Saturday, 26 December 2009

Recipe from Puglia.

I’ve been a little vague about the whole thing. I need to get around to writing out the whole house-buying story, something I wanted to do this summer to keep this online journal complete and accurate, but didn’t for scaramanzia, which is an Italian term meaning fear of jinxing something. I’ll do it in the next couple of days, in the mean time, here’s a recipe for anyone interested, typed with love directly from Puglia.

Orecchiette con Cime di Rapa
(serves 4)
700g of Orecchiette. (buy them fresh somehow, or make your own using water, semolina flour and this youtube video... Though I will admire you greatly if you learn from this... it took me a morning of private instruction.)
I kg Cime di Rapa (Turnip tops. Buy organic turnips, and use the green bits. Use the turnips themselves for something else, I can't think of anything off the top of my head. Maybe soup? If these are unavailable use broccoli)
4 anchovies
1 clove of garlic
12 tbsp of olive oil
1 chili
2 tbsp bread crumbs

Wash the turnip tops, get rid of the hardest leaves.
Throw them in some salted boiling water.
Once the water starts bubbling again, add the orecchiette.

Meanwhile, use half the oil in the saucepan and sautèe the garlic and chili. Chop them up first if you want these flavours to come through stongly, otherwise leave them whole and take them out afterwards.
Add the ancovies and melt them into the oil
Add the bread crumbs and continue cooking until they are crispy.
Drain the pasta and turnip tops when the pasta is cooked al dente.
Mix the condiment with the pasta in a bowel,
Moisten it all with the remaining olive oil

Writing my mediterranean travel/ cookbook is something that I’ve put on the back burner for the last year. I’ve been researching it very half-heartedly for the last year, (I think Ihave about 5 interviews scribbled in my journal) but seem to have too many other half-finished projects going on. I thought it might be a nice idea to start sharing some here on my blog on the off-chance that someone who stops by might be a keen cook or an italian food lover, and at any rate able to fathom the idea of cooking and eating again so soon after christmas...


  1. This recipe sounds delicious. I wish you would write your cookbook, I'm sure from all your travels you would have collected many lovely dishes. The half finished project issue is a tricky one. Maybe you could make a list of them and use the new year as motivation to work you way through the list. I'm really enjoying reading your blog and getting a taste of another life, another world. Thanks xo ps more Italian food please!!

  2. Hayley! This sounds delicious! Simple and delicious, my kind of food. Hope you had a happy Christmas:)

  3. I didn't realize you were working on a cookbook. What a wonderful idea! And thanks so much for sharing this recipe. It sounds delicious!


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