Melanzane alla parmigiana – a classic Italian recipe

As January comes to an end, we propose a classic Italian veggie bake: Aubergine Parmigiana. As usual with typical dishes, this is a homemade classic and every family has their own method and ingredients to make it. My friend Gianfranco from Puglia always says “You can be as beautiful as ever, but if you don’t…

Dongbei stew (luan dun) with ribs and winter vegetables

Stew is one of the best hearty and warming winter foods, and North-Eastern Chinese (Dongbei) cuisine is full these. Luan Dun (cooked here with ribs and winter vegetables) literally means messy stew, so as you can imagine, the recipe is far from precise. It also involves ripping as many ingredients apart with your hands as…

Halloween Recipe: Bones of the Dead

In Italy, Halloween is often seen as the American festival that took over our culture, but only a few know that actually our pagan traditions are very similar to this spooky holiday. This Halloween recipe, in dialect called Ossus de Mottu, is representative of what Sardinians called Is Animeddas, a tradition that occurred during the night between…

Chinese dried meat (rou gan) – a simple recipe

What do you do with left over minced meat? Try this rou gan recipe and turn your meat into a jerky-like snack! It’s saved a lot of expiring meat for me. I’m using minced pork here, but it also works for other types of meat, and of course if you have some leftover meat that’s…

Halloween Recipe – Bolognese Stuffed Pumpkin

It’s Halloween, and while in most households families get busy carving and empting pumpkins, we decided to stuff ours! This time, with very typical Italian flavours: we stuffed it with Bolognese sauce, probably the most famous pasta sauce in the world. Since the traditional recipe for Bolognese is very time consuming, we decided to make…

A Classic: Spaghetti alla Carbonara

I won’t dwell too much on the name origin of this Italian classic recipe, for which many are the presumed stories , but none of them sure. What is certain is that this classic recipe from Lazio was popular only after the Second World War, it is one of the most famous recipes in the world, and also one of the…

Sesame Tuna with a modified Sauce Messine

Just as much as I easily find good cuts of meat in the Haringey wing of Seven Sisters, well sourced tasty fish is equally as impossible to find. So when I crave it, I make it a proper treat, spending a bit more, but trying to find some sustainably sourced fish. In this case, I got…

Imitated crab (sai pang xie) – an imperial recipe from Beijing – revisited

There’s a story behind this imitated crab (sai pang xie) recipe, and it starts with the Empress Dowager Cixi craving crabs. Unfortunately, being based in Beijing means a lack of fresh crabs, so the imperial chefs found a clever way to cook eggs to make them taste as good as crab meat. I love this recipe because you can make a huge quantity of the “crab” without breaking the bank – and the bonus is that there’s no need to get fiddly with crab shells!

Classic pesto recipe – a revisit

Let’s admit it, who hasn’t bought pesto in the shops? I did so many times… I understand many people think it is a complicated sauce to make, but actually it is super easy and a lot nicer when made with fresh ingredients. Recently, I had the opportunity to grow my own basil in the garden and…

Koushui Ji – a spicy Sichuan Chinese chicken salad recipe

For something a bit different from your standard chicken salad this summer, there’s always the spicy sichuan koushui ji, which is also very easy to make. You can use either one whole chicken, or, as I’ve done here, use only chicken thighs. I’ve also used boneless pieces in this recipe, as I find it easier…