This is what an Italian Easter meal Looks like

colomba pasquale

If you’ve ever wondered what a typical Italian Easter meal looks like, you are in the right place. This article will guide you through the best bits of the Roman Culinary tradition.

A carefully chosen, well-mixed types of starters, mains and second main courses will be on the menu from early in the morning to fill you up until you really don’t need anything else (aside from dozing off). Might worth to note that each Region has its own peculiarities in terms of traditions, but we will find out what these traditions are in Rome, my hometown.

Easter in Rome: breakfast

Breakfast has been linked to Italian culinary traditions for centuries, however, the Easter breakfast might actually surprise you. The day will start with a meal consisting of unusual ingredients, on the table on Easter Sunday in Rome, in fact, you will not find either a brioche nor a cappuccino, but boiled eggs, offal, quiches, dove, salami, pizza pasqualina (a type of sweet and sour cheese bread) the ubiquitous chocolate, Easter pizza and  finally a nice frittata with either artichokes or spinach.

It may sound as a “challenging” meal to start the day with, however, this reflects ancient Christian tradition of celebrating the end of the pre-Easter fasting with all kinds of good things.

Easter in Rome: Lunch

For those who survived the breakfast, a round of starters, mains and second mains will be there on the table for the second round of glorious tastiness. Pasta, quiche, asparagus and the irreplaceable lamb with roasted potatoes.

The Roasted Lamb belongs to the Lazio culinary tradition and is the typical dish of the Easter period.
As per tradition, this is cooked with rosemary, garlic and a glass of wine, however, lamb can be offered in three (and equally tasty) variants: agnello alla cacciatora, agnello alla romana (full browned in garlic, olive oil, chopped ham  and roasted potatoes), or lamb chops.

Note: Lamb should be eaten with your hands, you don’t want to spoil the taste!

After the meal, each one gets its own easter egg full of surprises.

 

Buona Pasqua!    from…

A Roman In London

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Recipe Ideas: Cake with Yoghurt and raisins

Today, I want to share with you the recipe of my favourite Italian childhood cake (In Italian Plumcake, although no plums are in this recipe). This is super easy to make and also very versatile, you can literally mix the dough in 15 minutes and the oven will do the rest! Good for breakfast or for an afternoon tea. This time I’ve added 0 fat Greek Yoghurt and Raisins but you can be more creative and add whatever you like the best.

Good for breakfast or for an afternoon tea. Delicious!

 

Cake with Greek Yoghurt and Raisins
Cake with Greek Yoghurt and Raisins. Photo by Roman In London

 

Ingredients

3 medium Eggs
 140 gr of Sugar
Greek yoghurt  250 gr
Vegetable Oil 100 ml
00 flour 180g
Potato starch 60 g
Zest of 1 Lemon
 a pinch of salt
16 gr of Baking powder

Recipe

  1. Firstly, weight all the ingredients at room temperature. Place the eggs in a large bowl along with the sugar and a pinch of salt; mix them all with an electric mixer at low-speed initially, then you can increase it. When the mix becomes light and fluffy use the non-electric whisk instead. Add the greek yoghurt a little at time, stirring it with the whisk.
  2. Grate the zest of one lemon and add it to the mixture. Mix all the ingredients, then gently pour the oil in while continuing to stir.
  3. In a bowl, sift the flour, potato starch and baking powder, then add the powder a spoon at a time to the mixture, stirring with a spatula from the top downwards until you get a smooth mixture.
  4. Grease a loaf pan of 23 x 10x 7,5 cm and gently pour the dough while levelling it with a spatula. Bake it in a preheated oven to 170 degrees for 55 minutes.
  5. Test if it’s done with a toothpick: if pulling it out remains clean, it means that is ready; alternatively you’ll need to keep cooking for a few more minutes. When the plumcake is well browned, let it cool completely.
  6. Your Italian yoghurt ‘plumcake’ is ready to be served!

Note

Store the cake out of the refrigerator under a bell jar for 3-4 days max. Once cooked, it can be frozen and stored for up to 30 days.

 A Roman In London

 

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Dinner at Rivea Restaurant at the Bulgari Hotel

rivea london

Rivea Restaurant was, admittedly, a pleasant surprise. ‘Hidden’ inside the lavish and glossy Bulgari Hotel, Alain Duchesse protege’ Alexandre Nicolas is now in charge of the kitchen.

The cuisine is both Italian and French “inspired by the many years Ducasse spent visiting the vibrant food markets in Italy and Provence”.

We were recommended the place and, being a group we were able to taste different things from the menu as we wanted to try many different things.

Rivea London
Puzzle of flavours. Photo by Roman in London

The first plate that grabbed our attention was the above combination of colourful pots of 8 condiments ‘prepared for your pleasure….’ Every little pot contained a different vegetable purées which we scooped out with bread sticks.

 

Rivea Restaurant
Starter: Marinated line-caught sea bream, citrus.Photo by Roman in London

The picture above was one of my favourite starters: Marinated line-caught sea bream with citrus. The combination of flavours was excellent.

The main course was Seared cod, shellfish, Cassis and white wine sauce, tasty and light at the same time. The Lemon cake was also great.

And finally, the service was what really impressed me. Angelo, the Italian head waiter, made us feel very welcomed and was kind and helpful throughout the whole evening with the many requests we’ve had, while flawlessly topping up the wine, bread and water.

Bulgari Hotel
Details of the Bulgari Hotel Hall. Photo by Roman in London

Not a cheap choice but overall more than worth it. Suitable for dinner with friends and as a romantic venue for a date.

 

Location: Bulgari Hotel, 171 Knightsbridge , London , SW7 1DW

(020 7151 1025, rivealondon.com). Daily, noon-2.30pm and 6.30-10.30pm. Lunch menu £35. A la carte, a meal for two with wine, about £170 including 12.5 per cent service.

French and Italian

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10 Best Pizzerie in London

  1. Bravi Ragazzi, Streatham

 

A combination of very moist toppings and light dough, that’s what makes Neapolitan Pizza legendary! Rustic and small place but very friendly and cosy. Recommended the trek south.

Location: 2A Sunnyhill Road Streatham London SW16 2UH

Contact: 2087694966 www.braviragazzi.co.uk 

2. Santa Maria, Chelsea

 

Beautiful San Rocco, our pizza with Burrata pugliese, repost from @cristinamehe

Una foto pubblicata da Santa Maria (@santamariapizza) in data:

This Neapolitan-style pizzeria has recently been under refurbishment, now featuring a new pizza oven hand-built with biscotto di Sorrento clay brics which is capable of withstanding the high temperatures typical of this type of pizza making.

Location:15 Saint Mary’s Road Ealing, London, W5 5RA

Contact: 02085791462, www.santamariapizzeria.com

3. Pizza Pilgrims

 

NEW SPECIAL! The “Mac-kale-ie Culkin”. Kale, smoked anchovies, chilli, garlic & mozz. KINDA healthy… VERY delicious!! 👊🏻🍕

Una foto pubblicata da pizzapilgrims (@pizzapilgrims) in data:

This is the story of two brothers returning from a trip to Italy with a Piaggio Van and the idea of making a business out of Neapolitan Pizza. Needless to say, they bloody succeeded it! I absolutely love it.

Location:11 Dean Street Soho, W1D 3RP

Contact: 02072878964, www.pizzapilgrims.co.uk 

4. Franco Manca

 

Rapid and friendly service at a decent price. What else? Ah! Neapolitan-style pizza, with a slow-rise sourdough crust.

5. Santore’, Farringdon

 

Just to keep a light stomach before the Christmas food marathon 👍🏻💪🏻 #pizza #foodie #london #exmouthmarket #farringdon #italianfood

Una foto pubblicata da Giulia (@giulia_romaninlondon) in data:

I define the atmosphere of this place truly Italian: it’s noisy and crowded and gives me that feel at home vibe. Amazing pizza and good service make this place a remarkable restaurant for pizza lovers.

Location Exmouth Market

6. Rosso Pomodoro

International chain of pizzerie, it’s also one of my favourite spot. It never disappoints me.

Location: 10 Jamestown Road Camden, London, NW1 7BY

7. Homeslice

 

Una foto pubblicata da Homeslice (@homesliceldn) in data:

Supersized thin light crust wood-fired pizza, served or by the whole or by the slice.

Location: 13 Neal’s Yard Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9DP

8. Princi, Soho

 

@princi_london @pizza looks pretty damn close to perfect. 📷: @massimousaiphotography #EEEEEATS #InfatuationLondon

Una foto pubblicata da Infatuation London (@infatuation_london) in data:

Classy atmosphere but always quite crowded and difficult to find a spot.

location: Princi
135 Wardour Street
W1F 0UT

9. Pizza East Portobello

 

Let it snow, Portobello💙❄️

Una foto pubblicata da Pizza East (@pizzaeast) in data:

Beautiful interior decor and from the Soho House Group this is the other branch of Pizza East which is based in Shoreditch instead.

Location: 310 Portobello Road
London
W10 5TA

 

10. Sartori, Covent Garden

 

Sartori, London – UK

Una foto pubblicata da Pizza Napoletana Nel Mondo (@pizza.napoletana) in data:

Amongst thousands of touristy place this restaurant truly stands up. Wood-fired oven, you can find both individual or metre long pizza. Fresh and quality toppings.

Location: 15-18 Great Newport Street WC2H 7JE
02078366308

 

 

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Home made roast Chicken Salad

Being sunday I thought that this would be an appropriate recipe to share, because who doesn’t love a roast on a sunday?

Whilst looking for some inspiration online I set a challenge to myself: to find a quick and easy recipe that it’ll use (possibly) as many ingredients as I already have in my fridge. It wasn’t as easy as I thought, but thanks to Jamie Oliver I found what I needed.

This salad is also healthy (which is a major bonus) and really really tasty. Please note: my version is slightly different from the original one.

Here is a list of what you are going to need:

 

For the Roast Chicken

Olive oil

1 Free Range chicken

salt

Pepper

fresh thyme

juice of a lemon

500 gr of cherry tomatoes

1 bulb of garlic

For the salad

200 gr of green beans

Extra virgin olive oil

parsley

6 spring onions

bread (I’ve used 2 slices of toasted bread)

So, first up pre-heat your oven and marinate your chicken with oil, salt and pepper. I’ve used leftover chicken strips instead, but the original recipe says that “it’s fully worth cooking the whole chicken to perfection”, so why not trying?

Once you’ve mixed these flavors you can put the chicken into the roasting tray and leave it cooking for an hour (if you have used chicken strips instead, as I did, half of the time will be enough).

Whilst the chicken is cooking you can start with the preparation of the salad. Cut the cherry tomatoes into halves and mix them with the garlic cloves. After 30 minutes throw them into the roasting tray with the chicken.

Once the the chicken is thoroughly cooked, remove it from the tray and leave it to cool down. Put the bread into the tray and leave it into the oven for 20 mins until crispy and slightly brown.

Remove the skin from the chicken and mix the meat with the resting juices. Cook your green beans for up to 6 minutes and add them to the meat, then add extra virgin olive oil, parsley and spring onions. Finally put the chicken back into the oven until crispy. Serve everything together in a tray (as I did) or a nice platter.

And .. Bon Appetit! Hope you ‘ll enjoy it as much as I did 🙂

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Recipe ideas: zucchini rolls with ham and soft cheese

zucchini rolls

This recipe is the result of one of my recent attemps at cooking (yeah for those who don’t know me well, literally, ATTEMPS). But I must admit that I am getting better at it and, last but not least, definitely putting an effort.

And as the wise Anonymous says:  “Cooking is love made visible”,  let’s show some love today!

Whilst wondering on the web I came across to this recipe from the Giallo Zafferano, an italian cooking website  which I truly recommend when in the look for some tasty and easy to repeat italian recipes.

This a light, fresh and remarkably easy to make appetizer which doesn’t require too much effort,  but at the same time,  is nice  to present on the table when inviting friends for dinner.

The ingredients are:
Zucchini slices 12
Robiola 100 g (any soft cheese will do the trick)
Ham (Prosciutto crudo like Parma is preferable) 40 gr
Chives , chopped 1 tablespoon
Pepper ground black pepper
Salt

1) Firstly, allow the Zucchini to lose part of their water, then cut them lenghtwise   – 2,3 mm- and then grill them side by side for at least 2 minutes per side. Less than that doesn’t really work me.

2) Mix in a bowl the soft cheese with the rest of the ingredients until they amalgamate together in a cream.

3) Leave the zucchini to cool down for a little while so you can easily spread the cream afterwards.

4) Roll the zucchini and garnish them with chives.

And there you have it!

In case you were wondering how many calories does a zucchini contain, here you can find the numbers:

 

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 21.09.46

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