Two sweet and savory Italian inspired French toast recipes for your holiday brunch or “breakfast for dinner”.
Rosemary Olive French Toast
1 firm olive rosemary loaf of bread
1 cup half & half
2 cloves finely minced
s/p to taste
1 T. Capezzana Extra Virgin Olive Oil
4 T. unsalted butter
2 T. Capezzana Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 sweet onion, thinly
6 cloves garlic, rough chopped
1/2 lb Robiola or goat cheese
1/3 lb roasted tomatoes, chopped
10-12 fresh basil leaves
• Heat skillet or griddle pan to medium high heat.
• Slice bread in 1″ thick slices and set aside. Whisk together eggs, half and half, garlic and olive oil. Dip bread slices into egg mixture thoroughly to absorb.
• Meanwhile, heat olive oil in another pan and saute peppers, onions and garlic until caramelized. Set aside and begin cooking french toast.
• Melt 1 T. butter on heated skillet and place soaked bread on heated pan. Cook until golden brown and flip until both sides are same. Keep warm until all slices are finished.
• Place finished french toast on a warm serving platter and place a thin slice of goat cheese on top of each bread slice. Add a spoonful of pepper mixture and some roasted tomatoes. Garnish with slivered basil.
Pesto Prosciutto French Toast
• 2 pieces of firm Italian bread
• 1 large egg
• 1/3 cup whole milk
• 1 generous T of La Bella Angiolina Ligurian Basil Pesto
• 3 slices of prosciutto roughly chopped or torn into small pieces
Whisk egg, milk and pesto until mixed. Dip bread, 1 piece at a time into egg mixture until soaked. Melt 1 T. unsalted butter on heated skillet and place soaked bread on heated pan. Add chopped prosciutto and cook until golden brown then flip until prosciutto side is crisped. Serve with a savory jam.
Summer is here and its official arrival brings a symphony of colors and flavors to heighten our senses and satisfy our taste buds.
Seasonal summer produce offers the best opportunity to experience some of Italy’s most iconic dishes which are based on locally grown ingredients picked at the height of their flavor and simply prepared.
One of the best ways to eat like an Italian locavore is to make l’insalata caprese (the salad from Capri). The texture, flavor and vitality of this popular Italian dish is at its best this time of the year. Deceptively simple, it is made of three basic parts that tie together the ingredients in a forceful way reminiscent of a Vivaldian concerto. Made with firm vine-ripened tomatoes, fresh mozzarella (bufala or fior di latte – cow’s milk mozzarella) and garden grown Italian basil. The whole is made better by the quality of the individual ingredients. Top with a drizzle of an excellent Italian estate-bottled extra-virgin olive oil for a light, delicious salad on a warm summer evening.
The idea that if something works well there’s no reason to change it might be applied to the culinary history of Italy. The idea of simple food simply prepared using the best ingredients has been a hallmark of Italian cuisine with authentic dishes that highlight regional traditions and accentuate the products of the land – herbs, grains, seafood, meats, wine and olive oil.
The traditional olive oil salad dressing (Italian vinaigrette) has a gastro-history of ancient origins. Last summer a 2000 -year-old shipwreck buried in mud off the Ligurian coast near Varazze in Italy was discovered that contained sealed clay amphorae thought to still hold preserved food items. In recent years scientists have found other well-preserved artifacts from Mediterranean shipwrecks. Using sophisticated technologies like remote operating vehicles, sonar mapping equipment and genetic analysis they have been able to identify the contents of jars of cargo including an ancient salad dressing (olive oil flavored with oregano).
The first bottled salad dressing!
Make Your Own Italian Vinaigrette
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup red wine vinegar
½ tsp minced garlic
½ tsp fresh chopped oregano
1 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Whisk together and let stand for 30 minutes for flavors to blend together. Whisk again immediately before serving.
Makes 1 cup of dressing.
hing can transport you to Italy quicker than opening a good bottle of Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil. The aroma, flavor and taste reflect the character of the land. From the delicate, fruity oils of the Ligurian Riviera to the pungent, peppery oils of Tuscany to the soft buttery flavors of the Umbrian hills, the oils of the Italian peninsula are like a travelogue of flavor. Yet less than 30 years ago olive oil was relatively unheard of in the US. It was barely mentioned in the early editions of the Betty Crocker Cookbook and wasn’t looked at as an ingredient in cooking until 1973 when Marcella Hazan
published her classic book on Italian cooking. Today almost every kitchen on the planet has a bottle of olive oil in their pantry and every grocery store and market an array of oils on their shelves so much so that we may take it for granted.
Click on the following link to discover health, happiness and great dinners with extra virgin Italian olive oil.