Sunday, June 5, 2011

Summertime Italian Feast

Hi Everyone!

During the summer, my family loves to make crostinis. Crostinis are slices of baguette that have been toasted with olive oil and salt. We always serve crostinis with a variety of different toppings. Recently, I attended an expo and saw Giada de Laurentiis cook on stage. I bought her Giada at Home cookbook and Mario Batali’s Molto Gusto cookbook. My mom noticed a recipe for pea pesto in Giada’s book and it looked delicious! I decided to make it and cooked a three-course Italian dinner!

The first course was the crostini platter. Our crostinis were topped with Giada’s pea pesto, arugula and pine nut pesto, brie cheese, sliced tomato, fresh purple basil and an apricot paste. The pea pesto was refreshing and really yummy!

The second course was broccoli rabe in a Pecorino Romano sauce. It was really yummy, especially once we topped it with smoked salt. You only need a tiny amount of smoked salt, great flavor!

The final course was fettuccine cacio e pepe, which is Italian for fettuccine with cheese and pepper. I found this recipe, and the broccoli rabe recipe, in Mario Batali’s cookbook. The fettuccine cacio e pepe only had a couple ingredients, but it took a long time to make! In the end, it was amazingly good! When I was in New York last year I visited Mario Batali’s specialty foods shop, Eataly. Mom and I ate lunch there and I ordered spaghettone cacio e pepe, which is the same as what I made, but the pasta was thinner. It was creamy, peppery and definitely a weekend splurge. What can I say, I LOVE Italian food!

I'm so excited to be back in NYC this week!

Lizzie Marie

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