Thursday, January 30

{Podcast from Italy} Attention Dice & Card Sharks, Gambling & Games Are Prohibited at Local Bars

This weeks podcast is uber-focused on our tiny village of Piobbico - Jason becomes a local weatherman and we breakdown/review the four bars found in Piobbico. Plus we issue a warning on prohibited card and dice games in town (photo above). Ashley retells the story of rolling our car down the hill & being trapped inside & upside down! We also discuss our thoughts on Coca Cola & McDonald's infiltrating Italy. Finally, it never felt so good to be #2! We are incredibly proud to be #2 of 912 B&B's/Inn's in Le Marche, Italy on TripAdvisor and now we're on iTune's What's Hot List (all of this subject to change at a moments notice!)

Song of the week "Mama voglio anch'io la fidanzata" by Natalino Otto
Thanks for listening!!

Stream on Stitcher Radio or download/subscribe via iTunes: Podcast from Italy #67 - Local Weather Reporting and The Bars of Piobbico

Monday, January 27

Recipe: Braised Rabbit Hunter's Style "alla Cacciatore"

 
In Italian, 'alla cacciatore' just means 'of the hunter', and since not all hunters are the same, neither are the 'alla cacciatore' recipes! Most Americans associate ‘cacciatore' as a dish with a tomato base - well, not this version! Braising the rabbit in vinegar creates one of the most mouth-watering, fall-off-the-bone dishes you'll try!

Rabbit (or coniglio) can be found in butchers & markets throughout Italy. It's savory, inexpensive and perfect for cooking alla cacciatora!  Rabbit is an incredibly lean white meat you must be careful not to dry it out since there is so little fat. In this recipe we braise it in diluted vinegar (acid) which breaks down the meat - leaving it tender, juicy and oh sooo succulent!  
 
I remember hearing that if you only had rabbit to eat to survive, you would probably die because there is not enough fat which is why I've always been surprised there hasn't been a fade-bunny diet (just like paleo or south beach, etc)!
 
 
 I'm not sure why rabbit gets such a bad rap (since recipes have been around for centuries) -maybe too many people associate it with "Bugs Bunny" or the "Easter Rabbit" or had one as a pet... I know many of you have strong feelings on eating a fluffy white rabbit - but isn't it the same as eating a fluffy white lamb or pig or any other meat for that matter? For the record I had a pet bunny as a kid named "Thunder" & have no qualms eating rabbit for dinner, in fact I love it!
 
Coniglio or rabbit is on many many Italian menus all across the country - from roasted, stewed, in sauces & even in the style of porchetta.  Give it a try, it's absolutely delicious especially with a side of roasted potatoes with rosemary!! 
 
Want to learn more about cooking rabbit or see this dish made LIVE before your eyes?! (Sounds soo dramatic I know!) Sign up for our next LIVE from ITALY Online Cooking Class on February 16, 2014.  Jason teaches not only how to make this dish along with roasted rosemary potatoes but a lesson on braising and knife care 101! (Register via email: info@latavolamarche.com)

Braised Rabbit (or Chicken) in the Style of the Hunter
Coniglio alla Cacciatore

Note: Chicken can be easily substituted)

Serves 4

1 rabbit or chicken cut in pieces (chicken will take longer to cook)
4-5 cloves of garlic whole, peeled
2-4  anchovy fillets
spoonful of capers
small handful of sage
olive oil
white wine vinegar
water
salt/ pepper
pinch of chopped parsley


If using rabbit soak in cold water for a couple of hours to extract any blood. Change the water once during this process.

Clean and pat dry rabbit/chicken and then season with salt and pepper.  In a heavy bottom pan over medium high heat sear rabbit/chicken in a few glugs of olive oil.   About halfway through the searing process once you have turned all the meat over, add in your sage and garlic.   

In a glass combine 1/2 cup white wine vinegar with 1/2 cup water.  Once the meat is seared, turn down the heat and add vinegar mixture to the pan.  Cover the pan with a parchment paper lid (allowing some of the liquid to cook out) and braise slowly, 30 to 50 minutes depending on the size of rabbit/chicken pieces.  Give everything a turn every 10 minutes or so.  Be sure to control pan heat and continue to add vinegar and water in a 1:1 ratio as needed to keep the pan from going dry.  

Once meat is tender transfer to a warm serving plate.  Remove garlic cloves from the pan  and discard (or just mush them into the pan sauce if you like.) Chop anchovy and dissolve into the pan and finally in go the capers and parsley. Check Seasoning and pour over warm meat with a drizzle of good olive oil.  Serve.

(Pairs perfectly with roasted potatoes)

photo: Rachel Eats

Saturday, January 25

{Podcast from Italy} #66 - Italian Delicacies Foreigners Find Hard to Stomach and Your Questions Answered!

Coppa di testa made our list of Italian delicacies that foreigners think are strange! photo courtesy of Gola.it

This week's podcast is jam packed!! We chat about our upcoming online LIVE cooking classes and give an update on our salami & sausage making (plus I'm posting a video on vimeo & youtube "The Meat Machine") Then the conversation starts to really wander from an Oscar Nominated Italian film to  celebrating the 70th Anniversary of the Americans Bombing Urbania (accidentally) during WWII! We strongly urge listeners not to buy plane tickets on Alitalia and just when you think he's gone for good...Berlusconi's back!  We answer your burning questions (keep them coming by the way) and read through The Local's list of Top 10 Italian delicacies foreigners can't stomach - adding a few of our own to the list as well! International shout-outs and the song of the week....
 
Thanks for listening!!
Stream on StitcherRadio or download from iTunes "Podcast from Italy" 

If you download or subscribe on iTunes, PLEASE comment and/or rate the show!!

Tuesday, January 21

Sunday, January 26 - LIVE from ITALY | Online Cooking Class: Comfort Food


LIVE from ITALY: Online Cooking Class Sunday, January 26, 2014
This week La Tavola Marche’s LIVE Online Cooking Class is all about local comfort food. A creamy pasta sauce with sausages and carrots along side baked vegetables with bread crumbs will become instant classics. We will end the class with a very local specialty originating with the fishermen of Fano - la morreta, a caffè (espresso) made with liquor, sugar and lemon rind.

Our classes focus not only the recipes at hand but the technique and theories behind each dish.  It’s more than just watching an episode of a cooking show on television because this is not only LIVE but interactive! Students/viewers will have the chance to ask questions along the way since all the cooking is done together LIVE! Either join in the fun and cook along with us (invite a few friends over and cook together!) or sit back and watch with a glass of wine.
 
Menu


LIVE from ITALY: Online Cooking Class on
Sunday, 26 January 2014
Early Broadcast: 1pm EST / 10am PST
Late Broadcast: 4pm EST / 1pm PST
(The class will last about an hour in duration.)
Cost: $5/class
To register, email: info@latavolamarche.com
Please send an email and include your preferred time slot (Early or Late). Once payment is received (via PayPal) we will send you the recipes, ingredients & equipment list plus the all important pre-class prep list!
For more details click here!
Upcoming Class dates & Menus: http://livefromitalyonline.tumblr.com/
Hope you join us in the kitchen on Sunday!

Sunday, January 19

"La Moretta" - Caffè with Liquor + Twist of Lemon



Moretta Fanese or better known in these parts as "la moretta" is a local specialty of caffè spiked with liquor (a mix of anise, rum and brandy), sweetened with sugar and the signature twist of lemon! Moretta Fanese was born in the seaside village of Fano. Sailors and fishermen from the Marche port may have created the drink, to keep warm and leave for the Sea invigorated!

It is strong and sweet, and usually drunk after meals as a digestive.  With a belly full of grilled fish, 'una moretta' is just what the doctor ordered! (Literally as well - because Dr. Gaggi LOVES a good moretta Fanese!





La Moretta, Moretta Fanese
(Recipes vary from house to house)

fresh brewed strong coffee - preferably caffè (espresso)
twist of lemon (lemon rind)
spoonful of sugar (optional)
equal parts: rum, anise (Varnelli or Sambucca) and brandy

If you have a steamer: Heat rum, anise and brandy slowly over low heat. Then add the sugar and lemon rind, mix until it's dissolved.

(OR Make a 'poor man's double boiler. Mix the liquor together into a heat safe glass/bottle. Place in double boiler and warm over low heat.  Place the lemon zest and sugar in a glass and then pour warm booze over top.)

Pour into a small glass or espresso cup (make sure the lemon rind is in the cup too). Then gently pour the fresh espresso into the glass. Locals like to keep the layers (liquor, coffee, coffee froth) intact - so don't mix it up - just drink.



Thursday, January 16

{Podcast from Italy} Field Trip & What’s up with Facebook?!

Vittorio, il maestro.
During a two part podcast, we fire up the mics  while driving to Fano for our first round of sausage & salami making with Dr. Gaggi & Vittorio. Along the way Jason gives his Unofficial - official tips to driving in Italy! In part two, we recant our day with the doctor including a visit to a small scale commercial slaughter house & as usual come away with some great stories to share! Conversation turns to complaining about facebook while we promote our newest short video: I love Festa della Befana. Jason explains why our new LIVE from ITALY Online Cooking Classes are more about technique and theory than just the recipe at hand. The song of the week: L'Appuntamento by Ornella Vanoni
And you can now follow us on instagram @ashleybartner

Thanks for listening & we hope you can join us in the kitchen this Sunday!

Saturday, January 11

LIVE from ITALY: Online Cooking Class 19 January, Featuring FISH!


La Tavola Marche's next LIVE from ITALY: Online Cooking Class is Sunday, January 19th - direct from our kitchen in Le Marche!

The class will focus on not only the recipes at hand but the technique and theories behind each dish.  It's more than just watching an episode of a cooking show on television because this is not only live but interactive! Students/viewers will have the chance to ask questions along the way since all the cooking is done LIVE! Either join in the fun and cook along with us or sit back and watch with a glass of wine.  This week's menu will include Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Onion & Oregano and Whole Fish in Salt Crust!  

Fish can sometimes be intimidating to clean and cook, it's not the first thing people tend to make at home. Many of our guests/cooking students have said, "Sure when I go out to dinner, I ALWAYS order fresh fish but have never have tried to make it at home!" Well, this class is for you!

In case you are wondering what our cooking classes look like - here's a glimpse!


LIVE from ITALY: Online Cooking Class on Sunday, 19 January 2014
Early Broadcast: 1pm EST / 10am PST
Late Broadcast: 4pm EST / 1pm PST
(The class will last about an hour in duration.)
Cost: $5

To register, email: info@latavolamarche.com
Please send an email and include your preferred time slot (Early or Late). Once payment is received (via PayPal) we will send you the recipes, ingredients & equipment list plus the all important pre-class prep list! 

Hope you join us in the kitchen on Sunday!

*******

MENU

Roasted Butternut Squash with Red Onion, Oregano and Mint: Recipe Click Here!


Fish in Salt Crust: Recipe Click Here!
For this dish you can use any round, whole fish (trout, bronzino, orata, striped bass) between 1-2lbs (.5 - 1 kilo). Stay away from a flat fish such as sole.



Thursday, January 9

Podcast from Italy & 30 Second Video - Festa della Befana in Le Marche


This week's Podcast from Italy we recap of the Festa della Befana festivities in Urbania! Jason and I shot video and did a few 'man on the street' interviews with locals and talk about traditional foods served at the festival each year.  Above is the 30 second teaser/trailer for the short film we're working on! Time to start the in-house charcuterie but it's a little hard when there are no pigs ready to be butchered! Plus we announce the next LIVE from Italy Online Cooking Class & menu!
The song of the week is by Italy's most famous rock-export: Zucchero! 
Thanks for listening - Jason & Ashley!!



Monday, January 6

Spring Cooking Holiday: Wild Edibles & Bottling Wine 24 - 28 April 2014

 
Cooking with Spring's Wild Edibles & Bottling Wine   
24 - 28 April 2014 (4 Nights) = 500 Euro/person

Fields of wild radicchio ready to be sauteed, young nettle perfect for tongue tingling ravioli, rich & creamy artichoke risotto - the flavors of Spring in Le Marche, Italy. In our farm to fork cooking classes we will collect wild edibles for both a pasta class and a five course Italian dinner party! Learn to make pasta (both cut & stuffed) with two seasonal sauces as well a complete menu of antipasti, primo (first course), secondo (main course), contorno (side dish) and dolce (dessert).  Plus this is the time of year that we refill our cantina with local wines and we need your help bottling, corking & labeling the hundreds of liters of red, white & rosè!  

Includes: 4 nights, guided wild edible walk, 2 half day cooking class with a custom hand-made apron, wine bottling, two meals with wine, five course dinner and breakfast daily, price based on double occupancy.

La Tavola Marche (farm, inn and cooking school)
www.latavolamarche.com
info@latavolamarche.com

 Spring in Italy, Wild Edibles Cooking Class:



 Bottling Wine with Guests:




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