Monthly Archives: August 2010

Pink summery cakes – Tortine fragole e mascarpone (-21 weeks)

Recipe 46: Leaving for holidays i needed to clean a bit my fridge and i still have some pastry, mascarpone and strawberries to use so… let’s do some summery cakes! Super easy and quick as usual and perfect for a weekend breakfast to celebrate the beginning of the last holidays.

Ingredients for 6-7 cakes: 350gr shortcrust pasty, 150gr mascarpone, 1egg yolk, 2 spoons of sugar and 300gr strawberries.

Prepare a baking pan putting some batter and flour in the holes to don’t make the pastry stick to it. Then stretch the pasta and make it little circles to fit in the baking pan. Place them in and make them thinner than you can.

With a fork make some holes in the pastry and let them cook for around 20 minutes in the oven at 200 degree.When ready, take them out from the baking pan and let them cool down on a plate. In the meantime wash the strawberry and cut half of them in little pieces.

Place in a bowl a yolk egg and 2 spoon of sugar and mix until it become a yellowish cream. Then add the mascarpone and the strawberry mixing very well. the strawberry will release their sauce creating a nice pink and reach cream.

Fill the little pastry cakes with the cream and finish them with half of a strawberry each. Place in the fridge for a bit and serve them cold. Buon appetito!

PS. Mamy ti sorprendo con questa ricetta facilissima eh? ricordandomi quanto era buono il mascarpone con lo zucchero, ho pensato di usare quel poco che era rimasto nel frigo per fare queste tortine estive! Buonissime !

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Frittata di spaghetti – Pasta omelette

Recipe 47: last week we had some guess at home from France and I discovered a very strange way to eat pasta. Basically they cook it and left that in the fridge ready to be mixed with some sauce when needed! They left some boiled pasta in the fridge and this was for me the best occasion to cook a dish I didn’t eat for a long time… I think since I was kid: the pasta omelette or frittata di pasta. The funny thing is that I saw it sold in Carluccio some weeks ago as a very special plate!!!
In reality this come from the old tradition to use all the leftover in the fridge. Do you know? In poor time this is the rule and this dish in its simplicity it’s just amazing!Ingredients: leftover pasta (200 or 300gr, then I added some cream left, 150gr of frozen peas, 5 slices of cooked ham, half of a big onion, salt, pepper, 2 or 3 eggs depending by the pasta, some parmesan and olive oil.

Defrost the peas while you are making hot some oil in a pan. Put the chopped onion in the pan and when goldish add the peas and the ham in pieces. Boil the pasta in salty water or just use some pasta you have also if cooked with tomato sauce.

Otherwise you can add some cream if you want or cheese. Drain the pasta and add it to the pan. In a bowl mix 2 or 3 eggs, adding some Parmesan (depending by your taste) and the pour the mix on the pasta when the pan is out of the fire and not too hot otherwise the eggs will cook.

Cover a baking pan with some baking paper and place the pasta well mixed with the rest of the ingredients in it. Put it in a pre-hitten oven at around 200 degree for half an hour and add the grill at the end to make it crispy on the top.

Then serve it in a plate or you can also eat it the day after without hot it up bit just at the temperature of the ambient! I prefer it like this!!! Enjoy!Ps. Mamma ti ricordi la frittata di pasta? Pensa che l’ho vista in vendita in un italian delicatessen di qui! Non ho resistito! Dovevo cucinarla!! E con il fatto che dovevo partire e’ stata un”idea perfetta per svuotare il frigo!

Ferragosto Menu’: Quiche spinach and mascarpone (-22 weeks)

Recipe 48: finally for ferragosto I decided to prepare also a quiche with spinach, another classic in my mother parties preparations but this time I changed it a bit and I was very happy with the result!

Ingredients: 1 packet of shortcrust pastry, 450gr of frozen spinach(in buy best they have it), 150 gr mascarpone, pepper, 2 eggs, salt, just a bit of pancetta (40 gr) and nutmeg.

Boil the spinach in salty water and wait for them to be cooked. When ready, drain them very well, taking of all the water.
Prepare the baking pan with some baking paper or butter and flour as usual. Then place the pastry in the pan after having alredy stretched it in a flat round form. Mix the spinach with the mascarpone, the eggs, the salt, papper and nutmeg, adding a bit of pancetta already slightly cooked without oil. Here is the main difference with my mum’s one, made with ricotta and some pieces of frankfurts.Place the mix in the pastry and adjust the borders to contain perfectluy the filling! Place it in a prehitted oven at 200 degrees for around 30 40 minutes. Check with a tooth pick if inside the quiche is cooked and be ready to eat!
Buon appetito!PS: Mamy ho fatto anche la tua quiche con gli spinaci, ma non ho trovato la ricotta percio’ ho usato il mascarpone,mentre in cambio dei wurstel ho preferito dargli piu’sapore con la pancetta! Mi hanno detto tutti che era ottima!

Ferragosto Menu’: Pasta fredda – Cold pasta or pasta salad

Recipe 49: This is something I was waiting to cook since 2 months…more or less since we started to see some sun in London and we began to organize picnics in the parks. Finally I never did it and this Ferragosto was just the right occasion! So here is the simple but delicious recipe.

The ingredients for 3 people are: 300gr short pasta (I used fusilli), 1 can of tuna (or you can do without if you are vegetarian, and it’s going to be great anyway), 2 little bags of little mozzarelle or 2 mozzarelle to cut in pieces, some cherry tomatoes, some pitted black olives, oregan, fresh basil, salt, pepper and  olive oil.

Boil the pasta in some salty water until al dente or even a bit before. Just to give you an example on the english ( and I have to mention this because if it’s not an Italian brand you need to be even more careful ) pasta bag there was written 12 minute and I take the pasta off at 8 minutes because was al dente…not to hard or with flour taste, but not even melted.

Drain the pasta and pass it under cold running water to stop the cooking process. Then place it in a big container and add some olive oil. Mix until all the pasta is divided and start to add the ingredients: cut the mozzarella, the cherry tomatoes and the black olives in half.  Then add the tuna, the fresh basil the origan, salt and pepper.Mix it all with some more oil if needed and be ready to eat! We used plastic glasses instead of plates and it was great! It’s a good solution for lunches in the park. Enjoy!

PS: Mamy che buona!!! Che belle mangiate checi facevamo di pasta fredda ed insalate di riso a Lavinio eh??? Qui invece bisogna sempre aspettare il tempo propizio, ma diciamo che quest’anno c’e’ andata bene! E poi per Ferragosto non puo’ mancare! Con il tapperware faceva anche effetto pranzo in spiaggia… mancava solo il mare e la ghiacciaia 🙂

Menu’ from Ferragosto: Quiche Lorraine (-23 weeks)

Recipe  50: Ok this is originally a french recipe, but it’s something my mum used to cook often because it’s very versatile. The quiche is something you can prepare the night before and it’s perfect for parties, pic nic or to bring with you for lunch! On top of that I discovered that our way to do it it’s very different from the french one!
Here are the ingredients you will need: shortcrust pastry (I used almost a full pack or you can take the one already prepared to be placed in the baking pan), 200 gr emmenthal,2 eggs, 6 spoon single cream, 150 gr pancetta, salt, pepper, a bit of nutmag and it’s done!Place the pancetta in a pan without anything else and let cook! In the meantime, prepare the pastry base for the quiche. I suggest you to use some baking paper or put some butter and flour in the baking pan to don’t allow the pastry to stick to it. Then use a fork to create some holes in the base and wait for the pancetta to be ready to prepare the filling.Grate the emmenthal, add the 2 eggs and the cream. Mix and add the pancetta, some salt, pepper and nutmeg. Pour the mix in the pastry base and adjust the border in a way to contain all the filling. Place it in a pre-hitten oven for around 30-40 minutes at 200 degrees. When colored take it out and put a tooth pick in it. If it will come out dry, the quiche is ready! Buon appetito e buon Ferragosto!Ps: mamy questo e’ parte di cio che ho preparato per Ferragosto. Volevamo fare un pic nic ma visto il tempo ho trovato un posto dove potevamo stare portando il nostro cibo ed ho dato inizio al banchetto! Pensa che pur non essendo come l’originale francese anche a Nat e’ piaciuta un sacco!

Sformato verde – Green pie

Recipe 51: This is something my mum did during our holiday just to change a bit from the normal vegetable side order. It’s nothing really amazing or particular, but it’s just something healthy and different to eat and that can maybe suits children too.

Ingredients: you will just need some broccoli and cauliflower, olive oil, some garlic (cloves or powder), pepper, a bit of chili and nothing else.

Wash and cut the vegetable in little pieces, then boil them in some water with salt. Leave them for around 10 minutes. In the meantime put some oil in a pan with some garlic cloves. Let them get goldish and then take them out.

When the vegetable are still a bit hard place them in the pan and start to mash them with a wooden spoon or spatula. In the meantime the vegetable will cook in the oil and will take a nice taste. Add the pepper and chili and keep on  mixing and turning the vegetables. If they are getting to dry you can always add some more oil. I think the mix could be really good also with something like pancetta, if you like or pieces of sausages.

When you think the mix has reach a good consistency, creating a nice pie, you can try to cover the pan with a plate and turn the pie to let it cook on the other side.

Keep on turning until it become a little bit colored and when you think is ready you can serve it on a plate or already divided in slices with some meat or fish.

Enjoy!

PS. Mamy alla fine ho messo anche questa ricetta, perche’ non avevo mai proposto nulla con i broccoli ed il cavolfiore e questo sformato ripassato con aglio ed olio e’ perfetto per non mangiarsi sempre verdure lesse.

Chocolate and raspberries cheesecake (-24 weeks)

Recipe 52:  We are almost at the end of this holiday and I couldn’t leave without doing a cake. The problem is that here we don’t have the oven and not even the kitchen instruments I have at home. So it was quite difficult to think in a cake recipe, but I also couldn’t resist to use some fresh forest fruits! Here there are some amazing raspberries and blackberries! So what about a cheesecake?

Ingredients: 200gr biscuits (I used the “Campagnole” from Mulino Bianco… the best biscuits ever in Italy), 100 gr butter, 400gr Philadelphia (I used half normal and half light), then 60 gr sugar, 1 egg, and  50gr dark chocolate (I used just 30gr for half cake)  and/or  50 gr of raspberries ( they are sweeter than blackberries). You can even add some iced sugar on top and marshmallows if you like it.

Mash the biscuits until reduce them in powder, and add the butter already melted. Mix it all and place it in a baking pan creating the base of the cake.

In another container place the Philadelphia cheese, 40gr sugar and the egg yolk. Mix all well and then add also the white of the egg already whipped up. Fill the base of the cake with the mix and use a knife to make it homogeneous.

Now do you prefer to cover it with chocolate or rasberries sauce? For the chocolate put some water to boil in a saucepan and place the dark chocolate in another little saucepan. Place this one in the water and let the chocolate melt slowly ( this system in Italian is called “a bagno maria”). When ready spread the chocolate on the cake and add some iced sugar or marshmellows if you like.

If you prefer the raspberry sauce, place some rasperries in a saucepan with some sugar (one spoon and half) and let it melt. You can add some water if you need but I don’t think you will need. When ready, cover the cake with the sauce and you can also add some fresh fruit to make it looks better.

Place it in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours and serve it cold! Buon appetito!

PS. Mamy che mi dici della colazione a base di cheesecake? Anche se non era proprio una tua ricetta sono fiera di aver trovato una torta da poter preparare senza forno ma con frutta fresca e poi cucinare insieme e’ stato troppo divertente… specialmente sperimentando la salsa di lamponi 🙂