Friday, March 26, 2010

Cooking Up Some More Tastes of Italy

When we visited Michael and Sam in Italy, we had some really great meals, and as someone who spends a fair amount of time in front of the range myself, I found good inspiration from the cuisine we enjoyed abroad.  Last weekend, I put together some homemade pasta; today while out grocery shopping, I came across some "Bufala" Mozzarella, and decided to bake up some bruschetta.  (It's amazing, really, what you can find at Costco.)

I started with some halved flatbread rolls--normally, I'd make my own crusts, but I was on a constrained schedule. The bread went into the broiler for a few moments, followed by a rub-down with a half a clove of garlic when out and just toasty.  Then, a thin layer of tomato sauce (maybe 1-2 tablespoons each), topped with some sautéed onion and mushrooms (or "funghi" in Italiano).

A layer of fresh Mozzarella topped the bruschetta, followed by some of the Bufala Mozzarella, which has a creamier, "fluffier" consistency.  I added some prosciutto di parma (thank you, Costco) to mine, and finished each with a few grinds of pepper before putting them under the broiler again.

I also prepared a bit of breakfast ahead of time, juicing several oranges by hand to be chilling overnight in the fridge.  Costco has had some fantastic Sicilian Tarocco oranges--yes, we're not being very good localvores right now, I know--which are very sweet and often have the distinctive "blood orange" flesh that gives some extra color to our morning glass of OJ:

And, of course, we had espresso.  It wouldn't be an Italian meal without some Joe.

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