Italian food is one of the most recognised cuisines in the word: pasta, pizza and gelato are all associated with this culturally rich country. There has been a number of cookery books that have focused on regional Italian cooking, with a few also specialising in the cuisine of Rome. I am always intrigued with regional cooking and having been to Rome myself (I didn't have a great culinary experience) , I wanted to know more about the eternal city. Eleanora Galasso's debut cookery book introduces food lovers to the diverse and somewhat unknown cuisine of Rome. Eleanora has an impressive Instagram following of 45k, showing us the best of #foodhappiness and #romanity.
As soon as I flicked through the cookbook, I wanted to return to Rome and eat like the locals do. Eleanora's recipes are easy to follow and the photography is stunning. This is a very glamours Rome but the recipes aren't expensive to make or you end up foraging for some random ingredient.
There is a good combination of baking, vegetables, meat, fish and frugal dishes, so I think there is something for everyone. I've bookmarked quite a few recipes, especially from the breakfast chapter romantic dinners and cakes and co. I think what makes this cookery book stands out from other Italian cookery books is that there are only a handful of pasta dishes.
There are a whopping 11 chapters, all which showcases authentic dishes - also like that every recipe has a story and Eleanora's slight obsession with nuns. A nice little touch are that the names of the recipes are in Italian and English
As The Romans Do is split into the following chapters:
- Breakfast: recipes to try include: Sticky Buns, Bricohe braid with chocolate flakes and sweet melba toast.
- Merende: Bookmarked recipes include: Three bruchette of a kind, mini pizzas with tomato sauce and Polenta cake with pumpkin and apple.
- Lunch on the run: Stand out recipes include: Rosetta load with mortadella, stracchino cheese & homemade mustard and Friday's salt cod with chickpeas.
- Family Lunches: recipes to try include: Citrusy monkfish with fennel accompanied by runner beans in a walnut, mango & pomegranate dressing, filled beef too;s with argetti tart.
- Aperitvo: bookmarked recipes include: stuffed courgette flowers, polenta sandwich with baked sausage & cheese and fritter trio of Roman-style rice balls, potato croquettes and mini meat loaves.
- Romantic Dinners: stand out recipes include: crispy lamb cutlets with cauliflower and chestnuts accompanied by potato and orange savoury cake, Roman-stye ravioli with broccoli, anchovies, sun-dried tomatoes & ricotta.
- #FOODHAPPINESS Suppers: recipes to try include, pork chops with greased bread, aricca-style roast pork with "dragged" savouy cabbage and Lazio-style Ribollito soup.
- Festivities: bookmarked recipes include: pineapple flavoured mimosa cake with candied flowers, Easter bread with egg and poached peaches in syrup with cream.
- Cakes & CO: standout recipes include: Roman-style meringue with orange sauce, Chocolate, amaretti & tutti frutti cake and Apple, chestnut and hazelnut cake with candied oranges.
- Provisions: recipes to try include: Red Onion Preserve, Grape and Pecan jam and Negroni cocktail.
- Midnight Munchies: bookmarked recipes include, Braised sausages with lentils, leeks and fennel, ice-cream drowned in coffee and frothy lemon sorbet.
The recipe that I tried was the braised sausages, lentils & fennel. Quick, easy and most importantly it tasted amazing. I'm not one normally for lentils, but I loved the lentils in this dish and how it complimented the plump and crispy sausages.
Recipe for Braised Sausages with Lentils, Leeks & Fennel
Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
4 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 leek, trimmed, ceased and finely sliced lengthways
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and cut into rough strips
400g pork sausages
250g puy lentils
350ml vegetable stock
10g fennel seeds
small handful of chives
salt and pepper
Warm the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the leek and fry for 5 minutes until softened and translucent. Add the fennel and sausages and cook for a further 5 minutes until the sausages are browned on all sides.
Add the lentils to the pan and pour the stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and leave to cook for 25 minutes, or until the lentils have softened and the sausages are cooked through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Divide the lentils and sausages between plates and scatter over the fennel seeds and chopped chives to finish. Serve.
Many thanks to Octopus Publishing for my review copy.