2LC: Porcini mushrooms and pumpkin macaroni

So happy to take part to 2 Little Chefettes challenge this month!! 😀

For this fabulous dish of macaroni, you will need (2 serves):

170 g macaroni

30-40 g dried porcini mushrooms

350 g pumpkin

1 garlic clove

half onion

1 teaspoon of home-made meat stock cube (click here for the recipe)

half glass of white wine

100 g single cream

1 sachet of saffron

1 piece of hot pepper

a bit of parsley

extra virgin olive oil and salt

Make the mushrooms to soften up in a cup of hot water. Wash, peel and cut the pumpkin in little pieces. In a little pan brown the chopped onion, the garlic clove (unpeeled but crushed a bit), the piece of hot pepper and the stock cube. Add the pumpkin, pour the wine, add salt and let cook. Crush the pumpkin with a fork, to make the sauce homogeneous, and if it needs more water for cooking, add the mushrooms water. When the pumpkin is cooked, add the mushrooms, roughly chopped, cook some minutes more and put out the heath. Then add the cream and the saffron, and throw away the garlic clove.

In the meantime, cook the macaroni.

Mix the sauce with the macaroni and serve with some parsley leaves and grated parmesan.

As we say in Italy… buon appetito!


Spaghetti alla carbonara


The traditional italian recipe of carbonara pasta from Italy.. because travelling abroad I’ve seen a lot of confusion about it 🙂

For 3 people, you will need:

300 g of spaghetti

2 eggs

100-150 g of chopped into cubes pancetta (sweet or smoked, it’s up to your taste)

ground pepper, ground nutmeg, salt

That’s all!

Put a big pot with salty water over the flame and let it boil to cook the spaghetti. Meanwhile, whisk 2 eggs in a bowl and add salt, pepper and nutmeg. In a little pan, cook the pancetta. Put the spaghetti into the pot, cook it “al dente”. When cooked , strain and, suddenly, put them in a pan with the eggs and the pancetta, strained from its fat. Mix over the flame, and when the eggs are cooked, move away. Serve immediately. Advice: test with grated parmesan, as we do almost everyday with our pasta 🙂


Sardines Pasta – Pasta con le sarde

VoilĂ  a famous Sicilian recipe!

These are the ingredients for 2 people:

– 150 g of spaghetti

– 150 gr of fresh sardines

– 40 g of fennel (to be clear, I mean Foeniculum vulgare)

– 1 sachet of saffron 

– a handful of pine nuts

– onion, garlic

– extra virgin olive oil, salt.

I start washing the fennel and boiling it in salty water for 5 minutes. It’s very important to keep the cooking water because I’ll cook the spaghetti into it! (I have to be careful here: I can easily forget it and throw away the water 😦 )

I chop the fennel, then I clean and wash the sardines (It’s a horrible job for me, so I usually try to find someone doing this for me, or I ask the fish monger for it). I brown the sardines in a frying pan with some oil, a little bit of chopped onion and 1 garlic clove. After 4 minutes, I join the fennel and some tablespoons of the cooking water, the saffron sachet, salt and, last of all, the pine nuts roughly chopped.

I cook the spaghetti in the cooking water of the fennel (and I add some more salt), I strain them and I mix them with the sauce.

Tasty, aromatic and healthy! What could be better? 😉

Home-made tagliatelle with asparagus and raw ham

Yesterday we had a guest for dinner, our friend Ilenia, so I decided to make a real dinner: hors d’oeuvre, main course, dessert. I cooked, Francesco stretched the tagliatelle pastry and the other Francesco, our  flat mate, did the washing up. A true teamwork!

Home-made tagliatelle are the best: they are good taste, with organic flour and fresh eggs and they contains a lot of love!

For them, I used 300 g of white flour, 3 eggs, a little bit of salt and 1/2 glass of water. I mixed all these ingredients and I kneaded the pastry. Then I let it rest for 1 hour. After that time, my boyfriend stretched it until 1 mm thick, and he cut it in bands of 1 cm large and 10 cm long.

Meanwhile, I cut the asparagus (I used 10 big, fresh and organic asparagus) : I trow away the bottoms and I laid aside the tops, I cut the high parts in little sticks and the remaining parts in normal bits. I cooked them in a frying pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1/4 of chopped onion.

I cooked the pasta for 3-4 minutes in a large pot with boiling water, salt and 2 tablespoons of oil (to avoid the pasta bands to stick together).

In the same time I cut the sliced raw ham in little bands.

I strained the pasta, I put it in a glass salad bowl ad I added the asparagus and the ham, and a little bit of extra virgin olive oil. I served with grated parmesan.


Pasta alle zucchine

Sunday in my family farm there was a whole fantastic greenhouse of young courgettes and beautiful courgettes flowers – so I picked 6 beautiful little courgettes with their flowers.

So today for lunch, I decided to cook pasta with courgettes.

In a frying pan, I put 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 1/4 of sliced onion and 1 fresh and little young plant of garlic, chopped. I added dried basil (I’ve seeded only yesterday my fresh basil) and the 6 chopped flowers and I cooked under a low flame. After 5 minutes, I added my sliced courgettes. I cooked for 20 minutes, and  close to the end I added some little tomatoes, chopped, and the salt.

I used spaghetti, and I cooked them “al dente”. Then I put the spaghetti into the frying pan with the courgettes and I mixed. When in the  plate, we added parmesan.

The result was very good. I love it because you can taste the spring and the new and tender vegetables’ taste into it.