02/08/12 Meat Broth

"Finché c'è vita, c'è speranza." (While there's life, there's hope.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Angela's Organic Oregano Farm!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Meat Broth
  -Penne with Prosciutto and Asparagus
  -Lamb Stew Bologna Style

"Buongiorno!" Thanks again for finding the time to read your recipe newsletter! The meat broth recipe is a traditional recipe that will keep you warm and full of energy during this cold February month. Give it a try! I look forward to connecting further in a couple of days. Enjoy this week's recipes.

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Yours Truly,              
Angela Reina       

 Recipe: Meat Broth

Meat Broth
Brodo di Carne


2 pounds veal shanks, bones and scraps
2 pounds beef scraps and bones, preferably from knuckles
1 pound chicken bones and scraps
2 small carrots, peeled and cut into pieces
1 large celery stalk, cut into pieces
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
A few sprigs of fresh parsley
2 small ripe tomatoes
Salt to taste


Wash bones, meat scraps and vegetables thoroughly under cold running water.

Put all ingredients, except salt, in a large stockpot and cover with 3 to 4 inches of cold water.

Cover pot partially, and bring liquid to a gentle boil over medium heat.

As soon as water begins to bubble, reduce heat to low and skim off all foam that rises to surface of the water.

Cook, barely simmering, about 3 hours.

Season with salt only during last few minutes of cooking, because broth reduces considerably and its flavor becomes more accentuated. Makes about 2 quarts.

Note: If you are planning to use broth within a few hours, strain it through a fine-mesh strainer directly into another pot, and remove fat that comes to surface of broth with a spoon, or by dragging a piece of paper towel over broth surface.

If broth is for later use, strain it into several small containers and place containers in a basin of iced water to cool completely. It can be kept in refrigerator, tightly covered, 2 to 3 days.

Before using, remove fat that has solidified on surface. The broth is now fat free and ready to use or to freeze. Bring broth to a full boil before using.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Penne with Prosciutto and Asparagus

Penne with Prosciutto and Asparagus
Penne con Prosciutto Cotto e Asparagi


1 and 1/2 pounds small asparagus
1/4 cup butter
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
1/2 pound boiled ham, diced
1 cup whipping cream
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 pound Penne pasta
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese plus additional for serving


Wash asparagus and cut tips off stalks.

Fill a medium saucepan half full with salted water.

Bring water to a boil.

Add asparagus tips.

Boil about 1 minute or until tender but firm.

Drain asparagus.

Melt butter in a large skillet.

When butter foams, add onions.

Saute over medium heat until pale yellow.

Add drained asparagus and ham.

Saute 1 to 2 minutes.

Stir in cream.

Simmer 2 minutes or until cream begins to thicken.

Season with salt and pepper.

Fill a very large saucepan two-thirds full with salted water.

Bring water to a boil.

Add pasta.

Bring water back to a boil and cook pasta uncovered until 'al dente', 8 to 10 minutes.

Drain pasta and place in skillet with sauce.

Add 1/3 cup Parmigiano cheese.

Toss pasta and sauce over medium heat until sauce coats macaroni, 20 to 30 seconds.

Serve immediately with additional Parmigiano cheese. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Lamb Stew Bologna Style

Lamb Stew Bologna Style
Spezzatino di Agnello alla Bolognese


One (2 to 2 and 1/2-pound) boneless shoulder of lamb
1 and 1/2 cups canned crushed Italian-style or whole tomatoes
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 or 3 sprigs fresh rosemary or 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
3/4 cup light, red wine
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


Trim all fat from lamb.

Cut meat in 1 and 1/2 to 2-inch cubes.

Press tomatoes through a food mill or sieve to remove seeds.

Heat olive oil in a medium skillet.

Add lamb.

Saute over medium heat until lamb is colored on all sides, 2 to 3 minutes.

Remove lamb from skillet.

Discard all fat from skillet and add butter.

When butter foams, add garlic and rosemary.

Return lamb to skillet.

Before garlic changes color, stir in wine and cook until wine is reduced by half.

Add tomato pulp.

Season with salt and pepper.

Cook uncovered 25 to 30 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

Serve hot. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

That's it!

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 Only In Italy!

"Only In Italy" is a daily news column that translates & reports on funny but true news items from legitimate Italian news resources in Italy. Each story is slapped with our wild, often ironic, and sometimes rather opinionated comments. And now, for your reading pleasure, a sample of today's edition:

Italian Police Stop Jackass Political Party From Throwing Bear Barbecue

Rome - July 3, 2011 - Police have broken up a banquet of bear meat hosted by Berlusconi's powerful coalition partner in northern Italy after government ministers and animal rights groups described the event as scandalous.

The order came as about 200 people lined up to devour grilled and stewed bear at a rally in Imer in the Italian Dolomites organized by the Northern League.

Organizers said they had bought the meat legally in Slovenia to get round a ban on bear hunting in Italy, but food safety officers from Italy's paramilitary Carabinieri police objected to the lack of import documentation for the 50kg of meat.

Foreign minister Franco Frattini and tourism minister Michela Vittoria Brambilla had condemned the bear feast as "a scandalous initiative", while environment minister Stefania Prestigiacomo described the get-together as "barbarous".

In his blog, Frattini said the banquet was particularly offensive since Italian bears were "almost extinct and we are trying with great effort to bring them back to the mountains that have hosted them for centuries".

The brown bear population has risen to about 35 in and around the Dolomites after 10 were reintroduced there a decade ago. But instead of celebrating their return, some locals have complained that the bears are attacking chickens and sheep. Claims made for lost livestock rose to 100,000 Euros ($143,000 USD) last year, and farmers were fed up, said Maurizio Fugatti, an MP for the anti-immigrant Northern League.

Hence the banquet, which, said Fugatti, had been planned to "send a clear signal to citizens who have the right to reconquer their territory and freely circulate".

To protect locals from marauding bears, he added, "we prefer to eat them like this."

Fugatti said half of the bear meat had been cooked for the canceled banquet but the remainder was frozen and ready for a new dinner date should the paperwork be put in order.

"The idea was to attract attention to a bear repopulation plan which has got out of hand, resulting in locals being followed by bears through woods normally frequented by families. Even if the banquet doesn't happen, we have made our point," he went on.

The Northern League has long specialized in controversial statements and stunts. In 2007 Senator Roberto Calderoli proposed dissuading Muslims from building a mosque in Bologna by parading a pig across the chosen site, defiling it.

Yogi Bear: "Mamma mia, Boo-Boo, these animals are out of their mind."

Have you ever wondered how some mental Italian politicians who give a personal name to each one of their kitchen knives are able to win glory, wealth, fame, and an enduring place in Italy's sagas while others have to settle for plundering a few small towns in Calabria and Sicily?

Welcome to the world of the "Lega Nord".

It’s easy to see how simple and foul-mouthed the tone of their language is. It is the same linguistic style used by Lega representatives, a trick they have used to reach a wider public (a stupid and illiterate public, mind you, who is usually full of crap and immobile from eating too much polenta, slurping grappa, and belching) in the past elections and "conquer" a new electorate with so-called hot issues such as national security, immigration...and bear invasions.

So, what principles separate these Northern Italian Vikings from ordinary political ravagers? Well, the Lega Nord embraces the plunder approach which states that all the resources and success of a country should be held by the territory responsible for it...their territory.

1. Be arrogant and destructive
Accept responsibility for your actions in order to take control of the situation (a bear barbecue). You can be either reactive or destructive. When you are reactive, you blame other Italians for your problems. When you are destructive, other Italians blame you for their problems.

2. Principles of personal victory
Set long term goals based on the total victory principle. Visualization is an important tool. Visualize overwhelming the Southern Italian warriors with soap and jobs, plundering their little towns, and carrying off their women and cattle (leader of the Lega Nord, Bossi, is married to a Sicilian). Unless your longship has limited cargo space, in which case you might want to visualize leaving some of the ugly and fat women behind.

3) Go nuts
Going nuts is a very effective way to overwhelm an Italian government. Avoid decision making. Apply destructive problem solving. Employ brute force to promote successful confrontation. Embrace and leverage annihilation (Bossi once referred to immigrants as "bingo bongos" and has suggested that immigrant boats off Italy's shores be fired upon with cannons).

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