The best way to ensure that your Italian recipes turn out their very best is to use authentic Italian food and Italian groceries from an Italian supermarket. If you don't happen to have one in your neighborhood, you can order whatever you need from the Italian Food Online Store.
With authentic ingredients from an Italian grocery store, you'll be starting out on the right foot, and then it will just be a matter of following the recipes below, and you'll be able to delight your family and guests with some wonderful, Old World meals and appetizers.
One of our most crucial ingredients to have in your kitchen when preparing Italian food is extra virgin olive oil. Olive oil is what makes food more flavorful and adds intense depth to the world of gourmet and cuisine!
Five Simple Italian Recipes That Use Olive Oil
1. Spiedini di pollo
How to make Spiedini di Pollo:
These are skewers of chicken and rosemary, and to obtain optimal results, either use twigs of rosemary instead of regular skewers, or wrap some rosemary around very wet skewers (wet skewers won't burn on the grill).
For the marinade, you'll need:
- 1 cup of extra virgin olive oil,
- 3 cloves of garlic,
- and a pinch of salt and pepper;
- use 1-1/2 lbs. of chicken, which you'll need to cut into small cubes, 6-inch twigs of rosemary,
- served with a side dish of Italian onions, sweet red peppers, and zucchini.
- After cutting the chicken into cubes...
- Mix it with the salt and pepper to suit your taste.
- Chop up the garlic and mix it with the meat, then add the olive oil and mix again, before putting it into the fridge to stand for about an hour.
- Slice your vegetables into large chunks, skewer them, and set them aside for later.
- Grill the chicken skewers for about 6 minutes, avoiding any flame-ups caused by the olive oil.
- Put the vegetable skewers on the grill at the same time as the chicken, because they will require the same 6 minutes of grill time.
- Check that the meat is cooked thoroughly and that the vegetables have cooked soft before serving.
2. Pepata di cozze
How to Make Pepata di Cozze:
This is a steamed mussel dish which emphasizes the pepper, and it's a dish that originates from the Puglia section.
- 1 small, chopped-up fillet of anchovy,
- pinch of lemon Zest,
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil,
- 1 clove of garlic,
- 1/3 cup of parsley,
- 1/2 cup dry white wine,
- 1 stalk of celery,
- 1/2 tablespoon of coarsely ground black pepper,
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice,
- 4 lbs. of fresh, cleaned mussels.
- First, you'll need to chop up the lemon Zest, garlic, celery, and parsley,
- then place them into a large saucepan and simmer them until they become soft.
- Then you can add in the anchovy pieces and blend the whole mixture together.
- Add in the wine, lemon juice, mussels, and black pepper, then cook on a high temperature, stirring occasionally.
- After about 10 minutes, all the shells should have opened, and you'll know the mussels are cooked. You can take out the mussels with a large serving spoon or tongs, and place them into serving dishes.
- Keep cooking the vegetables until they're soft, and then you can use the remaining liquid to drizzle over the mussels before serving.
3. Bruschetta di morea
How to Make Bruschetta di morea
Basically consisting of bread with various toppings, this is a delightful Italian appetizer which goes well with just about any entree. The variety of olive oil used in this recipe can have a huge impact on the eventual taste, so you may want to experiment with different brands to find the ideal one.
- You can either go with salted or unsalted bread, according to your tastes, but it should be pre-sliced.
- Olive Oil: Ideally, you should use a sweet, fruity oil from Lucca, or slightly peppery oils such as those from Siena.
- Some good fresh tomatoes will be needed as well, and you can supplement the flavor with marinara sauce or eggplant tomato sauce.
- Several cloves of garlic chopped in half will also be needed.
- Optional: balsamic vinegar and fresh basil leaves.
- Chop up the tomatoes into fairly small pieces and
- Add them into a bowl with the marinara sauce and eggplant tomato sauce, if you're using them.
- Add some olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper to the mixture as well.
- Now you can grill the bread outdoors until both sides have become slightly toasted, adding a bit of olive oil before grilling if you like.
- When you take the bread off the grill, rub it on one side only with the cloves of garlic.
- Then you can spoon the tomato mixture on to the bread, and serve hot to your guests.
- If you want, you can drizzle some balsamic vinegar to give it that extra zest!
4. Insalata Caprese
How to Make Insalata Caprese
A cool summer salad like this one will charm all your guests, and make them think they're back enjoying a lazy summer day in Capri. Essential to the flavor of this salad is the freshness of the tomatoes, as well as the buffalo mozzarella (as opposed to mozzarella from cow's milk).
- 6 large fresh leaves of basil,
- 3 medium ripe tomatoes,
- 4 tablespoons of fruity olive oil,
- 1 clove of garlic, 8 oz. of fresh buffalo mozzarella, and
- salt with freshly ground pepper.
- Cut your garlic up and rub it on the dish you'll be serving with, then discard the garlic.
- Slice up the tomatoes into 1/4" thick slices, discarding the bottoms and tops of the tomato.
- Slice the mozzarella up into slices which are approximately the same size as the tomatoes.
- Add the salt and pepper over the tomatoes according to your tastes.
- Chop up the basil, and add this over the tomatoes as well.
- Drizzle olive oil over the whole dish and allow it to set for about 10 minutes before dazzling your guests.
5. How to Make Pasta primavera with Tenuta di Capezzana
When preparing this old favorite, it's best to let the vegetables marinate for an hour before using them, but if you're in a hurry you can dispense with the marinating process and you'll still have an authentic Italian masterpiece.
If you don't have genuine Italian pasta, you can make your own with Caputo semolina flour. If you don't know where to buy 00 flour, it can be purchased from our authentic Italian online store, where you'll find all the groceries and Italian snacks you need to impress your hungry guests.
- 1/2 cup of black olives,
- sea salt,
- 1 bunch of basil with leaves chopped,
- 3 garlic cloves,
- 6 ripe tomatoes which have been seeded and chopped,
- freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano,
- 1 lb. Angel Hair pasta,
- 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil.
- Mix together in a medium-sized bowl the olive oil, olives, basil, tomatoes, and garlic, and let the mix set for about one hour.
- Cook the Angel Hair pasta and drain it a the point where it has become al dente.
- Remove the garlic and add the tomato sauce mixture to the pasta, serving with freshly grated cheese.