Semifreddo! A Summertime Treat

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One of my favorite summertime treats is an Italian favorite. Semifreddo! It is an icy, light treat that can easily be made at home. When you’re craving some gelato or ice cream, it can be a little intimidating to consider making it yourself. I’m happy to tell you that semifreddo is a cinch!

At Bocca Di Bacco, we make our own semifreddo with chocolate shavings and hint of espresso. However, you can make whatever type of semifreddo you like! Citrus, fruity or coffee flavored semifreddos are always super yummy. It just depends on what you blend into the mixture.

Here is a recipe I pulled from one of my personal inspirational chefs, Giada De Laurentiis that I think you all can try at home. This one happens to be a citrus based recipe and is perfect for summer! With just a little patience and  few ingredients, you will be enjoying this frozen treat in no time!

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Pesto!

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I love a good, old fashioned pesto on my pasta. But sometimes, it’s good to mix it up and have a little fun with the classic sauce. To jazz up any dinner, try drizzling pesto over veggies, poultry, and fish. You could also spread it over some bread and enjoy it as a modified version of bruschetta or as a replacement for mayo on a sandwiches, for a nice healthy substitute.

You can also switch up the recipe altogether. For example, you can substitute the basil for spinach, broccoli rabe, or arugula for a zesty flavor. Another creative substitution is to make pesto with parsley and almonds or walnuts instead of the classic basil and pesto. Serve with some angel hair pasta and you’ll wonder why it took you so long to try! Also, if you have leftover pesto of any kind, mix with some red-wine vinegar and pour over salad mix for a tasty lunch!

-Chef K

Pasta: Sauces and Shapes

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With all the different shapes and sizes of pasta, I am often asked how to choose what pasta to pair with a sauce. So, here’s a little cheat sheet to help when cooking up your favorite pasta dishes!

Shaped pastas like orecchiette, farfalle, and fusilli are perfect for most sauces. However textured sauces in particular are best with shaped pastas, for example vegetables or meaty sauces. This is because the shapes are able to stick and hold onto chunkier ingredients. We use orecchiette for our lamb ragu sauce, so that each bite is filled with a little bit of that succulent lamb. YUM!

Tube pastas are best served with thick sauces. This could be anything from a simple marinara, to a bolognese meat sauce. The tubes and ridges hold onto the sauce and get enveloped in all the yummy flavors! A rigatoni would be best with a meat sauce, while a penne is ideal for a creamy pink tomato sauce.

When it comes to the flat and long pasta family, they need lots of olive oil love! You’ll notice a lot of the thinner versions such as angel hair, spagetti or linguine will be served in lighter tomato or wine sauces. This is because they need the lubrication from the liquid and oil to stay silky smooth. For thicker versions such as fettuccine, or tagliatelle, these can hold up to cream sauces or ragus. 

Hope this quick cheat sheet helps! 

-Chef K

July 4th!

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               It wouldn’t be Fourth of July in the city without the Macy’s firework display! Now on its 37th year, this is the spot to be in New York for Independence Day. Not only is there going to be a spectacular display of fireworks overlooking the Hudson River but Usher will curate this show for the first time ever. The optimal viewing spots are going to be on 12th Avenue between 23rd and 42nd streets but anywhere with a view of the Hudson River will be just fine for all those who are trying to avoid the massive crowd this year! They are advising everyone to start arriving around 5pm in order to secure a spot so pack up your goodies and bring your loved ones for a front row view of history in the making! This once a year extravaganza begins at 8pm on the 7/2/13 and will be featuring performances by Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, Mariah Carey and Selena Gomez. Mark your calendars New York, Fourth of July is only a couple days away!