Thursday, December 8, 2011

Cooking The Italian Way

A recipe has no soul.
You as the cook,
must bring soul to the soup.
Thomas Keller

Carmela's Cucina is based in Edina Minnesota. It is owned and operated by Carmela Hobbins. She offers Italian cooking classes that feature authentic Italian cuisine and preparation at her Cucina.
Lucky for me I didn't even have to drive across town to be treated to a very fine cooking demonstration and a chance to sample foods prepared by Carmela at a recent luncheon. Carmela's Italian heritage and love of cooking Italian food has inspired her to host cooking classes, author two cookbooks and lead culinary trips each year to Italy and Savannah GA. Her cookbooks offer rich stories about her heritage and photos of family members and lots of good and easy to follow recipes.
The following recipe is from her new book Celebrations with Carmela's Cucina. I really enjoyed the format of the book with her family stories and seasonal menus with recipes. Not only was the following salad recipe good, easy to prepare but a visual treat. Check out Carmela's website to learn more about her and the books she has written. You might even be tempted to sign up for one of her upcoming 2012 culinary tours. The next blog posting will include the main meal we had Stromboli.
And no... I was not commissioned by her to write this blog :) Just liked the simplicity of the recipes and how flavorful each one was I tasted.

Blueberry-Orange Salad 
  • 1 pint of blueberries, rinse and pat dry
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 TB. balsamic vinegar
  • 2-3 TB. red onion diced-can do strips also
  • 8 cups spring mix (lettuce)
  • 5 oranges-peeled, remove membrane and slice
  • 4 TB. olive oil
  • ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4-1/3 cup toasted pecans
  • Mix sugar, balsamic vinegar and onion
  • Stir into blueberries, cover and refrigerate 30 minutes
  • Toast pecans
  • Add greens in bowl
  • Slice oranges and arrange with greens
  • Drizzle olive oil over lettuce greens and add marinated blueberries

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