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Simple Italian meals to enjoy this summer

Here’s another one for my foodies; summer is at our doors and lockdown is finally coming to an end. Let’s celebrate together in style with these simple yet delicious Italian recipes.

Prosciutto e melone (Cantaloupe and Parma ham)

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Having grown up in Italy, I can testify that this treat is a  summertime favorite: its juicy refreshing taste goes down a treat with both adults and kids. Its uniqueness stems from the contrast between the savouriness of the prosciutto (Parma ham) and the sweet and juicy taste of the melon (Cantaloupe); it’s a tasty contradiction that needs to be tried. This gem is achieved by slicing a ripe Cantaloupe into thick half-moon-shaped slices and wrap each slice up with thin pieces of prosciutto. Voila’. Thank us later.

Italian Octopus and potatoes salad

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Another Italian treat that I highly recommend is this one. I’m aware that not everyone is a seafood lover however, If you’ve never tried it and feel adventurous after a whole year of monotone routine then you really should give this one a go . Wash and cut the octopus’ legs into small cubes and leave them into a bowl to rest. Wash, peel and cut a couple of potatoes also into small cubes. Once done, mix the two together in a bowl, add to them a sprinkle of olive oil, lemon and parsley and mix well. Enjoy!

Spaghetti alle cozze (Spaghetti with mussels)

Who’s a seafood lover? This one is for you. I love mussels! This can be made with any type of pasta but spaghetti is the most preferred for this meal. Water in a pot and let it get to boiling point: put the spaghetti in and cook until time set on the pack. In the meantime, get another pot and empty a bottle of Italian passata and add whichever seasoning to it you’re accustomed to. Remove the little beards from each mussel by pulling hard then wash them thoroughly under cold water. Place them into a saucepan and here, if you want, you can add some white wine and let them simmer in it until their shells are fully open. Add them to the pot with your tomato sauce and then add the spaghetti.

Insalata di riso (Italian rice salad)

Oooh… the picnic memories with this one; fresh-from-the-fridge rice covered with veggies, prawns, olives, pickles, sweetcorn and whatever else tickles your fancy. Gorgeous treat perfect for those hot summer days, where nobody wants to suffer the heat of the kitchen. This is prepared the day before and left to cool off in the fridge until cold and lovely.

The classic recipe goes a follows; Bring a pot full of salted water to boiling point and then add peas. 3 minutes later, add the rice to that same water and cook it 2/3 minutes less that it says on the pack. In the meantime, take care of your condiments; peppers (remove seeds, cut them up into small cubes and salt them up), wash and cut up tomatoes, cooked ham, cheddar cheese into small cubes, olives and, if you’re feeling adventurous why not add fruits to it? Once the rice is ready, remove from the pot and allow it to cool down. Add condiments and rice together into a bowl and mix well. This delicacy is now ready to be eaten. Want to add a bit more gusto to it? Why not add a spoonful of mayo or balsamic vinegar to top it all off? The choice is yours.