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Vegetables from an Italian Garden: Season-by-Season Recipes by Charles Nardozzi

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Notes about this book

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Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Eggplant Parmigiana (Parmigiana di melanzane)

    • twoyolks on August 07, 2014

      Next time I would peel the eggplant as some of the remaining peel became tough in the oven. I think this also could've used a better marinara sauce then just tomatoes simmered with basil.

  • Zucchini, goat cheese, and black olive frittata (Frittata di zucchine al caprino e olive nere)

    • Delys77 on February 27, 2013

      Pg. 189 This was a very good frittata. I modified the recipe a tiny bit but the flavour profile is excellent. I was out of black olives so I used kalamata, to no ill effect. I also sauteed the zucchini at a lower heat for closer to 10 minutes. Finally, it didn't say what size pan to use so I went with a 9 inch, which resulted in a relatively full pan (especially since I added about 3/4 cup milk to the eggs), given this fact I ended up finishing the fittata in a 400 degree oven for about 10 minutes to get the eggs to set properly. All that said, the goat cheese and olives with the the Zucchini were excellent.

  • Ricotta, zucchini, and zucchini flower flan (Gran flan di ricotta, zucchine e fiori di zucchina)

    • tasteslike on July 03, 2016

      Made as written, this was bland, uninteresting, and undercooked. This recipe could not have been tested. Made it again, heavily modified, and enjoyed it. Most important change: bake 30 min, not 15. Ingredients: 3 eggs, 1.5 c ricotta, 3 T flour, 2.5 c zucchini 5/8" dice, 1/4 c thin sliced green onion, 3 T chiffonade basil, 6 zucchini flowers, cut in half lengthwise and flattened. Put flowers on top of buttered parchment, inside down, top with mix (as for upside down cake). Turn out on plate to serve. Make in 9" round pan for easier unplating.

  • Roman-style crispy fried zucchini (Filetti di zucchine fritti alla Romana)

    • twoyolks on September 01, 2012

      This recipe did not work for me.

  • Roasted zucchini, potatoes, and tomatoes (Zucchine, patate e pomodori al forno)

    • twoyolks on July 12, 2012

      The cooking times are significantly too short.

  • Florentine mushrooms (Champignon alla Fiorentina)

    • Delys77 on June 04, 2012

      Pg 299 Great basic recipe with the earthy flavour of the mushrooms complimenting he rest. With a nice piece of bread this makes a nice light meal for two. As is the recipe s tasty but minimalist. I would suggest a few small modifications including seasoning all the components, adding some minced time to the mushrooms, and upping the Parmesan. I would also broil for the last few minutes.

  • Pan-fried potato patties (Pancakes di patate)

    • twoyolks on June 02, 2017

      Nice and easy to make potato pancakes. The only downside is they don't have a ton of flavor to them.

  • Pappardelle with cauliflower and Gorgonzola (Pappardelle con cavolfiori e Gorgonzola)

    • Delys77 on May 01, 2013

      Pg 412 We quite liked this. The gorgonzola sauce isn't overpowering and the garlic sauteed cauliflower is very nice. The whole dish comes together pretty easily and is well balanced. I would suggest going a bit heavier on the parmesan and mix some of it into the pasta before topping. I also went with 3 minced gloves of garlic instead of the one whole, and I left it in while sauteeing the cauliflower.

  • New potatoes with rosemary (Patatine novelle al rosmarino)

    • twoyolks on November 05, 2014

      These took longer to cook than the recipe called for. The potatoes never really picked up any flavor from the rosemary or garlic. In the end, they tasted mostly like (well) roasted new potatoes. They were extremely hot coming out of the pan and the skins were difficult to eat.

  • Cheese and onion quiche (Quiche di cipolle e formaggio)

    • Delys77 on April 03, 2012

      Pg. 116 Simple yet fabulous. The dish comes together very easily because you can use frozen puff pastry and the list of ingredients is quite short. The results however are anything but simple. The onions yield a nice sweet note, but you don't actually have to caramelize them, the 20 minutes she calls for is enough to develop a nice flavour without too much sweetness. The amount of eggs seems quite small but it is just enough to bind the onions and hold it all together. Season both the eggs and the onions relatively aggressively, but if you are a bit off a tiny bit of fleur de sel on top works perfectly. Serves three along with a side salad, serve with a nice Pinot Blanc (we had BC Nk'Mip and it was just right)

  • Rosemary focaccia (Focaccia al rosmarino)

    • twoyolks on July 30, 2012

      This makes a very dry dough which ends up as a very dry bread.

  • Zucchini tart (Torta di zucchine)

    • Delys77 on December 18, 2011

      The flavour in this recipe is pretty good but not stellar. The breadcrumbs don't do much for the recipe but the onion and zucchini mixture has a relatively good flavour and the balance with the egg is pretty good. I might add a touch of garlic, more herbs, and some chili. Overall just ok.

  • Cucumber salad (Cetrioli in insalata)

    • twoyolks on August 08, 2015

      This tasted like limp, wet cucumber.

  • Conchiglie with spinach (Conchiglie con gli spinaci)

    • Delys77 on October 17, 2011

      Pg. 54 This comes together in about 30 minutes so it is perfect for a weeknight vegetarian dinner. I wasn't sure if they meant 4.5 cups of cooked spinach or raw but I'm pretty sure they meant cooked which would equate to over 1 lb of spinach. I added a bit of parm and also seasoned the spinach, and sprinkled a little fleur de sel over the finished product. Delicious and not too fatty because the ricotta is quite light.

  • Linguine with zucchini, almond, and mint pesto (Linguine al pesto di zucchine, mandorle e menta)

    • Delys77 on August 27, 2012

      Pg 195 The initial result was a little bland. I found the pesto to be a little too neutral because of the relatively tame flavour of the zucchini. That being said, it acts as a pretty good canvas for other flavours. In my case I added a little lemon and fleur de sel which helped, but you could also go with a garlic flavoured olive oil in the pesto to help it along a little.

  • Orecchiette with tomato and ricotta (Orecchiette con pomodoro e ricotta)

    • twoyolks on August 21, 2012

      The ricotta called for here is "firm ricotta" which I believe is actually "ricotta salata", not "normal" loose ricotta. However, this still works pretty well with a loose ricotta, you just need to add significantly more.

  • Carrots with acacia honey (Carote al miele d'acacia)

    • Delys77 on November 20, 2011

      Pg 325 Great side which is rich from the butter and luxurious from the cognac, very nice accompaniment to roasted meats.

  • Radicchio and celery root salad (Insalata di radicchio e sedano rapa)

    • Delys77 on November 20, 2011

      Pg 384 This makes a very nice salad but I suggest you go with half he amount of radicchio and a bit of extra dressing. The sweetness of the dressing balances perfectly with the bitterness of the radicchio, resulting on a nice winter salad.

  • Delicious broccoli (Broccoli fantasia)

    • Delys77 on January 31, 2012

      Pg 406 I ended up using half and half as I had no cream and it was still nice and rich. I the whole thing in the Le creuset saucier and it worked very well. I steamed the broccoli for 5 minutes and that was a little too much, 4 is probably good. Overall this is a nice, slightly saucy side, with a combination of tang and richness, with the umami edge of the parm. To finish broil for a few minutes.

  • Celery root and pea soup (Minestra di sedano rapa con piselli)

    • Delys77 on October 23, 2011

      Pg. 419 I have to be honest that I made a few modifications to this soup as I wanted to freeze it for lunches. I omitted the pasta and also I puréed it as the colour was a little blah before pureeing. That being said the flavour profile on this soup is brilliant, and the fact that there isn't any sautéing makes this super light and very easy.

  • Parmesan asparagus (Asparagi alla Parmigiana)

    • twoyolks on May 26, 2015

      The parmesan complements the asparagus well. The timing for cooking the asparagus was a bit long so it lost some flavor that way.

  • Eggplant balls (Polpette di melanzane)

    • Delys77 on December 02, 2011

      Pg 183 I gave these a five because they wre so tasty and surprisingly so. Not that I expected they wouldn't be tasty but they really are quite special. The texture is almost meaty and the flavour of the basil and garlic combined with my home made bread crumbs was fabulous. I served with a porcini and tomato sauce and it was scrumptious. Great vegetarian entree.

  • Lettuce and mint soup (Crema di lattuga e menta)

    • Delys77 on October 14, 2011

      Pg 270 If you season this soup relatively aggressively it is ok but the flavour profile is a bit simple. I used romaine and the slight bitterness was offset by the cream. Overall this is something I might make if I had an abundance of lettuce but I would be unlikely to repeat otherwise.

  • Braised carrots with celery (Carote brasate al sedano)

    • Delys77 on October 15, 2011

      If you like your vegetables soft and slightly rich this is a good recipe. I would suggest increasing the onion to 8 oz or so, and possibly adding a little more rosemary. Good old style comfort food but not super interesting.

  • Potato, cheese, and ham cakes (Piccoli gatto di patate)

    • Delys77 on January 21, 2015

      These wouldn't be a repeat for us. I didn't take the time to do it in individual ramekins, just one large dish. I increased the ham to about 7 oz, increased the mozzarella to 5.5, and cut the processed cheese. This was tasty enough, with a bit of a crisp top and lovely mashed potatoes with a touch of ham and cheese, but that's pretty much all it was. Ok, but not stellar.

  • Brussels sprouts au gratin (Cavolini di Bruxelles gratinati)

    • twoyolks on January 18, 2013

      The bechamel only seemed to take away from the Brussels sprouts, instead of make them better. It seemed like too much work and too much fat for too little flavor.

  • Brussels sprout puree (Purè di cavolini di Bruxelles)

    • Delys77 on February 29, 2012

      This recipe results in a nice purée texture wise but it is far too bitter. I added a bit more butter and cream hoping the richness would cut the bitterness but it didn't do much. Plus the 15 minute pan frying doesnt add much and just adds time to the cooking. I actually tossed the leftovers out as I didn't think it was salvageable.

  • Spinach and tomato risotto (Risotto con spinaci e pomodori)

    • Delys77 on September 27, 2013

      This was a nice little risotto but the recipe needed a little tweaking. I went with chicken stock as that is what I had on hand and I didn't dilute it with any water. Also, I added only 3/4 of a cup of wine but I added it to the sauteed rice so that it could cook off a bit. Finally I would add the spinach in just the last few minutes of cooking as adding it so early cooks out the colour and changes the flavour too much. I removed the skin from the tomatoes about 7 or 8 minutes in and then roasted them skinless to chat a bit for another 4 minutes or so. Lastly I added a few tb of butter at the end to enrich and I increased the parm to about 1 cup. With these modifications I thought this was very nice indeed.

  • Green beans with pesto (Fagiolini al pesto)

    • Delys77 on February 27, 2013

      Simple but filling side with just the right amount of pesto. Would repeat.

  • Tagliatelle with mushrooms (Tagliatelle ai funghi)

    • Delys77 on October 09, 2013

      Pg. 290 This recipe was good but I made quite a few modifications. With those modifications made however I would say it was very good. Firstly the I used about 1 cup chicken stock instead of 1/2 of water, plus I added the wine first and then let it cook off a bit instead of adding it after putting in the stock. Also, I sauteed some fresh mushrooms separately with a bit of thyme and then added this to the sauce at the very end. In terms of the onions, I sauteed much longer than she called for, but then only simmered for about 20 minutes to avoid the sauce getting too thick. Finally, I added a bit of spinach to the sauce just before tossing with the pasta. Made a nice and balanced meal for about 3 adults. Lots of modifications, but I think they were worth it.

  • Braised cabbage (Cavolo verza brasato)

    • twoyolks on November 09, 2014

      A very nice, simple braised cabbage recipe.

  • Caramelized red cabbage (Cavolo rosso caramellato)

    • Delys77 on July 22, 2012

      This dish is more of a braised than carmelzed dish. That being said the results for such a simple recipe are ok, but I do think variations with a bit of fat and spicing are much better, but this would do if you had a limited pantry.

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Reviews about this book

  • Oregonian

    ...we found loads of unique recipes that had us marching straight into the kitchen to cook.... certainly not your run-of-the-mill American take on vegetables.

    Full review
  • ISBN 10 0714861170
  • ISBN 13 9780714861173
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published May 18 2011
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 432
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Phaidon Press
  • Imprint Phaidon Press

Publishers Text

Vegetables from an Italian Garden features 400 delicious recipes showcasing over 40 different kinds of vegetables newly collected by the editors behind the classic Italian cooking bible, The Silver Spoon. Authentic and easy-to-use, the book will reveal how Italians use vegetables year-round to prepare simple yet crowd-pleasing dishes.

The book is organized by season in four color-coded sections (Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter) to help you conveniently browse for recipes by time of year. Each season is subdivided into chapters for different vegetables highlighting best-known varieties, appearance, storage and preparation and everything you need to know to maximize flavor and nutritional content. It even includes information on how to plant and harvest each vegetable in your own home garden.

Then come the recipes! Each season includes approximately 100 recipes organized further by main vegetable ingredient. For example for Spring, the book reveals how to utilize the best of the season’s bounty with main ingredients including Spinach, Swiss Chard, Wild Greens, Artichokes, Asparagus, Fava Beans, Peas, Radishes, Avocados, Onions and Belgian Endive.

Offering something for everyone, two-thirds of the recipes are vegetarian, and the remaining third feature beef, chicken, pork or fish as co-stars and are coded with unique symbols to make pleasing any dietary preference easy. As stated in the book’s introduction by the Editors, “Italian cuisine is by no means vegetarian, but vegetables play an important and integral role to every meal.”

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