06/02/10 Sicilian Rice Balls

"Chi va piano, va sano; chi va sano, va lontano." (He who goes softly, goes safely; he who goes safely, goes far. Slowly but surely.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Angela's Organic Oregano Farm!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Carrots With Rosemary
  -Sicilian Rice Balls
  -Braised Veal With Olives

"A tavola non si invecchia." (You don't age while seated for a meal.) Enjoy your recipes.

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Yours Truly,              
Angela Reina       

 Recipe: Carrots With Rosemary

Carrots With Rosemary
Carote Al Rosmarino


1 lb and 10 oz (750 grams) carrots, cut into thin strips
1/2 pint (300 ml) vegetable stock
Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
Salt and pepper


Put the carrots and stock into a saucepan.

Bring to a boil over a medium heat, then cover and simmer for about 15-18 minutes.

Remove the lid and season with salt and pepper to taste. If the mixture is too runny, continue cooking until it has reduced to the consistency desired.

Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with the rosemary and cook for another few minutes.

Transfer to a warm serving dish. Serves 4.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Sicilian Rice Balls

Sicilian Rice Balls
Arancini Alla Siciliana


11 oz (300 grams) long-grain rice
2 oz (50 grams) butter
2 tablespoons Parmigiano cheese, freshly grated
3 and 1/2 oz (100 grams) minced lean beef
3 and 1/2 oz (100 grams) mozzarella cheese, diced
2 eggs
2 oz (50 grams) plain flour
3 and 1/2 fl oz (100 ml) dry white wine
2 tablespoons tomato puree
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying


Cook the rice in plenty of salted, boiling water for 15-20 minutes until tender.

Drain, tip into a bowl and stir in half the butter and the Parmigiano cheese.

Spread the rice out on the work surface and leave to cool.

Melt the remaining butter in a saucepan.

Add the beef and cook, stirring frequently, until browned all over.

Sprinkle with the wine and cook until it has evaporated.

Stir in the tomato puree, cover and cook over a low heat for about 15 minutes.

Season with salt and remove from the heat.

Shape the cooled rice into balls as large as small oranges and hollow out the centers.

Fill with a little meat sauce and a cube of mozzarella cheese and seal with more rice.

Beat the eggs with a pinch of salt in a shallow dish and spread out the flour in another shallow dish.

Dip the rice balls in the beaten eggs, then in the flour and shake off any excess.

Heat the vegetable oil in a deep-fryer or saucepan to 350-375F (180-190C) or until a cube of day-old bread browns in 30 seconds.

Deep-fry the rice balls in the hot oil until golden brown all over.

Drain on kitchen paper and serve. Serves 4.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Braised Veal With Olives

Braised Veal With Olives
Arrosto Alle Olive


1 and 3/4 lb (800 grams) topside
7 oz (200 grams) green olives, stoned and halved
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 oz (50 grams) butter
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 fresh rosemary sprig, chopped
1 celery stick, chopped
6 fl oz (175 ml) dry white wine
Salt and pepper


Make small incisions in the veal with a small, sharp knife, insert the olive halves and tie neatly with kitchen string.

Heat the olive oil and butter in a pan, add the onion, carrot, rosemary and celery and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.

Add the meat and cook, turning frequently, until browned all over.

Pour in the wine and cook until it has evaporated, then season with salt and pepper.

Simmer gently over a low heat, turning occasionally and adding a little warm water if necessary, for about 1 hour.

Remove the veal from the pan and leave to stand for 10 minutes.

Untie, carve into slices and place on a warm serving dish.

Pass the cooking juices through a food mill into a bowl. If they are too thick, thin with a little hot stock; if they are too runny, add a paste of equal quantities of butter and plain flour.

Spoon the juices over the meat and serve. Serves 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:

Serving Vodka To 12 Year Olds

Lodi - March 5, 2010 - A bartender in northern Italy was caught serving vodka to a 12-year-old on Thursday night by police following up on reports of underage drinking at a disco in Lodi.

Officers said they caught the man red-handed while mixing a vodka and Pepsi for a boy standing at the bar after taking money from another underage customer, 14, who'd bought a pint of beer.

The raid followed complaints by Lodi parents who suspected their children were drinking at the disco.

Both the owner and bartender were cited for serving alcohol to minors in addition to a handful of administrative violations.

They said city inspectors would also be by over concerns that the venue failed to meet safety codes.

According to a report released earlier this week by the health ministry, Italians on average start drinking earlier than in any other country in the European union.

They consume their first alcoholic beverage by the age of 12 compared to a EU average of 14 and a half, the study said.

More than 17.6% of 15-year-olds in Italy said that they drink on a regular or semi-regular basis, which the health ministry says puts them at high risk of alcohol abuse in later life.

Getting loaded on a school night?! What stupid little "bastardi!"

"Mamma mia," it's no wonder a third of 11-year-olds in the city of Milan have alcohol related problems. After a long day of arithmetic, geography and popping zits, you need to relax with couple of drinks to help wind down?

You have to question this behavior ("Cavolo", please don't ask us. We actually get bullied at the local bars from these little arrogant mules).

It's somewhat understandable that Italian families are used to giving young children a teaspoon of wine or liquor as a family party treat. But what possible entertainment could a 12-year-old find in a disco drinking vodka and cola on a Thursday night? And what fortune could a bar actually make from selling mixed drinks to kids? They're only going to pass out after the third sip.

This only reinforces the opinions of our grandfather who insists kids are stupid today because they don't learn in school.

"They're always on a plane, they go to Monte Carlo, they go to Paris!"
"When do they go to school? Those imbeciles...cornuti!"

(Huh? The kids are going to Monte Carlo instead of school?!)

We asked our grandfather if he went to school: "I went to school until I was 11 years old, after that my father said it was over! You are not too bright; you have to go to work because you are not going to be a genius! Go to work and produce something! And he was right, cazzo!"

You know, between the lunacy, our grandfather makes a lot of good points.

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