Tag: appetizer

Appetizer of sea and land? Mussels stuffed with caciocavallo! – Italian Cuisine

Appetizer of sea and land? Mussels stuffed with caciocavallo!

The mussels stuffed with caciocavallo are a tasty appetizer halfway between the sea and the land, easy to prepare and irresistible

Do you fancy a starter that you mix flavors of sea and land, in a balanced mix full of flavor? The mussels stuffed with caciocavallo they are the answer to your desires, a soft sweet heart wrapped in the flavor of the cheese, accompanied by the acidity of the tomatoes. Virtually irresistible.

How to choose mussels

The mussels are among the clams less valuable and on sale are found all year round, but the best time to buy them is during the months without "r", from May to August, when their taste is at its peak. When you buy them, check also the color of the mussel, which must be shiny and shiny, the valves must be well closed and not broken. If the mussels come from farms, it is necessary to check that on the package there is a label that describes their origin, the date of collection and packaging. If you buy them and have them cleaned, remember to consume them as soon as possible, because they deteriorate in a short time.

How to make them open

The best way to do it open musselsonce cleaned, it is to put them in a large pan without adding anything. Cover with a lid and let them cook for a few minutes on high heat, turning them over. Once you see all the half-closed shells, turn off, filter the liquid that they have left, and then use it to give more flavor to each of your recipes.

Caciocavallo, the cheese of Podolian cows

Also called provolone, the cheese it's a spun paste cheese, aged from 3 months to two years, typical of the southern regions, in particular of Puglia, Sicily and Calabria, made exclusively with milk from Podolica breed cows. It can be sweet or spicier, depending on whether the rennet is from calf or kid. The two best known caciocavallo are the Silano and the Ragusano. Both are used to season sauces, to flavor the filling of rolls, fish or pastas or on homemade pizzas. And to make mussels stuffed with caciocavallo!

The recipe of mussels stuffed with caciocavallo


1 kg of clean mussels, 50 g grated caciocavallo, 40 g breadcrumbs, 10 cherry tomatoes, 1 clove of garlic, 1 bunch of parsley, extra virgin olive oil, black pepper.


To open the mussels, put them in a large pan, cook them for a few minutes on high heat with the lid, then drain them, strain the liquid and let cool. In a bowl mix the breadcrumbs with the cheese, the pepper and the minced garlic with the parsley. Also add a few tablespoons of filtered water released from the mussels and a little extra virgin olive oil. Stir and open the mussels cooked in the book, without separating the valves. Fill them with one or two tablespoons of filling and place them close to each other in a pan greased with oil. In the meantime wash and dice the tomatoes and then distribute them over the mussels seasoned with two tablespoons of oil. Cook at 180 degrees for 15 minutes and then serve immediately.

Browse the tutorial for some other tips for stuffing mussels

Yellow tomato gazpacho and couscous, an idea for the appetizer – Italian Cuisine

A sweeter version of the usual gazpacho that will make you appreciate yellow datterini and bring a new color to the table

Do you fancy something fresh and at the same time tantalizing that won't force you into the kitchen for hours? The recipe of the yellow tomato gazpacho and couscous it's what you need, because it is a light dish, but it gives great satisfaction! It can be prepared in advance and seasoned at the last moment for a quick lunch or a fresh appetizer: the result will be guaranteed and everything will seem freshly made.

Yellow is the color of sweetness

The color in tomatoes, but also in peppers, it does not only characterize its aesthetics but also its taste. As for the peppers, between the spiciest green and the more decisive red, the yellow variety is the one with a more juicy and delicate pulp, almost sweet. The same goes for tomatoes. In particular, the yellow cherry tomato it is acid free and this gives it an extremely sweet and delicate taste. This tomato so special, which cannot stand temperatures below 5 degrees and which needs a lot of sun to grow full of taste, is only grown in the southern regions where summer lasts well beyond the canonical 3 months.


How to recognize a ready avocado

In this recipe it also plays a fundamental role avocado. But do you know you will choose one ready to use? There are many types on the market, the easiest to find is the Hass quality, which has a slightly lumpy and irregular skin. In this case, a ripe avocado will have a dark brown skin. Another method of understanding the right ripening of this fruit it is putting it in the palm of one hand and exerting slight pressure: if the fingers will sink into the fruit then forget it, it is already too mature. If, on the other hand, the fruit appears to be slightly soft, then it is ready to be eaten. Another way to understand if avocado is ripe is to understand color is the skin under the stalk: if once removed you will see green skin then your avocado is ready. If it should be black, leave it alone, it is still unripe.

The recipe for yellow tomato and couscous gazpacho


600 g yellow cherry tomatoes, 80 g yellow pepper, 2 tablespoons of vinegar, 1/2 avocado, 1/2 cucumber, 100 g couscous, 20 g grated pecorino cheese, 4 ice cubes, 100 g bread, extra virgin olive oil, a few leaves of fresh basil, salt, pepper.


Cut the bread into small pieces and wet it with vinegar and 100 ml of water. Pour the couscous into a glass and measure another equal with the water inside. Put the couscous on a plate and season it with a drizzle of oil, in the meantime bring the water from the other glass to a boil with a little salt and then pour it boiling over the couscous, cover and let it swell. Then shell it with a fork, season it again with a drizzle of oil and pecorino cheese and stir. Pour the couscous on a baking tray covered with parchment paper and toast it for 5 minutes in the preheated oven at 200 °. Take the tomatoes, clean them and cut them into wedges and put them in the blender together with the clean and sliced ​​pepper. Add the soaked bread with its liquid, ice, salt, pepper and 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Blend everything coarsely. Spread the gazpacho into 4 bowls, add the avocado cut into squares and the cucumber slices. Finish with the crispy couscous, the basil leaves and serve immediately.

In the tutorial some tips for a perfect dish

Cooking school: almond, from appetizer to dessert – Italian Cuisine

Cooking school: almond, from appetizer to dessert

Almond is an excellent ally in the kitchen, because it is versatile and suitable for numerous preparations.

The almond is recognized among the traditional Italian agri-food products as a typical Sicilian product, present on the menu from appetizer to dessert, with pastas, bruschettas, salads, breadings, but also ice cream, milk, marzipan, martorana fruit or nougat. As an alternative to the preparations that you can do simply at home, give yourself a Sicilian tour: the show of spring flowering is truly a joy for the eyes.

The almond through the whole menu

Sweet and bitter, crunchy or pasty, light or dark, all almond-based preparations are wonderful. Among the lesser known, there is breading for various fries or for fish and crusted meat: just blend it more or less fine depending on the consistency you want to obtain. During her season, however, it is better to leave her fresh as it is very soft, then peel and peel it and then accompany it with fresh salads or as a side dish for a steamed fish. In desserts, the use is almost infinite, from the best known Marzipan, with almonds, flour, sugar and eggs, used by the Etruscans and Romans as a votive food, until Nougat, whose paternity we still contend with France and Spain.

How to prepare almond milk at home

Making almond milk at home is very simple: simply soak the peeled almonds in boiling water for a day, then pass them with theextractor, or blend them in a blender with very little filtered water. This milk, if boiled, tends to thicken and remember almost one fresh cream, ideal to be used again in salty as a sauce for a ravioli or even for a steamed or roasted steak.

How to use almond flour

Almond flour also has a good one versatility in the kitchen, excellent for cakes and biscuits, where it retains more moisture giving a softness greater than all our desserts. If we are interested in a more bitter taste we should use the almond Ermellina, but be careful: ingested in large quantities it can become toxic to the body.

The almond in the dishes of the great chefs

They could not remain impassive in front of the charm of the almond great chefs as Andrea Berton, who proposed a delicious almond cream with pumpkin, apples and goat milk, or Pino Cuttaia in La Madia di Licata with its masterful almond and basil soup. In short, there is just to indulge in this oily fruit, which is also rich in vitamin E, mineral salts and proteins.

A curiosity about martorana fruit based on almond

There martorana fruit it was created for the first time by the nuns of the Palermo convent dedicated to the noblewoman Eloisa Martorana, hence the name, to honor Roger II of Sicily who visited during the winter, when no other fruit was available. After three centuries of activity, at the end of the sixteenth century an edict of the diocesan Synod of Mazara del Vallo sanctioned the nuns, guilty of an activity that was believed to distract them from the proper religious recollection; in fact, there were many other reasons, so much so that after a few months the Sicilian confectioners' guild acquired the monopoly of the recipe of the nuns with the blessing of the Curia.

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Texts by Giulia Ubaldi

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