Feasting on Traditional Sicilian Summer Dishes

Summer is a wonderful time of year for feasting and embracing beautiful summer dishes provided by the abundant fruit and vegetables that are available.  A dear friend suggested that we should get together, prepare and cook some traditional Sicilian food.  With the Christmas and New Year over the opportunity was there for our get together… Continue reading Feasting on Traditional Sicilian Summer Dishes

Risotto Milanese Style (Risotto Alla Milanese)


Risotto Milanese accompanies Ossobuco beautifully.  I am pairing these two dishes together as they are a match made in heaven.  Some delicious comfort food during the week or weekend can be pleasurable. Home cooked, hearty food to warm the soul inside and out.

1 onion (finely chopped)
40 grams butter (unsalted)
400 grams Arborio Rice
1 glass dry white wine
1.5 litres vegetable stock (hot)
1 sachet saffron (10 grams)
6 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
4 tablespoons olive oil

Preparation Time:    15 minutes
Cooking Time:    30 minutes + 2 minutes resting time
Serves:    4 people

  1. Heat the vegetable stock in a pot large enough and when it comes to a simmer turn off the heat.  Add the saffron threads to the stock and allow to infuse for a few minutes until the stock becomes a orange in colour.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan, add the onion and saute until the onion has softened.
  3. Add the rice and cook for a few minutes stirring.
  4. Add the wine into the rice.
  5. Gradually start adding the stock and continue stirring until the stock evaporates into the rice.  Add more stock and continue to stir the rice until it has absorbed more stock. Continue this process until all the stock has been used and the rice has released its starches, has a creamy consistency and is al dente.  The al dente rice is still firm in the centre of the grain while the rest is soft and the rice has released all its starches into the dish.
  6. Towards the end stir in the butter and then add the Parmesan cheese. Continue to stir until thoroughly melted and combined with the risotto.  Allow to stand for a few minutes and you are ready to serve.

Cook’s Tips

To cook a good risotto, you must always stir the rice throughout the whole cooking process.  The stock must be hot or simmering whilst being added to the rice.  You do not want the rice to stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.  The temperature must be on medium to high for the risotto to bubble away in the pot with the stock.  The final result is a creamy consistency and the rice a little al dente.



Ossobuco Milanese Style (Ossobuco Alla Milanese)


I cannot help but gravitate to cooking hearty and soul warming food especially when the weekend is upon us.  This gorgeous dish is from the Lombardy region of Italy and you can use veal shins or the traditional beef shins. The recipe that I am sharing, I will be using the traditional cut of beef.  I have used both cuts of meat in the past and they both work very well.  However, the beef has more meat around the bone as opposed to the veal.

4 beef shins (with marrow bone)
1 onion (sliced)
1 clove garlic (chopped)
60 grams butter (unsalted)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 glass dry white wine
1 cup vegetable stock
salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 carrot (diced)
2 sticks of celery (diced)
handful of parsley (chopped)
strip of lemon peel
flour (for dusting the meat)

Preparation Time:     20 minutes
Cooking Time:       1 1/2 hours
Serves:     4 people

  1. Lightly flour the four pieces of meat and place aside.
  2. In a pan large enough heat half the butter and oil.
  3. Add the meat to the pan and brown on both sides.
  4. Remove from the pan and place aside.
  5. Add the onion, saute for a few minutes, then add the garlic, carrot, celery and continue to cook for a further few minutes.
  6. When the onion, garlic, carrot and celery has softened and browned a little return the meat to the pan and add the white wine.
  7. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer gently.
  8. When the wine has evaporated, season with salt and pepper, continue to cook gently, adding a little stock at a time to the pan.
  9. Ensure that the meat does not stick to the pan.
  10. Add the chopped parsley and lemon peel halfway through the cooking process.
  11. Continue to cook gently until the meat is tender.  Mix the remaining butter into the sauce and remove the lid towards the end of cooking to thicken.
  12. Before serving remove the lemon rind.

Cook’s Tips

This dish goes very well with Risotto Milanese (saffron risotto) and gremolada, a mixture of chopped lemon rind, garlic and parsley.



Austin’s Squid Ink Pasta

Today is Friday YAY!   The weekend brings family and friends together, fresh food, drink and conversation.  What ever the weekend brings your way I hope that it is your nirvana of joyful and happy moments.  A few weekend’s ago my son Austin decided to prepare a dish which he has been wanting to cook… Continue reading Austin’s Squid Ink Pasta

Seafood Linguine

Yesterday I visited one of Melbourne’s Markets with a friend.  We enjoyed a light lunch of Vietnamese Lemon Grass Soup with Rice Noodles. Followed by, traipsing around the market and buying our goodies for the weekend. We both stocked up on fresh seafood, meat, fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts and deli goods. This plan has been… Continue reading Seafood Linguine

Classic Chicken Parmigiana

I would like to share this recipe with you again as there are a number of you that have recently started visiting my blog and for those who enjoy a classic dish of Chicken Parmigiana. I am currently working on a number of new recipes, video and of course dishes. Stay tuned and thank you… Continue reading Classic Chicken Parmigiana