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Below are some recipes that I love making! 

BBQ Pulled Pork - Slow Cooker Style

1 package of pork shoulder
1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce
Light Olive Oil
Crock Pot/Slow Cooker

Open the pork and rinse it under cold water. Pat dry with paper towels and let sit. In the crock pot, add shallots and a drop of olive oil. Place the pork into the pot and cover with BBQ sauce. Roll around in the sauce/shallots until well covered. Cover and cook on low for at least 8 hours (I start it when I leave for work and when I come home about 9 hours later, it is still fine). After the 8 or so hours, take 2 forks and shred the meat. Mix around so that the sauce covers all of the meat. Let sit on low/warm until ready to serve. Serve alone or on sandwich buns. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container.
Bocconcini di Pollo

Chicken Breasts (preferably skinless and boneless)
Light Olive Oil
Parmesan Cheese (grated)
Lemon (sliced)

Take the chicken breasts and rinse them under cold water. Pat completely dry. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Leave on cutting board with slices of lemon on top. In the meantime, prepare one bowl with flour, one with 2 eggs (beaten with a fork), a third with breadcrumbs and parmesan (maybe a 2:1 ratio? I eyeball it), and a fourth bowl to place the chicken in after. Remove the lemon from the chicken and discard. Take the chicken and cover it with flour (individually) making sure that it is all covered. Dunk the chicken in the egg mixture until covered. Finally, cover the chicken with the breadcrumb mixture (your fingers will get quite gooey). Place the chicken in the fourth bowl. Repeat process until all of the chicken is covered in the breadcrumb mixture and in the bowl. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge for a few hours (this is optional, but I have found that the chicken is much better after having sat in the fridge for a little bit). In a large pan with high sides, pour approximately a finger-thick amount of oil and turn on medium heat. When the oil is heated, place the chicken in the pan. Allow the chicken to cook thoroughly (about 4 minutes per side) then flip. The chicken should brown slightly. Once cooked, place on a tray/pan/bowl lined with paper towels to catch the oil. Cover with additional paper towels until ready to serve. Serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce!
Chicken and Potatoes

Whole chicken legs, rinsed and patted dry
Yukon Gold Potatoes, washed, peeled, and cubed
Light Olive Oil
Herb Mixture (sage, rosemary, salt)

Line a 13"x9" pan with aluminum foil (optional, but will be easier to clean after). Pour a little olive oil onto the pan making sure that the bottom is evenly coated. In a medium bowl, combine the potatoes with a little olive oil and some of the herb mixture, making sure to cover each potato. Pour the potatoes evenly into the pan. With the chicken, place one on either end of the pan in the middle of the potatoes. Top with a little olive oil and herb mixture and ensure that there is no dry spot on the chicken. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook at 375 degrees for a couple of hours. The chicken is done when the skin is a golden brown.
Corn Chowder (from here)

4 pieces thick-sliced bacon, chopped (I chopped the bacon after I cooked it)
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
Salt and pepper
1 small jalapeno (I did not add this)
3 cloves garlic (I didn't add this)
1/4 cup Flour
4 cups chicken stock
2 large red potatoes, diced (I used three)
1 cup heavy cream
16 ounces frozen corn
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 bay leaf (I didn't add this)

Saute bacon until crisp and then transfer to plate with paper towels, reserving the grease. Add the onions and red pepper to pan and saute until tender (I then transferred to a soup pot because my sauce pan was not going to be able to hold everything). Add salt and pepper to taste. [This is where you would add the jalapeno and garlic]. Stir in the flour until combined (this did not work for me). Add chicken stock and potatoes and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes until potatoes are soft (I also added some bacon). Add cream, cayenne, corn, and bay leaf and let cook/simmer for another 15 minutes. Serve hot and top with chopped bacon. 
Recipe from Food Network

Ground beef (can also use ground pork)/Maiale
Breadcrumbs/pane grattugiato
1 Egg/un uovo
Herb Mixture/Trito d'erbe

Mix everything together in a large bowl. Form little balls and then roll them in flour. Cook in a skillet with olive oil and shallots. Once lightly browned on all sides, add white wine. Let simmer on low until served (or turn off and then re-heat just before serving). Serve warm. 

Carrots - chopped or diced
Celery - chopped or diced
Tomato Sauce (I like Pomi', you can use fresh but it won't last as long)
Tomato Paste
Potatoes - cut into cubes
**You can add any and all vegetables you want
Chicken Broth

Place the chopped carrots and celery in a large pot with a little light olive oil. Let cook for a few minutes. Add the remaining ingredients (except for the spinach). Add chicken broth and water to fully cover the vegetables. Add the spinach and a pinch of salt last. Let cook at medium temperature as long as needed (can take a few hours if cooked at a lower temperature). Once the vegetables have been cooked (the carrots and celery are not hard), pasta can be added. Make sure that there is still water covering the vegetables and it is boiling before putting the pasta in. Allow the pasta to cook and then serve hot with parmesan cheese and olive oil. This can be made ahead of time and frozen. It will also last in the fridge for a week or two. Also, when time to reheat, add more water!
Pork Medallions

Pork Medallions
Extra Light Olive Oil

Flour the pork medallions while heating oil in a large saucepan. When the oil is hot, add the pork. Cook for a few minutes on each side. Serve hot, adding salt and pepper to taste!
Pork Meatballs

Ground Pork
Olive Oil
White wine (dry)

Very similar to the pork medallions, but this time, making meatballs. In a large pan (needs to have lid), heat olive oil and diced shallots. Roll the pork into the desired meatball size and then roll in flour. Add the rosemary to the pan and sear the meatballs in the pan on each side until almost golden. Pour in wine enough wine to come up halfway on the meatballs. Cover and let simmer. Stir meatballs occasionally. Once the majority of the wine has been absorbed, serve. The wine should make a nice little sauce.
Quinoa with Green Beans and Mushrooms

Green beans
Sliced mushrooms
Heavy Cream

This recipe was kind of an accident in that I just tried mixing things and it turned out delicious. Cook the quinoa according to the package instructions (chicken broth gives it a little more flavor than water). Boil the green beans in water with salt and strain once cooked. Once strained, mix with a little olive oil salt and set aside. In a small pan, heat up some olive oil and shallots (if desired). Add the mushrooms and cook until done. Combine quinoa, green beans, and mushrooms. Add heavy cream and parmesan and stir. Serve warm.

2 1/2 pounds tomatoes, peeled and chopped (I don't peel tomatoes and it turned out fine)
8 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced (realized too late that I didn't have any, still turned out fine)
1 cup chopped parsley
20 fresh basil leaves torn in half
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 eggplant cut into cubes
2 1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large onion thinly sliced
3 assorted bell peppers, cored, seeded, and cut into pieces
4 medium zucchini, cut into pieces
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Combine tomatoes, garlic, parsley, basil, and 1/3 cup oil in a large pot (you will add everything to this pot, so make sure it's large, I used a large saucepan). Bring to a simmer and simmer covered until sauce is slightly thickened (I left mine on the whole time, seemed to be fine). While sauce is simmering, toss eggplant with 1/2 teaspoon salt and let stand in sink (I didn't understand why I had to do this, but oh well).  Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet. Add onions and some salt and cook until softened (10-12 minutes). With a slotted spoon, transfer onions to a large bowl. Repeat same process with bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant (I did this, but didn't add as much oil each time or as much salt). In the large bowl, mix the vegetables together and then add vegetables to pot with tomatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir and then let cook for an hour or until vegetables are very tender (I only cooked mine for an additional half hour or so, the veggies were already pretty tender). Serve over rice. 

Arborio Rice
Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Extra Light Olive Oil
Chicken Broth
White Wine
Cream (optional)
Parmesan Cheese

In a large sauce pan, heat up the olive oil and shallots. When the shallots begin to brown, add the risotto. Mix well and let cook for a few minutes. Add white wine and let the rice absorb the liquid. Once absorbed, add one cup (roughly one cup of broth per one cup of dry rice) of warm chicken broth, stir and let the rice absorb. Continue to add chicken broth and/or water until rice is cooked to desired texture. Continue to stir often so that the rice does not stick to the pot. Once the rice is cooked, add cream and parmesan and serve hot. You can add dried porcini mushrooms to the risotto if you'd like. Soak the mushrooms in water for a few hours. Chop into small pieces and add them when you add the shallots. Continue to cook as regular risotto!

13" x 9" Glass Pan
One large piece of salmon
Extra Light Olive Oil
Rosemary/Sage/Salt Mixture (all mixed together in the food processor)
One Lemon

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Drizzle some olive oil into the glass pan and spread around with your hand. Grab the salmon and rub some of the oil from the pan on the salmon. Add salt and the herb mixture and rub on the salmon with your hand. Squeeze the juice of one lemon on the salmon. Cook for 20 minutes (be careful not to overcook!) and serve warm. Leftovers can be used in a pasta sauce with my favorite ingredient, cream!
Saltimbocca alla Romana

Veal cutlets - thinly sliced
Provolone (optional)
Olive Oil
Dry White Wine

Lightly coat the veal with flour. Layer cheese, prosciutto, and sage onto the veal. Wrap the veal and secure with a toothpick. In a pan, heat up the olive oil and shallots. When the oil is hot, place in the veal. Cook a few minutes or until each side is browned. You will need to move the toothpicks to ensure that all sides are cooked. Once all sides are browned, add in white wine to about the middle of
one of the pieces of veal. Let simmer on low, covered, until reduced. Serve hot. 
Pasta Crudaiola

1 pack of pasta (orrecchiete work the best)
Fresh basil - washed
Provolone or scamorza (this is harder to find but is the actual cheese to use)
Tomatoes - washed
Olive Oil

Cook the pasta. While the pasta is cooking, chop the basil and cheese in the food processor with some olive oil until the cheese is in small chunks (you don't want it super fine). Cut the tomatoes into cubes that are bite-size. Mix together in a large pasta bowl the basil, cheese, tomatoes, and some olive oil. Strain the pasta and mix into the sauce. Serve hot. This pasta is also good the next day after it's been in the fridge.
Pasta Democratica

Heavy cream/panna
Parmesan cheese/parmigiano
Pasta (mezze maniche)

Cook the sausage in a pan and chop it as it cooks (this can be made ahead of time). You can also cook it whole and then put it in the food processor to chop. Add cream and parmesan to the pan and let simmer until pasta is cooked. Drain pasta and stir into sauce while pan is still simmering. Serve hot.
Homemade Meat Sauce

Ground meat (beef, pork, etc.)
Can of chopped tomatoes
Tomato Paste
Red Wine
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
**You can add any other ingredients you wish, this is a basic sauce that I make**

In a large saucepan, heat up the olive oil and the shallots. then add the ground meat. When the meat is almost done cooking, (still just a little pink), add red wine to cover. Let simmer for a few minutes then add the salt, pepper, carrots, celery, and all the tomatoes (you can make as much or as little as you want) adding just a little tomato paste. Mix well, cover, and let simmer for a few hours stirring every half hour or so. Serve as a pasta sauce with a touch of cream (optional) and parmesan. Once the sauce has been made, it can be stored either in the refrigerator or in the freezer in an air-tight glass jar.

Fresh Basil
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Pine Nuts (Optional)
Parmesan and/or Pecorino
Glass air-tight jar to store pesto in

Start with some fresh basil and wash it with cold water. Pat to dry. In a food processor, start with a little olive oil and add the basil and one small clove of garlic. You can add some pinte nuts if you'd like. Traditional pesto is made with pecorino so that is another ingredient that you can add. I make it with a little bit of pecorino and a little bit of parmesan. Process the basil until it's finely ground adding olive oil slowly. Pour the pesto into a glass jar and add more pine nutes (again, optional), and a clove or two of garlic. Mix together and top with a layer of olive oil. Store in the refrigerator and serve as a pasta sauce adding parmesan cheese and cream (optional). Always topping the remaining pesto with a layer of olive oil. Pesto is also wonderful on/with many other dishes!
Penne alla Vodka
(adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cookbook)

Tomato paste
1/4 cup Vodka
Olive Oil

Fill a large pot with water and add a tablespoon of salt. Bring to boil. Add pasta when water boils and cook al dente. While the pasta is cooking, quarter the tomatoes and remove the seeds. In a large saucepan, heat up a little bit of olive oil and the garlic. When the garlic is turning brown, add the tomatoes, and the vodka. Add in the tomato paste and stir. Reduce to low heat and let simmer until ready to serve. Strain the pasta and pour into saucepan. Add a little bit of cream to blend everything together. Serve hot. 

Fruit that works best: Strawberries, apples, pears, peaches, bananas (if eaten immediately), etc.
Lemon and/or Orange

Slice fruit to desired sizes. If using bananas, it is best to eat the macedonia immediately so that the bananas do not turn into mush. Squeeze the juice of one or two lemons or oranges, or orange juice, then add a tablespoon or two of sugar. Mix everything together. Serve cold with ice cream and/or a cookie as garnish. This will last for a while in the fridge, it can also be blended into a smoothie.
S’mores Cookies

Yield: 30 cookies

½ cup rolled oats
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
¾ cup light-brown sugar
1 large egg
8 ounces chocolate cut into squares **I used the Hershey’s snack size chocolate bars and put one piece per cookie**
15 large marshmallows, halved

Preheat oven to 350˚
In a food processor, pulse oats until finely ground
Add flours, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt; pulse to combine
In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy with mixer
Beat in egg, scraping down sides of the bowl
With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture until just combined
Drop dough by tablespoons onto two baking sheets
Top each with a chocolate square
Bake until just lightly golden 11-13 minutes
Remove sheets from oven and heat broiler
Top each cookie with a marshmallow (sticky side down)
One sheet at a time, broil until marshmallows are lightly browned (this varied with each sheet, but about 2 minutes
Keep a CLOSE eye on the marshmallows and remove when lightly browned (they burn really quickly)
Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool
Spritz Italiano

Soda Water
Orange Slice

Combine 3 parts Aperol with 2 parts Prosecco and 1 part soda water (optional). Serve over ice and garnish with orange slice.


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