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Nicoletta e Fabio

Nicoletta e Fabio B.

Milano (MI) - Lombardia

The Milanese Cesarini couple Nicoletta and Fabio reinterpret the culinary traditions of their regions of origin: Emilia Romagna and Lazio. Indomitable travelers and lovers of their own home, both journalists and cooking enthusiasts, this solid Milanese couple toils together over the stovetop, “even taking the risk of having an argument.”

Nicoletta and Fabio’s kitchen translates culinary influences from the regions of their family members into”Milanese.” In their beautiful home, food becomes a joyous trail that embraces diners sitting around Nicoletta’s elegantly set table, where you can admire the beautiful embroidered tablecloths that the Cesarina has inherited from her family.

In the country of Arcimboldo the boiled meat with vegetables

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From Emilian and Milanese family Nicoletta, Milanese and Roman Fabio, our two guests reinterpret their history through a menu that explores and combines the three regions. Lombardy is revisited in the risotti and boiled meats, the Emilia in the vegetable soups and the desserts, Rome is recognizable in the stuffed roast and in the salad of pomegranate. In the year 1848, in these places the people erected baricades, piling up everything that could impede the course of the troups of Radetzky, even though it was the table of the kitchen or the bed where the grandmother slept. “XXII marzo”, the name of the road where our Cesarinos live, is placed there to commemorate the day in which the great heroism of the people of Milano achieved in drive out the Austrians from the city. Vestige of the past and boutiques are combined together in the proximity of the quartier, welcoming to a local identity which is excellently represented by our Cesarinos, too. Cosmopolitan and traditionalist, indomitable travellers and lovers of their house, they represent the latest version of the solid couple from Milan. They are both journalists as well as both fond of cooking: when they bustle around the burners, they almost risk to get on well. The historical and economic importance of Milano and the geographical position of the Lombardia, bordering with the Piemonte, the Emilia-Romagna, the Veneto, the Trentino Alto Adige, also influeced the gastronomic tradition of the city, that could be compared to a wide river in which, not only the source, but also various tributaries merge, which, while losing their own identity, reinforce the main stream. The cooking of Nicoletta and Fabio is a valid demonstration of this fact. If the father of Fabio is from Milan as well as the one of Nicoletta (who lived in the famous “via Gluck”), the mother of Fabio is from Roma, while the one of Nicoletta was born in Emilia. The route traced by our Cesarinos traslate in a local version the gastronomic suggestions coming from the different regions of their relatives. Fabio’s mother, who inundated her six sons, their friends and anyone who entered their house with her affectionate preparations, surely influenced the creation of the atmosphere in which we are immersed. The food becomes a joyful track that embraces, as a magic circle, the guests at their table. Their love for vegetables and their care in selecting them, too, both derive from the wisdom of their mothers, celebrating the union between the agro romano and the Po valley. Approaching the table, a good rule is to admire the table-cloth and enthusiastically make great appreciations. Nicoletta will be flattered by compliments; she adores the precious table linen and not only this: she kept with care the one of her family, but she is always looking for a beautiful cloth, that means one that is adorned with the art of embroidery, the one that she sometimes practises, when she has time. Painstaking and always careful in the selection of the ingredients, Nicoletta, accompanied by her husband, is used to going until Pavia in order to buy the best rice with which she prepares a first reference to this city, the rice with pumpkin from Mantova. First of all, the broth, prepared as the grandparents of our Cesarinos taught to them: a combination of “biancostato”, selected lean meat, spare-ribs of pork and free-range hen that, the impeccable Fabio and Nicoletta, recuperate from a small producer in the near San Giuliano Milanese. The broth undergoes a long and scrupulous preparation as a composition of a mosaic: in fact, it is boiled for about two hours, together with the odours of onion, celery and carrot, in order to obtain the best result. The second dish perfectly intones and is the completing tessella of the mosaic just initiated: with the predominant tones of the grass the boiled meat with cabbage, turnip and green sauce follows. Odours and tastes of parsley, the sardines under oil, the capers, the boiled egg and soaked bread are all told by the words of our Cesarinos and remind of how the green sauce is shaped by the teachings of their mothers who “prepared it by hand-mincing the parsley or letting the children using the mortar”. During more technological times, Nicoletta e Fabio often delegate this operation to the mixer. Concomitant to this dish, the pomegranate salad comes, a rich variety of soncino and red chicory, gruviera and Swiss cheese, unshelled almonds, corn, white celery flavoured with mustard and oil: an augural dish that our Cesarinos say humorously to have the power of rinse the palat. The dates with chocolate or figs with Ruhm, suggested depending on the period of the year, are the scenery for the splendid mosaic that is about to be fully completed with the apple pies scented with cinnamon, which are a tender homage made by Nicoletta to her mother, who was once used to preparing it every time she came back from the swimming trainings. Furthermore, the cinnamon has digesting properties and its taste, having roots in the past, preludes to next flavours. Similarly to Fabio and Nicoletta…and their Milano.
  • Rice with pumpkin from Mantova
  • Boiled meat with cabbage, turnip and green sauce
  • Pomegranate salad
  • Apple pies scented with cinnamon
  • Dates with chocolate or figs with Ruhm
  • Home-made wholemeal bread