Posts Tagged ‘John and Elana Talk About Food’

Crazy news, everyone: John and I are going to be at an event!

Here’s the skinny:

67 Wine and Spirits is hosting a free Sicilian wine tasting at their shop. Robert Camuto, author of Palmento: A Sicilian Wine Odyssey will be discussing his book, and there will be a sampling of Sicilian wines from a four different producers. In addition, John and I will be there offering our homemade ricotta cheese as a complement to the wine. It’s going to be fun, and you should come check it out.

I will be making this ricotta cheese (and maybe another variety):

Also, one of the featured wine producers, Arianna Occhipinti, makes my current favorite wine. You will not be able to sample it because I will be hoarding all the available bottles. This is the one of which I speak:

Here are the full details and the link to the formal, engraved invitation is here.

Where: 67 Wine and Spirits
179 Columbus Avenue
New York, NY 10023
(212) 724-6767

When: Saturday, March 19, 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm.

Join Award-winning author Robert V. Camuto for a discussion of his most recent book, Palmento: A Sicilian Wine Odyssey, as well as a tasting of Sicilian wines.

Palmento is the story of author Camuto’s year-long quest to explore Sicily’s emerging wine scene. Amid the wild landscapes, lavish markets, and astonishing natural warmth of its people, Camuto portrays Sicily at a shining moment in history. He takes readers into the anti-Mafia movement growing in the former mob vineyards around infamous Corleone; tells the stories of some of the island’s most prominent landowning families; and introduces us to film and music celebrities and other foreigners drawn to Sicily’s vineyards. Above all, he introduces readers to the wonderful culture and flavor of Sicilian wine.

Camuto will be at 67 Wine & Spirits Shop from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. for a book discussion and tasting of Sicilian wines, including several from winemakers profiled in Palmento. Additionally, Sicilian treats including artisan focaccia and handmade ricotta will be served. The event is free and open to the public.

Wines producers featured in the book and the tasting:

Ramí (50% Greciano 50% Insolia)
Cerasuolo di Vittoria Classico (60% Nero d’Avola 40% Frappato)
Pithos (anfora 60% Nero d’Avola 40% Frappato)

Arianna Occhipinti
Il Frappato

Frank Cornelissen
Munjibel Rosso #6

Tasca d’Almerita
Regaleali Bianco (Inzolia, Catarratto and Grecanico)
Regaleali Nero d’Avola

We’ll also have Arianna Occhipinti’s two olive oils – Gheta and Pantarei – on hand to taste, as well as handmade ricotta from Elana Iaciofano of John and Elana Talk About Food. Ben Wood, one of our buyers and resident bread maker will offer for the noshing his fabled focaccia.

** We would like to note that we are not responsible for any disappointment you may feel upon meeting us in person. However, John would like to add this his hair is WAY more impressive in real life.


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Each passing day on the ol’ blog is a learning experience.  Originally, Elana and I had intended to treat the blog as a smorgasbord for all things food related; reviewing restaurants, posting recipes, and starring in videos – with the only common denominators  being enthusiasm and honesty.  There was not necessarily a real theme or concentration as to what we would feature.  You were just to trust our homegrown taste buds on various food related topics.

Much to our surprise, a decent amount of people actually read this thing.  Well, thanks for peepin’ the posts, peeps (hehe).  And, in order to take this blog to the next level, we feel it is appropriate to narrow the focus a bit.  An Italian focus.  I mean, that is the type of food we were raised on, experiment with most frequently, and eat too much of.

So what does this mean?  Well, like many things we do here on the blog, the focus will be an experiment of indefinite duration and potential debate.  But generally it will mean this: most of the restaurants we will review will be Italian or Italian influenced.  Our recipes and videos, will predominantly forward Italian dishes and ideas.  In fact, even the blog, is going to be written in Italian.  Comprende, amigo?

But lovers of food we are above all.  So we will still make occasional room for posts that are outside the scope.  However, according to my father (“The Box”) all foods (and generally everything else) on this planet are a derivation of some sort of Italian influence.  So, technically, even if our posts do, in fact, stray from the Boot’s roots, perhaps we are not straying at all… naw mean?  No?  Care to debate the topic with this man?

We didn’t think so.

Elana here (that was John above, if you hadn’t guessed). In keeping with this new focus, we are starting off with a very basic, Italian 101 recipe: bruschetta. I’ve talked a lot about brushcettas, but I’ve never offered you the simplest, most basic and potentially most satisfying combination: Tomato and Basil Bruschetta. Here it is:

What You Need:

Tomatoes (4 nice plum ones, or a basket of the cherry variety)
Extra virgin olive oil (as much as you like, but you really only need a drizzle or three)
Sea salt (to taste)
Fresh basil (chopped)
Loaf of Italian bread cut into slices

What To Do:
First, fire up your broiler. Place your bread slices on a cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Place the cookie sheet with bread in the broiler and toast for about 1-2 minutes on each side (don’t forget to flip!). Make sure you keep an eye on the toasting process, because that broiler heats things up mighty fast, and I have pulled too many charred bread remains from its fire-y depths because I can’t seem to remember that I put them in there in the first place. But you are waaaaaay smarter. Let’s hope.

Chop up your tomatoes and put them in a bowl. Drizzle with a healthy dollop of olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt to taste, and decorate with chopped, fresh basil. It really must be fresh. I can’t stress that enough.

Once your toasts are toasted, line them up on a nice platter and using a spoon, heap generous amount of the tomato mixture on top of the toast. Serve immediately. Bene?

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