Knives and Needles

Where Chefs can talk tattoos and Tattooers can talk food

Archive for the tag “italian”

Alessandra Palotti

My new and dear friend, Alessandra Palotti is a great tattoo artist and a great cook! Alexandra is Italian from Bologna, Italy where she has been tattooing for over 6 years. Alessandra and her husband, Koji Ichimaru, run their private studio in Bologna, what a beautiful place to live, definitely on my go-to list!

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Alessandra and I got to cook together one day. I made beef Milanese and she made Bolognese sauce. I had never had traditional, authentic Bolognese before and had a completely different idea in my head on how it is made. I learned so much from her that day.

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Here is a mix of Alessandra’s tattoo photos, her recipe and photos of the process. Please enjoy and try out her recipe, it will become a staple in your culinary repertoire!

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Alessandra’s Bolognese Sauce

makes about 4 servings

To be served with pasta of your choice and garnished with a good grated parmesan cheese!

1 carrot, finely chopped

1 onion, finely chopped

1 celery stalk, finely chopped

2 fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

1/4-1/2c olive oil

1 pound ground beef

1/2 tsp sugar

salt and pepper if desired

26-27 oz crushed tomatoes

15-26 oz water

2-3 TBLS butter

Brown carrots, celery, onion over medium heat in the olive oil for about 10 minutes.

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Add the ground beef and cook until the beef is cooked. Then add the basil, salt and pepper (if desired) and sugar. Let it simmer for a few minutes, then add the tomatoes and 1/2 the water.

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Let the sauce lightly simmer for about 2-3 hours. If the water starts to evaporate too much, add more water little by little.

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You will want to end up with a very thick sauce, you want most of the water to be reduced in the cooking process. Add the butter at the end, before serving. Eat with pasta and parmesan. Enjoy!!

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Grazie Mille, Ale!!  Thank you for coming out to visit and for showing us all this amazing recipe!!!!!!!! We can’t wait till you come out next time!

You can catch more of Alessandra on her Instagram, @ale1126

If you are a tattooed chef or foodie tattooer and want to be featured on this blog or Instagram, email us at knivesandneedles@gmail.com

@knivesandneedles

Ciao!!

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Rob Struven

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Rob Struven is definitely one great guy and definitely one talented tattooer. He also happens to have his shop, Garage Ink, in the heart of Napa Valley, California. Napa Valley is a destination spot for foodies and wine connoisseurs as the area is known for wine making and California cuisine, notably the world-famous French Laundry and Morimotos. And Garage Ink is a tattoo oasis within this food and wine mecca. So it was only natural that I would want to write about Rob and his love for food!

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Rob has a gluten allergy, so his diet can be pretty specific. It is interesting to cook for special diets or turning classic dishes into suitable dishes for specific diets. Rob is an inspiration to anyone who has to make the best out of eating a restricted diet. I always see him getting creative and it never looks as if what he is eating is boring or flavorless. What a fun and rewarding challenge!

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Rob’s wife, Ginger (who is of Italian decent), was kind enough to give me an old family recipe to share with your guys today. She has done an amazing job transforming this family heirloom recipe into something gluten free and organic. Go Ginger! Please read on and check out this delicious recipe for gluten free and organic spaghetti with meat sauce, you wont regret it!

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Gluten Free, organic spaghetti and meat sauce

1 pound ground beef

1 medium yellow onion

1 large bell pepper or 2 smaller ones

2 14oz jars diced tomatoes or fresh tomatoes if available

8 oz crimini mushrooms

7 oz jar tomato paste

4-6 large garlic cloves

4 tps worcestershire sauce

2 tsp sugar

2 tsp chili powder or more if you like heat

1 tsp salt or to taste

2 tsp pepper or to taste

2 bay leaf

Fresh shaved or grated parmesan cheese

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Brown ground beef with minced garlic, drain.

Sauté bell peppers and onion in olive oil.

Combine meat, bell peppers and onion in large pot.  Add tomatoes, tomato paste, worcestershire, all spices and mushrooms.

Simmer on very low heat for approx. 3 hours, stirring frequently.  Tastes even better the next day!

Serve with any gluten free pasta, spaghetti squash or zucchini “noodles”.

Top with parmesan. enjoy!

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Thank you so much Rob and Ginger! For more of Rob and Garage Ink, catch them at:

http://www.garageinktattoo.com

@garageinktattoostudios_napa

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Garage-ink-studios/142539032452465

If you have a food tattoo or recipe you would like to share, IG us or email us at:

@knivesandneedles

knivesandneedles@gmail.com

Cheers and enjoy!

Recipe of the Day, Make Ahead and Take to Work!

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Milanesa de Napolitana with Butternut Squash Puree and a Fennel and Roma Tomato Salad

Serves 4

This is a great go-to recipe that is not really very difficult. I used to eat this all the time in Argentina but it is originally Italian. It is usually made with veal or beef but I am doing it with chicken today. Happy eating!!

BTW, you can check out a bit of the history of the Milanesa on my other blog, cookwithmolly.wordpress.com!

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Fennel and Roma Tomato Salad

1 Fennel plant, thinly shaved and toss into the salad some of the thin needle-like leaves slightly chopped

5 Roma tomatoes, cut in medium-sized wedges

2 Lemons, juiced

1/4c olive oil, start with half and add more depending on your taste on how tart you want the salad

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine the fennel, leaves, tomatoes and lemon juice. Add the olive oil to taste and then season with the salt and pepper to taste. Chill until served and serve with the Milanesa and puree.

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Butternut Squash puree

1 medium-large butternut squash, trimmed and cut into medium chunks

4-6 TBLS unsalted butter

Salt and pepper to taste

Bring a medium or large pot of water to a boil. Add the squash and boil until soft. Strain the water out and mash or whip squash with either a masher, a fork, a whisk or mixer with the whisk attachment. Add butter and combine both until butter is melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Warm up before serving and serve with Milanesa and salad.

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Milanesa de Napolitana

4 thinly sliced chicken breast filets, lightly seasoned with salt and pepper

1/2c flour

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

3 1/2c dry breadcrumbs (panko breadcrumbs are great)

4 TBLS tomato paste

3-4cloves of garlic, minced

2tsp oregano

4 pieces of a good ham

1c mozzarella cheese (fresh mozzarella is amazing)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs in three separate bowls. Coat each piece of chicken int he flour first, then egg, and last press the panko firmly (but gently) onto the flour and egg coated chicken filet. You really want to make sure the panko is pressed onto the meat, otherwise the breading will fall off. Sprinkle a little olive oil over each Milanesa and place them on one or two baking sheets depending on how they fit and size. Put in the oven and bake for about 7 minutes. Take them out of the oven, flip each Milanesa over and top with first the tomato paste, then the garlic and oregano, and after the ham and mozzarella. Put back in the oven for another 8-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and starts to turn golden on the edges. Remove them from the oven and transfer each one to a plate. Serve while hot and with the puree and salad.

Enjoy!

Photos by me

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