If you’ve never eaten a cardoon, think artichoke stalks, which is essentially what they are. Cardoons are a little work to prepare, but baked with Italian cheeses they are lovely.
It should be obvious by now how much I love spring onions in all their forms. This light, lovely Italian rice dish highlights whatever wild or store-bought green onion you have on hand, spiked with fresh spring green herbs.
A recipe for spaghetti with anchovies, a take on the classic pasta con le sarde from Sardinia and Sicily. Any small fish works, though.
An Italian classic. Squash gnocchi tossed with butter and sage, and, in this case, with wild mushrooms.
Marinated mushrooms are a staple on any antipasti plate, and if you can get porcini, which are popping in the Rockies now, so much the better. Here’s how to do the technique the Italians call sott’olio.
Growing up in New Jersey, this classic Italian-American pasta dish was one of my favorites: Linguini or spaghetti with white clam sauce. Clams, herbs, olive oil and lotsa garlic! I make this normally with West Coast littleneck clams, but lots of different clams will work.
I call this recipe thistle soup. Little pheasant meatballs in a clear pheasant broth served with artichoke hearts and cardoons. It is a lovely light dinner or lunch in springtime. And don’t worry if you don’t have cardoons, you can skip them.
I love the idea of this dish. “Glutton’s style.” Best I can tell is that it is a reference to the fact that virtually every wonderful staple in the Southern Italian kitchen is in this recipe, which will work with pretty much any fish. Tomato, capers, olives, anchovy, you name it, it’s in here.