Thursday, 20 June 2013

Bistecche di tonno fresco con rosmarino, aceto balsamico e asparagi ( Fresh tuna steaks with rosemary, balsamic vinegar and asparagus )




The sea was rough and the sky cloudy, but the mermaids were still there, singing their song, sailing on waves, and tickling starfish,  while the sun was playing hide and seek. She though of the past, long time ago... that day she went to the beach with her father. She was only little, the waves high and scary. I still don't know why her father sat her on a rock, like a little island surrounded by sea foam, sprays of salt water and bright green seaweed.








She was scared, in her little white and blue swimming costume, she cried and she screamed, but nobody came to help. She was like a little mermaid, all alone, on a tiny island, screaming with each and every wave. To this day, I still don't know why I was left on that rock, all alone, surrounded by waves and wind... I don't know... but I know that on that day, the sea and I became best friends... 

Many of my childhood memories are connected with my father, who was a very sweet, lovely man. He never once shouted, or got cross. He always had so many stories to tell and so much love to give... I miss him!

In Summer, Babbo would take me to the beach. He taught me how to catch crabs and how to hold them, so you don't get pinched. On the way home, he would stop the car and buy us both an ice cream.I always had vanilla... it's still my favourite!  He loved ice cream more than anything! And he loved us. My dad also had a bike. It had a little seat at the front... it was my seat. Sometimes he would ride to the beach, with this tiny, proud little girl sat at the front. He paraded me like a little blond trophy. He was such a special dad, my beautiful Babbo!

I do love the sea and the gift it brings. Many of my happy memories are connected with the sea... the beautiful blue sea...

Today I went to my sister's villa. The beach is right across the street... I love it! On my way back, I stopped to buy some fish.






 A big piece of bright red tuna caught my eye and I bought a couple of huge (expensive) steaks. I brought them home and decided to "create" something delicious with it, which I thought you might like, too!








PS: If you don't like fish, you can make this with pork chops (cooked tuna does resemble pork!) But fresh tuna is so good and can be eaten raw in carpaccio (well... I do!)

This is what I made with my fish:





Bistecche di tonno fresco
con rosmarino, aceto balsamico
e asparagi

(Fresh tuna steak with rosemary, balsamic vinegar 
and asparagus)

(Serves 2)

INGREDIENTS:

2 fresh tuna steaks
5 tbsp olive oil
1 small garlic clove
a small handful cubed pancetta
1 rosemary sprig
balsamic vinegar
fresh parsley
salt

8-10 asparagus spears




This recipe is very quick and easy! Place the oil in a non stick frying pan. When hot, add your pancetta cubes and cook until crispy. Next,  add the chopped garlic. Brown, then add a sprig of fresh rosemary. Stir, so the flavours mingle. You are now ready to cook your tuna.





 You need to be very gentle with tuna, as it's very delicate and, if you're not careful, it will break and separate, just like the tinned stuff. Cook gently for about three minutes on each side, then add some lovely balsamic vinegar, as much or as little as you like. I like lots! And, if like me, you like a bit of "spice" in your life, some fresh chilli would be an excellent addition! But it's optional! What you "must" add is a little bunch fresh parsley.

While you are cooking your fish, bring some water to the boil (I used a shallow rectangular dish for this) and cook your asparagus for just three or so minutes. Drain, place  and set aside. If you want your asparagus to stay green, place it in ice cold water, after cooking. I am practical and very quick, in the kitchen, so I don't bother!






Take your fish out of the pan, then put your drained asparagus in the juices and stir. As you can see from the picture... 






 I served my asparagus with the fish and a lovely mixed salad of tomatoes, mixed salad leaves, capers, olive oil, fresh basil leaves and ricotta salata (a bit like Feta cheese, but nicer! Sorry, nice Greek followers!)  You can use Feta, instead!









BUONO, BUONO, BUONO ---

BUONISSIMO!

37 comments:

  1. There is something about the Italian language that makes a dish even tastier than it already is :-)!

    Your dish sounds delicious Anna.....and you have the gift of a true storyteller!

    Have a lovely day!

    Madelief x

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  2. Oh, thank you! My grandmother was a storyteller! And I do love writing. So... thank you very much!

    The Italian language is beautiful and very musical. I can't think of any Italian word I don't like, except... oh, yes... there is an ugly one: BERLUSCONI!

    Just having fun!

    BUONA NOTTE e GRAZIE!

    PS: The dish is good, too!

    ANNA
    xxx

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  3. Dear Anna - hello wherever you are - not sure whether you are in UK or Italy? Perhaps
    your dear Babbo placed his precious blond princess on the rocks to keep her safe. He knew that she would stay there safely whilst he was doing what? may be looking for crabs or other shell fish for supper!!!
    Sounds a lovely recipe - two of my favourite things, fresh tuna and asparagus. I also find that some pancetta or similar adds and enhances fish. I usually wrap my salmon steaks in slices of parma ham before cooking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Rosemary,

      We are actually at our new town house, in Italy. I think you are probably confused as when I tell my little stories, I kind speak in the first and third person and I sometimes go from past to present. That's because I'm the Quentin Tarantino of Blogland (I have a kind of Post-Modern(istic) style, when I write!
      You are right about pancetta adding a welcome extra flavour to a fish dish, especially when the fish is not too fishy!

      Very hot here, but just beautiful!

      Hugs

      ANNA
      xxx

      Delete
  4. So lovely, Anna! How lucky you are to be in Italy by the sea!! The recipe sounds delicious! Grazie!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Sandy! Our new house is in a town not far from the sea. It's still very hot, as I write. We are about to have a vegetarian supper of green vegetables (scarola) with pureed broad beans and Olive oil. Love it!

      CIAO!

      ANNA
      xxx

      Delete
  5. Hello Anna, a wonderful tribute to your Father. I love the sea too. It's so nice to spend time with family near the sea and eating fresh seafood. Your tuna steak look so delicious and the asparagus looks so fresh! yum!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it was truly delicious. we have fantastic seaffod and an incredible varoety of vegetables! YUM!

      You should really try this recipe! It's so good!

      CIAO!

      ANNA
      xx

      Delete
    2. Sorry for all the typos! I wasn't wearing my glasses! I can spell, I swear! Anna x

      Delete
    3. Sorry for all the typos! I wasn't wearing my glasses! I can spell, I swear! Anna x

      Delete
  6. Hello Anna

    A delightful story of you sitting on the rock serving your apprenticeship for a love of the ocean. The tuna looks delicious and quick too.
    Enjoy every minute by the ocean and to think summer is just beginning
    Ciao Anna

    Helen xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear helen,

      It's the third time I try to reply and what I write doesn't appear. I love the "apprenticeship" idea! It certainly worked, as I adore the sea! But that is inevitable, I guess, when you were born in a city on the Adriatic coast.

      The recipe is delicious and you should try it (if you like cooking, that is...)

      It's very hot here and I am sitting by a huge fan, as I write. I have lost count of how many cold showers I took, today!

      HAPPY WEEKEND, HELEN!

      HUGS

      ANNA
      xx

      Delete
  7. I think I have my menu sorted for Sunday now. The skies here are grey and yucky but I can bring a little Italian sunshine to my table with this delicious looking recipe. I will buy my fresh ingredients Sunday morning. Have a splendid weekend Anna.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Paul,

      You do make me happy, as you actually use some of my recipes. I love your enthusiasm.

      I will make an Italian carrot cake (I think) for the blog, which should be really good. Did you know that carrot cake originated in Venice?

      HAPPY SUNDAY!

      ANNA :)

      Delete
  8. Dear Anne,what a lovely story!!!
    And your dish sounds delicious!!!!It's a great recipe!!
    I'm so happy that you're in beautiful Italy!!And so close to Greece!!I'm sure you are having a wonderful time!!
    Happy hollidays and have fun!!
    Dimi..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Dimi,

      Yes, we are not too far from each other. It's so hot, though, but I can stand it...

      I'm glad you like the recipe!

      HAPPY SUNDAY!

      HUGS

      ANNA
      x

      Delete
  9. Anna, you are a storyteller. What a beautiful story. I've got a lovely image of that little girl on the cliff. And memories from my childhood summer beach are turning up in my mind.

    Your dear father kept an eye on you from a distance.

    Thank you for a lovely recipe. I love the Italian touch.

    Grethe `)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello, Grethe! When I was little, our grandmother lived with us. She was the real story teller. I would spend whole Winter afternoons looking at clouds with her, trying to guess what they could be (horses, etc.)
      My grandmother died at our house. I was ten, and I remember her last breath. For hours, she told us stories. The last one was about a mother mouse who was pushing her babies in a pram! So, maybe, I take after her!

      I am glad my childhood tale took you back to your own childhood, Grethe!

      Grethe, my father still keeps an eye on my, even from wherever he went, after he died. Love (not blood) is thicker than water"... I can still feel his love, and that is really nice...love never dies, does it?

      Thank you for your lovely comment. My grandmother would be happy about people calling me a storyteller, because she taught me how to be one!

      CIAO!

      ANNA
      x

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  10. You are at home !!! Another unique way to tell us this beautiful story !Your plate looks delicious ! I am very glad that you are at your lovely hometown and enjoy the summer with your beloved !

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hello Olympia! I just found your comment. I guess you must have been away, somewhere nice! We just got back from our home in Campania, up in the mountains, but still only ten minutes away from the sea.

    We are very busy, trying to get this house together... it's hard work!

    Will be posting again soon. I'm so busy!

    LOVE

    ANNA

    ReplyDelete
  12. Dear Anna,
    I am late with my comments.. i have only just got my old blog back and hope it stays with me.
    I love this dish.. I eat a lot of fresh tuna.. the menu is very much like what we make here with the ricotta ... I love ricotta by itself with a little salt and pepper..
    also with honey and walnuts.. its delicious..
    A great recipe.
    Most of all i love your story.
    you took me back to my childhood days, when my father would walk me to the little tidal pools and show me the crabs.. i always wore little plastic beach sandals..
    A loving enjoyable post Anna.
    baci
    val x xx x

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    Replies
    1. Hi Val! I think you somehow saw an old post of mine, dating back to two years ago. I remember the recipe; really good! I prefer ricotta in sweet dishes, rather than savoury!

      I am late answering, as I am very busy here at our new house, still full of unopened boxes and furniture! So stressfull!

      The good thing is the weather: fantastic every day! Will be posting again, soon!

      LOVE

      ANNA

      xxx

      Delete
  13. Mmmmmmm......che buono !! ;0)

    Comment c`est jolie la mer !!


    Bonne semaine!!

    xxx Maria xxx

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    Replies
    1. Merci beaucoup, Maria! I hope you are well- I am very, very busy with our new house in Italy! VERY BUSY!

      Merci pour ton commentaire.

      Bonne semaine a toi, aussi!

      XXANNA XX

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  14. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I have neglected my blog and blogging and feel aewful, but I am very busy sorting out this new house we have bought in Italy. It's big (three floors) and there is so much to sort out (2.500 books amongst other things!)

      Will be back soon with more recipes and images from Italy!

      Thank you for a lovely comment!

      ANNA

      xx

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  15. Cara bella Anna - Your tuna steaks look fantastic and I know that they taste wonderful! Usually I do them with coriander seeds, fresh coriander and lemon! Now that the weather is hot - that is what I ought to cook! Thanks for the idea! Today I went to the cinema with my son and watched "La grande bellezza" - a wonderful movie a bit like a Fellini - chaotic but with magic pictures and hearing the language and seeing those beautiful people was great and very inspiring! Unfortunately no long holidays for me in Italy this year but maybe a short trip to northern Italy... just a two hours train ride from Berne! Have a good time and as always BMH&B Christa

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    Replies
    1. Dear Christa,

      It's lovely to hear from you, again. I have not even had time to look at blogs, as we are so busy, with this new house in Italy, which is taking so much time and energy! Good job my home in UK is still there, as the thought of being here forever would drive me mad, as much as I love the place!I am afraid I got used to the British way of doing things and I find a side of the Italian lifestyle a bit difficult.

      I like Italian movies, too, especially some of the old ones... love the music!

      I hope you see this reply, Christa!

      BMH&B to you, too...

      ANNA

      xxx

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  16. Anna..your story was lovely. I could see your memories turned into a wonderful children's book emphasizing the warm loving relationship between a father and daughter.. Complete with beautiful watercolor illustrations! Dinner sounded awesome,too! Smiles... Susan

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    Replies
    1. Hello Susan! Thank you so much for your truly LOVELY comment!I can imagine the watercolour illustrations... it would be so nice seeing a picture of my dad riding his bike through the chaos of a big city, with me, on my little seat eating an ice cream!

      Will be posting again soon. We have been busy with our new house in Italy, though it's beginning to look good, except for my husband's library... a right mess! He only has 2.500 books to put on shelves!

      CIAO!

      ANNA

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  17. Hello Dear Anna, This is a very late visit from me! That is a delicious dish, so tasty and summery.
    I too love the sea. My parents tell of how, on my first visit, when I was about two, I tottered down the beach and just kept going- right into the water and was perfectly happy, so I think I must have always felt at home there. Hope you are still enjoying a happy time in your beloved Italy, love Jane xx

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    Replies
    1. Hi Jane! Yes, it's lovely here, though I do miss my England! I'm hoping to come back next month to spend some time at my house.

      So hot here, you wouldn't believe it! Though I think we might get some rain, soon, today, as the sky is turning grey. It would be welcome, believe me!

      Got some lovely plants and a grapevine... plants grow so quick and so fast here!

      Will be posting again, by the end of the week. I have this ricotta cake I want to make, but I keep eating the cheese!

      HUGS

      ANNA
      xxx

      Delete
  18. You paint wonderful pictures with your story of your lovely father I could really see you there sitting before the mighty ocean and weeping into your swimsuit. I wonder why he left you there? Maybe he wanted to see if you could beat your fear, a tough lesson I think. But your Dad sounds lovely and it really comes across how much you loved each other.

    Jane

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    Replies
    1. Hello Jane! I am so glad I came to check my blog, only to find a few wonderful comments!

      I don't know why I was left on that rock... maybe he didn't think I would be scared... I don't know, really...

      I was blessed with wonderful parents, who loved each other. They shared everything and taught us a lot about life and love. Not one day passes when they are not mentioned. They are certainly still alive.

      It makes me happy to realize that my childhood memories are actually read and appreciated. Thank you so much!

      Look out for my next post. Like I already told Jane, I will have to stop eating the ingredients and make that ricotta cake for the blog!

      HAVE A LOVELY WEEKEND!

      ANNA
      x

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  19. Just called by for a lovely Italy fix as it seems you and I have changed places. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kind of, Lundy, as I still have my home in England, where we will also be spending time. I love England to much.... It's my home and I actually miss it a lot! Be back soon!
      Hugs
      Anna xx

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