05/18/11 Castellane with Sausage, Peppers and Cherry Tomatoes

"Chi lava il capo all'asino perde il ranno e il sapone." (He who scrubs the head of a donkey wastes his soap.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Angela's Organic Oregano Farm!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Meat Frittata
  -Ziti with Roasted Peppers, Green Olives, and Spicy Salami
  -Castellane with Sausage, Peppers and Cherry Tomatoes

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Yours Truly,              
Angela Reina       

 Recipe: Meat Frittata

Meat Frittata
Frittata di Carne


4 eggs
150 oz (50 grams) minced meat
2 oz (50 grams) butter
2-3 tablespoons milk (optional)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 fresh flat-leaf parsley sprig, chopped
Salt and pepper


Melt half the butter in a small saucepan.

Add the meat and a pinch of salt and cook over a medium heat, stirring frequently, until browned.

Lightly beat the eggs, season with salt and pepper and stir in the meat and parsley. If the mixture seems too dry, stir in a little milk.

Melt the remaining butter with the olive oil in a frying pan.

Pour in the mixture and cook until golden brown on both sides.

Serve hot or cold. Serves 4.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Ziti with Roasted Peppers, Green Olives, and Spicy Salami

Ziti with Roasted Peppers, Green Olives, and Spicy Salami
Ziti con Peperoni, Olive Verdi, e Salame Piccante


1 large red bell pepper
1 large yellow bell pepper
1 large green bell pepper

2 garlic cloves
1 small shallot, halved
1 cup pitted green olives in brine, drained
1 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves

1 pound ziti
4 ounces 1/8-inch thick slices spicy salami, cut into thin sized strips
1 cup coarsely grated Parmigiano cheese


Char bell peppers directly over gas flame or in broiler until blackened on all sides.

Enclose peppers in paper bag and cool completely.

Peel, stem, and seed peppers.

Cut peppers lengthwise into 1/4-inch wide strips.

With machine running, drop garlic and shallot through processor feed tube and chop coarsely.

Add olives, parsley, olive oil, and oregano and chop finely.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente', stirring occasionally.

Drain well.

Return pasta to pot; stir in peppers and olive mixture.

Add salami and cheese; toss to combine.

Serve warm or let stand at room temperature up to 2 hours. Serves 6-8.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Castellane with Sausage, Peppers and Cherry Tomatoes

Castellane with Sausage, Peppers and Cherry Tomatoes
Castellane con Salsiccia, Peperoni e Pomodorini


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound hot Italian sausage, casings removed
2 red bell peppers, chopped (about 2 cups)
1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
2 and 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh marjoram
Two 12-ounce packages cherry tomatoes
5 ounces crumbled goat cheese
12 ounces Castellane or fusilli pasta


Heat olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

Add sausages; saute until browned, breaking up with back of fork, about 5 minutes.

Add peppers and onion; saute until soft and onion is golden brown, about 13 minutes.

Stir in marjoram, then tomatoes.

Simmer until tomatoes soften and release their juices, crushing with back of fork, about 5 minutes.

Season generously to taste with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente'.


Return pasta to pot.

Add sausage mixture and goat cheese; stir to blend.

Transfer pasta to plates and serve. Serves 4-6.

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:

Fake Italian Food Outdoing Real Italian Food

Rome - September 17, 2010 - Foreign-made goods that cash in on Italian food's fame and popularity by using names that make them sound authentic are outstripping the real deal two-to-one on the market place.

The 'Italian-sounding' food business is worth 26 billion euros a year in the Europe Union alone, over twice the value of the nation's exports of genuine goods to the region, Italy's food producers' federation Federalimentare said Friday.

It said offenders include Romanian 'parmezan' masquerading as parmesan cheese, Portugal's 'Milaneza' - not Milanese - pasta and the Montenegrin 'palenta' consumers might buy when they want traditional northern Italian polenta cornmeal.

Federalimentare expressed particular dismay at the 'Lasandwich' that supermarket giant Tesco recently unleashed on British shoppers, saying the delicious baked pasta dish does not deserve to have its name tarred in this way.

It also lamented the fact that even shoppers in Italy were buying more and more foreign foods with Italian-sounding names, calling on consumers to pay more attention to where their food is made.

Italy's producers say these goods do not taste anywhere near as good as the real thing and sometimes cause nasty surprises, as shown with the recent health alarm sparked by German-made mozzarella cheese that turned blue when opened.

Furthermore, Italian-sounding goods are only part of the food-piracy problem - some foreign fakes are even more brazen, using the proper names of the goods they are imitating.

As a result the CIA farming association estimates that food piracy costs Italy some 60 billion euros a year in total.

Another farmers' association, Coldiretti, says that in the US, Australia and New Zealand only around 2% of so-called Italian produce was actually from Italy, with fake San Daniele ham and mortadella among the offenders.

Coldiretti said that in the US you can also find clones of, among other things, prized cheeses such as Gorgonzola, Asiago and Romano, as well as 'Californian Chianti' and San Marzano tomatoes.

Environment association Legambiente, meanwhile, presented a report Friday based on checks carried out in 2009 which said meat and dairy products were the foods most targeted by the makers of fake foreign goods.

''This shows the battle against counterfeit foods is necessary to uphold law and order, to protect the public from fraudsters and keep their health safe,'' said Legambiente national secretary Francesco Ferrante, a Senator with the center-left opposition Democratic Party.

Despite the unfair competition, Federalimentare said Italian exports in Europe were up 11.6% in the first quarter of this year.

"Mamma mia", it's frightening to think that there are still rednecks out there who think red-checkered covered tables and heaping mounds of spaghetti dripping with a red sauce represents so-called Italian food.

Mini-guide: "Cazzo", I can't believe it's not Italian.

- Cheese: Kraft makes a product called "parmesan cheese" that’s definitively not "parmigiano-reggiano". We don't know what the hell is in there but it's not our stuff.

- The lasagne sandwich: A calorie infected sandwich that consists of a filling of minced processed beef, pasta sheets and a creamy sauce, between two thick slices of white bread. "'Fanculo, no one is shameful anymore. No shame. Why doesn't the inventor of this thing just wear a shirt that says, "You hear that? It's the wind whistling through my head", and maybe that will satisfy us.

- Olive oil: Check the label. Does it say "extra-virgin"? Is there a harvest or milling date, in addition to the best-use date? Is the harvest date within 12 months? Remember, extra-virgin oil is "best used" within 18 months...and don't accept a dinner invitation by someone who stores olive oil in a wine cellar as if it is supposed to increase in value over time.

"Pasquale, I just cracked open a bottle of superb oil I got during my wild boar safari in Tuscany in '98. Try it on your salad."

"Eh, vaffanculo Todd. Will someone please pass the corn oil?"

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