The Greedy Italians: Minestra Maritata (Spring Cabbage and Bacon Soup)

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The literal translation of Minestra Maritata is ‘Wedding Soup’. Gennaro Contaldo says it’s because of the way the meat and the vegetables marry so well together. I say that he can say what he likes, and often does!, but you could call this ‘Spit In My Eye Soup’ and it wouldn’t be any less delicious. This is a good example of cucina povera, which Contaldo and Carluccio were going on and on and on about in the two series of The Greedy Italians – and I can see why! It’s simple and cheap, but also healthy and completely fall-off-your-chair delicious.

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Slow-cooked Pork with Spicy Coleslaw and Sweet Potatoes

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Father’s Day afforded me the perfect opportunity to flick through some of my old Olive magazines on the hunt for an easy but tasty recipe to serve up to the in-laws. An impulse buy pork shoulder was still in the freezer from before I left for California, no doubt because my husband thought it was too much for one person. Had it been me, I would not have had any hang ups about cooking and eating the whole thing – obviously not in one sitting, probably. I found a recipe for slow-cooked pork shoulder with coleslaw and sweet potato fries. It sounded good and southern to me, which is not a cuisine my British in-laws have enjoyed very often, so I decided to go with it.

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Pork and Beer Stew

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It’s the time of the month where I start rooting around in the freezer, pushing aside heels of year-old bread and tupperware dishes full of indistinguishable leftovers, searching for something to stretch our month’s food budget a bit further. During one of these excavations I discovered a couple packs of diced pork leg obviously bought from the corner of the supermarket where food goes to die, as evidenced from the yellow ‘reduced’ sticker clinging desperately to the side of the package – the scarlet letter of the nearly binned.

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Asian Meatball Soup

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I think we can safely say that, even in my short life as a blogger, I have established my love for Asian flavors. The strange thing is, I don’t like ginger in any other guise – not in candy, not in drinks, not in cakes or cookies – but put it with some meat and a few vegetables and I’m singing it’s praises.

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Steamed Pork Buns: A Tragic Tale

Those of you who follow me on Twitter may have seen some of the build up to this particular recipe challenge. I was raring to go. All week long I had been looking forward to Sunday, when I would have the time to make my very own steamed pork buns. The recipe in my Olive magazine looked easy enough – time consuming, but each step seemed quite accessible.

Everything started off wonderfully, I skinned the the pork belly (and made some lovely pork scratchings which I then munched throughout the afternoon), sliced it up and made the marinade. Then I went to munch my scratchings and watch a bit of TV before attempting the dough.

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