Self-taught kosher Italian cook, Alessandra Rovati has launched a new website, www.DinnerInVenice.com to celebrate colorful, healthy and kosher foods that talented and passionate Italians Jews have brought to their tables over the centuries. Best known for her healthy and delicious Italian recipes, Rovati highlights classic light dishes for summer on her site, such as steamed or grilled fish fillet served with a traditional “Salsa Verde” (green sauce), a tricolored green salad, oven-baked turkey loaf with vegetables, minestrone soup, light vegetable pasta sauces, and Macedonia, an Italian fruit salad. She also posts recipes on her Facebook page, “Kosher Italian Kitchen” which currently boasts over 1,000 fans. “People think that eating Italian cuisine is fattening because they associate Italian food with pasta dishes made with creamy sauces,” said Rovati. “But that’s just not true! Most Italians, especially women, eat a small dish of pasta with a fresh vegetable sauce, followed by fresh greens and fruit and a small portion of protein food; while a typical American will eat a giant plate of pasta smothered in a jar of tomato sauce filled with preservatives and sugar as well as artificially flavored cheese.”
According to Rovati, Mediterraneans tend to eat lots of healthy fat such as extra virgin olive oil and fish, so they tend to be leaner. Rovati’s secret when it comes to cooking is using high-quality Italian olive oils, small amounts of high-end cheeses, and lots of fresh vegetables. Born and raised in Venice, Alessandra has always loved food and taught herself how to cook. Her mother, a scientist, taught her about the importance of being exact and the understanding of cooking techniques.When she moved to the U.S. in 1995, Alessandra missed the food from back home and started perfecting her techniques and spending hours on the phone with her mother and friends living in Italy to learn their tricks and secrets from the Old World. She then created a collection of homemade recipes—some passed down from generation to generation, the others more modern, light and quick to make, yet still very authentic in flavor.
She teaches her recipes in a monthly cooking series through the Jewish International Connection of New York (www.jicny.com). She also cooks for her family almost every night. It was only this past April, when preparing for the holiday of Passover, that Alessandra launched DinnerInVenice.com, and her Facebook page Italian Kosher Food, as a result of receiving dozens of inquiries from friends about how to prepare specific Italian dishes for the Jewish holiday. Alessandra slightly modified and lightened these Old World recipes to create a more modern and tasty Italian style cuisine suitable for everyday. “Cooking has kept me connected to my community of origin,” she said. “Dinner in Venice is my way of passing on my community’s oldest traditions and also new trends in Italian cooking to anyone who loves fresh, tasty and nutritious food.”
To learn more about Alessandra Rovati and Italian Kosher recipes go to www.DinnerInVenice.com or www.Facebook.com/KosherItalianKitchen