A frittata is a flat Italian style omelette in which the ingredients are mixed into the eggs instead of being stuffed like a traditional omelette. The top layer is the creative, artistic finishing touch. I like to serve a gorgeous frittata by using vibrant colored vegetables. Like a traditional omelette, a frittata can be healthy, or not.
How to make a healthy frittata:
Use egg whites
Add healthy vegetables
Sprinkle in chia seeds
In this frittata, I wanted to use some beautiful prosciutto cotto. Prosciutto cotto is the highest quality Italian cooked ham with a smooth mild flavor. Perfectly paired with a gooey mozzarella or fontina on a panini, or in this case, baked into a frittata.
Prosciutto Cotto and Mozzarella Frittata
2 tbsp. milk
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella or fontina cheese
4 slices prosciutto cotto, chopped
1 small tomato sliced
2 tbsp. Oregano
2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven 350 degrees.
In a small mixing bowl, beat eggs with a whisk.
Continue whisking while adding milk until egg turns pale yellow in color.
Add cheese and prosciutto cotto and stir.
Pour into a Pam coated 9″ round cake pan.
Top with sliced tomato, oregano, Parmesan, salt and pepper.
Bake 20-30 minutes or until the egg is cooked through and set.
Antonio Branduzzi must be proud to have the Colangelo family celebrate his legacy by continuing the traditions and recipes of Il Piccolo Forno. As a testament to the late baker’s impeccable reputation with colleagues, customers and friends, it was no surprise when Braduzzi’s close friends Nicholas and Denese Colangelo decided to carry on the baker’s legacy.
Located adjacent to La Prima Espresso Company and sharing a common walkway, Colangelo’s Bakery is a natural spot to grab a pastry or a slice. I found Colangelo’s Bakery with my kids, ages 5 and 3. They are the perfect height to spot the square pizza with the tiny pepperoni in the case. We all fell in love with this pizza.
After meeting Denese Colangelo and her son Nicholas, I knew I had to make my kids’ favorite pizza and spend some time here- yeah, I already somehow felt like part of the family.
Customers are family in the quaint bakery on 21st street in Pittsburgh’s Strip District. I was introduced to many people and saw so many faces light up while ordering their “usuals.”
Sit outside at the tables, hover at the pub tables inside, or take it to go!
It was a busy Saturday morning and the fresh pastries lined the sill between the case and the kitchen. My eyes were bugging out of my head when Nicholas Colangelo greeted me and mentioned the pizza we would be making. As I was surrounded by frittata, mele, ricotta pie, Danish, cinnamon sticks…I thought “What?”
Oh yes! I nearly forgot about the square pizza with the tiny pepperoni.
Nicholas mixed the dough in his super mixer, flattened it in the sheeter, shaped it in the rectangular pan, passed over it with the docker, proofed it…
The pizza is then topped with the finest, freshest, local ingredients and baked. Ezzo pepperoni, an old fashioned made pepperoni from Columbus, OH, to Grande mozzarella, Colangelo’s Bakery does not cut any corners.
A secret garlic olive oil sauce here, a sprinkle of a secret herb blend dashed there, I knew I would never be able to replicate this one! Oh well, we know where to get it!
Nicholas says the significance of the secret toppings lie in the Colangelo’s philosophy, “Add flavor after the best ingredients are used. That is what makes our food so classic and naturally delicious.”
As lunch time approached, I was surprised to see the menu items being ordered. Salads, focaccia, Beans and greens? One of my favorites!
While taste testing…
Denese told me the story of Antonio Branduzzi and his Mele, one of the many original recipes the bakery serves in the great baker’s honor. Once the health department questioned the refrigeration of his egg custard Mele, Branduzzi told them, it would be ruined. He made many other delicious Mele fillings after this. They sell so fast it makes no difference. One night in the refrigerator is ok, says Denese.
So since that Saturday morning, I have visited Colangelo’s Bakery and had the beans and greens with sausage, the cannoli, the avocado salad, the ricotta pie and much more. The place that was once only the square pizza with the tiny pepperoni is now Colangelo’s Bakery. Everything is Delicious. Perfect. Amazing.
(Inspired by Nicholas at Colangelo’s Bakery)
One of the most basic and most delicious pizzas.
To make traditional Margherita pizza,
Cover dough’s surface in your favorite sauce, or chunky tomatoes drained,leaving a 1/2 inch border.
Add sliced buffalo mozzarella.
Drizzle olive oil.
Salt and pepper.
Bake at 400 degrees until cheese is melted and bottom is golden brown.
Remove from oven and top with fresh basil.
Thank you Colangelo’s for having me, allowing me to cook with you, and becoming part of your “family.” It is an honor to know and to be able to share Antonio Branduzzi’s legacy with others.
Quinoa is a superfood packed with nine amino acids making it a complete protein. Although this is common in meats, plants do not typically contain complete proteins. Quinoa comes most commonly in red, black and white. Quinoa has a nutty taste and the white cooks the fluffiest with a more rice-like texture.
I frequently substitute quinoa for meat, as well as rice. Give your family a healthier alternative and more energy!!
Superfood Quinoa Eggplant Involtini
(Inspired by Mary Ann Esposito of Ciao Italia)
2 Medium eggplant, slices 1/4 inch thick
1/2 cup quinoa
1-1/2 cup water
2 cloves of garlic, pressed
2 tbsp. Aroma seasoning by Ciao Pittsburgh (OR 1 tsp. oregano, 1 tsp. basil, 1 tbsp.parsley)
2 tbsp. Olive oil
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1/2 cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Bring water to a boil in a saucepan and add quinoa.
Cook on low heat until water is absorbed.
Add tomato paste, spices, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Mix well.
Coat a baking sheet with olive oil, place eggplant slices on sheet and brush tops with olive oil.
Bake 15 mins. or until eggplant is softened.
Let cool and stuff with quinoa mixture. (Place mixture in the middle and roll.) You will be surprised by the malleability of the eggplant after being baked.
Coat a casserole dish with olive oil. Place rolls in a single layer, drizzle olive oil on the tops, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes. Take foil off for the last 5 minutes.
Serve as a side dish or with a salad or vegetable!
Don’t mess with my sauce! For those of us who make homemade pasta sauce, more than likely, we are in agreement about one thing: Our sauce is the best sauce. Whether it’s grandma’s recipe, Giada’s recipe, or from the internet ; ), we take possession and will defend our sauce anyday, anytime. Back up.
Ok, maybe too strong.
So many different recipes and ingredients all yield a great sauce! From crushed tomatoes, whole tomatoes, and San Marzano tomatoes, to veggies, meat, and spices, there are many different types of sauce and cooking variations.
I get many questions and comments regarding sauce do’s and dont’s. The latest question is “Should I brown my meat before putting it in the sauce?” Great question!
I don’t brown…but there are great reasons for both methods! Ground meatballs, Italian sausage, pork, or ox tail, can all be put directly into the sauce raw as long as you are cooking the sauce until the meat is cooked. I cook my sauce for approximately 4-6 hours.
Here are 5 observations I have made after trying both methods:
1. I love putting my round meatballs into the sauce and having them come out round! I have tried browning meatballs and it caused some kind of cone head problem. My meatballs ended up like triangles.
2. Cooking raw meat in the sauce for 4-6 hours creates the yummy tender tiny bites throughout that surprise our palates.
3. The carmelaization during browning will help hold together the meat as it cooks in the sauce.
4. Browning adds flavor and texture to the meat.
5. The fat can be drained after browning. Shhhh! (The fat adds and irreplicable flavor!!)
Of course, both methods are great! I encourage you to try them, get creative, and don’t forget to add fresh grated Parm!
This is the last dish I will be cooking for fish week! It’s Luke Wholey’s tonight for the fish week grand finale. Cool, right?
I call this dish linguini clams because there is no actual pasta sauce to scoop on top. The linguini soak up the liquid, and the clams, chunks of tomato, pieces of onion, herbs, and grated Parmesan cheese stick to the linguini. In my opinion, this is a perfect linguini clams. Much different than a bowl of pasta with a traditional marinara and added clams.
I say no shirt required because we have rookie pasta twirlers that splatter sauce everywhere and eat in their underwear ; )
Linguini Clams Ingredients:
2 tbsp. olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, pressed
1 small onion
1 35oz. can San Marzano tomatoes
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 lb. bag Pana Pesca baby clams
1 tbsp. chopped basil
1 tbsp. chopped rosemary
1 tbsp. chopped thyme
1 lb. linguini noodles (I actually use fettuccine noodles. They are a little thicker than linguini noodles and cook to a perfect al dente bite… Shhh!)
Freshly grated parmesan cheese
Heat oil in your biggest,deepest pan.
Add onions and sauté until they begin to look translucent.
Add garlic and heat.
Add tomatoes, herbs, chicken stock and mix well.
Meanwhile, bring salted water to a boil in a stockpot for the linguini.
Add linguini and cook according to package or until al dente approximately 7-9 minutes.
Add clams to sauce pan and cook while linguini is boiling. Clams will cook within 10 minutes.
Drain the linguini and add slowly into the sauce pan while mixing well.
Coat the linguini until your linguini/clam ratio is satisfactory.
Sometimes I only have 20 minutes to cook dinner! A quick San Marzano tomato pan sauce mixed with cooked pasta is quick, light, and delicious! In the summertime, I include fresh vegetables and fresh herbs! Here is one of my favorite summertime dishes!
The key to a great tasting quick pan sauce is getting the acidity out of the veggies by tossing them with olive oil and garlic before adding them to the tomatoes.
Simply adding squash and zucchini to the tomatoes creates a sour taste. Follow these simple steps and your simple pan sauce will be transformed into a gourmet dinner!
Summer San Marzano Veggie Pasta
1 yellow squash, chopped into quartered rounds
1 zucchini, chopped into quartered rounds
2 cloves garlic, pressed
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup chopped kale
2 35 oz. cans San Marzano tomatoes
1 tbsp. fresh chopped basil
1 tbsp. fresh chopped rosemary
Freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 lb. of your favorite pasta
Heat olive oil in your largest, deepest frying pan on low to medium heat, and add pressed garlic.
Add squash and zucchini, cook until slightly softened but still firm.
Add kale, basil and rosemary and coat with liquid.
Mix in tomatoes and heat through.
Cook pasta according to package in a separate pot of boiling water until al dente.
Add pasta to sauce and mix well.
Always top with fresh grated parmesan cheese.
Want to add meat?
The addition of chopped bacon, italian sausage, or ham adds another layer of flavor! Experiment!
Eggs plus flour plus water equals homemade pasta! Surprised? The ingredients are extremely basic. The process takes practice, and a whole lotta patience!
I am very “old school,” so everyone says, and old school ravioli making involves a hard surface, eggs-flour-water, a hand crank pasta machine, some filling, a knife, and a fork. I do not use pasta making KitchenAid attachments or ravioli cutters. I’m so fancy. Ha!
Kale Ricotta Ravioli
Makes approx. 3 dozen 3″X 3″ ravioli
3 cups flour
1/2 cup water
Extra flour for surface.
2 cups ricotta
2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup kale, finely chopped
Clean your work surface. If it is porous, cover it with waxed paper.
Wash your hands!
Crack the eggs on top of the flour pile and mix with your hands using a squeezing molding motion.
Add water 1 tbsp. at a time and continue kneading until a dough ball forms.
If the dough is sticky, add 1 -2 tbsp. flour. If the dough is dry and cracked looking, add water 1-2 tbsp. at a time.
This is the trickiest part. I always keep a pile of flour and a a little bowl of water right on the work surface. So many external factors are involved with dough making including humidity and air temperature.
When you feel that the dough ball is malleable and well mixed, break off a handful of dough and flatten it into an oval.
Sprinkle some flour on the pasta machine and work surface.
Starting at #1 setting, feed the dough through the machine while turning the crank in one fluid motion. Repeat at #3 and finish on #6.
(I have the craziest pasta machine ever! The numbers are backwards, so I start with #7. Took me minute to figure it out!)
Place 1 tbsp. of filling on the dough approx. 1 inch apart.
Fold the dough over and press finger between filling.
Cut with a knife into squares.
Press and seal the raviolo’s edges with a fork.
Add the ravioli to salted boiling water and remove with a slotted spoon when the ravioli are floating.
Try saying that one five times fast! My foodie friend @NickyDCooks is responsible for my dinner tonight! She made zucchini blossoms for dinner and her action photos on twitter got me in the mood! I had to make some form of fried zucchini!
Parmesan Pecorino Panko Pan Zucchini
2 zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch thick rounds
1-1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
2 tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. Pecorino Romano cheese
1/4 cup olive oil
Slice zucchini into 1/4 inch thick rounds.
Set up an olive oil plate to dip zucchini.
Mix the Panko breadcrumbs with chopped rosemary, freshly grated Parmesan and Pecorino Romano cheese, salt and pepper.
Set up breadcrumb bowl.
Dip zucchini slices and flip in olive oil to coat.
Dip zucchini slices in Panko breadcrumb mixture and flip to cover both sides.
Heat your biggest pan on medium heat.
Add coated zucchini rounds to the pan, flipping when golden brown.
What is the most daunting task involved in stuffed pasta making? Boiling the noodles! Then stuffing them, while scalding hot, because I have no patience! I get this honestly from my grandma who can pull pans out of the oven without mitts. I think slowly we singe the skin and lose feeling.
If the art of making stuffed shells, manicotti, cannelloni required no boiling, I bet more people would cook these delicious dishes. So I did an experiment with my cannelloni today…
In the first tray, I boiled the noodles…
In the other tray, I stuffed the uncooked, hard noodles.
They turned out exactly the same!! NO BOILING REQUIRED!!
Now, was it the heavy filling I used as sauce? Was it the cheese? Was it the brand of noodles?
It could have been luck, but you better believe I will be trying the no boil method again!!
OK, What was the filling?
I did a crockpot cannelloni filling because we were headed to the pool for the day!
Ground Turkey and Lentil Cannelloni
Makes 18 cannelloni
1.2 lb. package ground white meat Turkey
1-1/2 packages of Barilla manicotti shells
1-1/2 cup red lentils
2 35oz. Cans La Valle San Marzano whole peeled tomatoes
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, pressed
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 handfuls fresh basil and rosemary leaves, chopped
1 cup freshly shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the crockpot on high for 10-25 minutes.
Add olive oil and sauté garlic in pot.(This method will not be like cooking in a frying pan, but it is better than throwing it all in with no prep)
Add chopped onion and cook until tender.
Add turkey and coat.
Add tomatoes, lentils and top with spices.
Let cook 6-8 hours on high.
Preheat oven 350 degrees.
Take the lid off so any liquid evaporates.
Cook shells 4-6mins…Or don’t!!
Stuff shells with filling and place in a sauce lined baking dish.
Layer the top with cheeses and cover with foil.
Bake 35-45 minutes until it bubbles and the cheese is melted.