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Mario Batali's Summer Playlist

Mario Batali's Summer Playlist

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What is the chef listening to this summer?

What is the chef listening to this summer?

You can’t beat the combo of warm weather, a barbecue, and some great tunes blasting from the speakers. These three things — and a nice cold beverage — are some of Lifestyle Mirror guest editor Mario Batali’s favorite summer essentials, and it’s hard to argue with him.

"With a chilled glass of wine and summer playlist, the food is just gravy," he says. Who can argue with that?

So, we’re following Batali’s lead and listening to what he has piping through the sound system. "This summer, we’re listening to everything on an orange Jambox I was given by Mary Giuliani. It’s Bluetooth-enabled, portable, and loud," he adds. "That is to say, it's the perfect gift."

From The National to Kanye West's "Yeezus" — "It’s loud and in-your-face and we love it!" he says — Batali shares his music of summer 2013. Check out the slideshow above for his ultimate playlist, and shop his picks below.

— Sasha Levine (@sashalevine), Lifestyle Mirror

More From Lifestyle Mirror:

• Mario Batali's Michigan Instagram Diary

• Recap: Guest Editor Mario Batali

• Best of Michigan: Mario Batali's Favorite Michigan Pit Stops

Chef Batali Offers Recipes With New Book

Just in time, Chef Mario Batali dishes recipes perfect for summer grilling.

May 23, 2008 — -- Mario Batali joined "Good Morning America" today to celebrate his sixth cookbook, "Italian Grill."

Batali showed the anchors how to prepare his Spicy Black Pepper-Coated Drumstricks, or as he likes to say "buffalo wings go to Italy," and other dishes perfect for summer grilling.

Get Batali's recipes for his signature Drumsticks, Grilled Vegetable Salad, Grilled Corn and Eggplant Parmigiana Packets below:

Grilled Vegetable Salad Capri-Style

This is a typical Italian way of preparing vegetables, but I first had it in a little restaurant called La Capannina on the Isle of Capri, and so I think of it as Capri-style. The vegetables listed here are merely guidelines?as always, the fresher and more seasonal, the better.


1 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled

1 teaspoon Colman's dry mustard

1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Grated zest and juice of 1 orange

2 small Asian or Italian eggplants

12 baby zucchini with flowers or 4 small zucchini

12 spears pencil asparagus

12 fresh basil leaves, cut into chiffonade (thin slivers)

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a charcoal grill.

In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, garlic, oregano, cumin, mustard, pepper flakes, olive oil, and orange juice (reserve the zest for garnish). Set aside.

Cut the eggplant into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Cut the peppers into quarters and remove the cores and seeds. If using baby zucchini, remove the blossoms and set aside cut the zucchini lengthwise in half. If using small zucchini, cut lengthwise into ¼-inch-thick slices (discard the first and last slice from each). Cut the onions into ¼-inch-thick rounds. Trim the scallions. Snap off the tough bottom parts of the asparagus stalks.

Place the vegetables on two large baking sheets. Brush lightly with some of the marinade and season lightly with salt. Place on the grill over medium-high to high heat (you will probably have to cook the vegetables in batches) and cook, turning once or twice, until tender and slightly charred on both sides: the eggplant will take about 8 to 10 minutes, the peppers 10 to 12 minutes, the zucchini 6 to 8 minutes, the onions and scallions 4 to 6 minutes,and the asparagus 5 to 7 minutes. Remove each vegetable from the grill as it is done and return to the baking sheets.

Cut the peppers into ½-inch-wide strips. Arrange the vegetables decoratively on a large serving platter and drizzle with the remaining marinade. Sprinkle with the orange zest, the zucchini blossoms if you have them, and the basil. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Spicy Black Pepper-Coated Drumsticks

Buffalo wings go to Italy: drumsticks in a spicy buttermilk marinade, red wine? Gorgonzola dressing, and fennel sticks standing in for the celery. Set out bowls of the sauce for dipping, or let guests spoon it over their chicken and fennel?either way, everyone will be very happy.

Partly cooking the drumsticks in the oven ensures that they will cook through on the grill without charring.You can bake the chicken early in the day or even the night before.


2 tablespoons Tabasco sauce, preferably chipotle

1 tablespoon fennel seeds, lightly crushed in a spice or coffee grinder

2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper

4 ounces Gorgonzola dolce

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Place the drumsticks on a baking sheet and season all over with salt. Bake unadorned for 20 minutes (25 minutes if your drumsticks are very large).

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together the buttermilk, Tabasco sauce, fennel seeds, and black pepper. Set a wire rack over a large plate or a small baking sheet.

As soon as the drumsticks come out of the oven, toss them, in batches, into the buttermilk mixture and turn to coat, then place skin side up on the rack to drain. Spoon a little of the mixture, with the fennel seeds and pepper, over the top of each one, and set aside. (The drumsticks can be baked and marinated up to a day ahead leave them on the rack, cover, and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before grilling.)

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a charcoal grill.

Trim the fennel bulbs, cut lengthwise in half, and cut out most of the core. Cut into ¼-inch-wide batonettes and toss into a bowl of ice water.

Crumble the Gorgonzola into a small bowl and mash with a fork. Add the red wine vinegar and stir with the fork until fairly smooth. Drizzle in the oil, stirring, to make a dressing. Pour into one or more shallow bowls for dipping.

Place the drumsticks on the hottest part of the grill, cover the grill, and cook, turning occasionally at first and then more often as they start to caramelize, until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

Put the drumsticks on a platter. Drain the fennel sticks, pat dry, and place on the platter next to the wings. Serve with the Gorgonzola dressing.

Corn, As Italians Would Eat It

In Mexico, I have seen groovy little stands where the vendors poach ears of corn and then paint it with mayonnaise, dust it with chile flakes and grated queso fresco, and squeeze lime juice all over the whole thing. They do not do that in Italy, but this is what they might do. It's fantastic.


¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 to 1½ cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

About 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a gas grill.

Place the corn on the hottest part of the grill and cook for 3 minutes, or until grill marks appear on the first side. Roll each ear over a quarter turn and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, then repeat two more times.

Meanwhile, mix the oil and vinegar on a large flat plate. Spread the Parmigiano on another flat plate.

When the corn is cooked, roll each ear in the oil and vinegar mixture, shake off the extra oil, and dredge in the Parmigiano to coat lightly. Place on a platter, sprinkle with the mint and pepper flakes, and serve immediately.

Eggplant Parmigiana Packets

Grilling eggplant brings out its smoky flavor, and it requires far less oil than frying, making this a much lighter version than the all-too-typical tired eggplant Parm. Serve hot or at room temperature, two little packets per person.


About 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

½ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

8 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into 12 thin slices

12 fresh basil leaves, cut into chiffonade (thin slivers)

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a charcoal grill.

Trim the eggplant and cut lengthwise into ¼-inch-thick slices, discarding the first and last slices from each one you should have 12 slices. Lay the slices on a baking sheet and lightly brush on both sides with olive oil, using about 3 tablespoons oil. Place on the grill and cook, turning once, until golden brown and soft, about 2 minutes on each side return the slices to the baking sheet as they are cooked.

In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs, thyme, and tomato sauce. Lay the eggplant slices out on a work surface, with a narrow end toward you. Divide the bread crumb mixture among them, using a scant 1/4 cup for each and placing it on the lower half of each one. Sprinkle with the grated Parmigiano and lay the slices of mozzarella on top. Fold the tops of the eggplant slices over to create little packages and transfer to a clean baking sheet. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or as long as overnight, to marry the flavors.

Preheat the gas grill again or prepare another fire in the charcoal grill.

Carefully brush the eggplant packets on both sides with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Place them gently on the hottest part of the grill and cook, unmoved, for 2 minutes, or until nice grill marks appear on the first side. Gently flip over with a large spatula and cook for 2 more minutes, or until marked on the second side and hot throughout.

Carefully transfer the packets to a platter and sprinkle with the basil. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Basic Tomato Sauce


¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 Spanish onion, cut into ¼-inch dice

4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

½ medium carrot, finely shredded

3 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme

Two 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes

In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and light golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the carrot and thyme and cook, stirring, until the carrot is softened, about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, with their juices, breaking up the tomatoes with your hands as you add them, and bring to a boil, stirring often. Lower the heat and simmer until the sauce is as thick as hot cereal, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and remove from the heat. (Once cool, the sauce can be refrigerated, tightly covered, for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 6 months.


  1. Panna cotta
    • 2 tablespoons water
    • 1 1/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
    • 2 cups whipping cream
    • 1 1/4 cups plain goat's-milk or whole-milk yogurt
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 cup sugar
  2. Strawberries
    • 2 1-pint baskets strawberries, hulled, thinly sliced
    • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
    • 1 tablespoon sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Ina Garten Shared a Perfectly Parisian Pastry Recipe & a Playlist to Pair With It

Ina Garten is no stranger to Spotify. Remember when she shared with her 2.6 million Instagram followers her “Women Who Rock” playlist back in October? Now with more than 12,800 followers, the 50-song playlist is chock-full of anthemic hits with choruses you can’t help but scream into your spatula as you shimmy around the kitchen. Well, Garten’s done it again she’s crafted the perfect playlist. Except this time, she’s dimming the lights, pouring champs into a glass, and enjoying the sunset with a soothing 34-song playlist titled “Ina Garten’s Trip to Paris.”

“Take Mom (or your sweetheart!) to Paris without ever leaving the house!” Garten wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of her French apple tart. “Bake my French Apple Tart and play my ‘Trip to Paris’ playlist on Apple Music or Spotify. Hope your weekend is délicieux!!”

Could Garten be any cuter? The answer is ‘yes’ &mdash in the photo with her husband of 51 years, Jeffrey.

Image: Ina Garten/Instagram.

Garten’s French apple tart dish may be an advanced-level recipe, but once you’ve baked it, it’ll intoxicate you with its sweet, apple aroma, making it the perfect pairing for Garten’s Parisian playlist.

“Ina Garten’s Trip to Paris” appropriately kicks off with Eartha Kitt’s 1952 song “C’est Si Bon,” which means, “It’s so good.” Other tracks that’ll transport you to Paris include “April in Paris” by Ella Fitzgerald, “La Javanaise” by Madeleine Peyroux, and more. But before you listen, may we suggest you mix yourself a glass of Garten’s French 75 cocktail first?

Want to prepare a full French meal with this playlist as your soundtrack? We suggest serving Garten’s Green Salad with the Ultimate French Vinaigrette, then moving into her Easy Coquilles Jacques, and, as the main entree, preparing her famous Beef Bourguignon.

Of course, we’d be remiss not to recommend ordering Garten’s 2004 cookbook, Barefoot in Paris: Easy French Food You Can Make at Home.

Before you go, check out these other impressive Ina Garten recipes.

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'The Chew' co-host Mario Batali shares speedy summer snack ideas

"The Chew" co-host Mario Batali says summer snacks do not have to keep you in the kitchen for hours.

Batali appeared on "Good Morning America" today to show how he can take any ingredient and make a great dish in less than one minute.

The three items Batali used on "GMA" today -- watermelon, strawberries and tomatoes -- were all red for a special reason. Batali is leading the fourth annual Eat (RED) Save Lives campaign to raise money for the Global Fund, which fights AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, and to awareness for the fight to end AIDS.

(RED) was founded by Bono and Bobby Shriver in 2006 to engage businesses and people in the fight against AIDS, according to its website. Throughout the month of June, the Eat (RED) Save Lives campaign will highlight the importance of people's food choices and underscore the power of life-saving HIV/AIDS medication.

June marks the month AIDS was first discovered in 1981.

"The term ’86’ is used in the American food industry to indicate that an item on the menu is gone. It’s not available anymore. It’s nixed. And that’s what we want to see happen with AIDS. It’s time to end AIDS," the organization states on its website.

Batali used watermelon today on "GMA" in a quick recipe for soup. He blended the watermelon with jalapeños and limes and topped the soup with some chopped scallions.

Batali whipped up a quick caprese salad snack by using tomatoes. He sliced the tomatoes and sprinkled them with basil and thinly-sliced red onions.

For the strawberries, Batali made a savory snack. He drizzled the strawberries with high-quality balsamic vinegar and black pepper and finished the dish off with a dollop of sour cream.

Batali has also shared some of his simple snack ideas on Instagram and in this video for "GMA" viewers.

Babbo, previously owned by Mario Batali, will close in the Seaport this summer

Babbo Pizzeria e Enoteca, a four-year-old Italian restaurant in the Seaport, is the latest piece of Mario Batali’s former empire to fall. According to The Boston Globe, the restaurant will close by September 15, laying off 62 employees.

B&B Hospitality, which owns Babbo, did not respond to’s request for comment.

Batali opened Babbo — his first foray into the Boston restaurant scene — in 2015, but much has changed for the celebrity chef since then. In late 2017, he was accused by multiple women of sexual misconduct, including an alleged incident at the now-closed Towne Stove & Spirits on Boylston Street. In May, Batali pleaded not guilty in a Boston courtroom to the charges that he forcibly kissed and groped a woman at Towne.

Just months before his arraignment, Batali divested from his interests in Babbo and 15 other restaurants that he co-owned with B&B Hospitality, which is now run by Tanya Bastianich Manuali, Joe Bastianich, Lidia Bastianich, and Nancy Silverton.

Babbo opened in spring 2015 with a focus on pizza and pasta, with Batali telling the Globe at the time that “This is a place for just about everyone.” The 8,700-square-foot space sits on the ground floor of 11 Fan Pier Blvd. and sports three bars and a wood-burning brick oven.

The Globe reports that a message from B&B Hospitality director Missy Andriazola notes that Babbo’s closure is “expected to be permanent.”

Mario Batali's Summer Playlist - Recipes

The Chef
Mario Batali of Otto

Serves 8

1𔊪 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large Spanish onion, cut into 1-inch dice
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons pine nuts
3 tablespoons dried currants
1𔊪𔂿 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, to taste 2 medium eggplants, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 11𔊬 pounds each)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1𔊪 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 1𔊪 teaspoon dried thyme
3𔊬 cup basic tomato sauce
1𔊬 cup orange juice
Zest of 3 oranges
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Instructions
Heat the oil in a 12-to-14-inch sauté pan. Add the onion, garlic, pine nuts, currants, and red-pepper flakes, and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes over medium heat until the onion is translucent. Add the eggplant, sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa powder, and cook for 5 minutes more, stirring often. Add the thyme, tomato sauce, orange juice, and orange zest, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let cool and serve at room temperature. Best made one day ahead, to let the flavors develop. Will keep up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

MARIO BATALI: Ragu bolognese, a building block of great Italian dishes

Q: What's the difference between ragu and ragu bolognese?

A: A ragu can be any meat mixture, from anywhere on the Italian peninsula (or elsewhere, I suppose). Ragu bolognese is specific to the city of Bologna in the northern region of Emilia-Romagna, where I lived and learned the subtle art of ragu at Trattoria La Volta in Borgo Capanne.

Ragu bolognese is made differently by every mother or grandmother or son who learns it. But all practitioners follow a fairly basic formula.

Start with soffritto (or, as the French call it, mirepoix) -- a combination of carrots, celery and onion -- and chop very finely. Because this recipe originated in Emilia Romagna, the gateway to the north, we heat the mixture with equal parts butter and oil (butter being the lipid of choice in the north, olive oil in the south). When the butter emulsifies, the combination creates a velvet-like texture. Be sure to use an enamel-coated heavy-bottomed pot so that the soffritto doesn't brown. Sweat the vegetables, stirring constantly, to prevent them from browning. If the mixture burns or scorches, toss it and start from scratch.

I use three kinds of meat in my ragu: veal, pork and beef. You could just as easily use all beef (or all pork or all chicken), but the combination adds a depth of flavor that I love. Have the butcher grind your meat of choice a bit bigger than he would sausage so it has a bit of a chew. Cook the meat with the vegetables until it's brown so as to render the fat completely out. As the water evaporates and is replaced by the rendered fat, the temperature of the pot will increase and the meat will brown in its own uniquely delicious way.

A true ragu bolognese does not include canned or fresh tomatoes -- just a tube of tomato paste. The only liquids used are milk and white wine to add richness and layers upon layers of flavor.

Ragu bolognese is an essential building block for some of the greatest dishes in the canon of Italian cooking, but few rival the simple preparation of Tagliatelle al Ragu: flat noodles dressed with the condiment and topped with Parmigiano Reggiano. Perfection.

Tagliatelle al Ragu Bolognese

Serves 6 as a first course.

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 medium onions, finely chopped

4 celery stalks, finely chopped

2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped

1 (8-ounce) can tomato paste

Parmigiana Reggiano, for serving

In a 6- to 8-quart enamel-coated heavy-bottomed pot, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the onions, celery and carrots and sweat over medium heat until vegetables are translucent but not browned, about 5 minutes. Add the veal, pork, and beef and stir into vegetables. Brown over high heat, stirring to keep the meat from sticking. Add the tomato paste, milk and wine. Using a wooden spoon, scrape at the bottom of the pan to dislodge browned bits of meat. Bring just to a boil, and then simmer over medium-low heat for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Season with salt.

Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons of salt.

Transfer 2 cups of the ragu to a 12- to 14-inch saute pan and heat gently over medium heat. Cook the tagliatelle for 2 minutes less than the package instructions indicate. Drain the pasta, then add it to the pan with the ragu and toss over medium heat until it is coated and the sauce is dispersed, about 1 minute. Divide evenly among six to eight warmed bowls. Grate Parmigiano Reggiano over each bowl and serve immediately.

(Mario Batali is the award-winning chef behind 24 restaurants, including Eataly, Del Posto and his flagship Greenwich Village enoteca, Babbo. In this column, Mario answers questions submitted via social media and by people he encounters daily in Downtown Manhattan. Follow Mario on Twitter @mariobatali. Keep asking!)


Some songs are made for hanging out in the yard surrounded by friends, family, and of course, food. Fire up the best grilling recipes while tuning out your worries and tuning in to summer fun.

  • Alan Jackson, "Summertime Blues"
  • Alabama, "Song of the South"
  • Zac Brown Band, "Chicken Fried"
  • David Nail, "Whatever She's Got"
  • Kid Rock, "All Summer Long"
  • Keith Urban, "Long Hot Summer"
  • Jake Owen, "Barefoot Blue Jean Night"
  • Bellamy Brothers, "Redneck Girl"
  • Alan Jackson, "Pop a Top"
  • Garth Brooks, "Friends in Low Places"
  • Kellie Pickler, "Feelin' Tonight"
  • Kenny Chesney, "I Go Back"
  • Jimmy Buffet, "Margaritaville"
  • Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings, "Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys"
  • Morgan Wallen, "Up Down (feat. Florida Georgia Line)"
  • Barbara Mandrell, "I Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool"
  • Old Crow Medicine Show, "Wagon Wheel"
  • Tim McGraw, "Where the Green Grass Grows"

Watch the video: Molto Mario: Pasta Sauces featuring Michael Stipe (July 2022).


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