08/13/08 Pepper Focaccia with Truffle Oil from OreganoFromItaly.com

"Chi tante male azioni fa, una grossa ne aspetta." (He who does many bad deeds can expect a big one in return.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Angela's Organic Oregano Farm!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Focaccia con Pepe e Olio di Tartufo
  -Cavoli Arrosto con Aglio e Pancetta
  -Carne di Maiale con Salsa di Gorgonzola

Enjoy the recipes and the rest of the summer season.

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Yours Truly,              
Angela Reina       

 Recipe: Focaccia con Pepe e Olio di Tartufo

Focaccia con Pepe e Olio di Tartufo
Pepper Focaccia with Truffle Oil


2 cups lukewarm water (85 F to 95 F)
1 tablespoon active dry yeast (for do-ahead version) or quick-rising dry yeast (for same-day version)
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white or black truffle oil* or extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
2 teaspoons salt
4 and 3/4 cups (about) bread flour
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons coarse sea salt


Stir 2 cups lukewarm water and yeast in large bowl to blend.

Mix in 3 tablespoons olive oil, truffle oil, cracked pepper, and 2 teaspoons salt.

Add 1 cup flour.

Using wood spoon, stir vigorously until well incorporated.

Add enough of remaining 3 and 3/4 cups flour, about 1/2 cup at a time, to form dough that is soft, sticky and not completely smooth, stirring vigorously until well incorporated.

Oil large bowl.

Scrape dough into oiled bowl.

Cover bowl with plastic wrap.

For do-ahead version:
Chill dough overnight.

Allow dough to come to room temperature in warm draft-free area before proceeding.

For same-day version:
Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 45 minutes (do not punch down dough).

Lightly oil 15 x 10 x 1-inch baking sheet.

Slide out dough onto prepared baking sheet (dough will be soft and will easily slide out onto sheet; do not punch down dough or knead dough).

Gently pull and stretch dough so that dough almost covers baking sheet.

Press fingertips all over top of dough to form indentations.

Brush top of focaccia with remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil.

Sprinkle with thyme, rosemary and coarse salt.

Cover loosely with plastic wrap.

Let rise in warm draft-free area until puffed, about 30 minutes for refrigerated dough and about 15 minutes for room-temperature dough.

Meanwhile, position rack in center of oven and preheat to 450 F.

Bake focaccia until deep golden brown, about 30 minutes.

Transfer to rack and cool. Makes 1 large loaf.

Note: *Available at Italian markets, specialty foods stores and some supermarkets.

That's it!

 Recipe: Cavoli Arrosto con Aglio e Pancetta

Cavoli Arrosto con Aglio e Pancetta
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Garlic and Pancetta


1 lb Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (quartered if large)
2 oz pancetta, visible fat discarded and pancetta minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup water


Preheat oven to 450 F.

Toss together Brussels sprouts, pancetta, garlic, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste in an 11 by 7-inch baking pan and spread in one layer.

Roast in upper third of oven, stirring once halfway through roasting, until sprouts are brown on edges and tender, about 25 minutes total.

Stir in water, scraping up brown bits.

Serve warm. Makes 4 servings.

That's it!

 Recipe: Carne di Maiale con Salsa di Gorgonzola

Carne di Maiale con Salsa di Gorgonzola
Pork with Gorgonzola Sauce


For the Pork:
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon dried thyme
2 3/4-lb pork tenderloins

For the Gorgonzola Sauce:
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
1 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese (about 4 ounces)


Prepare the pork:
Oil large rimmed baking sheet.

Whisk Dijon mustard, olive oil and thyme in small bowl to blend.

Sprinkle pork tenderloins with salt and pepper.

Heat heavy large nonstick skillet over high heat.

Add pork and sear until brown all over, turning occasionally, about 10 minutes.

Transfer seared pork to prepared baking sheet.

Spread Dijon mustard mixture over all sides of pork. (Can be prepared up to 2 hours ahead. Refrigerate pork uncovered.)

Preheat oven to 425 F.

Roast pork until thermometer inserted into thickest part of meat registers 150 F, about 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes.

Prepare the sauce:
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in heavy small saucepan over medium heat.

Add 1 tablespoon flour and whisk 1 minute.

Gradually whisk in whipping cream, white wine and chicken broth.

Boil until mixture is thick enough to coat spoon, whisking frequently, about 1 minute.

Add crumbled Gorgonzola cheese and whisk until cheese is melted and smooth and sauce is reduced to desired consistency, about 5 minutes.

Slice pork and transfer to plates.

Ladle some sauce over pork.

Serve, passing additional sauce separately. Makes 6 servings.

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:

Roaming Wild Boar Cause Crash

Florence - July 17, 2008 - A pack of wild boar invaded Italy's main north-south motorway near Florence Wednesday night, causing a crash in which a woman was injured.

One of the animals, which had roamed out of nearby woodland, hit the woman's Renault Clio, causing it to collide with an articulated truck.

The woman is being treated in a Florence hospital for minor injuries.

Porca di quel cinghiale, what were the chances of that?!

Woman: "A pack of wild pigs invaded the motorway, cut me off, and forced me to crash into a truck."
Insurer: "Hmmm...I see. Well, did you at least get a plate number? And why were you driving in Naples?"

Fact: Italian drivers are hideous! Italians have their own driving style, and it's very different to that of Americans and British drivers. Caution isn't in their vocabulary, though they will argue that it is their great God-given skill that allows them to drive in this way and cause so few accidents. They aren't going to change to suit you so you'd better learn this tip next time one is speeding three inches behind your rear bumper:

Italians drivers are much more comfortable driving up close; try not to be panicked by this. On Italian roads, your responsibility is to those in front of you and to the side, and a rear-view mirror is for checking your makeup.

Our best wishes go out to the woman and hope a nice dish of "Pappardelle with Wild Boar Sauce" will help her get over the trauma.

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