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Classic Tiramisu May 25, 2016

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes.
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Tiramisu is the all-time most classic dessert recipe in the Italian lectionary.  You will find it on 75% of the menus in Italian restaurants.  There is a good reason for all of this – it is really good and actually fairly easy to make.

Origin and history:

Unlike many Italian dishes, tiramisu is relatively new on the scene.  It was “invented” in a famous restaurant in Treviso called Le Beccherie in 1969.  The restaurant is still there (2016).  Treviso is about 50km. north of Venice.

The dessert starts with zabaglione (or sabayon as they say in France).  This mixture of egg yolks and sugar is the beginning of many Italian desserts; so, if you learn to make tiramisu, you will be ready to prepare a whole range of luscious treats.  The zabaglione is poured over Lady Fingers, which are crunchy sweet biscuits shaped like a finger.   They are very absorbent and are quickly soaked in expresso or coffee along with some liqueur or rum before adding the zabaglione. (more…)

Sexy Italian Salads August 17, 2015

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Classic Salads.
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The Ingredients for Sexy Italian Salads

The Ingredients for Sexy Italian Salads

Sometimes everything comes together and it all becomes clear. For, example, most people think of salads and can’t get excited. Well, that has all changed for me. Let me tell you how I got to this new place. (more…)

Linguine with Clam Sauce August 10, 2015

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes.
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Linguine with Clam Sauce

Linguine with Clam Sauce

This is one of the all-time favorite pasta dishes. You will find it on well over 50% of the menus in Italian restaurants. In Italy, Venice is probably most famous for this dish. I have this vision sitting in a sidewalk café looking over a canal at sunset, sipping on a cold glass of Gavi di Gavi, watching long-legged beauties walking by and smiling at my wonderful travel companion of 50 years. (more…)

Spaghetti and Veal Meatballs October 22, 2014

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes.
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Veal Meatballs

Veal Meatballs

Spaghetti and meatballs is certainly the most well-known Italian dish, at least in the U.S., but most of us have not even tried to make the dish. And yet, it is always a real hit with the fans, especially this recipe, which is incredibly tasty. After a recent dinner party, a friend announced to the table that these were the best meatballs she had ever tasted. (more…)

Classic Chicken Cacciatore – Umbrian Style October 25, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes.
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Umbrian Style Chicken Cacciatore

Umbrian Style Chicken Cacciatore

Those of you who have read the posts from our trip to Italy and especially Umbria might remember that our cooking instructor showed us how to make classic chicken cacciatore  (see Cooking Lessons in Umbria).  I gave a brief description of the dish but not a complete recipe.  I have now tried this on my own and can now tell you exactly how to make this great dish. (more…)

A Last Fling from Umbria – Tortellini al Tartufo July 26, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Diary of a Wandering Foodie.
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I Due Cuoci e Degustatori di Vini

Stewart and Bill: I Due Cuoci e Degustatori di Vini

This is my final post from Italy.  You can see my friend and Bravado chef, Stewart, enjoying a glass of wine with me outside the villa.  Note the beautiful hills in the background.  Rural Umbria is a real kick.

I convinced the owner of Ristorante Fontana in our village of Macerino to give me the recipe for Tortellini al Tartufo.  This was one of my favorites dishes in Italy, so I figured we better learn to make it.  It is a very easy recipe and will be a big hit. (more…)

Our Big Night in Umbria – Veal Saltimboca and more July 7, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Diary of a Wandering Foodie, Recipes.
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Buongiorno di Macerino

Buongiorno di Macerino

On our last night in the mountains of Umbria at the Palazzo Mazzuricci in Macerino (look it up on Google maps), we did our own version of “The Big Night” (I assume everyone has seen that movie – if not, go to Amazon NOW and stream it.)

To get you in the mood, here is a brief slideshow on our place in Umbria. (more…)

Caprese Salad – The Best Way to Start the Summer June 5, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Classic Salads.
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Sometimes I look at people on the street and think that each one has a story – someone loves them and they love somebody – some have had great happiness or great sadness.  I find myself wanting to know their stories.  The same thing happens to me with recipes, especially with the classic dishes.  I want to know their story.

Caprese salad is a good example. (more…)

Bolognese – The Queen of Sauces February 6, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Classic Stews, Recipes.
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Bolognese Sauce

Bolognese Sauce

I spent much of my life traveling in the developing world working on education projects, visiting many of the most remote countries on the planet.  Yet, on checking into a hotel in La Paz or Sana’a or Port au Prince, I would always find spaghetti Bolognese on the menu. (more…)

Pasta with Sausage and Cream October 19, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Recipes.
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Pasta with Sausage and Cream

Earlier this year, we had dinner with a friend, Ann.  She was going to make a recipe that her daughter had found in “some cookbook”.  It was pasta with sausage and cream and the cookbook was Marcella Hazan’s  “Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking”.  That was hardly “some cookbook” – her daughter had extracted a gem from the bible of Italian cuisine.  We’ve talked about Marcella’s book a number of times in the past (The Three Best Cookbooks) and this short, simple recipe is an example of some of the great dishes you will find there.  Most of you have already bought the book, I hope.

I like to use a little more sausage than she does, but otherwise it’s her recipe.  Actually, it is a very traditional Italian recipe so it is really not Marcella’s invention. (more…)

An Italian Classic – Eggplant Parmesan August 30, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Classic Vegetable Dishes, Recipes.
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Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant has been around for a long, long time.  It originated in India maybe 3,000 years ago.  The three largest producers are China, India and Egypt, who produce twenty times more than anyone else.  Few of you have heard of the names of eggplant dishes in those countries, but as we get closer to home, you will all recognize Greek moussaka, French ratatouille, and the most famous of all, Italian Eggplant Parmesan.  Some people say that if God had a favorite dish, it would most certainly be Eggplant Parmesan. (more…)

Basil Pesto Redeux August 7, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Recipes.
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As the end of summer approaches the basil goes wild in most of the U.S.  If you’re growing your own, you will have more than you easily use.  If you’re buying at the local farm stand, you’ll find it for about $2.00 a bag.  If you let the summer go by without some basil pesto, you have made a big mistake. (more…)

An Italo-American Classic – Spaghetti Carbonara June 7, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Recipes.
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Spaghetti Carbonara

Sometimes you get an urge for a dish and you have to get up, go to the refrigerator and start grabbing the ingredients.  Spaghetti Carbonara is just such a dish.  Luckily, it is easy to make and you usually have everything at hand – eggs, bacon, cheese and spaghetti. (more…)

Cooking and Wooing – Risotto with Black Truffles January 12, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Cooking and Wooing, Recipes.
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Risotto with Black Truffles, Carrots and Asparagus

This is my favorite romantic recipe in the whole world, and it is relatively simple.  If this dish doesn’t do the trick, either that special person has lost all taste buds and olfactory senses, or you have made a colossal mistake in thinking that this person likes you in any way. (more…)

Calamari At Home September 2, 2011

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic Italian Dishes, Recipes.
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Goofy Buddy with Calamari

You can now get frozen packages of calamari, already cut and ready to cook.  Over cocktails, a slightly goofy friend of mine (shown above) and I started experimenting to come up with a calamari dish that is similar to what you would find in restaurants, but without the deep frying.  Deep frying at home is a pain in the you-know-what.  The following recipe seemed to work very well and it is easy to do. (more…)

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