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Sun dried Tomatoes

Tomato Passata sauce, part 1

Tomato Passata sauce, part 2

Every things thermal…

Sea bass fillet with pistachio and lemon served with seafood risotto


It takes two wheelbarrows full of wood a day to warm up (or try to warm up) the ground floor of our house in the hills, but what  worries us is the fact that at the moment here in Umbria it is not even really cold yet!!

No, surely there is something wrong with our house. So , earlier this week we decided to look into the possibility of replacing one of our fireplaces with a SMART Thermal fireplace. Although we  still consider ourselves to be relatively young (I will be soon 40 years old and Nick is 46 years old…. still kids… I would say!), anyway ,despite our young age we have started to feel the first aches and pains in our bodies and  with them , the first physical changes typical of the local people here. It is not a joke, country life yes can be so beautiful, but my dear friends, the reality is that this  natural way of  life can slowly transform you. Looking around the situation of the inhabitants of this small village in Umbria it’s easy to see the difference between those who live within the village and those who are more isolated in the countryside (like us). The latter wear a minimum of three layers of sweaters, the skin is altered by temperature changes (rosaceous) and finally the posture: the body begins to enclose like a hedgehog as a defense against the cold. MAMMA MIA I already have all three of these features and all this after only 11 years of  country living, can you imagine how I will be transformed after ten more years !!!!!!!!???????

A solution must be found, first of all  I will hide  Nick’s  passport , just in case one morning he wakes up and decides to escape  back to London without the Yeti wife , I will also have to push for the new Thermal fireplace and last and not least I’ll continue to delight him with  good food. That is my plan, but for now I`d better go and put on the thermal underwear, fill the hot water bottle (all sent by my mother-in-law) add gloves and a scarf …………… just for indoors.               Ciao

Serves 2
Ingredients: 3 fillets of sea bass (2 with skin and 1 without skin cut into cubes)
a handful of chopped pistachios
1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest, finely chopped
juice of ½ lemon
two cups of fish stock (homemade if possible)

2 handfuls of rice Vialone nano
half a glass of dry white wine
1 shallot, finely chopped

1tbsp Evo oil
a knob of butter
6 clean shrimp

A handful of chopped parsley

How it works: Combine the lemon zest, pistachios and a pinch of salt. Cut the2  fillets with the skin into half . Cover the four small fillets with the mixture and set aside. In a saucepan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil add chopped shallot, cook until soft and then add wine. Add the rice, and allow it to toast, stirring, for one or 2 minutes. Pour the wine, raise the heat, and let the wine evaporate. Keep your fish stock warm, ladle one cup into the rice, and stir.  Keep on adding a little stock at a time, stirring continuously until the rice is tenderly cooked, this should take about 15 minutes. Few minutes before rise done add sea bass cubes and shrimps . keep stir gently. Finally, take the risotto off the heat, add nub of butter and lemon juice , and stir well until you get a rather creamy consistency. Add part of parsley, and let it rest for a couple of minutes before serving. Gently fry the 4 sea bass fillets in Evo oil on both side and serve with rice and  sprinkle parsley.

2 comments to Every things thermal…

  • Ken P

    Cara Simona
    I’m very glad we will be visiting you in September, for two reasons……
    Firstly, the culinary experience which we look forward to enormously
    Secondly, we avoid the Umbrian winter!

  • Eugen

    Nick’s food photography is fantastic. Let’s see more of it. And, by the way, thermal underwear is probably not the best route to a man’s heart.

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