie, and camembert as well, and gruyere. Well, I love all cheese, the Sardinian maggot cheese being the exception, but those are my favorite French cheeses, along with Roquefort.
    Indeed, we put it in a tin foil tray, because it may ooze out. Usually, we put it in our toaster oven, I believe at that temperature.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    Indeed, we put it in a tin foil tray, because it may ooze out. Usually, we put it in our toaster oven, I believe at that temperature.
    I was just wondering if you put the fruit before or after the oven, and if before if you protect them with tented tin foil.

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    1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    I was just wondering if you put the fruit before or after the oven, and if before if you protect them with tented tin foil.
    I believe the fruit goes after but you can put the syrup and walnuts with the brie in the oven.

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    Tortellini in brodo is the traditional first course in many Northern Italian households on Christmas Day, or at least it used to be. It's an incredibly laborious task, but worth it.

    Here an Australian woman married to a Tuscan makes them (and he helps, which never happened in our house unfortunately). She does a good job, I think, although she's pretty slow and the filling shouldn't be a ball. (Our recipe is also a bit different as we don't put as much beef; in Bologna I think they use only the capon for the meat portion of the broth.) She made 400. Given the size of my father's family, we often made 800 and more, but we had a couple of women doing it, and through long years of practice their fingers were very nimble. :)



    More precise measurements from pasta grannies:


    Master Chef Bruno Barbieri of Bologna arguing with his mother and her friend trying to get them to reveal their recipe. They do so only under duress. :)

    You posted my favorite in childhood. I could eat several dishes of it in the same occasion. :)

    Our was a bit different though, starting by the fact we didn't call it tortellini in brodo. But my mother's was pretty similar. The filling had chicken meat, and just a bit of nutmeg, egg, farina di pan, grated cheese, and also sage, parsley, basil, thyme, black pepper... The brodo was done with read meat with bones, chicken "carcass", sage, parsley, basil...

    The pasta per se was done the same way: only flour and eggs. Then it was cooked in the strained brodo. Divine!

    I haven't tasted it in years, unfortunately.


  23. #48
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Regio X View Post
    You posted my favorite in childhood. I could eat several dishes of it in the same occasion. :)

    Our was a bit different though, starting by the fact we didn't call it tortellini in brodo. But my mother's was pretty similar. The filling had chicken meat, and just a bit of nutmeg, egg, farina di pan, grated cheese, and also sage, parsley, basil, thyme, black pepper... The brodo was done with read meat with bones, chicken "carcass", sage, parsley, basil...

    The pasta per se was done the same way: only flour and eggs. Then it was cooked in the strained brodo. Divine!

    I haven't tasted it in years, unfortunately.

    You should try to reproduce it. There might even be a youtube or google.it post which gives measurements for a Veneto style filling. If that seems too daunting, are there no Italian import stores near you which sell them? Then you just have to make the brodo. It won't be her recipe, but you might like them. :)

    I only make them by hand for holidays, especially now that my daughter has moved off the island and can't come home a few days ahead of time, and for one person it's a lot. For regular use, our local store employs an Italian woman who makes them by hand. They're not as good as ours, but cooked in a good brodo they're very comforting.

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