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The Cookstr Weekly: Buon Appetito! Italian Classics for Summer

June 13, 2012

Using ingredients that are as fresh as possible is integral to Italian cuisine. While you might associate heavier pasta and cheese-laden dishes with the comfort foods of winter, a summertime farmers’ market bounty is actually the ideal for Italian flavors to shine. Vegetables take center stage in pasta dishes and hearty salads, while berries pair perfectly with ricotta cheese in warm-weather desserts.
This recipe for Roasted Peppers by Frank Pellegrino emphasizes the smokiness of blackened peppers, then tempers it with rich pine nuts, sweet golden raisins, and fresh garlic and parsley. They’re a great addition to an antipasto platter. 

More Italian Recipes from Cookstr
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In Season: Blueberries
“Bake a blueberry, and it tends to break down and turn into a sort of thin jam. This never struck me as a problem–it still tastes great–but Joanne undertook a mission to create a tart that celebrated the blueberry’s texture as well as its taste. She achieved it in this recipe by putting a mix of cooked blueberries and raw blueberries into a prebaked pie shell. The raw blueberries, flavored with the sauce of the cooked blueberries, seem to explode in your mouth. It’s not a small thing. For added thrills, top off this tart with a dollop of vanilla ice cream, vanilla yogurt, or whipped cream. Heaven.”       – Sara Moulton, Joanne’s New-and-Improved Blueberry Tart

 

“Carne asada is really the street taco. Smoky meat, fresh salsas, crunchy onions…it just doesn’t get any better. Unless, of course, you take it to the next level with a vampiro, a large and succulent example of the supertaco so fabulously good that you’ll wish you could eat a dozen. Basically, the vampiro is a chile quesadilla wrapped around juicy grilled carne asada and topped with creamy guacamole, a dash of chipotle salsa, pico de gallo, and salty cotixa cheese. It’s fantastic.

Why vampiro? Maybe because this taco deserves to be immortal-or because it has a steak through its heart? In Mexico, this marriage of quesadilla and taco is also called a quesotaco.”

– Deborah Schneider, Carne Asada Taco Vampiro

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