Each month we will be giving you two regional recipes from the Mediterranean. This month we will be focusing on Naples, the birth place of many of Italy’s most famous dishes. Naples food is known for its simplicity, letting ingredients speak for themselves.
This is largely due to the climate and fertile volcanic soils producing the best quality ingredients but also as a traditionally poor part of Italy the people of Naples had to get used to creating dishes while spending as little money as possible.
Starter – Linguine con Vongole (Linguine with clams)
You will need:
- 300g linguine pasta
- 600g fresh clams
- Cherry tomatoes
- Large bunch of flat leaf parsley
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 150ml white wine
- Salt and pepper
Cook your pasta in boiling salted water until al dente, then drain in a separate frying pan heat 3 table spoons olive oil and the garlic cloves leave for 30 seconds then add white wine and clams. Leave for 3 – 4 minutes stirring occasionally, add cherry tomatoes check that all the clams have opened and heat for a further minute removing any clams that have not yet opened.
Drain the pasta and add to the clams add chopped parsley and a drizzle of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and black pepper to taste, stir everything together and serve
Dessert – Crostata Di Ricotta (Ricotta Tart)
You will need:
- 400g shortcrust pastry
- 500g fresh ricotta cheese
- 1 egg
- 2 egg yolks 60g
- 60g candied peel
- 60g sultanas
- 125g caster sugar
Pre heat oven to 170oc gas mark 3, grease and line a 24cm, deep tart tin. Roll the pastry to fit the tin and carefully line it with pastry. Place in fridge while you make the tart filling.
Push ricotta through a sieve into a bowl to remove lumps add eggs and sugar and stir well, fold in the sultanas and peel. Fill the pastry case with the ricotta mixture and place in the oven for 40 minutes. Remove the tart from the oven and allow to cool before serving, the tart will keep for 4 days in the fridge.