Veal saltimbocca and...?

Hosting friends for dinner on Friday night and have settled on Veal Saltimbocca for the main and would like suggestions for sides and a pre-dinner nibble/salad/app. Would like to keep the Roman theme going but not a slave to it. Oh, and it's almost 70 degrees here in NC so maybe a nod to spring?

  • Posted by: Lunar
  • February 22, 2012


pierino February 23, 2012
Roman style artichokes are pretty simple but they do take some work. Cut off the tops and tear off the leaves until you get down to the tender pale yellow green part. Use a melon baller to remove the choke. Scrape the stem. The idea is that the whole thing should be edible, you are not going to be plucking off individual leaves and sucking on them. Make a mixture of coarse bread crumbs and finely chopped mint. Fill the center and spread the leaves a bit and force in more filling. Turn them into a pot stem side up. Add olive oil and water and bring to a simmer. Cook until the stems are tender.
Pasta with pecorino and black pepper is essentially spaghetti alla checca---definitely Roman. Add pancetta and fresh egg and you are working on carbonara. Also very Roman. But delicious as polenta is, it's not a Roman dish. That's a northern thing.
Lunar February 23, 2012
All these are wonderful ideas! Now to figure out what I can accomplish between now and then. I'm intrigued by the braised artichokes...can you direct me to a recipe? I also like the idea of the pasta with pecorino and pepper.
pierino February 23, 2012
As the semi-official "Roman embassy" here let me barge in with some suggestions: for greens; trimmed artichokes stuffed with bread crumbs and mint, braised and served at room temperature. They tend to "hammer" greens like chicory (cicoria) in Rome, meaning overcooked. Artichokes can also be served in the style of the Jewish ghetto and Trastevere (carciofi alla giuda), that is deep fried.
For finger food, pizza bianca which would be dressed with nothing more than olive oil, onions and garlic. Maybe some pecorino cheese.
They are big on lamb in Rome as well as offal, but that's not going to compliment saltimbocca which means "jump in the mouth".
Pasta, if you are up for that might be buccatini l'amatriciana; it's simple, tomatoes, onion, guanciale or pancetta, a little bit of hot pepper.
Roma Sempre Roma! There is no such thing as an "Italian" menu. It's all regional and Rome remains itself.
Forza Roma! Pierino SPQR.
sexyLAMBCHOPx February 23, 2012
simple roasted potatoes and green beans or sauteed spinach sounds good.
Brain H. February 23, 2012
Soft polenta made creamy with goat cheese and sprinkled with thyme. Or if you prefer to grill, make polenta with water, chill, slice and grill after brushing with olive oil. Serve with chopped tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil and salt like you would a bruschetta.
KimW February 22, 2012
Seared pork tenderloin on baguette with a tomato and basil chutney.
inpatskitchen February 22, 2012
And this is a great app that can be made ahead of time...just drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle the parsley just before serving
inpatskitchen February 22, 2012
Pasta with Pecorino and black pepper...and when I think spring grilled or roasted asparagus come to mind
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