Food & Drink Magazine

DaVinci..a Short Primer..and a Recipe

By Marialiberati

Edited by Shantae Taylor

While most Americans recognize April 15th as official Tax Day, it also happens to be the birthday of one of the world’s greatest minds as well as artists…. Leonardo da Vinci born on April 15, 1452 was a man of many talents and a significant figure in Italy. After his death, he became a significant figure all around the world.. Just in case you have not heard.. He was a writer, mathematician, and inventor but, was known mostly for his work as an artist. “The artist sees what others only catch a glimpse of” said da Vinci. Today Da Vinci is known for two paintings that are admired by millions across the world. “The Last Supper” was created between 1495 to 1498 during his time Milan. This painting portrays the Passover dinner in which Jesus Christ addresses the Apostles and says, “One of you shall betray me”. Da Vinci’s most well-known painting is “Mona Lisa”, which is a picture of Lisa Giocondo, wife of Florentine merchant Francisco del Giocondo. This is the only of the portrait from the Renaissance period made by Da Vinci that still survives. The “Mona Lisa” is stored in the Louvre Museum in Paris, France where it attracts millions of visitors each year. In addition to being a great artist, Da Vinci was also a nutritionist. Da Vinci created notebooks that included his shopping lists, which had ingredients for court feasts and simple items that were in his household as well as comments on cost and quality of the food in Italy. Now that you have learned a little history about the great Leonardo da Vinci, be sure to attend the Tuscan feast events coming up at Delaware Valley College to learn about his favorite recipes.

Due to weather on the East Coast both events are being postponed till April, stay tuned for a specific date shortly..and if you are traveling, yes the weather this year is something to worry about, but staying in touch with family and friends is as easy as ..well..’pie’ with Dual Global Mobile try it no roaming charges and a free USA or UK phone number. Go to

In the meantime, here is a recipe from The Basic Art of Italian Cooking: DaVinci Style

Risotto with Porcini Tartufata (Risotto with Porcini mushrooms and truffles)

Served in a bowl made of Parmigiano Reggiano

4 cups vegetable broth

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 leeks chopped finely

1 cup arborio or carnaroli rice

1 tablespoon butter (unsalted)

pinch of salt

8 ozs. Prosecco or dry sparkling white wine

1 oz. of dried porcini mushrooms

1-2 teaspoons of grated truffles or 2 teaspoons of truffle infused oil

2 tablespoons grated Parmigiana-Reggiano cheese

Place dried porcini mushrooms in bowl of warm water for 30 minutes, soak. Heat vegetable broth till boiling, then simmer. Place olive oil in large saute pan. Place in thinly sliced leeks and saute till leeks are just about golden. Place in soaked porcini mushrooms and their liquid. Place in rice and toast till rice is coated with oil and all liquid is evaporated. Add in Prosecco. Stir till all liquid is evaporated. Place in ½ cup of vegetable broth and stir till all liquid is evaporated and repeat this placing in ½ cup liquid till evaporated till rice is al dente (approximately 15-18 minutes) or till desired tenderness.

Place 1 tablespoon of butter on top and stir till melted. Plate and serve, top with grated parmigiana-reggiano cheese. Decorate with grated truffles or drizzle of truffle oil on top. Serve in parmigiana reggiano bowls and drizzle with wine reduction syrup.

Place parchment paper on a dish. Make a long plank of parmigiano reggiano on top of cookie sheet, place in microwave for 15 seconds till it melts but still soft, remove from microwave and place inside a small bowl to shape it into a bowl. Serve risotto in the bowl.

Red Wine Reduction Sauce

should be a dry red wine like Barbera, Amarone, Chianti

6 ounces red wine, 2 tsps brown sugar

In a saucepan, pour in the wine and sugar. Turn on the flame at first high, when it starts to boil reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes until the liquid is reduced forming a dense syrup.

Hope to see you at upcomingpPostponed Tuscan Cooking Courses at Delaware Valley College as soon as they are rescheduled


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