Before choosing the recipes for this newsletter, we wondered if, given restaurants are closed and we’re all in quarantine, perhaps we should have a different approach. Perhaps publish recipes more suitable to be made at home, more accessible to us, mere mortals, now forced to cook at home as often as never before.

In the end we decided that no, we would follow the same principles we’ve always used. We strongly believe in the work of cooks, in the professionals who in this way have a chance to be known even more. Why should we ask them to renounce to those characteristics that have put them under the spotlight? We’ll have to be patient, until we can visit their restaurants. In the meantime, we will test ourselves with their recipes. We have plenty of time.

Paolo Marchi

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Monograno Felicetti 
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Newsletter 80 del 30 april 2020

Dear {{NOME}},

Before choosing the recipes for this newsletter, we wondered if, given restaurants are closed and we’re all in quarantine, perhaps we should have a different approach. Perhaps publish recipes more suitable to be made at home, more accessible to us, mere mortals, now forced to cook at home as often as never before.

In the end we decided that no, we would follow the same principles we’ve always used. We strongly believe in the work of cooks, in the professionals who in this way have a chance to be known even more. Why should we ask them to renounce to those characteristics that have put them under the spotlight? We’ll have to be patient, until we can visit their restaurants. In the meantime, we will test ourselves with their recipes. We have plenty of time.

Paolo Marchi

Riccardo Felicetti and the boom of home cuisine

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"I’m happy because the emergency has led us to discover the importance of home cooking. We now spend more time looking for special ingredients, techniques we had never used before. This will strongly influence to the perception we have of cooks: we will be less annoying than before. We will be more understanding because now we understand much more clearly the effort that lies behind a dish. The effort of a cook, as well as of all the small and big artisans who come before him. We will have more respect for them. And therefore for ourselves". 

This is the conclusion of a nice interview with Riccardo Felicetti published in the website of Identità Golose. You can read it here.

Spaghetti with 3 tomatoes from Identità Golose Milano

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"The recipe I’m presenting", says Edoardo Traverso, sous chef at Identità Golose Milano, "is very simple in its method, but like with all simple methods, it requires strong attention to detail. It’s a real emblem of Italian taste, and at a time in which it is very important that we unite in a sense of community, this dish unites all of us, as excellent Italians.

Spaghetti with tomatoes

Recipe for 4 people

Ingredients
300 g peeled San Marzano tomatoes
250 g cherry tomatoes 
100 g date tomatoes
100 g golden cherry tomatoes
100 g golden onion
400 g spaghetti
extra virgin olive oil to taste 
salt to taste 
basil to taste

Method
Slice the onion and cook it lightly in a casserole with some olive oil. Once it has become golden, add the cherry tomatoes cut into half, the peeled tomatoes and a pinch of salt. Cook for at least one hour adding a drop of water from time to time so it doesn’t thicken too much. Once the tomatoes are cooked, remove from the heat and blend with a hand blender. Season to taste with salt and put aside.

Once the sauce is ready, take a pan and add a drop of oil, the yellow cherry tomatoes and the date tomatoes cut into half. Brown them then add the sauce and continue to cook. Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti in lots of salted boiling water, then when it’s 4 minutes to completing the cooking, pour the spaghetti into the pan, and finish cooking the pasta in a “risotto” style in the tomato sauce, adding lots of basil. If necessary, add some cooking water to finish cooking the spaghetti. Serve and enjoy.

Tubetti with asparagus from Cesare Battisti

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At home Cesare Battisti, these days is mostly creating fun, simple, healthy and light pasta dishes. «Now that we’re forced at home», the chef and patron from Ratanà in Milan explains, «we should all rediscover the pleasure and time of making recipes with care, having fun. We should cultivate the beautiful and the good in life».

«This dish does not include sautéed vegetables or animal fats. Only raw oil and blanched asparagus. Right now, with a limited physical activity,  we must feed ourselves in a healthy and aware way, and now that spring has come, let’s have fun using the flowers and leaves from our herbs on the balcony, if we have one. This recipe makes use of what I have at home, but of course you can change the aromas based on what you have in your vases. Set your creativity free».

Warm salad of Tubetti with asparagus 

Recipe for 2 people

Ingredients
8/10 asparagus
140/160gr tubetti pasta
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
1 teaspoon linseeds 
1 teaspoon sunflower seeds di semi di girasole
1 teaspoon of za'atar (a mix of spices)
lesser calamint flowers 
rosemary flowers 
5/6 tops of basil 
1 wedge of lemon 
1 tablespoon of pecorino
salt to taste 

Method
Using a potato peeler, shave a couple of asparagus into stripes, using them entirely. Put the shaved asparagus into a bowl with water and ice so that it will curl and become crispy. Cut the rest of the asparagus into three parts: tops, central part and stalk.

Cut the tops into half, dice the central part and cut the stalk into larger pieces. Blanch first the tops, then the dices, then cook the stalks, always in the same lightly salted water, but for different cooking times.

When the stalks are cooked al dente, move them into a blender with half a ladle of cooking water and a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Blend until you obtain a smooth cream. Then pour this into a pan. Pick the basil leaves and the flowers, rinse and add them into a bowl with the drained shaved asparagus, season with salt and squeeze the juice of a wedge of lemon.

Cook the tubetti pasta for 3 minutes in boiling water, drain and finish cooking with the sauce, as if it were risotto. Once cooked (very al dente) add oil and grated pecorino and mix. Toast the seeds and the za'atar in a non-stick pan.

Dish out the pasta (which will now be lukewarm) with the herbs, flowers and asparagus on top, and then the toasted seeds with a drop of oil.

Spaghetti, carletti (campion) and peanuts from Chiara Pavan

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"What we’re missing the most in this lockdown?", Chiara Pavan, chef at Venissa in Mazzorbo (Venice) says, "is the green colour of spring! Usually, in these months, we’d go out to collect herbs, flowers and leaves, while now we enjoy only the clean air from the roofs of Treviso. With no field in sight. Luckily there’s Andrea, a friend and farmer from Be-orto in Zero Branco, who comforts us by delivering not only vegetables but also the much desired herbs. This week he brought us carletti, sciòpetistridoli, sgrisoli or campion". 

"The result was this green dish of spaghetti. We made some fresh spaghettialla chitarra, but dry spaghetti will work equally well. In fact, this dish is very green, with some crunchy peanuts and some raisins to give sweetness and acidity".

Spaghetti, campion and peanuts

Recipes for 4 people

500 g flour
4 eggs
2 egg yolks
2 g salt
10 g extra virgin olive oil 
400 g carletti (campion)
50 g raisins

50 g peanuts
salt

Method
Mix the ingredients necessary to make the spaghetti, knead with your hands until you obtain a smooth dough, leave to rest in the fridge for one hour wrapped in cling film. Roll out with a pasta machine or with a rolling pin, cutting 25 x 40 cm rectangles of pasta, some 3 mm thick, and cut them with the special guitar.  

Clean the campion. Blanch it in boiling water for 1 minute and then cool it in water and ice. Blend it in a mixer so as to make a smooth cream, then strain it with a colander. Cook the spaghetti al dente in salted boiling water. Drain the pasta and toss it in a pan, away from the stove, with the cream of campion and the extra virgin olive oil, add some salt and then the raisins and the chopped peanuts.

Linguine alla moda di Cetara from Franceschetta

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This dish represents a journey to the south made by the guys at Franceschetta 58 in Modena. In the kitchen, following the indications of boss Massimo Bottura in his own way, the very young Francesco Vincenzi.

Linguine alla moda di Cetara

Recipe for 4 people 

INGREDIENTS

for the cream 
150 g anchovies from Cetera preserved in oil
150 g pine nuts
130 g capers from Cetara preserved in salt 
100 g extra virgin olive oil from Villa Manadori
70 g water
ice
 

for the marinated sardines
200 g fresh sardines 
Barolo vinegar Villa Manodori
50 g salt
50 g sugar 
seed oil 
extra virgin olive oil 

for the wild fennel oil 
100 g fresh wild fennel 
50 g fresh parsley 
100 g extra virgin olive oil from Villa Manpdori
50 g water

crunchy bread, slightly spicy 
200 g left over bread 
30 g extra virgin olive oil aromatised with chilli pepper from Villa Manodori

400 g linguine from Pastificio Mancini

METHOD
for the sardines
Remove scales, head, entrails and wash them well. Open them like a book, removing the main bone, and place them with the skin at the bottom, in a row, in a rectangular not very large container. Mix salt and sugar and spread over the sardines. Cover with vinegar and leave to marinate in the fridge from 2 to 3 hours depending on the size of the fish.

After the fish is marinated, remove the sardines from the vinegar and place them in another container, covered with 80% seed oil and 20% extra virgin olive oil. Leave them again in the fridge, for 2 more hours. Once this time has passed, drain them and with a knife cut the tail, the central fin and then cut them into 1.5-2 cm pieces (we’ll need this when dishing out because it will make the base of the dish).

for the sauce
Open the anchovies and drain them from the oil. Take the capers and desalt them in lots of water. When the capers are desalted and dried, take a blender and blend for 5 minutes the anchovies with the pine nuts, the capers, the extra virgin olive oil, the water and some ice. The ice will serve not to raise the temperature of the cream during the process, while the water will help emulsify the mixture. After these 5 minutes, the result should be a smooth cream, not very hard (should it be too hard, add some extra 30 g of water and blend for 2 more minutes). When the cream is ready, strain it with a colander into the pan.

for the wild fennel oil 
Blanch the wild fennel and parsley in salted water. Process with oil and water into a blender for 6 minutes, then strain with a colander.

for the crispy bread 
Take the left-over bread (not completely dry), cut it into pieces and then blend it making some breadcrumbs. Put the blended bread into a non-stick pan with the oil aromatised with chilli pepper and fry until crispy.

Cook the pasta in lots of water. Take the pan with the sauce, add 2 tablespoons of cooking water and start to warm it up. Drain the pasta al dente and put it into the pan. Toss the pasta with the sauce for around one minute, so that the starch from the pasta will thicken the mixture. Mix with oil and parsley. Dish out putting on the base of the plate the marinated sardines, then the rolled linguine with the sauce, and finally the crispy bread.

Fried pasta from Accursio Craparo

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«Fried pasta is the homely dish par excellence», says Accursio Craparo, patron chef at restaurants Accursio and Radici in Modica (Ragusa), «a dish with recovered ingredients of poor and farmers’s cuisines which, just by thinking of it, recalls the aroma of home and perhaps a pinch of nostalgia for the ethics of not throwing away anything».

«In my family everyone knew that the pasta left over would end up in the pan the following day and you only had to hear it sizzling to feel your stomach was empty: the concentrated taste of the tomato sauce, the crunchiness of the spaghetti, the fresh aroma of basil and of ricotta salata were the verses of a sweet popular poem. And they still are, in the kitchen of my Osteria Radici. And in your home, if you want to make it yourself».

Fried pasta 

Recipe for 4 people

Ingredients
400 g craft spaghetti 
1/2 l tomato purée
2 garlic cloves 
extra virgin olive oil 
40 g ricotta salata
2 sprigs of basil 
1 pinch of salt 

Method
Add aroma to the oil in an aluminium saucepan with garlic and basil, add the tomato purée, season with salt and cook for 10 minutes on a moderate heat. Remove the garlic and the basil. Cook the pasta, toss it in the pan with the sauce, roll it out and leave to rest in the fridge for a few hours. Gradually brown the pasta in the pan, with extra virgin olive oil, so it becomes crunchy. Garnish with some grated ricotta salata, basil leaves and oil.

Radicchio Tortelli from Antonio Ziantoni

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"Minimalistic and elegant", Antonio Ziantoni of restaurant Zia in Rome points out. He’s the author of this recipe made with fresh egg pasta, "the idea starts from the ingredient, from the idea of giving value to Italy and Italian products, a combination of ingredients that makes it an impetuous dish at first, and then shows a harmonic finale, with an overall balance".

Radicchio Tortelli, parmigiano and bitter

Recipe for 6 people

INGREDIENTS
for the radicchio filling
4 balls of radicchio
5  g almond oil 
30g butter
60 g prunes
10 g red wine vinegar 
40 cl water

for the pasta
800 g 00 flour
200 g semolina 
18 egg yolks 

Knead the mixture, leave to rest for 12 hours
Butter and pepper to taste (for the mantecatura)

for the parmigiano fondue
400g grated parmigiano 
400g fresh cream 
Bitter 


METHOD
for the radicchio filling
Start preparing the filling by bringing water and prunes to the boil, then blend and add the almond oil so as to make a cream. Stew the radicchio with the red wine vinegar, strain and add the cream of prunes with a Marisa spatula. Put the mixture into a sac à poche.

for the pasta
Roll out the dough and cut it into squares. In the middle of each square place the radicchio filling, close the square point to point, forming a triangle, and press the edges well to seal them; should the pasta be dry, brush some water on the edges. Push the base of the triangle to the top and join the angles by pressing lightly. Cook in boiling water for around 3 minutes. Mix the tortelli in a pan with a knob of butter and some fresh ground pepper.

for the parmigiano fondue
Blend the Parmigiano and add the cream. Bring the ingredients to 85°C with a termomix so as to make a smooth and silky fondue. If you don’t have a termomix, place the Parmigiano and cream in a bowl and warm it up in a Baine-Marie and, always mixing, melt them making a smooth and silky fondue.

Dishing out
Place the tortellini in a bowl, pour the Parmigiano fondue paying attention not to cover the tortellini or it would be too strong and would cover the flavour of the radicchio. Finish with some drops of Bitter on the tortellini.

Niko Romito and the Unforketable spaghetti

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During the forced reclusion, we brushed “Unforketable.it. La cucina italiana di Niko Romito a casa tua”, a small masterpiece of home cuisine. Published 5 years ago by Giunti and curated by Elisia Menduni, the book doesn’t include the inaccessible recipes designed by the cook from Abruzzo for his restaurant Reale Casadonna in Castel di Sangro (3 Michelin stars) nor the simplified ones of the Spazio restaurants in Milan or Rome.

These are popular recipes, that speak of cuisine to everyone, in a simple way. Which doesn’t mean banal but “essential, intense, immediate”. And they are easy to make, as in the case of the following recipe.
 

Spaghetti bread, anchovies, olives and capers

Recipe for 4 people

Ingredients
400 g spaghetti
40 g extra virgin olive oil 
40 g rough breadcrumbs, toasted 
12 Gaeta olives
6 desalted capers 
4 anchovies preserved in oil 
1 garlic clove 
120 g tomato
2 teaspoons white vinegar 
rosemary, mint, orange zest to taste 

Method
Bring to the boil a pot with lots of water. While the water warms up, debone the olives on a cutting board, pressing with the blade of a knife. Having removed the bones, chop the olives roughly. On the cutting board, chop the capers and crash the garlic with the blade of the knife.

Salt the water which is now boiling, toss in the pasta and cook for 7 minutes. While the pasta cooks, heat a pan with oil, garlic, capers and olives. Warm up and add the white vinegar. Let it evaporate and add the tomato. Cook for 4 minutes, remove the garlic and remove from the heat.

In another non-stick pan put some oil with the rosemary and the anchovies. Turn the heat on and when the anchovies have melted add the bread and toast it for 3 minutes. Remove the pan with the bread and put back on the heat the one with the tomato, in which we will pour the pasta. Mix and, if necessary, add some cooking water. Turn off the heat and add some mint, breaking it with your fingers. Serve in bowls, adding a tablespoon of bread crumbs and the orange zest, grating it directly on the plate.

©Unforketable

Tagliatelle with walnuts and lemon from Ottolenghi

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"This recipe", saysYotam Ottolenghi, famous Israeli-British chef, restaurateur and writer in his book "Plenty More", translated into Italian by Bompiani/Giunti (you can buy it online here), "it’s rather simple and easy to make, yet it can offer unexpectedly rich flavours. I recommend using fresh walnuts, avoiding any bitter note".

Tagliatelle with walnuts and lemon 

Recipe for 2 people

Ingredients
60 g walnuts, roughly pressed 
30 g butter 
10 g sage leaves, finely chopped 
the grated zest of a medium-sized lemon 
3 tablespoons of double cream 
300 g tagliatelle (or tagliolini, if you prefer)
50 g shaved parmigiano 
15 g chopped parsley 
2 tablespoons of lemon juice 
salt and black pepper 

Method
Preheat the oven at 160°C (ventilated), or at 140°C. Spread the walnuts on a tray and roast for 15 minutes. Pull out of the oven and leave to cool. Put a medium frying pan on high heat and add the butter. Cook for a minute, add the sage and fry it for two more minutes, until the butter starts to brown. Now add the lemon zest, the cream and half a teaspoon of salt and plenty of black pepper. Then mix and cook for a few seconds, to thicken a little. Immediately remove from the heat to avoid lumps and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil, and then drop in the pasta. Cook it for 8 minutes, or as indicated on the pack, leaving it al dente. Reserve a few tablespoons of cooking liquid and put it into a large bowl.

Warm the sauce through, add some cooking liquid if necessary and pour it on top of the tagliatelle together with the walnuts, the parmigiano and the parsley. Mix adding some lemon juice and serve immediately.