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6/30/09

Preview!


Just a bite of my last three days journey...



















In the next days the whole story of my travelling weekend!

6/24/09

Fil rouge (4)








After a long absence here I am with another flaming red picture: these wonderful chili peppers! I like them for the colour, for the scent they give to a dish, for the warmth of the country they come from... I dedicate you this present spicy and tasty! Have a great day!!

Chiara.

6/17/09

Vegetables miniquiche

I know, the thought of the oven with this hot weather (well, here's hot!) is terrible, but something I must cook...




Here a dish I prepare to finish the left vegetables! In a pan with a little oil I put some sliced onion, one carrot and one zucchino sliced in rounds. I add in some string beans (alrealdy boiled for a salad), cut into pieces. While the vegs are cooking I prepare “creme royale” with 3 whole eggs, cream, Parmigiano cheese, salt, pepper and nutmeg then I slice the pastry for the little moulds. I put the vegetables on the pastry with one or two fresh tomatoes cut into cubes then cover with creme royale. In the pre-heated oven (220°C) for 15-20 minutes. The “little monsters” love these quiche a lot so these pies became “official supplying of vegetables for children who doesn’t love vegetables” lol!!
In these pies you can put everything you like, they’re very tasty; besides they’re a good opportunity to finish left vegetables!!




6/15/09

Craftsmen





Last week I've been in the laboratory of two friends of mine, who are carpenters and furniture restorer




I've seen how they work, I've seen the passion they put in every single gesture.






I've seen destroyed furnitures, useful only for the chimney, reborn to a new life in their expert and loving hands.






I've seen their enthusiasm vanishing, due to the ignorance of the people. I've seen the disappointment when their work were not understood and appreciated.





I've seen the hours spent around a wooden sculpture reduced to nothing. Wooden sculpture are a difficult thing, need patience calculations.





I've seen bitterness in their eyes to note that today, even the craftswork (literally "made with my own hands") is reduced to quick patching, without any care, with tools that remember more and more the industry instead of crafts!




People is in a hurry, they want beautiful things, but "quickly" and no matter if your work need love and dedication, devotion, if you need hours to bring to a new life a ruin, if the defects of some pieces (a chair, a table..) are part of its history... "no defects, no bugs" is the
password!




And then, to do honour to them, who still cares about the authenticity of things and the respect of the "history" that hides behind every single object, I've carried home a symbol of
all these things.






I like to think that the owner of this chair put down a candle every night to write on a notebook his "minimal chronicles" and I'm happy to continue his work!

6/9/09

Collaborations


So, starting by this month I have a little collaboration with CHIERIOGGI, a local magazine of the (small) city where I live ... I say so, as if nothing had happened ... BUT I'M SOOOO HAPPY! As the wise ones say, even in the longest journey the most important thing is the first step, and this is my first step in terms of newspapers and magazines!

When they asked me to write this article I had one thought: summer is not the best season to stay around the cook stuff! So I started to think again and again.... et voilà: two simple recipes but very tasty, fresh, which do not require long hours at the stove: the "pasta alla crudaiola" and "tuna & peppers".




PASTA ALLA CRUDAIOLA

The first time I tasted it cooked by my dad, while he was living for business near Bari (Puglia, in the south of Italy); I was fifteen when I went there but I perfectly remember: the house near the sea with garden and sunny terrace, the Favonio (other name of Fohn, an hot wind) which forced everyone in the house with closed windows with the only shelter of the cool shadows of the rooms. The sea quite rough and turbulent, with its carpet of algae that always gave me a nasty sensation under the feet ... this recipe makes me think about the smells and tastes of those days, despite the years gone! I remembered this dish a few years ago while trying to avoid another "caprese" salad or ham and melon! So I asked my dad to help my memory and this is what I ate.

Ingredients (4 people)

3-4 ripe tomatoes
1 clove of garlic
1 basil bunch
seasoned "ricotta" cheese
extra virgin olive oil
red pepper, salt.

Cut the tomatoes into cubes and put in a bowl. Add a whole clove of garlic (if you want you can remove it before dressing pasta), a few leaves of basil chopped with fingers, grated ricotta. Dress it with extra-virgin olive oil, red pepper and a pinch of oregano, salt.
Leave it a few hours in refrigerator, stirring occasionally to mix well the different scents. One hour before eating pull out the bowl from the refrigerator. Once drained pasta is into the bowl, stir well, add in some more ricotta and serve immediately.




TUNA & PEPPERS

I've stolen to my mother-in-law this recipe and I discovered that is a quite typical Piedmontese appetizer. It's easy to prepare and you can eat it all year; in summer is good on bruschetta as a prelude to a great barbecue!

Ingredients

1 kg of red and yellow peppers
1/4 glass of white wine
1/4 glass of wine vinegar
1/4 glass fingers of extra virgin olive oil
2 whole cloves of garlic
4-5 anchovy fillets
1 tablespoon of capers
1 teaspoon of sugar
1 bunch of parsley
2 tins of tuna
salt

cut the red and yellow peppers in small pieces (if you decide to put them on bruschette smaller is better!).
Put them in a pot and add in the white wine, vinegar and the oil; add the peeled cloves of garlic, anchovy fillets, capers, a teaspoon of sugar and salt.
Mix well and cook on a lively fire for 15-20 minutes (the peppers should not be too soft). In the last minutes of cooking add chopped parsley and two little tins of tuna.
Let it cool down and serve with toasted bread or as a simple appetizer.

I like these dishes for their simplicity and colours... I like them because they're a source of pleasant and fragrant memories... and finally I like them because they're so good in pictures... after all I am a photographer!
Buon appetito!

6/8/09

Today my mind rests...

Absolutely no inspiration for today! I don't want to cook anything "photographable"; I don't want to photograph anything in the kitchen; I have no desire to find something artistic-cultural-creative-intelligent; I don't want to think ... this is the real point: I don't want to think! Then I'm going to leave my mind resting and I'm going to do something with my hands: the gardener ...

But before I leave you three ugly photographs made with the mobile that I do like a lot indeed!







Have a nice week!

6/4/09

Fil rouge (3)



It calls to me... from the deep of a virtual drawer this work is calling to me... it's time to pander this, to pander this desire for creativity! So I took this picture of an old lantern bought by my mother-in-law in London, during a journey she made when she was 16. Originally it was black and now tells stories... eyes looking around in the darkness, to watch the rest of a city; a stationmaster controlling a train before its leaving in the dawn; it swings hung to a cart that carry fresh fish to the marketplace... or hung to the boat that's trying to fish at night in the dark, dark sea... Find its place in the world and bring it back to a new life!!

6/3/09

Sauces

Today I was thinking about something tasty and yummy … et voilà… patè and mousse and sauces… coloured, tasty and absolutely good looking! You can put all these sauces on the croutons!!
HAM MOUSSE
Put in the mixer 2hg of ham, a little of rubra sauce (something like ketchup, for home made rubra you must wait... got to buy good, ripe tomatoes!!), half package of fresh cream, salt and pepper. Instead of the fresh cream you can use fresh ricotta cheese or other cheese you like! If you like you can add on a little of brandy!

PEPPER’S PATE’
Put 4 peppers in the oven to roast them. After a while pull them out and let them cool down into a paper bag. Then remove the skin and the seeds inside and cut into pieces. Put into a frying pan with a little oil and a sliced onion, let them brown a little. Add in 2 or 3 anchovies, 1 spoon capers than mix all adding in oil, salt and fresh cream.



RED SAUCE
Mince 2-3 anchovies, 1 spoon capers and mix with tomato concentrate (about 150gr), add in 1 teaspoon of mustard, oil and vinegar. Stir well adding in one spoon of hot water to emulsify. If the sauce is too acid add in one tspoon of sugar and if you like it spicy add in a little of chilli.

GREEN SAUCE
Mince a bunch of parsley, one garlic clove, 1 spoon of capers, 2-3 anchovies, the soft part of a sandwich wet with vinegar, a little chilli. Add in salt if needed and oil. Stir well adding in one spoon of hot water to emulsify.



These two sauces (the red and the green one) are good with croutons... but they’re sooooooo tasty with anchovies!!! Anchovies in red sauce and green sauce are a tipical, traditional Piedmontese dish.The green sauce is wonderful also with a particular kind of meat called “bollito”, a big piece of beef boiled into water with onion, carrot, parsley. But this is another recipe, for another post !!
If something’s not clear ask... I’ll answer.


6/1/09

Travel's chronicles: Trentino


Today I come back to Trentino (only with the memory, unfortunately...); we went there as often as we could in the last years because there are places which stay in our heart from the very first time we saw...




That's happened with Trentino with its wonderful greens, houses with flowered balconies, colours and scent of the woods.
Our eyes were full of dreamy images...



Villages and churches tell their old stories: "minimal chronicles" lived far from the spotlights, from urban frenzy, made of simple things...

I think it's time to visit this places again... when do we leave???