11/23/10 Prosciutto and Portobello Mushroom Lasagna

"Si pigliano piu mosche in una gocciola di miele che in un barile d'aceto." (You can catch more flies with honey than a barrel of vinegar.) Welcome to another recipe edition from Angela's Organic Oregano Farm!

This week's Italian recipes:
  -Shrimp Stuffed Mushrooms
  -Prosciutto and Portobello Mushroom Lasagna
  -Ricotta and Lemon Cookies

"Buon giorno" folks! A warm and fuzzy hug from all of us on the farm. Yes, it's pretty cold here too in Sicily! Enjoy this week's recipes.

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Yours Truly,              
Angela Reina       

 Recipe: Shrimp Stuffed Mushrooms

Shrimp Stuffed Mushrooms
Funghi Ripieni di Gamberetti


12 large mushrooms
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
2 tbs fresh parsley, chopped
2 tbs fresh oregano, chopped
1 cup shrimp meat, cleaned, cooked and chopped
1/4 cup Romano cheese
Salt and pepper to taste


Coat a baking dish with cooking spray.

Preheat oven to 375F.

Wash the mushrooms and remove the stems.

Place into the prepared baking dish.

In a small saucepan, melt 1/4 cup butter.

Stir in garlic and shallots and cook for 2-3 minutes, until softened.

Remove from heat and combine butter mixture with breadcrumbs, herbs, shrimp, and Romano cheese.

Spoon mixture into the mushroom caps.

Place in oven for 8-10 minutes. Yields 12.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Prosciutto and Portobello Mushroom Lasagna

Prosciutto and Portobello Mushroom Lasagna
Prosciutto e Funghi Portobello Lasagna


For the Filling:
3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 and 1/2 pounds (about 10) Portobello mushrooms, stems trimmed
1 cup chopped prosciutto (about 6 ounces)
2/3 cup chopped shallots (about 2 large)
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

For the Sauce:
4 cups whole milk
14-ounce chicken broth
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2/3 cup all purpose flour
2 cups (about 8 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated Parmigiano cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the Lasagna:
1 pound lasagna pasta
1/2 cup grated Swiss cheese
2 tablespoons butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces


Prepare the Filling:
Preheat oven to 400F.

Brush rimmed baking sheet with 1 tablespoon olive oil.

Toss mushrooms with 2 tablespoons olive oil in large bowl to coat.

Arrange mushrooms, gill side up, in single layer on prepared baking sheet.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Roast until tender, about 45 minutes.


Cut mushrooms into 1/3-inch thick slices.

Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil in medium nonstick skillet over medium heat.

Add prosciutto; saute until browned, about 3 minutes.

Add shallots, rosemary, and thyme.

Cook until shallots are tender, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. (Mushrooms and prosciutto-shallot mixture can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and chill).

Prepare the Sauce:
Bring milk, broth, and bay leaf to simmer in heavy large saucepan over medium heat.

Remove from heat.

Let stand 10 minutes; discard bay leaf.

Melt butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat.

Whisk in flour; stir 2 minutes.

Whisk in hot milk mixture; bring to boil, whisking frequently.

Reduce heat to low; simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

Remove from heat; stir in Swiss cheese, Parmigiano cheese, and nutmeg.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Prepare the Lasagna:
Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente' (noodles will finish cooking in oven).

Drain and rinse with cold water.

Drain again; pat dry.

Butter 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish.

Spread 1 cup sauce over bottom of prepared dish.

Arrange 1/3 of noodles over sauce, overlapping to fit.

Spread about 1 and 2/3 cups sauce over noodles.

Arrange 1/2 of mushrooms over sauce.

Scatter 1/2 of prosciutto mixture over mushrooms.

Arrange 1/2 of remaining pasta over mushrooms, overlapping to fit.

Spread 1 and 2/3 cups sauce over noodles.

Arrange remaining mushrooms over sauce, sprinkle with remaining prosciutto, and top with remaining noodles.

Spread remaining sauce over noodles, sprinkle Parmigiano cheese over, and dot with butter. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 350F.

Bake lasagna until top is golden brown and sauce is bubbling, about 45 minutes (about 1 hour if refrigerated).

Let stand 20 to 30 minutes before serving. Makes 8 servings.

That's it!

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 Recipe: Ricotta and Lemon Cookies

Ricotta and Lemon Cookies
Biscotti al Limone e Ricotta


2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup granulated sugar
Zest of 1 large lemon
Zest of 1 large orange
1 stick (114 grams) unsalted butter, softened
1 and 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup whole-milk ricotta, put through a sieve, at room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream, at room temperature
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1/3 cup finely chopped candied lemon and orange peel


Center an oven rack and preheat the oven to 350F.

Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat.

Put the lined baking sheet into another sheet to protect the bottoms of the cookies from over baking.

In a bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, salt, and baking soda to combine.

Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the sugar and citrus zest.

Rub with your fingertips to release the orange-lemon oil.

Set aside for a moment.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter until fluffy.

Gradually beat in the sugar and continue mixing until light and well combined.

Beat in the vanilla extract.

Beat in the ricotta and sour cream, mix well.

Add the egg, then the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed just until the dough forms; finish mixing with a wooden spoon.

Stir in the candied peel.

Using a tablespoon, drop small mounds (a scant tablespoon each) onto the prepared baking sheet spacing them 2 inches apart.

Bake the cookies, in batches, until they are very pale golden, for about 18 minutes.

Cool the cookies on the sheet on a cooling rack for 10 minutes, then transfer them to the rack to cool completely. Makes about 60 cookies.

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:

Racist Leader Bossi Pretends To Make Peace With Romans

Rome - October 6, 2010 - Northern League leader Umberto Bossi made peace with Rome Wednesday over a meal of Roman and northern specialities like coda alla vaccinara and polenta, washed down with Lambrusco and Frascati wines.

"I've made peace with Rome," Bossi said after the meal with Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno, a special event staged in front of the parliament building to patch things up after the outspoken federalist leader recycled an old joke about the Roman S.P.Q.R. label standing for "Romans Are Pigs".

"This is the moment to swap habits," Alemanno said. "After all the polemics, it's the moment of peace"."

Also present, along with League bigwigs, was Lazio Governor Renata Polverini who helped Bossi spoon up his rigatoni. But even in peace-making mode Bossi couldn't resist another dig at the planned Rome Formula One Grand Prix, the subject which prompted his original quip last week.

"Where the f**k are you going to race a GP in Rome," he told reporters.

Bossi got in Romans' bad books last week when, asked about the Rome GP and its potential rivalry with the Italian GP at Monza, said: "They can race their chariots in Rome...as we all know, S.P.Q.R. stands for 'They're Pigs, These Romans'".

The label, seen from ancient times all over the capital, is the Latin acronym for Senatus PopulusQue Romanus (The Senate and the Roman People).

Bossi took advantage of Wednesday's meal to reiterate his view that a general election was on the horizon in the spring.

Ahhh, the "minchione"...hard at work creating the perfect Italian society.

The Northern League party’s xenophobia is in essence a cheap by-product parmigiana dish of this idiot's efforts to create a shared identity among the Northerners he looks to unite. How? One way he does this is by presenting the common enemies:

First, it was Italians from the South (as in yours truly): If you buy a globe from the North of Italy, you'll find the African island (Sicily) erased from it along with the so-called "useless" heel (Puglia) and annoying boot tip (Reggio Calabria).

Kids from North Italy come home from school and say, "We heard in school today that there are regions of Italy called Sicily, Puglia and Reggio Calabria."
And the shocked parents respond, "Eh? What are my kids learning in school today? I don't see them on the globe...and you'll never find them on my mine."

Then came the immigrants, Muslims in particular: "The Coast Guard and Finance Police should defend our coasts and use cannons. One way or another, these immigrants will be driven back." (Bossi)

"Immigrants have some rights...but only in their own countries." (Bossi)

Soon, it will be with the Eskimos: "Cazzarola, that's just what we need; Eskimos hunting for whale blubber in the Venice lagoons! Just point them in the direction of the high Alps where they can build igloos, rub their noses to keep warm, and keep quiet!"

'Fanculo everyone! Viva la Padania!

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