Friday, November 21, 2014

Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes


    Ok......back from a little vacation in Florida.......just in time to share a side dish with you that is worthy of your Thanksgiving table!  Who doesn't love twice-baked potatoes?? But, have you ever tried the idea with sweet potatoes?  Delicious!!  This is a simple variation of a recipe in Ina Garten's newest cookbook "Make It Ahead".  The Fontina cheese is my yummy twist.....next time, I think I'll sprinkle on some crispy, sauteed pancetta!  You have to try this recipe!  ( And, I'd love to hear your feedback!)

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Meatloaf Brasciole


    O.k..........it's been a long time since I've posted a meat recipe on the blog and I'm just a little excited to share this one.  It's definitely not your typical, boring meatloaf recipe!  "Brasciole" are, basically, thin slices of meat rolled around a filling and cooked with or without tomato sauce/wine. There can be many different variations, and you may sometimes see them referred to as "Involtini".

    As a child, I loved my gramma's version!  She baked hers on skewers and served them along with tomato sauce, but not in the sauce; they were delicious!!  My kids grew up enjoying the same recipe! (Note to self.....share gramma's brasciole recipe on the blog in the future!)  I've  made variations that are also delicious.

    So, what is "Meatloaf Brasciole", you ask?  Well, you mix several yummy ingredients together to make the meatloaf base and, then, you layer on a few more yummy ingredients, roll the whole thing up into this delicious loaf and, there you have it........meatloaf, all dressed up, Italian-style!!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Parmigiana Bianca ("White" Parmigiana)


    I think I've shared my love of eggplant before.  Besides being hearty and delicious, you can do so many different things with it!  And....because I love it, it makes a pretty regular appearance on our dinner table in various forms.  Two of my favorites are Eggplant Parmesan Stacks and Caponata.  You definitely will want to give those recipes a try!

    All over southern Italy, the name "parmigiana" refers to a dish of vegetables layered with tomato sauce and cheese and baked in the oven.  Now, for those of you who have an aversion to the "red sauce", typically used in these dishes, this is the recipe for you!  It has no tomatoes, but all the meaty eggplant and gooey cheese you'd expect from an eggplant parmesan! Serve it with a nice salad and a crusty loaf of bread and you've got a great dinner!  Or, it would also make a nice vegetable side dish to serve alongside some grilled meat.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Peas and Prosciutto


    Here's a simple and delicious side dish to add to your recipe box.  AND........you can have it ready in about 15-20 minutes!  The saltiness of the prosciutto adds a nice contrast to the otherwise mellow peas.  This dish is great to add to a mid-week meal, when you might not have a lot of time, but  goes equally well on a holiday table with all of the other "special" foods.

Friday, September 26, 2014

White Chocolate and Banana Cake w/ White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting


    Is it just me, or does banana eating go in spurts?  It seems that, when I only buy a few of them, they're gone in a day or two and everybody's looking for more.  I can't seem to keep them in the house.  Then, all of a sudden, just when I think I've got a handle on the whole "supply and demand" thing, I have bananas turning speckled and black left and right!  What is going on?  

    I recently found myself in this predicament and decided to use it to my advantage.  Banana cake it would be.  But, not just any banana cake.  A White Chocolate Banana Cake with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Celery and Chickpea Salad w/ Dried Cranberries, Roasted Almonds, and Parmesan Dressing


    O.k....so summer is gone, the kids are back in school, and fall is just about upon us.  Let's enjoy a light and delicious salad before we start to think about all those warm and comforting, cold weather dishes, shall we?

     I really do love salads. I mean.....a salad can be anything you want it to be!   There are soooo many options!  

Monday, July 14, 2014

This Italian is "On Hold"!

    Hi there, friends and subscribers!  After my last post, explaining my computer dilemma, this is very disappointing for me.  The bad news....... my computer issues are continuing, with no quick fix in sight. It seems that the laptop I have is just too old to really handle Windows anymore, so we had to install a different operating system.  But the editing program that I use with my camera was not able to be installed either.   The whole set-up for storing and editing pictures is totally different and unfamiliar to me, and just not the easiest to use.  (Remember, I'm not exactly a computer whiz!)  It doesn't seem to have the same features and abilities that my camera's editing program had, which is very disappointing.

    Anyway.......to shorten my long and sad story......."The Italian Next Door" will have to be "on hold" until we can figure something out.  I mean......pictures mean so much on a food blog, right?  And,  I had so many great recipes that I wanted to share with you, but I know you want to see all this delicious food....not just read about it!

    So, for now, I'm just waiting....waiting until I can figure out a way to store and edit my blog pictures sufficiently or, until I can afford a new laptop that can handle everything I need, to do justice to my blog.  Please don't forget about me and please don't deactivate your subscription!  Be patient and hopefully, when the time is right, "The Italian Next Door" will be up and running again.  A chi vuole, non mancano modi.  (Where there's a will, there's a way.)

                                                         Until then.......enjoy your family and friends and eat well!!