I'm STILL a self confessing, self professing know-it-all, or so I think!

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Saturday Spa-ghett!

technically Fileja Calabresi, but spewing that three times fast is a mouthful of marbles gone horribly sideways, plus ain’t alliterative! in any case, is spaghetti epitomized to the nth degree… and then some!

danssauce is a culmination of time+effort… as well as my superduperchefskillset!!

… and for all ya foodies out there… shite def don’t get better than this!!







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chili strozzapreti… & my shite life!

… trying to juggle so much crap, and now crap from over a year ago hit the danfan today. so much on my plate, trying my best to deal w/it all. hardly have any free time during my workday squeezing in the phone calls quelling the barrage! not all was bad, thanks seema for the call… much appreciated!

as promised; the aforementioned chili strozzapreti… w/grilled naan, & creemore!


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Baked BBQ Chipotle Beans w/ Spezzati, and toasted Jalapeño Cornbread!

… that’s a mouthful, and it was! oh, before I forget, Havarti – old Cheddar was my first choice, but package was sealed. Again, the king of using what I got on hand… pasta, cheese, sour cream. Beans and bread were gratis… courtesy Iris and Tiff respectively. Thanks gals! Hmmm, am I really the king of shite, lol?!




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Boy oh Barolo!

Special ordered this December 2 … I blame falling for AMEX’s front of the line privileges afforded me! Arrived yesterday – was well within their 8-12 week delivery window! Beautiful attention to detail regarding package and delivery! Very impressed! Oh, and what’s w/ that awesome order number 95959 … it’s a prime, a palindrome too! I love it, it’s a sign from my number God, means wine’s def got to be exceptional! Can’t wait to try, and I know exactly what I’ll be cooking … more pics then, I promise! Oh, and for all inquiring minds – $100 for the deuce!







new digs, and a new friend!

I LOVE my new kitchen, the whole place kinda rocks! New stainless steel fridge, new cabinets, counter-top, island, sink & faucet, above stove microwave, new backsplash, new bar stools … but the star of the show is a new gas stove!! My first time cooking w/ gas too. In fact I had a maiden meal all planned out, I wanted pasta w/ either braised/simmered oxtails, or veal shanks … but grocery store deals dictated otherwise, so it’s pasta w/ sausages & meatballs. Not too shabby a second fiddle! Oh, true story – wanted to serve my inaugural meal w/ a Barolo … and a couple days ago allowed myself a final budgetary indulgence. It was a front of the line, membership benefits I saw in my inbox, a limited release Barolo. Perfect timing! I pounced, and if any’s left, the rest of you plebes can search ‘n seek LCBO’s inventory, when it’s finally released to the general public. I payed the same price, $49.95/bottle (plus only $15 shipping) for the 2 bottles I bought. Oh, speaking of indulgences, I’m anxiously awaiting the arrival of my next to last one … that one should arrive anytime soon. Perhaps, another blogpost, lol?!

Ok, mostly pics, few words – better, eh? A couple of notes about my gas range. Of course we all know (even if you don’t own one, never have used one), the best feature is immediate heat. I love that. But, my fave new thing to get used to, is not only the incremental heat that is available, but unlike other types of ranges w/ burners that continually shut off, trying to moderate cooking temps – gas ranges don’t … there’s never that lull, the simmer/sizzle never stops. I LOVE that!! As promised, pics …











… yep, a sucker for sweet pussy!!


My Killer Bolognese!!

… and, I’ve made many variations, today’s was extra killer! It hit me? I haven’t been food bloggin’ for quite some time. And, knowing it’s cyclical (people come, people go), it made me realize many newcomers to danistrulytheman don’t have a clue about me, especially when it comes to my cooking skills. I really have neglected this part of me, my blog … and I also realize, no one can be bothered to peruse a blog that extends 4 years+ back, just want you newcomers to know, I do have exceptional (Italian) cooking skills. So much, that lately, things I see on other blogs that would make me cringe, now elicits a friendly “like” … lol! I could go on ad nauseam about it … in fact, I MAY have previously. I kept it basic for today … I think that’s been my problem of late; too lazy … can’t be bothered to teach y’all! typically, I use minced veal, today my market had gorgeous beef (cheaper too) … was an easy decision. normally, I put my tomatoes (San Marzano) through a food mill, but at a dinner party once, a non-foodie commented that she used an immersion blender … her thinking was that any tomato skins/seeds contained nutrients, and she didn’t want to waste any of it. I’ll never forgot her words, and it made me rethink my method, and to this day, I use her approach. BUT, today pressed for time, went sans blender, dumping the cans into the browned meat, breaking up the tomatoes with my wooden spoon … pulling out any obvious tomato skins. here’s a pic of my bolognese (chunky) simmering …


and here’s my pasta boiling away. notice the high boil? plus, I don’t use ANYTHING but pasta from Italy (sorry, another topic, for another day). when the water comes to a boil, I dump in about 5 tablespoons of salt; the pasta water should taste like the ocean ( again, another day – oh, and kosher/sea salt too).


and, finally plated … my bolognese linguine piccolo w/Romano Lupa and OMG’s focaccia. and, please believe me; this pic doesn’t even begin to give the meal justice – it WAS more awesome than you can imagine!


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I’m getting a roomie? Tomorrow? Geez, thanks for the heads-up!

… always outta the loop! On a need to know basis. Apparently I need not knowing, lol!!

… is ok y’all, I LOVE my roomie! Now for the menu, hmmm? Pasta, pasta & MORE pasta!! … wait, and clemetines too!!

… another 4:20!! 😉

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three meats tomato sauce w/ casareccia

Today I pan seared ossobucco, Italian sausages, and my famous meatballs … then gently plopped them into my homemade tomato sauce letting them slowly simmer for a few hours creating this flavourful gravy. Casareccia pasta, with its great texture really helps the sauce cling, sopping it up  … oh I also added a bit of broccoli rabe before serving to give it that extra oomph. Freshly grated Grana Padano Scelto, and a glass (or two) of vino … yep, life don’t get no better!!




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my thick ass ossobuco

Had these sexyshanks a while back with the family … believe me, there’s enough meat here to feed the troops, and then some … finally got around to bloggin’ pics ’bout it. Real easy & simple too … key is to have a butcher who’ll go out of his way for you, willing to work with you … getting the exact piece you ask for, and cutting to your specs. Season liberally with salt and pepper, brown in olive oil … then, add the shanks to 1.5 – 2 litres of the best homemade tomato sauce/passata you have, and bake in a dutch oven at 350° for a couple of hours till falling off the bone tender, the marrow oozing/melting into the sauce. At this point, I pulled out the ossobuco and cut/broke apart into 1-2 inch portions. I also extracted any remaining marrow from the bones, adding it to the sauce, discarding any sinewy/grisly bits as well. Served up family style with my best al dente Italian linguine (sorry, no pics … was crazily rushing around …and stressing, lol)!! 🙄

yeah, thick ass is right …


browning away #1 …


… and #2 …


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I am the KING … love eating on the cheap, waste not want not … I’ll drag out a meal for a week, no joke. Started this party with meatballs (BEST batch btw – sorry, no pics) and my home made marinara. Three days in, digging through my creative cupboards (metaphorically & literally) I found these … Magyar noodles doing their best drywall plug imitation, and half a bag of Gomiti. Well, you know the drill … sea salt al dente, then added to ma ma meatballs … NOW I have more food than when I started, lol. Served with frozen garlic toast found in the freezer *score*, and freshly grated Grana Padano from my fridge. Note: must snap pics sans grated cheese – can’t see the forest for the trees. 💡




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Polpette con Gomiti

… and properly fancied it up, tired of always mangiacaking it down … oh what the hell – Meatballs with pasta, lol!! This creation came courtesy leftovers (once again), a coupla days back I made a batch of my famous meatballs and homemade sauce. And later looking to vary and extend it further, came up with this … it’s a baked pasta dish (my favourite way of cooking it btw), and that sliced tomato (I’ve NEVER done that before, but I had a very ripe one – and remember; waste not, want not) inspiration was something I’ve seen … I think it was from Lidia (Bastianich), maybe it was Giada (De Laurentis) though?! Cooked the pasta in my stock pot full of boiling water and with a ladle full of sea salt – should taste like the ocean, until very al dente, then drained (but with a bit of the pasta water reserved) and finally combined with the meatballs and sauce … oh, I did layer Auricchio before finishing with the tomato (and that’s Grana Padano grated on top when I pulled it out of the oven) … some pics, enjoy – mangia mangia!! 😀

my balls are simmering …

outta the oven …

drizzled with Acropolis, lotsa Grana Padano too …

the money shot – YUMM

scooped out with a spoon shot – love this …

onto my plate …

and served with toasted garlic bread …

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spaghetti n’ shrimp

Cooler temps precipitated this … plus I had all the ingredients (pretty much), AND love using fresh herbs from my garden while I’m still able to – so the deal was sealed.

Italian spaghetti (loops around – VERY long):

Homemade sauce gently simmering away:

Pan sautéed shrimp in white wine, butter sauce – fresh oregano too:

Handfuls of whole basil leaves thrown in at the very end (along with the shrimp):

Combined with the pasta (this is KEY), NOT simply spooned on top:

Vino – red, any good Italian wine … Bread – crusty, peasant loaf … and YES Cheese (give a rat’s ass ’bout any seafood pasta rules we’ve all heard to the contrary. I’m eating a tomato based pasta, I’m grating cheese, and generously too, lol) – Grana Padano, Parm-Regg, or Romano Lupa. Good Italian eating … it don’t get no better folks!! 😉