This month I’m thinking of Italy, my visit to Europe this winter (Euro-summer) and the some of the deliciously fresh ingredients that they put together for the dishes around Genoa where the Genoa International Boat Show has just finished for 2009.
Fresh pesto is a popular flavouring agent to many of the local dishes. And its principal ingredient is fresh Basil, a herb readily available in Australia.
My Italian friends here like to make their own and compete with one another’s Mama’s secrets for the best mix of ingredients.
It’s good fun and good sense economically to make your own.
Why not have a go, yourself? Just remember to use quality ingredients for best results.
Notice that Basil growing in a pot has a much stronger, more potent aroma than ‘dead’ bunches. With bunches, check the smell and check the base of the stems to see that they are freshly cut.
Here’s a recipe for Pesto and some tasty tomato tartlets to serve it on. They make for a delicious, no fuss canapé to serve on board with some cold sparkling Prosecco wine.
For the more adventurous chefs among you, why not try making your own Foccacia?
This requires high gluten flour dough as in pizza and the family will find it irresistible when fresh.
Here’s a recipe for Foccacia Bread.
With a simple fresh green salad and pesto flavoured dressing, Foccacia can be served with smoked fish such as Trout or Mackerel.
These oily fish are full of Omega 3 and, along with the Mediterranean diet of salad, olive oil and minimal dairy products help the people of Italy to achieve a low rate of heart disease.
Well folks, enjoy the beginning of the boating season.
And when out on a boat feeding the crew – eat fresh and don’t hesitate to refrigerate.