TOAA: a standard size dry battery cell, backstage pass I hope, Australian Archaeological Association, Japanese rock band, morse code for aerial attacker and a trio of food writers, Ada, Anna, Anna.
Ada is Ada Boni, the Roman gastronomer, magazine editor and author of several books, the most famous of which is from 1925. The Talisman of Happiness. Boni hoped that his The Talisman of Happiness, a collection of 882 recipes (later expanded), would preserve culinary traditions and teach, although he did not view recipes as things to be slavishly followed; rather, as infinite creative possibilities, which, for me, is the beauty of the book. Volume of regional recipes by Anna Gosetti della Salda, Italian regional recipesOn the other hand, it may seem more prescriptive, which has a lot to do with the encyclopedic nature of the book. Although this happens when you realize that the succinct nature of a recipe can be liberating, like getting enough advice and telling him to go for it.
While both books are famous for their autonomy, I think they are even better in company, and especially in that of Anna del Conte, who translates and communicates the recipes and lessons of both (and many others) in a delicious and wise way. And nowhere more than in the anthology of his work, Amaretto, Apple Cake and Artichokes, which is divided by ingredient.
This week, carrots! I asked the three of them, Ada, Anna and Anna, what should I do with the carrots at Christmas, and the answer was unanimous: stew them in plenty of butter with liquid (which I will get to shortly) until they shine. But before you do, a word about age. Mature is better. A detailed investigation by Hans Platenius, a research instructor in the New York Department of Vegetable Crops in 1934, showed that the sweetness of carrots is controlled primarily by the amount of sucrose they contain, which increases as they age, is say, so does your sweetness. Thanks to extensive and ongoing research in my refrigerator, I have tested this theory many times and can confirm that the old, wrinkled, flexible carrot with a black tip is almost always the sweetest, and that large carrots do better with age. Also, if they are stored in a cool place for the first five months, carrots will increase their vitamin A content. Neglecting carrots seems to be a good thing.
In addition to flavor, sweetness and vitamin A, as Jane Grigson reminds us in her Vegetable Book, there is another advantage of maturity: resistance, like braising in broth or, for an even richer and more festive dish, in a glass of amber. Marsala.
Anna (del Conte) points out that this, in the Ada way, is one of the best ways to cook carrots. And I agree: it brings out the best in them, while allowing them to remain themselves. Like AAA, even on their own, carrots cooked this way are even better with others: cabbage and chestnuts, spring greens and bacon, or roasted potatoes and parsnips, a stuffed bird, or pumpkin, whatever is in it. middle of your table.
Ada Boni’s carrots – Ada Boni glazed carrots with marsala
It serves 6
Salt and black pepper
1 teaspoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of flour
200ml dry marsala, or 300 ml light chicken or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon of chopped parsley
Peel the carrots and trim the tips and tails. There are two options for cutting: cut them into 3mm thick discs or cut them into sticks, in which case cut them into 5cm long pieces and then cut each piece into sticks.
In a deep fry or skillet, melt the butter over medium heat and add the carrots, salt, pepper and sugar and cook, stirring, for three minutes. Sprinkle over the flour, stir, then pour in the marsala and 100 ml of water (or use 300 ml of broth), which should only cover the carrots.
Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover the pan and cook for 15-25 minutes, lifting the lid to stir occasionally and adding a little more liquid if you think you need it. At the end of cooking, the carrots should be very tender with a little thick sauce. Add the chopped parsley and more black pepper and serve.