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 02/25/09 Champagne Risotto with Scallops from OreganoFromItaly.com

""Vai in piazza e chiedi consiglio; vai a casa e fai come ti pare." (Go to the square and ask advice; go home and do what you like. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Angela's Organic Oregano Farm!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Garlic Bread with Pecorino Romano Butter
  -Bean and Swiss Chard Soup
  -Champagne Risotto with Scallops

We sincerely hope all our subscribers and their families enjoy their recipes.

Thanks again for subscribing!

Yours Truly,              
Angela Reina       


 Recipe: Garlic Bread with Pecorino Romano Butter

Garlic Bread with Pecorino Romano Butter
Pane con Aglio e Burro di Pecorino Romano

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced

One 14-inch-long loaf Italian or French bread, halved lengthwise

Directions:

Mix butter, cheese, parsley and garlic in medium bowl to blend well. Season with pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before using.)

Preheat oven to 500 F.

Place bread, cut side up, on baking sheet.

Spread butter mixture evenly over cut sides of bread.

Bake until topping is golden brown and bread is heated through, about 5 minutes.

Cut bread crosswise into 2-inch-wide pieces. Serve immediately. Serves 10.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Bean and Swiss Chard Soup

Bean and Swiss Chard Soup
Zuppa di Fagioli e Bietole

Ingredients:

1/2 lb (225 grams) Swiss chard or kale, trimmed
1 teaspoon coarse salt, plus additional to taste
2 flat anchovy fillets
1/4 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves or dried
1/3 cup (80 ml) extra virgin olive oil
2 medium garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
1 cup (225 grams) cooked small white beans or drained and rinsed canned beans
4 cups (1 liter) chicken stock
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/2 cup (60 grams) small shell macaroni
Freshly grated Parmigiano cheese, for serving

Directions:

In a medium saucepan, cook the chard with 1/2 cup (125 ml) water and the salt over medium heat until tender.

Drain the chard, reserving any liquid that remains.

Coarsely chop the chard.

Very finely chop anchovies together with the rosemary.

In a medium saucepan, stir together the olive oil and garlic over medium-high heat.

Cook, stirring frequently, until the garlic is pale gold, about 10 minutes.

Stir in the anchovies and rosemary.

Cook, stirring for 1 minute.

Discard the garlic.

Stir in the chard and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring to thoroughly coat it with the olive oil.

Stir in the beans. Cook for 3 minutes.

Stir in the reserved cooking liquid and the stock.

Season with salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil and stir in the macaroni. Boil for 6 minutes, or until the pasta is tender. Adjust the seasoning, if necessary.

Pass Parmigiano cheese at the table. Makes about 5 cups (1.25 liters); 4 first-course servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Champagne Risotto with Scallops

Champagne Risotto with Scallops
Champagne Risotto con Capesante

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
1/4 cup chopped green onions
2/3 cup Arborio rice or medium-grain white rice
1 cup dry Champagne
14 and 1/2-ounces chicken broth
1/2 lb bay scallops
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese

Directions:

Melt butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat.

Add onions; saute 1 minute.

Add rice; saute 2 minutes.

Add Champagne; simmer until almost all liquid evaporates, stirring often, about 2 minutes.

Add broth; simmer until rice is almost tender, stirring often, about 15 minutes.

Add scallops; simmer until scallops are cooked through and rice is tender but still firm to bite and mixture is creamy, adding more broth if too thick and stirring often, about 5 minutes.

Stir in Parmigiano. Season with salt and pepper. Serves 2.

That's it!

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 Only In Italy!

"Only In Italy" is a daily news column that translates and 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:

Mafia Fans on Facebook Are Potential Mobsters

Palermo - January 7, 2009 - People who have joined Mafia fan clubs on social networking site Facebook are mobsters in the making and should be investigated, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's transnational crime envoy Carlo Vizzini said Wednesday.

Thousands of people have signed up to fan club pages dedicated to jailed Cosa Nostra super bosses Salvatore (Toto') Riina and Bernardo Provenzano. Reacting to a statement from Palermo public prosecutor's office that it will not investigate mafioso pages because they are not a criminal offence, Vizzini said that user's personal details should still be collected before Facebook is asked to remove the pages.

"With the exception of a small minority of macabre pranksters, these people represent potential mobsters," said Vizzini, who is also a member of Italy's parliamentary anti-Mafia commission.

"They belong to the so-called gray zone of people willing to support the bosses and the Mafia".

Police said they were monitoring the site but explained that the only law governing opinions expressed on the Internet related to race discrimination and Fascism. People who join online fan clubs dedicated to Mafia bosses are therefore immune from prosecution, as are those who signed up to serial killer fan sites, they said.

The Union of Young Italian Lawyers (UGAI) on Wednesday appealed to its members to remove their profiles in protest at Facebook's silence and added that its owners could be seen as complicit in instigating criminal behavior.

"Although it's clear that the Facebook owners do not share the opinions of the Mafia fan clubs, it's also true that they could be seen as abetting because they are tolerating such content," said UGAI president Gaetano Romano.

At the weekend centrist UDC senator and anti-Mafia commission member Giampiero D'Alia called for Italian politicians to remove their profiles and said there was a "concrete risk" that the Mafia could genuinely take an interest in such sites.

"We need to prevent Mafia and criminal infiltration of the Internet and force Facebook to clear the social network of those who put themselves - not just virtually - at the disposition of Mafia bosses," he said.

Opposition Democratic Party leader Walter Veltroni meanwhile joined a new Facebook group set up to ask site organizers to remove mafioso pages and which currently has 50,000 subscribers.

"We must stop criminal organizations from finding space on Facebook. Freedom of expression has nothing to do with it - the Mafia must be destroyed and we must do it together. Thank you guys," Veltroni wrote on the site.

The Facebook row first broke a week ago when furious relatives of Mafia victims called for Facebook to remove fan club pages. One club dedicated to Toto' 'The Beast' Riina has almost 2,228 subscribers, who leave him messages wishing him a happy Christmas, telling him he's "great" and posting videos about him. Riina, 78, was the undisputed Cosa Nostra 'boss of bosses' until his arrest in January 1993 and is currently serving twelve life sentences for murder.

Riina's successor, Bernardo Provenzano, has a smaller fan group with 202 subscribers who claim to "honor someone who tricked the state for 40 years" as well as a group calling for him to be made a saint with 152 subscribers.

Another group on the site is searching for an "official look-alike" for the Cosa Nostra kingpin and posts photos of people bearing physical similarities to the 75-year-old.

A peasant who rose up the Mafia's ranks through his ability as a killer, Provenzano helped run the Mafia from various hiding places for more than 40 years before police caught up with him at a sheep farm outside Corleone in April 2006.

Many individual Facebook users have meanwhile signed on to the site using the names and photos of Riina, Provenzano and Trapani boss Matteo Messina Denaro, the last of Provenzano's key henchmen still at large. Facebook users accepted as 'friends' by people claiming to be the mobster post messages asking if they are "the real Messina Denaro" and telling them they are "honored by his friendship".

Police said Wednesday that users who posed as notorious Mafiosi on the site could be prosecuted for stealing identities.

"Yawn"...You know the whole world has really suffered since Provenzano and Riina have been in jail. It's really affected my daily life. My pasta is no longer 'al dente' without them.

Luckily, there are the irrational mules on Facebook that keep their memories alive.

"Facebook users accepted as 'friends' by people claiming to be the mobster post messages asking if they are "the real Messina Denaro" and telling them they are "honored by his friendship". Hmmm...the gates are down, lights are flashing, but the train just isn't coming.

Mafia: (Sends request for friendship)

Irrational mule: "Si Si! I'll accept your friendship! I'm so honored!"

Mafia: "Grazie! Thanks for being on the winning team. You wouldn't mind if I take a peek at your email address, date of birth, work/educational information, home address, phone numbers, screen name, family and employer info, would you?"

Irrational mule: "Per favore, no! Not at all. After all, we're now friends on Facebook. Isn't life wonderful? :0)

Mafia: "Grazie! Afterwards, would you mind if I bury you in the yard?"

Very few of us without food in our ears would provide this type of information to someone we met in real life, but we're quite happy to give it to an organized criminal organization online. "Mah..."

"Only In Italy" Subscribe for free and day in and day out, 5 days a week, you'll have laughter, tears and intelligent commentary all blaring at you from your stupid little monitor. Click Here to Subscribe!



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