Welcome To My Italian Kitchen!

This entry is part 1 of 31 in the series My Italian Kitchen

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As I mentioned in my 5 Ways to Be a Better Cook post on the Blended Blog,  although I am Italian and grew up in Italy, I did not spend time in the kitchen with my mom learning how to cook. I was  much too busy for THAT! It wasn’t until I moved from Italy to Florida in 1985 to attend the University of Florida that I HAD to learn to cook out of necessity. I didn’t like the food served at the dining halls and I couldn’t afford to eat out all the time. My mamma patiently explained recipes over the phone while I wrote them down (despite those international calls tariffs!) She also mailed me (SNAIL MAIL people!) 3X5 cards written in her distinctive Italian script.recipe-cards-marked

I still have those cards in my recipe file. That’s how I began – with easy, inexpensive, few-ingredient recipes. Over the years I’ve added to my repertoire but it’s those basic, easy recipes that I turn to time and time again when I’m in a hurry or I long for some good Italian cooking!

So come on in to My Italian Kitchen! Benvenuti! Have a seat at the counter while I fix you a cappuccino. You want to learn how to make one too? It’s not hard but it will take some equipment.

(Some links are affiliate links. If you purchase through these links you help support this blog so thank you for that!)

First, you need a moka. This is a stove-top percolator. They come in every imaginable size. If you are just making coffee for yourself, a one-cupper is fine. If you are making for two people then I recommend the three-cupper. We have 3 sizes: one cup, 3 cup and 6 cup. We hardly ever use the 6 cup but keep the other two out at all times. They even travel with me.

You will also need a milk frother.

And finally you will need a good quality espresso coffee. My favorite is Lavazza Blu.

To make a cappuccino, you need to first brew the coffee. The moka comes apart into three pieces as seen below. moka-parts

You fill the bottom part with water to the bottom of the screw threads, then drop in the funnel shaped piece and fill that with coffee. The bottom of the funnel should be almost dry. If there’s water in there just drain it out of the funnel before adding the coffee grounds. The next two pieces (the gasket and the filter) are actually attached to the top piece. Screw the top piece onto the bottom piece then place on a stove top set on HIGH. Leave it to percolate. You will hear a bubbling sound when the coffee is percolating. Once the top receptacle is full, pull the moka off the heat.

In the meantime, while the coffee is percolating, heat some milk in a coffee cup in a microwave oven. I use skim or 1% but any kind is fine. My daughter even uses half and half. I use between 1/4 and 1/2 cup of milk, and I heat it for about 45 seconds in my microwave. Yours may be different. The milk should be hot but not boiling.

Place the whisk part of the frother into the hot milk and turn it on. It will quickly froth your milk into a nice foam! Add the brewed coffee, sweeten to taste, and voila’! Better than Starbucks!

Come back tomorrow for an overview of Italian Cooking! (Hint: it’s not Olive Garden or Carrabbas!)

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About Sheila @ Making the Most of Every Day

I’m a wife, mom, and a homeschool teacher. I’m always behind on housework and paper pile sorting. I’m fond of this crazy life but not of melted cheese. I want to follow hard after God, making each day really count. I like to run, read, cook (and eat!). Thanks for joining along on my journey!

16 thoughts on “Welcome To My Italian Kitchen!

  1. I am so glad you started off your series with how to make a cappuccino! Yours are the best! PLUS I am needing a coffee-making solution for our camper. I have a camping percolator, but I just can’t seem to make good perked coffee. So this might be just what I’m looking for. It works on the stovetop, right? As in, when we don’t have electricity to plug into, I can still make coffee on a gas stove? And it would also work with whatever coffee I like but ground fine with the espresso setting, right? I’ll be sure to use your affiliate link if and when I decide to go this route.

    Looking forward to the rest of your series!

    1. Yes, that’s right! No electricity required (unless your stove is electric). You might remember from YEARS ago at the STC that I sometimes travel with my single electric burner. We take the moka camping with is and make it on our Coleman stove. Thank you for using my affiliate link 🙂 Try the Lavazza Blu. It’s really good coffee!

  2. Great post, Sheila! I’m looking forward to your series! I just learned that I’m not putting enough water in my moka! But then, cappuccinos always taste better when YOU make them anyway!

  3. This is cool!! I’ve ever seen a Moka take apart or how to use one. I’m not much of a coffee drink but I probably should try cappuccino sometime just to see if i like if 🙂
    I can’t wait to see your Italian cooking. I grew up in an area that had great Italian food because there were so many Italian immigrants but now I live in Texas and in just can’t find it here.

  4. My stove-top percolator and my mama’s hand written index card recipes are two of my favorite kitchen things, too. I can’t wait to see what you will share this month!

    1. Love that you have these same things, Joy. I have a few handwritten recipes from my mom, too. But mostly, she would give us the recipe on the phone and I would write it down. Precious keepsakes.

  5. Would love to taste one of your cappuccinos before attempting one myself. Not sure I have ever had one. Tend to drink my coffee black. Should I try one at Starbucks or wait for the real thing from you?

  6. Oh my goodness, I am so excited about this series! We visited Italy in 2014 and I can’t wait to go back someday. I learned so much. And now, from you I learn that pasta, like wine, can be named from where it came from?!? I had no idea. Love this!

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