Food writer and passionate home cook Silvia Colloca feels most Italian when she is in her kitchen. She still bakes with her mother, shares good food with friends and of course, cooks for her family. But if you don’t have a treasured dowry of Italian home cooking know-how passed on to you from generations of Nonnas and Mammas, relax, because Silvia does and she’s ready to share it.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 8 January, 2020 on SBS Food
In the first episode of the series Silvia starts with the basics. How do Italian home cooks shop for pantry staples and fresh produce? After visiting an Italian deli that's been running since the 1960’s and her local fruit and veg shop, Silvia prepares a rustic Tuscan chickpea pasta for her daughter Luna. She then bakes two savoury schiacciata breads and makes her mother’s apple and mascarpone cake. Silvia proves that when an Italian pantry is well stocked you only need a few fresh ingredients to create simple yet memorable meals.
The mascarpone gives the cake a creamy density and moistness and a beautiful zest when mixed with the lemon.
Resembling a focaccia, these yoghurt flatbreads are topped with vine tomatoes, chilli and ricotta on one loaf and potato and anchovy on the other.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 15 January, 2020 on SBS Food
Family recipes are an eternal source of happiness for Italians, and in this episode, Silvia shares her family’s most cherished meals. Starting with her Nonna’s Sunday lunch spectacular, a rich sausage stew served at the table over a giant bed of soft polenta. Plus a timeless family favourite, pasta with potato and provola. Coming in direct from Italy via webcam, Silvia’s mum helps her bake her great aunt’s famous Abruzzese-style waffles.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 22 January, 2020 on SBS Food
For Italian home cooks, recipes have never been as important to them in the kitchen as their senses. In this episode nothing Silvia makes will be measured or mixed with kitchen appliances, it’s all hands on. Starting with some delicious mini pizzas made from leftover bread, and a delicate prawn and lemon risotto that’s so easy to make it's almost zen. Later, her mother’s foolproof yogurt and berry loaf that can be made using only a spoon. Trust your hands and eyes, and these dishes will never fail.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 29 January, 2020 on SBS Food
Bread is sacred in Italy, it’s there at almost every family meal and should never be wasted. Today Silvia shares three delicious ways to repurpose leftover bread, starting with a rustic, healthy orecchiette pasta, a baked fish dish with roasted bread and a dessert so spectacular you wont believe it’s made with stale bread.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 5 February, 2020 on SBS Food
When Italians gather at the table to celebrate there is always love, chaos and show stopping things to eat. So, with Silvia’s best friends coming to stay for few days she is out to impress, making one of her Nonna’s most delicious, crowd-pleasing pasta feasts – spaghetti with ricotta meatballs. Later Silvia makes a delicate ricotta and semolina cake that is a true show stopper, and, not to be out-done, Silvia’s friend Rose shares an old Sicilian savoury doughnut recipe.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 12 February, 2020 on SBS Food
Italians are without a doubt some of the most resourceful home cooks on the planet; they believe in the time-honoured art of cooking once and eating twice. To demonstrate this Silvia makes some ricotta-filled Italian crepes, then using the leftover ingredients reveals how to create a rustic story pie from the North of Italy and a hearty baked pasta called pasta al forno.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 19 February, 2020 on SBS Food
Italian culture is famous the world over for its art, history and architecture - but food is integral to an Italian’s identity. Here, Silvia explores how to make the three meals that have actually become national treasures. She cooks the 1,000 year old recipe for pasta amatriciana, plus a seafood dish of mussels, rice and potato from the Puglia region that is largely unknown to the outside world. Lastly she makes her version of Neapolitan pizza - a pizza dish so cherished its recipe is protected by the European Union and the United Nations.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 26 February, 2020 on SBS Food
For Italians, food has always formed a huge part of how they connect with their roots, which means keeping culinary traditions alive is essential. In this episode, Silvia and her dear friend Lina make one of Italy’s most treasured Sunday recipes, the famous ragu napolitana. Plus, Silvia makes an old school antipasto treat- taralli - and direct for Italy, Silvia’s mum joins her via webcam to help her create an incredible dessert using a stale old Panettone.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 4 March, 2020 on SBS Food
Italian home cooks are masters at the art of speedy meals, because their pantries and fridges are often stocked with essential ingredients, which, combined with a little creativity, can become incredible meals in no time. In this episode Silvia prepares a quick seafood risotto, cooks a Sicilian pesto penne in 8 minutes flat and whips up a lemon and almond biscuit to end the night.
Airs 8:30pm Wednesday 11 March, 2020 on SBS Food
Italians love tradition in the kitchen, but in this episode Silvia shares a few new tricks and hacks that Italians have learned to embrace. From a one-pot tuna pasta method even Silvia thought was too good to be true, to a no-knead technique for baking sensational bread, it all seemed too good to be true until she whips out a tomato pasta recipe you’ll be making for years to come.
Find Silvia Colloca sharing secrets from her very own kitchen each Thursday at 8:30pm on SBS Food from 8 January to 11 March 2020 and later on SBS On Demand. Head to the website for recipes, articles, tips and more.