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Rabbit Roulade with Lardo di Colonnata

Rabbit Roulade with Lardo di Colonnata

Per la ricetta in Italiano, clicca qui per il sito e video ricetta del Antica Larderia Malfada.   This month This Tuscan Life featured a story about a special ‘lard’ known as Lardo di Colonnata.  It’s a wonderful and informative article which features a traditional Tuscan […]

Meatloaf with BBQ Sauce

Meatloaf with BBQ Sauce

  Meatloaf is one of those recipes that can evoke good or bad memories from our childhood.  I remember before discovering this recipe, my mother made another version of meatloaf (obviously no BBQ sauce), and I never loved it.  Actually I hated it.  I think […]

Pavlova

Pavlova

While I’ve posted the recipe for my Mini Pavlovas and also for a Pavlova Roulade on my blog, I have definitely been amiss in not posting a good Pavlova recipe.  My mother made the best Pavlova ever, and sadly I’m not 100% sure of her exact recipe.  What makes a perfect Pavlova?  As far as I’m concerned, a perfect Pavlova is one where the meringue is of a good height.  There must be an outer crunchy meringue crust and the inside must be soft, light and fluffy.  While you can put whatever fruit you like on top of your Pavlova, it was traditional in our house to have strawberries, kiwi, blueberries, raspberries and passionfruit is obligatory.  I made a Pavlova yesterday and couldn’t find passionfruit (horror of horrors)!  It is still delicious without (depending on what fruit you decorate the Pavlova with), although just before serving it yesterday, I drizzled a little warmed peach jam on top! 

While Australia and New Zealand both argue as to who this dessert belongs to, and although I’d like to claim it as ours, it is well documented that the Pavlova indeed originates from New Zealand and was named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova.  The ‘Pavlova’ is believed to have been created in honour of the dancer either during or after one of her tours to Australia and New Zealand in the 1920’s.

Pavlova

  • 6 egg whites
  • pinch of salt
  • 315g caster sugar
  • 2teaspoons cornflour
  • 1teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 300ml fresh cream
  • 4 kiwi, peeled and thinly sliced
  • strawberries, blueberries, blackberries
  • peach slices
  • 2 – 3 passionfruit
  1. Preheat oven to 170°C.   Line a baking tray with some non-stick baking paper. Draw a 20cm circle on the paper, place on the tray, circle side down.
  2. Use an electric mixer to whisk egg whites and salt until soft peaks form.  Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking well after each addition.  Once all the sugar has been added, continue to whisk on high for 3 minutes.
  3. Add the cornflour, vinegar and vanilla extract to meringue and whisk until just combined.
  4. Use a spatula to spread the meringue over the circle, smoothing the surface and sides. Reduce the oven temperature to 120°C.  Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes – the pavlova should be dry to the touch. Turn off the oven and leave to cool completely, with the oven door slightly ajar.
  5. Whip cream until thick.  Spoon onto pavlova and decorate with fresh fruit of your choice.

PAVLOVA

  • 6 Albumi
  • pizzico di sale
  • 315g di zucchero semolato extrafine
  • 2 cucchiaio di maizena
  • 1 cucchiaino di estratto di vaniglia
  • 1 cucchiaino di aceto
  • 300ml panna da montare
  • frutta fresca di stagione: kiwi, mirtilli, lamponi, fragole, frutta della passione….

  1. Scaldare il forno a 170˚C.  Foderare una teglia di carta da forno e tracciarci un cerchio di 20cm servendosi di un piatto.
  2. Sbattere gli albumi con la frusta elettrica e montate a neve gli albumi aggiungendo il sale. Aumentare la velocità e continuare a sbattere, aggiungendo lo zucchero alle albume un cucchiaio alla volta, finché gli ingredienti non saranno tutti amalgamati.
  3. Il composto deve essere denso e lucido. Assicurarsi che lo zucchero sia completamente sciolto e continuare a lavorare fino a che il tutto si presenta completamente liscio e senza granuli.
  4. Aggiungere l’estratto di vaniglia al composto ed infine incorporarvi delicatamente la maizena e l’aceto.
  5. Versare il composto di meringa nel cerchio tracciato in precedenza e, servendosi di un cucchiaio, spargerlo sino ai bordi rialzandone il perimetro per facilitare l’assemblamento finale.
  6. Infornate la meringa abbassando il termostato del forno a 120°C,  e lasciatela cuocere per circa 1 ora e mezza in forno statico.
  7. Spegnere il forno e far raffreddare completamente la meringa nel forno con lo sportello leggermente accostato.
  8. Montare la panna e ponetela sulla superficie della meringa.
  9. Decorate con la frutta tagliata, i mirtilli e i lamponi ecc, ed infine cospargete con la polpa di tre frutti della passione.

 

 

Cherry Brandy Chicken

Cherry Brandy Chicken

This is a vintage recipe from my mother’s repertoire and one that I grew up with.  It will impress at any dinner party, and is much easier to put together than what it appears.  It’s also a quick recipe that you can easily make after a busy day […]

Rocket, Fig & Pecorino Salad with Honey and Balsamic

Rocket, Fig & Pecorino Salad with Honey and Balsamic

This is such a quick and easy salad to throw togther, essential to make during Summer when you’ll find fresh and seasonal summer fruits in abundance at your local market.  In this recipe, savoury and sweet flavours marry well together, and although this would be […]

Flourless Chocolate, Orange & Almond Cake

Flourless Chocolate, Orange & Almond Cake

I first made this cake when I had to come up with a Gluten Free alternative for a wedding cake.  It is dense and rich like any flourless chocolate cake and the bittersweet orange taste is a perfect companion to the sweetness of the sugar and dark chocolate.  Use top quality ingredients and you’ll definitely impress with this very easy, yet decadent cake.

Valencia oranges have a thinner skin than Navel oranges.  If you can’t find the variety ‘Valencia’,  just make sure the oranges you use have a thn skin and not a thick pithy one.

Flourless Chocolate, Orange and Almond Cake

  • 2 organic Valencia oranges
  • 200g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 100g butter
  • 8 eggs
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 300g almond meal
  • 100g bitter cocoa
  1. Boil the oranges in a covered saucepan for 30 minutes.  Remove from water and slice in quarters.  Leave skin on.  Remove any pips (there shouldn’t be any), and place orange pieces in a food processor.  Blend well until there is an orange ‘paste’.  Repeat with second orange. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 180°C (static).
  3. Place chocolate and butter cut into cubes, in a microwave proof bowl. Microwave until chocolate and butter has melted. Alternatively, you can melt the chocolate and butter together in a ‘bagno maria’.
  4. Add eggs and sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer with the whisk attachment.  Whisk well on high speed until eggs have doubled in volume.
  5. Fold almond meal, orange paste, chocolate mixture and cocoa into the egg and sugar and mix until all ingredients are well combined.  (I did this using the flat beater of my KitchenAid, mixing on medium-low).
  6. Pour cake mixture into a 22cm lined cake tin.
  7. Bake for 1 hour 25minutes.  Remove from oven when an inserted skewer comes out clean.
  8. Allow to cool for 15min, then remove from cake tin and allow to cool on a wire cake rack.

This cake is delicious eaten as is with some good quality vanilla gelato.  If you’d like to take the decadence up a notch, serve with marmalade and a rich chocolate frosting.

Torta al Cioccolato, Arance e Mandorle

  • 2 arance biologiche Valencia
  • 200g cioccolato amaro tagliato a pezzetti
  • 100g burro
  • 8 uova
  • 300g zucchero semolato
  • 300g farina di mandorle
  • 100g cacao amaro
  1. Bollire le arance in una pentola coperta per 30 minuti. Togliere dall’acqua e affettare in quarti. Lasciare la buccia. Togliere ogni seme – non ce ne dovrebbero essere – e macinarle con un food processor fino a creare una pasta. Fare lo stesso con la seconda arancia e mettere da parte.
  2. Preriscaldare il forno a 180°C (statico).
  3. Mettere burro e cioccolato a pezzi in una ciotola per microonde. Passare al microonde fino a che non siano mischiati. Alternativamente, potete mescolarli insieme a bagno maria.
  4. Aggiungere uova e zucchero nella ciotola di un mixer con la frusta attaccata, quindi sbattere bene fino a che le uova hanno raddoppiato di volume.
  5. Aggiungere la farina di mandorle, la pasta di arance e il mix di cioccolato e cacao alle uova e zucchero, e mescolare fino a che non sono bene amalgamate.  (io ho usato lo sbattitore piatto del KitchenAid, a velocità media).
  6. Mettere il composto in una teglia da 22 cm per torte.
  7. Cuocere in forno per 1 ora e 25 minuti.  Levare dal forno quando uno stecco esce asciutto dall’impasto.
  8. Far freddare per 15 minuti, poi levarla dalla teglia  e lasciare raffreddare.

Questa torta è deliziosa servita con un gelato alla vaniglia. Se volete esagerare, aggiungete marmellata di arance amare e glassa al cioccolato.

Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad is delicious all year round but is particularly enjoyed as a meal during the hot Summer months.  I’ve ordered this a couple of times while out in Italy, and it’s usually a little disappointing.  My favourite go to recipe for Caesar Salad is my […]

BABINGTONS TEA ROOMS

BABINGTONS TEA ROOMS

Since 1893, Rome has boasted a traditional and very elegant English tea room.  Stepping inside Babingtons with the promise of tea, cake and scones, you have to remind yourself that you’re not in England, but instead sitting in the very fashionable Piazza di Spagna in the heart […]

Fusilli con Fave – with Italian Sausage, Broad Beans & Pecorino Romano

Fusilli con Fave – with Italian Sausage, Broad Beans & Pecorino Romano

Known as ‘Fave’ in Italy, Broad Beans are enjoyed and celebrated in any different ways when they come into season.  I’ve tried to be a bit creative with them in this pasta recipe and I promise that it will convert anybody who declares they disike broad beans. If you treat them with respect and don’t over-cook them, you’ll enjoy their delicate flavour.  Die hard fava bean fans love to eat them raw paired with a good quality Pecorino Romano. 

This recipe is super easy, yet packed with flavour and I hope you enjoy the video that accompanies it!

Recipe quantities will be enough for 4 servings.

Fusilli con Fave – with Italian Sausage, Broad Beans & Pecorino Romano

 

  • 300g Fusilli
  • 2 large Italian sausages
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped finely
  • 200g Broad Beans
  • 150g grated Pecorino Romano
  • pinch dried chilli pepper (optional)
  1. Shell beans.  Blanch them all in boiling water for a few minutes only and then plunge them into an ice bath. Blanching loosens the skin of the beans and makes it easier to peel.  This hot-cold technique also brightens the colour of green vegetables, and helps to slow the loss of nutrients. (Parboiling is a term used interchangeably with blanching and means to precook or partially cook in water.)  Set aside.
  2. Add Olive Oil to a large frying pan, and remove casing from sausages.
  3. Add onion to frying pan over medium heat and stir until coated with Olive Oil.
  4. Add sausage, breaking it up as much as possible with a spoon or fork as it cooks. Add chilli pepper and stir through.
  5. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil, adding a small amount of salt.  Cook Fusilli paying attention to pasta cooking time.
  6. Meanwhile, in a small food processor, add Pecorino cheese and Broad Beans. (keep some aside for serving).  Pulse, occasionally adding a little of the pasta cooking water until the mixture is of a creamy consistency.  Taste and season with a little freshly cracked black pepper.
  7. Remove pasta from the saucepan with a slotted spoon a 3-4 minutes before cooking time finishes and complete the cooking of the pasta in the frying pan with the Italian sausage and red onion.  Ladel a small amount of pasta cooking water into the frying pan to facilitate the cooking of the pasta and to ensure the mixture doesn’t dry out.  Just before serving, stir through broad beans you set aside earlier into the pasta.
  8. Spoon Pecorino and Broad Bean pureè onto a plate, and place fusilli and sausage carefully on top. Sprinkle a little extra grated Pecorino Romano on top and some freshly cracked black pepper.

 

Fusilli, Salsiccia e Pecorino su letto di Fave

  • 300g Fusilli
  • 2 salsicce grandi
  • 1 cipolla rossa (tagliata fine)
  • 200g fave fresche
  • 150g Pecorino Romano, grattugiato
  • peperoncino q.b.
  • 1 cucchiaino di sale
  1. Sbollentate le fave per soli pochi minuti e poi immergetele in un bagno di ghiaccio. Questa rilassa la pelle delle fave e rende più facile sbucciarle. Inoltre aiuta a migliorare anche il colore delle verdure verdi e aiuta a rallentare la perdita di sostanze nutritive.  Mettetele da parte.
  2. Aggiungere olio d’oliva in una padella grande e rimuovere l’involucro dalle salsicce.
  3. Aggiungere la cipolla nella padella a fuoco medio e mescolare fino a rivestirla con l’olio di oliva.
  4. Aggiungere la salsiccia, spezzandola il più possibile con un cucchiaio o una forchetta mentre cuoce.  Aggiungere un pizzico di peperoncino e mescolare.
  5. Portate a bollore una grande pentola d’acqua, aggiungendo una piccola quantità di sale. Cuocere i fusilli prestando attenzione al tempo di cottura della pasta.
  6. Nel frattempo, in un piccolo robot di cucina, aggiungete il Pecorino e le fave. (Tenere da parte alcuni per guarnire il piatto finito).  Mescolare, aggiungendo occasionalmente un po’ dell’acqua di cottura della pasta fino a che la miscela sia di consistenza cremosa.
  7. Togliere la pasta dalla pentola  3-4 minuti prima che la cottura finisca e completare la cottura della pasta nella padella insieme alla salsiccia e cipolla.  Aggiungere una piccola quantità di acqua di cottura nella padella per facilitare la cottura della pasta e assicurare che la miscela non si asciughi.  Appena prima di servire, mescolare le fave messe da parte in precedenza nella pasta.
  8. Servire con la crema di Pecorino e fave su un piatto, e mettere i fusilli con la salsiccia con cura sopra. Mettere un po’ di Pecorino Romano grattugiato e pepe nero.

Crostata di Pesche – Peach Tart

Crostata di Pesche – Peach Tart

  With summer almost upon us, the markets have started filling with colour from gorgeous summer fruits.  It’s only the beginning of the season and while the selection may still be a little limited, there is already a good choice available.  I adore peaches and was thrilled […]