Tortellini in Brodo

Tortellini in Brodo www.bellalimento.com
Tortellini in Brodo means “Tortellini in Broth” or as my kids call it, Tortellini Soup. Whichever way you prefer to say it it’s always going to start with the broth. Since there are only 2 elements to this soup (well 3 if you add cheese and we always add cheese so okay 3) it’s important to make them count. Start with homemade stock. Making homemade stock couldn’t be easier I promise. If you can chuck everything into a stock pot, turn on the stove and later strain you can make homemade stock. Pretty much anytime I roast a chicken I’m making a batch of chicken stock afterwards. I leave a few jars in the fridge for that week and freeze the rest for later. Which is often. Amazing how many times I use chicken stock a week so I’m really grateful to have some in the freezer to thaw out as needed.

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Lemon Tart with Raspberries

Lemon Tart with Raspberries www.bellalimento.com

I’m pretty much a lemon-holic if there is indeed such a thing. I always have lemons in my refrigerator. They go with OH just about everything and they make one lip smacking tart to boot. This one is luscious, luxurious and a cinch to make. The hardest part will be arranging those raspberries on top. If you’re impatient and want to skip that step I’d totally understand. The lemon goodness is waiting just below and for us lemon-holics, it’s pretty irresistible.

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No Bake Peanut Butter Pretzel Bars

No Bake PB Pretzel Bars www.bellalimento.com

If you’re a fan of sweet and salty then you’re going to love these no bake peanut butter pretzel bar treats. These are easy enough to whip up in about 30 minutes – you know in case you’re craving something besides a cookie OR if you’re still looking for last minute holiday gifts (tell me I’m not the only last minute girl), home-made treats are the way to go.  Either way they won’t last long. There are only a few simple ingredients that you probably have in your pantry AND they’re easy enough that the kids can make these themselves with just a little help from the microwave. No bake remember!

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Black Forest Fudge

Black Forest Fudge www.bellalimento.com

It’s just not Christmas without a  variety of fudge on our holiday dessert table. Yes my Mom always has quite the impressive dessert table. She’s an overachiever too (I get it honestly). It includes a variety of cookies, cakes, rolls/logs (is that considered cake?) and candy. I’m pretty sure we all know why I have a sweet tooth. My Mom has made fudge for as long as I can remember. Every different type of fudge but surprisingly not a Black Forest Fudge. I’m going to surprise her with some this year. Because you know we need another dessert on our dessert table.

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Brutti Ma Buoni Cookies

 

Brutti Ma Buoni Cookies www.bellalimento.com
Ugly. But. Good. That is the literal Italian to English translation of the name of these cookies. In my opinion they should be called light and irresistible or the incredible disappearing cookie instead of ugly but who am I to argue with the most beautiful language on the planet? I will just continue to refer to them as “Brutti Ma Buoni” because that sounds so much more appealing than Ugly. But. Good. Let’s focus on the good part now shall we? If you have a strong arm you can whip up a few baking trays of these meringue-esque beauties in no time at all. Luckily all my risotto making has trained me well for the whisking that goes into this recipe.

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Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Candied Lemons

Lemon Olive Oil Cake www.bellalimento.com

Extra Virgin Olive Oil is like liquid gold to me. I’m never without it in my kitchen. Ever. It’s the foundation for so many of my dishes and beyond. I even use it on my skin. It’s a fabulous moisturizer. Truth. There is no substitution for a good quality olive oil period. When Jovial Foods reached out to me and asked me to try their organic reserve blend of olive oil of course I said yes. This blend is created exclusively from three ancient varieties of olives grown in the Veneto region of Italy (which is right next to my beloved Fruili); Favarol, Grignano and Nostrano.

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Apple Pie Puff Pastry Cups

Apple Pie Puff Pastry Cups www.bellalimento.com

Everyone that knows me well knows that I have a very wicked sweet tooth. Always have and I’m pretty sure I always will. I blame my Mom but don’t tell her. Funny thing is as much as I love desserts it’s not my favorite thing in the world to make. If you’re coming to my house for dinner and ask what you can bring I will tell you dessert (or wine) every single time. Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely can make desserts and I do all the time (you do read my blog don’t you LOL). I just prefer cooking to baking if I have my rathers. I like the flexibility of cooking. Baking requires me to pay close attention and be specific with my measurements. 

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Chai Panna Cotta with Honey and Raspberries

Chai Panna Cotta www.bellalimento.com

One of my “go to” desserts has always been panna cotta, which simply means cooked cream in Italian. Shocking because it is cooked cream right? It’s my go to for several reasons: One, I love it (what’s not to love about creamy and dreamy). Two, it’s incredibly versatile, you can add any flavor to it. Three, it’s ridiculously easy to make and can even be made in advance (big bonus points for party planning). What more can you ask for out of a dessert, unless someone else brings dessert and I’m always okay with that. Always.

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Chocolate Cake with Ganache

Italian Chocolate Cake with Ganache www.bellalimento.com

I have been craving chocolate cake for a while now.  A simple no fuss decadent from scratch chocolate cake that comes together in about an hour. Don’t worry most of that time is spent in the oven baking away. Plenty of time for you to enjoy dinner and then have it for dessert warm straight out of the oven. Did you hear me exhale? There is nothing better than a warm slice of chocolate cake dripping in chocolate ganache if you ask me. Unless someone else makes it, but that’s neither here nor there.

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Creamy Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Creamy Roasted Pumpkin Soup www.bellalimento.co

 

I’m an equal opportunity soup person. Meaning not only do I like all types of soup, I like soup year round. If there’s a choice of soup or salad well that’s an no brainer for me. It’s always soup. I do tend to gravitate to cream based soups. They’re calorie free aren’t they? No? Sigh, well I’m already hooked so I’m going to ignore that little tidbit. This creamy roasted pumpkin soup is high on my fall favorites list. Didn’t I mention that we’d be putting roasted pumpkin to good use.  So far we’ve already used it to make Roasted Pumpkin Risotto with Pancetta  and now we’re using it as the base for this soup.

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Fruit and Nut Brittle

Fruit and Nut Brittle www.bellalimento.com

Because sometimes you just feel like a nut right? If you like sweet salty and crunchy treats this fruit and nut brittle is for you. Now that it’s October (gasp I can’t believe I just typed that, where is this year going) I’m already starting to think about what homemade treats I’m going to be making for gift giving. My criteria usually includes quick and delicious. I’m super strict eh? This checks both of those boxes. You can whip up a few baking sheets of this beautiful brittle in no time at all. It reminds me of amber jewelry and  I’ve been obsessed with those gorgeous chunks for as long as I remember. Something hypnotizing about it. I’m going to consider this my edible amber.

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Homemade Chicken Stock

Homemade Chicken Stock www.bellalimento.com

I was roasting a chicken this weekend because A. I was craving it and B. I also had high hopes to re-shoot said roasted chicken to update a VERY old and ugly post that is finger licking good but is buried in the ehem ugly photo post archives and no one comes to visit it. Of course once it came out of the oven, the smells intoxicated us and we had zero willpower. We carved in too quickly and alas no new photos. Boo. Happens every.single.time. Silver lining, while I was shoving chicken into my mouth eating, it occurred to me that I’ve never shared a simple recipe for making homemade chicken stock. Silver linings. 

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10 Minute Thai Coconut Soup

10 Minute Thai Coconut Soup www.bellalimento.com

I am a soup fanatic. I love soup of all kinds (well except for vegetable soup, I know odd). If it’s ever offered on a menu I’m ordering it. Soup or Salad? You guessed it. I went out to lunch with a blogging friend earlier this week to a local Thai Cafe. They had a delicious Coconut Soup that made me pretty much ignored my shrimp Pad Thai (don’t worry I took it home and ate it later) for and if I didn’t think it would have looked bad I would have tipped the bowl and slurped all of it down. Needless to say, I restrained knowing that I would most definitely be re-creating their bowl of deliciousness at home where I could slurp in private. And slurp I did. 

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Simple Smoked Salmon

Smoked Salmon www.bellalimento.com

This past weekend over the Labor Day holiday we decided to pull out our little red smoker and get smokin’.  We had family in town and we were putting on a serious nosh fest. I’m still wearing yoga pants and recuperating 5 days later. We had the typical pork butts (which is a word I am so not fond of, I mean it’s an awful visual and isn’t even accurate description, it’s a shoulder so why not call it that. Okay moving on. Sigh.) smoking away for hours on end that would turn into bar-b-que pulled pork deliciousness. We also decided to throw some Copper River Salmon into the smoking mix. I for one am glad that we did. It’s smoky scrumptiousness that you simply must try.

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S’Mores Panna Cotta

S'Mores Panna Cotta | www.bellalimento.com

You probably know by now that one of my besties, Superstar Susan has a new cookbook out. It’s all about, you guessed it, S’Mores! I am incredibly proud of her hard work and so happy to help her spread the word! It’s a beautiful book that happens to have been photographed by another one of my awesome friends, Bree Hester (aka Baked Bree).  You need a copy. Or two because honestly you’ll likely get chocolate or melted marshmallow on one and who wants to have a book with pages stuck together.

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Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | www.bellalimento.com

I’m gearing up for back to school. It’s in 11 days (not that I’m counting or anything. Totally counting who am I kidding). During the school year I bake A LOT of cookies. Not everyday because honestly I’m not June Cleaver, I don’t even look good in an apron and Bobby pins hurt my head. And now back to our regularly scheduled programming. I TRY to have homemade cookies for the kids at least once a week. Nothing like seeing their faces light up when they walk in from school, drop their bags, shoes and everything else on the floor, sigh, and see a tiered tray of cookies waiting on them. Serious Mom bonus points I tell you,  and I can use all that I can get.

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Warm Chocolate Nutella Melting Cake

Warm Chocolate Nutella Melting Cake | www.bellalimento.com

Am I the only one who feels like this summer has flown by? I blinked and it’s August. Since school let out back in June we have tried to squeeze in as much family fun as possible. We have visited the mountains of Virgina and the beaches of North Carolina and then last week we all boarded the Carnival Fantasy compliments of Carnival and took off for for 5 days to the beautiful blue Bahamas for our last big hoorah before school starts back in 11 days (not that I’m counting or anything ehem). This warm chocolate Nutella melting cake is what’s helping me get over my end of summer blues and I think it will help you too.

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Grilled Peach Ice Cream with Caramel Sauce

Grilled Peach Ice Cream | www.bellalimento.com

Did you know that I am indeed a Georgia peach? Yes I was born in Georgia. Naturally this means that I love peaches, otherwise they kick you out of the state (okay that is not true but it was fun to say). I also love (and probably overuse) the phrases “peachy keen”, “she’s a peach” and “peach out”. They have nothing to do with this ice cream recipe they are simply further proof of my love of peaches.

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Cardamom Panna Cotta with Honeyed Figs

Cardamom Panna Cotta with Honeyed Figs | www.bellalimento.com

I get really excited when I see figs in the market. Practically giddy. Okay completely giddy. Since they’re only available for a short time I load up when I find them. With the first score of the season I always make FIG PRESERVES. This way we have them to tide us over until next season. This year I even planted a fig tree. I’m praying it makes it through winter and eventually will produce fruit. If not I may cry. Luckily I will be crying with fig preserves in hand if so. Silver lining people.

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Death by Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Death by Chocolate Zucchini Cake #recipe

You would never guess by simply looking at this cake but there is Zucchini buried in there underneath that deep dark decadent chocolate. Scandalous, I know. Please don’t tell my kids about this. I try to get as many vegetables in them as possible and they absolutely adored this cake. On another note, does putting zucchini into cake means it’s considered health food? Because if so then I’m definitely on board with  health food.

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