November it’s a great month for foodies in Italy. Starting from the truffles that are mostly available in November, then fruit and vegetables like oranges, grapes, olives and the whole family of cabbage including black cabbage, broccoli and cime di rapa (turnip greens).
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November fruit in Italy
November is the right month to enjoy lots of delicious seasonal fruit. You can find apples, pears and oranges, to fill up on vitamins.
Apples, for example, are rich in pectin, they can be eaten raw or cooked, but they are also used in recipes for soft and fragrant cakes. The pomegranate is a source of antioxidants, to be exploited to prepare natural fruit juices.
Kiwis are a super concentrate of vitamin C, strengthen the immune system and create a shield against colds. Finally, we cannot fail to mention chestnuts, the autumn fruit par excellence, satiating and rich in fiber, which we can use in very tasty desserts, such as the famous chestnut cake.
November Italian Vegetables
November is also the month of broccoli, a vegetable with a thousand properties, to be savored roasted or boiled, but also to be used in the preparation of a tasty dish of pasta with broccoli and sausage.
In this season the artichokes are born which, thanks to their extreme versatility, can be cooked in various recipes as first courses, second courses based on stuffed artichokes, omelettes, salads.
Mushrooms are also in season and great companions of polenta-based first courses, perfect for fighting the cold, this month’s table welcomes many seasonal vegetables rich in nutrients. Such as cabbage, cauliflower, thistles and turnip greens, vegetables with a high content of minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. They also contain chlorophyll, a substance that helps the body produce hemoglobin and counteract anemia.
Cooking tips for green vegetable
Don’t cover the pan where you cook the green vegetables with a lid. If you do that the acid present in the green vegetable will fal back in the pan and ruin the chlorophyll.
The month of the new olive oil
The olives in Italy are ripe at the end of October, and the Italians rush to buy the new extra-virgin olive oil. EVO oil is not like wine, it doesn’t improve with ageing. The best qualities of EVO oil are in the fresh one. If you are in Italy, in a region where we produce the green gold, you can look up an oil mill or a azienda agricola where they produce the oil. There are a lot of the in Tuscany, Lazio, Umbria, Puglia, Sardegna.
La zucca – the pumpkin
The pumpkin is originally from the American continent but it’s grown also in Italy. The pumpkin it’s a healthy food, low in calories and rich in vitamins and minerals.
I like the pumpking chopped in pieces of 1 inch – 2 cm and roasted in the over with a sprinkle of EVO oil, salt and pepper. I usually put on a tray some potatoes and some other vegetable like the brussells spriut cut in halves and roast everything for 30 minutes at 180°.
Nutritional facts about the pumpkin
Pumpkin is a low calorie food. Like all orange vegetables, it is rich in carotenes, substances that the body uses for the production of vitamin A, and with known antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It is a mine of other minerals and vitamins, such as: calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, phosphorus and vitamin E. It also contains a fair amount of amino acids and has a good fiber content.
Italian recipes for November
- Vellutata di cavolo vera
- Ravioli di zucca
- Orecchiette with cime di rapa (turnip greens) and sausage
- Roasted pumpkin
Orecchiette pasta with turnip greens
The classic recipe includes a dressing based on turnip greens blanched in water and sautéed in a pan with a clove of garlic and extra virgin olive oil. A really simple recipe but perfect in taste.
ORECCHIETTE AND CIME DI RAPA, VARIATIONS
You can add other ingredients to this simple dressing. Here are some “classic” variations:
Pasta and turnip greens with anchovies: heat the extra virgin olive oil with a clove of garlic and simply melt three anchovies in it; add the boiled turnip greens and mix well before seasoning the pasta.
Orecchiette with turnip tops and sausage: always when browning the garlic, add a peeled sausage reduced to chunks; when it is well cooked, add the turnip greens.