Sunday, July 31, 2016

Summer Sicilian salads: healthy, tasty and colorful

Have you ever tried this delicious and colorful summer Sicilian salads? Full of all the Mediterranean taste and incredibly healthy, it's perfect for a light lunch coming back from the seaside or as a side dish for dinner to accompany a nice steak or a lovely barbecue.
It's also the perfect dish that you want to prepare in advance, at least a couple of hours before, (even 3 or 4 is fine) as it is a dish that needs to be tasted cold.

Ingredients for 4 people:
500 gr. fresh green beans
1 red onion thinly chopped (raw)
3 fresh big tomatoes
250 gr. tuna can (in sunflower oil)
seasoning with salt and black pepper, extra virgin olive oil and oregano. 

How to prepare it:

1. Cut the edges of the green beans and rinse them under running water.
2. Put a pot of water on a high heat and as soon as the water boils add salt, a pinch of baking soda and drop the green beans in the pot. The baking soda will prevent the beans to change color and will leave them bright green. 

3. Let them cook for around 20-25 minutes then check them. As soon as they are soft and tender they are ready and you can turn the heat down.
4. Drain them and let them cool in a bowl.
5. In the meantime rinse and cut the tomatoes.
6. Peel
the onion and thinly chop it. Once chopped put salt on top and leave it in water for few minutes, then rinse it under running water and dry it in a cotton kitchen cloth.

7. Add the tomatoes and the onion to the green beans in the bowl, finally open the tuna can and let the excess of oil drip off completely, then mix the tuna with the rest of the salads and season it with salt, a pinch of black pepper, extra virgin olive oil and abundant oregano.

Put the salads in the fridge for at least one hour before serving it with slices of rustic bread or small panini. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Fresh peaches in white wine, our summery fruit salads

Have you ever tried this delicate peach salads during the hottest days of the  summer?

When I was a teen-ager we used to spend summer in our country house in northern Sicily and my dad used to go for grocery and buy a whole basket of yellow peaches (about 5 kilos) as the price was a lot more convenient.  

So... to use them all and avoid any waste with 38° degrees or so, we used to peel them, cut them into pieces and dress them with half glass white wine.

Perfect if you do it at least half an hour before dinner, so the peaches and the wine has the time to macerate and create a lovely sweet juice together. If you want you can add a scoop of vanilla ice-cream in your bowl, or, a cookie on the side, but we used to have them just plain as the conclusion of our dinner and for me this is absolutely the best way, otherwise you will cover the delicate taste of the peaches and the scent given by the wine. Sometimes less is more!

Don't waste any time then: get a basket of juicy peaches and in case you have got some left that are a bit too ripe, remember you can always make a lovely peach jam.

A great white wine for this peach salads could be the Mandrarossa DOC Laguna Secca, a chardonnay with a pale yellow and golden-green color.

On the nose this wine evokes hints of orange peel and prickly pear ripe, well integrated with hints of oleander flowers. 

The taste is powerful, enveloping, with good and pleasant minerality that makes it persistent in the mouth. 

It is also great paired with roasted prawns or medium consistency cheese. Serve it at 10° degrees.