Into The Vegetable Garden | Valentina Cirasola | Author and Designer

Tenerumi

How many vegetables people throw away because they are no known, or because nobody has ever shown the way to prepare them? This is the case of the tender fronds at the end the of the squash branches.
In Italy we call them ”tenerumi” and they are quite delicious. It is a very simple type food, a peasant food, the stomach doesn’t need complicated food everyday anyway and they can be presented quite elegantly, if you like.

First, when harvesting squashes, separate the large leaves, which are tough to eat from the small tender leaves at the end of the trail. Wash only the tender lease to get rid of soil impurities and cut them in diagonal to make a chiffonade.

Bring to a boil a pot pull of salted water. Salt will seal the green color of the leaves and they will not turn grey. Boil the leaves for about 10 minutes, take them out of the water with a perforated ladle, but do not drain the water.
In the same water, cook a short type of pasta, such as rigatoni, penne, rotini or ditaloni. Keep it “al dente”. The pasta texture and consistency it is very important for us Italians.

In another pan, sauté a couple of shallots or green onions in olive oil, add a couple of chopped tomatoes, or a basket of cherry tomatoes split in half (I like cherry tomatoes better), cook for about 10 minutes, then add the boiled tenerumi leaves to the sauce and let the flavor combine for a few more minutes. If you like a bit of heat, add some chili pepper to the sauce. Tenerumi have a bland flavor, but that is good too, if you like to keep it bland.
Adjust the sauce with salt and pepper to your liking, mix cooked pasta in it and serve warm with a generous sprinkle of Parmigiano or Pecorino cheese.

This is very simple and healthy version. For a richer taste, it is OK to combine sausage cut in small bites, or pancetta (Italian bacon) while sautéing the onions. Potatoes go well with tenerumi (squash leaves) in place of pasta, or Italian rice Arborio to make a risotto as usual. With or without the starch element, squash leaves are delicious vegetables to pair up with a piece of salmon, or a steak and a nice red wine served in a goblet.

Photo ©Valentina Cirasola

Photo ©Valentina Cirasola

Another type of leaves which goes to waste are the carrots leaves. They are delicious in quiches and frittata, or sautéed first and mixed in a meatloaf.
Fennel fronds are also not understood leaves, they are good in soups, in roasted lamb with peas and/or combined with eggs.

In American markets, I have difficulties finding these kind of leaves, they don’t make it to the shelves of the supermarkets. The solution was to grow them myself, otherwise what it the purpose of having my own garden? Flowers are beautiful, but food grown in my orchard are even better for my health and soul.

Simple and peasant food is the reason why in the past peasants were healthy and rich or noble people had gout. If you want to lose weight go for the greens and not for the shakes! Ciao,
Valentina
www.valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2011 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

Valentina Cirasola is an Italian interior designer with a passion for kitchen and cooking. She operates in USA and Europe.
She loves to remodel homes and loves to turn ugly spaces into castles, but especially loves to design kitchens and wine grottos.
She writes often about food and she is the author of two Italian regional cookbooks available in this site at the books Page:
Come Mia Nonna – A Return To Simplicity
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lnq8baaAq0M
Sins Of A Queen – Italian Appetizers and Desserts

Also available in various locations:
http://outskirtspress.com/ComeMiaNonna
http://outskirtspress.com/SinsOfAQueen
http://www.amazon.com/Valentina-Cirasola/e/B0031A02H2/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0
http://search.barnesandnoble.com/books/product.aspx?r=1&ISBN=1432762060

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Katrina Perkins

A force of Nature, with intense acting skills.

Postcards from Italy---Natalia Sarkissian

stories, one postcard at a time

In So Many Words

Creative writing inspired by life, love, laughter ... and a horse named Shakespeare

Art Gowns

The Art of Glamorous Fantasy

Paula Acton

Scribblings of an Aspiring Author

MAGNO

"La flamme des cuisines."

Teagan's Books

Now available: "Murder at the Bijou - Three Ingredients I"

litadoolan

Any old world uncovered by new writing

The Love of History

Another site/blog for loving history

Life is too short to drink bad wine

La vie est trop courte pour boire du mauvais vin

Badfish & Chips Cafe

Travel photos, memoirs & letters home...from anywhere in the world

daysandmonths

a journey of discovery with my camera...

yadadarcyyada

Vague Meanderings of the Broke and Obscure

Chasing Destino

I'll be outside of the mosh pit . . . waiting with bandaids and kleenex . . . I can also work magic with an ace bandage. Just sayin' . . .

this man's journey

Each journey has a story to tell. Each story has the possibility to bring about change, hope, joy, comfort, healing.

LEANNE COLE

Fine Art Photographer ~ Daring to be Different

Through Harold's Lens

Harold Green Photography

HarsH ReaLiTy

A Good Blog is Hard to Find

The Punchy Lands!

Embrace Your PUNCHY Nature

In Bruttium

Uncovering Calabria & The Mezzogiorno, One Toe At A Time. | By Adam Underhill

Design Secrets

fulfill your craving for a beautiful home

Decorating by Donna • Color Expert

A Virtual Color Expert who is highly specialized in designing color for your home.

Green Door Hospitality

Adventures in Everyday Entertaining

DEAR HUMAN

These letters are written to remind you just how much you matter, just how important you are, and just how beautiful the gift of life as a human is.

Tanamannya

Tanaman, Alam Semulajadi Dan Yang Berkaitan

Specifier Review

Architecture, Design & Innovation

%d bloggers like this: