Traditional Rustic Italian Fare
While many Italian restaurants try to bring a taste of traditional Italian cuisine to their dishes, few truly succeed in translating the beauty of family recipes onto our plates. Mad Tomato Italian Kitchen accomplishes both. Louis area. Their motto says it all: “Eat fresh, support local [and] build upon the tradition of providing good food and good times”
While Mad Tomato is rooted in traditional Italian customs, it delivers fantastically tasty entrées. The array of dishes on its extensive menu include some fan favorites, with appetizers like Hunter’s Egg with a farm fresh egg, white beans, pancetta, and polenta, as well as bruschetta with fresh tomatoes, eggplant, and ricotta cheese on top of a bed of arugula. For the main course, the pomodoro pizza hits the spot, with fresh tomato sauce made with chilis and roasted garlic topped with a thin coat of ricotta cheese. Another favorite entrée is Grandma’s special recipe of pork-rib ragu, with homemade fettuccine and light cheese, or rabbit ragu, served with fava beans and roasted carrots. Finally, the orange flavored cannoli or the peach crostata, filled with seasonal fruits and a scoop of blackberry ice cream, tops off the night right.
While Mad Tomato is commended for its wonderful food, it also has a great atmosphere. Its casual yet upscale environment as well as the stocked wine bar and pleasant service gives the restaurant a warm and comfortable feeling. Mad Tomato is no stranger to public praise. Reviewed by publications like St. Louis Magazine, Feast Magazine and Sauce Magazine, Mad Tomato Italian Kitchen creates a fun and relaxed dining experience that allows diners to sit back and truly enjoy their meals.
65 Italian-American Dinner Ideas
We know you love pizza and pasta, but we have a few other ideas.
The idiot-proof way to make chicken parm.
Making your own meatballs and sauce makes it even better.
Homemade ricotta is like nothing you've ever tasted.
Once you go air fryer you'll never go back.
Add a little spice to your life.
That balsamic glaze is rocking our world.
Try 'em with zoodles for a healthy-take on the Italian fave.
It's definitely not lacking in the flavor department.
Pizza doesn't deserve ALL the hype. Justice for calzones (especially this one!)
Tomatoes cooked in balsamic vinegar are the perfect sweet-tart compliment to this cheesy chicken.
Zucchini boats stuffed with sausage and breadcrumbs is the bomb low-carb dinner.
The only meatball recipe you'll ever need.
Change up your sauce game with this easy lamb dish.
Customize this versatile skillet with your favorite vegetables!
Bonus: Way cheaper than a trip to Italy.
Step out of your chicken comfort zone.
Easiest sauce ever = ricotta and pasta cooking water.
This is our new Italian dreamboat.
This one-pan lemony chicken is a total winner.
You have no excuse to not make this stupid-easy ragu: Made with ground turkey, white wine, and crushed tomatoes, it's a flavor bomb.
Rustic Italian Tomato Pie
Neither my husband nor I had ever heard of this before living here.
But lately I’ve seen it featured in Southern Living and on some of the food shows that I’ve been watching while laid up on the recliner healing my back after surgery. We were really grateful for the kindness extended to us from our friends who are native Southerners when they baked one of these pies to give us this week . . . and that certainly gave my husband a night off from cooking while I’m on the mend from surgery.
From the Northeastern region of the States, I found that there is a thick pizza-focaccia bread based tomato pie that I’d like to make later on. From the photos, it looks like a thick pizza with an equally thick layer of tomato sauce on top (not sliced tomatoes) and nothing else. Already I could see a difference in the sub-cultural interpretation of tomato pie!
Meanwhile within the pages of one of my Italian cookbooks, “Vegetables From An Italian Garden”, I found a photo and recipe for a ‘rustic’ tomato pie. It doesn’t look like a pie at all, but since that’s what the title stated I set out to try it.
This recipe did not fail my expectations even my husband ate a whole ‘slice’!
Where do you find the most authentic and traditional Italian Recipes? Only at Cooking with Nonna.
Enjoy our Grandma's files for the most Original and Traditional Italian Food and Cuisine. Our collection includes: Pasta dishes, Soups, Desserts, Cookies, Fish, Meat and all the traditional Italian Holiday recipes prepared by our Nonne, our Grandmothers, who are the keepers of the most treasured traditions. It is like getting Free Italian Cooking lessons at your own pace. So, please become a member of La Famiglia and immediately have access to all the Best Italian Recipes. By joining La Famiglia we can also keep you informed of all new events and offers going on at Cooking with Nonna. Remember, when it comes to Italian Food. there is no higher authority than Nonna!
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Believed to have originated from the city of Naples, this well-loved and yet another classic Italian dish is made by baking sheets of lasagne pasta layered with cheese, ground meat, vegetables and different varieties of sauces, such as the ragù, bechamel or tomato sauce. This dish should definitely not be missed out on if you want to have a taste of true Italian cuisine.
- ½ cup olive oil
- 2 white onions, diced
- 8 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (28 ounce) can petite diced tomatoes
- 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon white sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 cup freshly grated Pecorino-Romano cheese, divided
- ¾ cup chopped fresh basil
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven or heavy pot over medium heat cook and stir onions for 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes more.
Mix petite diced tomatoes, diced tomatoes, white wine, tomato paste, oregano, salt, sugar, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and bay leaves into onion mixture reduce heat to low, cover Dutch oven, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until flavors blend, about 1 hour.
Remove Dutch oven from heat. Add 1/2 cup Pecorino-Romano cheese, basil, and parsley into into sauce stir until cheese melts, about 5 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Sprinkle remaining cheese over sauce when serving.
How to make Frutti di Mare Seafood Spaghetti:
- Quickly sauté some garlic and red pepper flakes in olive oil, about 20 seconds.
- Add clams and mussels and hit it with a good splash of dry white wine. Insane!
- Stir in your shrimp and squid tentacles, then add some good homemade arrabiata sauce. Don’t be stingy!
- Toss some spaghetti or linguine with the seafood and the sauce and dive in!
Williams-Sonoma Rustic Italian: Simple, Authentic Recipes for Everyday Cooking
This book offers over 100 recipes that are inspired by classic Italian favorites, but are lighter, fresher, simpler, and perfect for today’s busy home cook.This engaging, accessible everyday Italian cookbook features 100 simple recipes highlighting fresh, seasonal ingredients. The recipes are divided into six chapters, which are organized by course. Author Domenica Marchet This book offers over 100 recipes that are inspired by classic Italian favorites, but are lighter, fresher, simpler, and perfect for today’s busy home cook.This engaging, accessible everyday Italian cookbook features 100 simple recipes highlighting fresh, seasonal ingredients. The recipes are divided into six chapters, which are organized by course. Author Domenica Marchetti’s lively voice shines through in the evocative text, which grounds us in place and season. The food is rustic—loose and not perfectly composed—and the recipes use familiar ingredients but are also modern, offering a subtle element of surprise through interesting flavor pairings and the use of a wide range of produce and Italian pantry stapes. There is a festive vibe to the recipes and text—this is food to share in a casual setting with family and friends. Wine pairings are offered for every recipe, adding to the convivial feeling of the book.
Bring the bold and beloved flavors of Italy into your kitchen with this enticing collection of authentic dishes made modern. In these pages, author Domenica Marchetti shares her rich Italian heritage with an abundant array of simply prepared foods that embrace the seasons and celebrate traditional ingredients and techniques.
The more than 100 recipes are organized by course, from antipasti such as crostini with tasty toppings and saffron-infused rice croquettes to dolci like pistachio gelato and plum-almond cake. In zuppe e insalate, discover soups and salads to match every occasion, such as hearty wild rice soup with porcini and escarole, a tomato-based Livorno-style fish stew, a simple salad of beets with blood oranges and fennel, and green beans tossed with ricotta salata and lemon. You’ll also find dishes like spaghetti with summer squash and crispy speck, risotto with Prosecco and radicchio, and Roman-style pizza with spinach and olives. In pesce e carne, look for such favorites as Tuscan-style steak with crispy potatoes and roasted branzino with herbed farro. And, as in Italy, the vegetables here shine with little adornment in contorni like wine-braised broccoli rabe, spicy sautéed kale and chickpeas, and oven-roasted endive.
Wine-pairing suggestions and guides to Italian cheeses, salumi, and pantry staples round out this fresh take on home-cooked Italian fare.
"This collection reflects how I cook at home. My favorite dishes to make for family and friends are uncomplicated ones—recipes that honor ingredients and the seasons, with a nod to my Italian heritage.”
A less intense version of the Negroni, gin is swapped out for sparkling water.
Recipes you want to make. Cooking advice that works. Restaurant recommendations you trust.
Quick & Easy Rustic Summer Tomato Tart
Every summer we seem to have an excess of something in our garden. It is often zucchini, although this year our zucchini started off strong but then fizzled out to nothing. Our tomatoes however, have taken over, and our tomatoes plants have outgrown their six-foot stakes and are now either folding over or are growing into our olive trees. We have never had plants grow like these ones have, and despite the fact that we have four or five different varieties, they are all growing like weeds. With the temperatures in the nineties and with constant sunshine, I am presently picking a large basket full of tomatoes each and every day. Although I love eating raw tomatoes, one can only eat so many, so I have been using them for sauces, soups, freezing them, canning them, and basically, using them up every way I can think of. I recently decided to try something different, and pulled a package of puff pastry from the refrigerator and pulled together this light tart for lunch that I served with a big mixed salad.
I try and keep puff pastry in my refrigerator as often as possible because it is so versatile and you can use it for a quick appetizer, or a sweet dessert in mere minutes. I used large beefsteak, or “cuore di bue” tomatoes, although you could use any ripe, tasty tomato that you prefer. I think a combination of yellow and red heirloom tomatoes would be gorgeous on this tart as well. To add flavor and substance to this tart, I first covered the bottom of the tart with some shredded mozzarella and a little grated Parmesan cheese. After layering the tomatoes over the cheese, I sprinkled on more grated Parmesan along with some minced fresh basil, then simply baked it until the tart was golden brown. I like to cut this tart into good sized squares, but you could cut it into smaller pieces to pass around with a glass of wine when entertaining.