The pizzas are baked in a ceramic oven, with either a thin or traditional Sicilian crust. Some of the pizzas are pretty creative – one that they especially recommend is the Sfincione – a square pie that has tomato basil sauce, sautéed onions, anchovies, caciocavallo cheese, topped with roasted bread crumbs (Bread crumbs on pizza? Oh yes.), and extra virgin olive oil. Continue reading
After Jon got out of the hospital, the doctors recommended no fatty food. The first meal my Dad Rocco made for him when they met for the first time was Pasta with Bacon. I was like, “Are you trying to kill my boyfriend, Dad?!”
He survived and loved it!
In Sicily, it’s called Pasta alla Matriciana (mah – truh- cha – nah). And it’s another easy half hour dinner. In Italy, they use Pancetta, which is Italian Bacon.
The pasta is a Spinach Parpardelle from Cayuga Pure Organics, which sells flours and beans on Saturdays in McGolrick Park. We picked up some delicious bacon from Brooklyn Cured who sells at the McGolrick Park Famers Market on Sundays. The fresh tomatoes are paste tomatoes, good for sauce, a special breed Sam from Great Road Farm is cultivating, but I can’t remember the name! Kewalo? Roma tomatoes will do. We are saving the seeds for next year. He told us they need to ferment a little before drying, so if they get moldy and stink, then it’s happening.
Pasta with Bacon
Cut up a package of bacon into chunks and fry it until crisp but still fatty. Remove the bacon. If there is a lot of fat, drain it so the bottom is just covered with grease. Fry one whole chopped onion with hot pepper flakes in the oil. After about 5 minutes add 4-5 chopped tomatoes. A can of chopped tomatoes will do. Salt and pepper. After about 10 minutes, add the bacon back into the pot. Cook for about 20 minutes. Use the sauce on top of pasta and top with fresh parsley and grated cheese.
The feast is starting today! And it’s not just about winning goldfish and eating zeppoles, though that is how we celebrate it in my family. The story behind the feast began in a little town outside of Naples called Nola.
(If you don’t know what a zeppole is, read about it here.)
The feast in “Italian Williamsburg” is actually two feasts in one. The “Giglio” part of the feast honors Saint Paolino of Nola, who is celebrated because he sacrificed himself to North African slave abducting pirates in order to free a young man from the hometown. Word spread of his courage and a Turkish sultan talked to a guy and Saint Paolini and his “paesani” (homeboys) were freed.
The feast culminates on July 16th to honor Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Referred to as the Blessed Mother, the devotion to the Virgin by Southern Italians often leaves you asking, “God who?”
Even though we love our Madonna in Brooklyn, that aspect of the feast was added on later. The feast was originally was all about the Giglio. Continue reading
Join Greenpointers for a Rice Balls Class & Supper with Jen on Monday April 23rd, 2012 at 7pm at Paulie Gee’s (60 Greenpoint Ave). Learn how to make homemade arancini, which means little oranges, a delicious, traditional Sicilian specialty. After we fry up all the rice balls we can sit down and eat them all. Includes wine. Course includes all food and materials. (Vegetarian Friendly.) This is going to be ALOT of fun!
Rice Balls Class & Supper with Jen