Fresh Pasta Squares with Peas and Prosciutto (Quadrucci con Piselli e Crudo)

On this blog I like to share all my foody adventures with you. More and more often they are inspired by other bloggers, and as you may have noticed if you have been following my blog for a while, I do not mind at all to blog about the results of trying other blogger’s ideas and giving them credit.

Today’s post is about a simple but very tasty Italian dish (aren’t they all): pasta with peas and ham. I’ve already done a post about pasta with (boiled) ham, peas, and cream, which was inspired by CampariGirl. Today’s version is different in a couple of ways: it uses cured ham (prosciutto crudo) instead of boiled ham (prosciutto cotto), it uses fresh pasta, and it doesn’t use cream. It has also been inspired by another of my favorite bloggers: Josephine of My Home Food That’s Amore. She is a wonderful person who shares her love for simple but tasty Italian food on her blog. Thanks, Jo, for introducing me to quadrucci, a type of fresh pasta that I had not seen before. I love them! Continue reading “Fresh Pasta Squares with Peas and Prosciutto (Quadrucci con Piselli e Crudo)”

Rabbit Loin Saltimbocca (Saltimbocca di Coniglio)

Cuts of meat that come from different muscle groups in an animal require different cooking to make them shine. For instance, a ribeye steak is best served medium rare after a quick sear and some resting, whereas a brisket needs to be cooked low and slow to become tender and delicious to eat. Smaller animals like chickens and rabbits are often cooked whole, disregarding the wisdom gained from preparing beef in separate parts. Part of the reason for this may be that a chicken fits easier into most pans and ovens than a whole cow does 😉 A more economical reason is that if you judge by effort per pound of meat, a relatively big effort is needed to separate the different muscle groups of a small animal. Even so, it is worth doing so to get the best results. This is also true for rabbit. Rabbit loins are the ‘rib eye’ of the rabbit, they are very tender and require very little cooking. The legs and other parts however need to be braised or stewed. Even so, rabbit is often cooked whole with the loin dried out.

I thought this to be a waste of a very nice piece of meat, and so when I bought a whole rabbit I decided to do my own butchering and divide the rabbit into loins, legs, flap meat, and carcass. (Of course you can also ask your butcher to do this for you.) The latter three parts will be used for tomorrow’s recipe. The tenderloins are so small in a 1.1 kg (2.5 lbs) rabbit that they are hardly worth getting out. The loins themselves were about 160 grams together or about 14% of the weight of the rabbit.

On the same day I had bought the rabbit, I had also bought some very nice prosciutto. As I still have fresh sage growing in my garden, I decided to turn those rabbit loins into rabbit saltimboccaSaltimbocca is a famous dish from Rome consisting of veal scaloppine with prosciutto and sage. It is so delicious that it is called “jump into mouth” (salt = jump, bocca = mouth). I prefer to have a rabbit jumping in the direction of my mouth rather than a calf 😉 But seriously, this rabbit saltimbocca was absolutely delicious. The meat is super tender and succulent, and pairs very well with the prosciutto and sage. Compared to the veal version, it is a bit lighter and softer in style.

Continue reading “Rabbit Loin Saltimbocca (Saltimbocca di Coniglio)”

Tagliatelle al Prosciutto

This is one of those dishes where the quality of the main ingredient makes all the difference. If you use really good prosciutto (Spanish jamon iberico will also do) that has been aged for at least two years and is sweet rather than salty, this dish will be amazing. If you use cheap prosciutto, it will end up being so salty it’s hardly edible. Good prosciutto is expensive, but even good prosciutto comes in a natural shape and thus there are pieces of the ham that are less attractive to be sliced. For this recipe you will chop it anyway, … Continue reading Tagliatelle al Prosciutto