Meet La Signora Melanzana
Over twenty years ago, not long after getting married, I wanted to ignite my passion for vegetables and especially recipies with eggplants because our family are eggplant growers. I set out to find traditional recipes and started to experiement and be creative. I wanted to explore both savoury and especially sweet combinations in order to demonstrate that home cooking can be without limits and I wanted to share these recipes.
Our family wanted to create a name to identify our product and share our story. The name, La Signora Melanzana, which simply means in English "Mrs. Eggplant" was born and inspired by my mother-in-law, Mrs Virginia - the eggplant lady.
My passion for vegetables has been handed down to me from my family: my father is a farmer, was and still is a great consumer of fresh, healthy food. There were always plentiful products from the local countryside delivered almost daily and expertly cooked by my mother. My mother was very creative, often involved us in the preparation and always encouraged us to enjoy our food including lots of salads!
I like to create recipes that are adaptable using the fresh ingredients that are available at that moment or on that day. I love to find that balance between making dishes that reflect simplicity and joy, and, at the same time others that require a little more 'tender loving care' to reflect the season and local region by taking a little more time.
My favourite salad is roasted eggplant seasoned with olive oil, salt and Mediterranean herbs on bread - simply baked in a stone oven. At home vegetables are always present in our meals, as a side dish or quite often as the main dish.
Usually I garnish salads using nuts from our own trees: almonds, pistachios or walnuts, then with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a dash of balsamic or fruity vinegar. I love what is natural and am proud to have raised my children with food rich in vegetables, natural jams and healthy snacks like eggplant meatballs, arancini, stuffed tomatoes, and panini - toasted sandwiches with grilled vegetables.
My passion is linked to my land, to the land grown by my grandparents, parents, children. A land that generously offers me “fresh ingredients” every day for my recipes, and it is the same love and the same passion that I want to convey to the people living around me.
Signora Melanzana made us some pretty eggplant dishes and trusted us her recipes:
San Marzanino tomato with ricotta cheese and pistachos
Ingredients: 20 (san marzanino) tomatoes, 200g of ricotta cheese, 50g of grated pistachios