Summer is nearly over in the UK, but I can’t help and hold on to a little glimmer of hope that the sun and warmth will come back, even if it’s just for a few more days. To keep the belief that summer may return, I’ve been trying to inject a little southern Italian cooking in my kitchen. Inspired by my annual family holidays, where every summer since I was born has been spent in Puglia visiting my family and eating the most incredible food. A summer diet consisting of organic vegetables, home made freshly rolled pasta and incredible fish and seafood. So, to get my creative cooking juices flowing, I picked myself up a copy of Phaidons latest edition to the Silver Spoon Italian cook book range, ‘Naples and the Amalfi coast’.
I love the Silver Spoon range as not only is it filled with super traditional Italian regional recipes but love how they have the recipes divided into chapters based on the towns or mini regions the dishes are from; it has informative pages on locally produced foods and gorgeous unpretentious photography. Perfect for super geeky Italian food lovers like myself.
The recipes are fabulous, not only are they as traditional as traditional can be, they are based on the belief of slow cooking, taking your time and using fresh ingredients to make the ultimate flavour sensation dish. However, I know many of you can sympathise that when holding down a full time job, you may not always have hours to cook. So I do like to create ‘cheat recipes’ of beautiful dishes where possible without impacting the flavours.
Here is my adaptation of a gorgeous recipe, Sorrento style stuffed squid with oozy mozzarella.
- 300g Mozzarella, finely chopped
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 30g Parmesan, grated
- Pinch of chilli flakes
- Salt & Pepper
- 750ml Passata
- Pinch of Italian dry herbs
- 1 garlic clove
- 5/6 large squid tubes
- Cocktail sticks
- First make the stuffing. In a bowl, mix the mozzarella, Parmesan, breadcrumbs, beaten eggs, chilli flakes and season with salt & pepper.
- Next, in a large deep sauce pan, start making the tomato sauce. Add the passata, garlic, herbs and season. Allow the sauce to simmer for at least 20 minutes.
- While the sauce is simmering, stuff the squid tubes with the mozzarella mix and sercure the ends with a tooth pick. Leave a little space in the tubes as the stuffing will expand when cooking.
- Place the stuffed squid into the pan with the tomato sauce. Make sure the squid is covered in the sauce. Place lid on the pan and cook for an hour on a low heat.
- Serve squid on a bed of tomato sauce and drizzle on top. Serve with a green salad