THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: BISCOTTI AL LIMONE

Hello folks!Happy Fiesta Friday to you all!This Friday i thought to bring some Lemon Cookies, was I wrong? I totally love lemon taste, and in the summer I often use it for cookies and cakes: I thing it has a refreshing taste. I found the recipe in Marisa’s blog: her recipe are just fabulous. Here the recipe:

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INGREDIENTS: for 25/30 cookies

– 120 gr granulated sugar
– 120 gr soft butter
– 1 egg
– 1 lemon
– 250 gr flour 00
– 1 teaspoon full of baking powder for desserts
– powdered sugar (as needed)

PREPARATION:

In a bowl work with a mixer – or with whisks – the soft butter with the sugar, till you’ll obtain a creamy mixture. After that, sift the flour together with the teaspoon of baking powder for desserts.

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Continue to work the mixture with the mixer; in the meanwhile, add the whole egg, the juice of half lemon, the grated peel of a whole lemon, and finally the sifted flour with the baking powder. The final mix obtained will be soft: let it rest in the fridge wrapped in clingfilm for 1 hour.

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When the hour has gone, make small ball with the mixture, and put them first in the granulated sugar, and then in the powdered sugar. Set the small balls in a baking tray covered in wax paper. Cook them in the preheated oven at  180°C for 10/15 minutes.

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Check often while cooking, the cookies must be taken out when you see that they have “cracks” on the surface. At this moment the lemon cookies will be really soft. You have to let them cool down for a bit before serving.

Buon Appetito!Cris

THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: PACCHERI GAMBERONI&ZUCCHINE

Hello!Am I in time for FiestaFriday also this week?!Unbelivable!This Friday I cooked a simple pasta dish – classic Italian style –  with prawns and courgette. I used a big type of pasta named “pacchero”, they’re like maccheroni but bigger, and they’re made by durum wheat flour.

INGREDIENTS: (4 persons)
– 350 gr paccheri
– 200 gr shrimps (to clean)
– 1 zucchino
– salt&pepper
– extra-virgin olive oil
– chopped parsley
– tomato passata (1 spoon)

PREPARATION:

We start first from cleaning the shrimps: separate the heads from the bodies, and remove the shells. In a frypan, warm up two spoon of extra-virgine olive oil with red onion and a butter curl. Let the onion lightly fry and the butter liquefy. After that, you could add the zucchini previously chopped, to pieces or slices. Flavour them with salt, pepper and add the chopped parsley, and the spoon of tomato passata.

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At this point you can add the shrimps heads, and let all the ingredients cook for a while on low fire, then switch off the stove. In the meanwhile, put another pot with salted water on the stove, and wait till the water will join the boiling point to add the paccheri.

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The coooking time for paccheri is about 12-13 minutes. When the pasta is “al dente” (not too hard, not too soft) you can drain the pasta. Transfer the pasta in the frypan together with the courgette and the shrimps and cook them together for 2-3 minutes.

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Buon Appetito!Cris

THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: LEMON CAKE

Hello! I’m glad this Friday to be able finally to participate again to FiestaFriday. Lately, I tried some new dishes, but I give up to post them on the blog because of the lack of time to write. Today I would like to show you a simple classic Lemon Cake, ideal for breakfast or a tea break.

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INGREDIENTS:

– 120 gr flour 00
– 250 gr butter
– 250 gr sugar
– 4 eggs
– 8-10 gr yeast
– 2 small lemon
– 120 gr maizena (it could be replaced with the same quantity of potato flour)

PREPARATION:

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To start preparing the cake cut the butter in cubes and let it became soft at room temperature, then put it in a bowl and add half of the sugar quantity previewed for this recipe. Start mixing (with the mixer or with the whisks) till you’ll obtain a soft and spumy mixture, then add the egg yolks (one by one). When the eggs will be fully blended, add the lemon peel.

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At this point you add the flour, the maizena and the yeast, previously sifted all together. Mix well all the ingredients then transfer the mixture in a clean big bowl. Use another time the mixer (or the whisks) to beat until stiff the albumen and the remaining quantity of sugar.

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When you have approximately finish to beat the egg whites, add slowly the lemon juice, then continue till you’ll obtain a rich and dense mixture. Add at last delicately the edd yolks you previously prepared, mixing from bottom to the top, not to disassemble the albumen. Mix until all the ingredients all fully combined.
Transfer the mixture in a round baking tray – diameter 22-24 cm – covered in wax paper, and put the cake in the preheated oven for 1 hour time at 180°C. When the cake it’s ready, let it cool down and then sprinkle powdered sugar on the top.

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Advice: If you notice that, while cooking, the cake became darker on the top, after 40 minutes open the oven and cover the cake with an aluminiun foil, then continue the cooking for the time suggested.

Buon Appetito!

THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: SEDANINI TONNO, POMODORINI E OLIVE

Hello!Spring is here, and this week I thought to present you for FiestaFriday one of my common and simple pasta dish: i love this version of sedanini (they’re tiny maccheroni) with tuna, pachino tomatoes and olives (this time I used the taggiasche type). A perfect fresh pasta dish for the hot mounths!

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INGREDIENTS: (4 persons)

– 360/380 gr sedanini pasta;
– 1 can of tuna (extra virgin oil, or natural)
– 50/70 gr taggiasche olives (pitted);
– 150 gr pachino tomatoes;
– extra virgin olive oil;
– onion, or (garlic, if you like it);
– salt&pepper;
– oregano

PREPARATION:

First of all, cut the tomatoes in half, eliminating all the seeds and the water in the inside. (squeezing them lightly) In a small saucepan, put a bit of extra-virgin olive oil and let it warm up for 2 minutes. In the meanwhile, cut a tiny piece of onion (and/or garlic) and put it in the pan together with the oil, to flavour it. When the oil start to sizzle, throw away the onion. Add the cutted tomatoes to the oil, and let it “rest” for a bit out of the stove.

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In another pot, put 750 ml of water on the stove, add two teaspoon salt, and let the water reach the boil. When it’s ready, add the sedanini and let them boil for 8-9 minutes.

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In the meanwhile, add the taggiasche olives and the tuna to the tomatoes in the small saucepan. When the pasta is ready – al dente -, drain the pasta and put it in the saucepan, and finally cook all until creamy – 2 minutes -.

Buon Appetito!Cris

THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: CHOCOLATE BUTTER CREAM CUPCAKES

Hello to you all! This week I receive a special request from Mons to translate one of the firsts recipe that I published on the blog. I was really honoured by this, so I decided to share with everybody the translation of my previous post. After all, yesterday started a brand new FiestaFriday party, isn’t it?

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INGREDIENTS: (10-12 cupcakes)

– 125 gr. butter (room temperature)
– 1 vanillin bag
– 165 gr. granulated sugar
– 150 gr. flour 00
– 3 eggs
– 1 teaspoon baking powder for desserts
– 60 ml milk
– grated lemon peel (optional)

FOR THE BUTTER CREAM

– 200 gr. powdered sugar
– 100 gr. butter
– 100-125 gr. milk chocolate

PREPARATION:

Preheat the oven at 180°C. Amalgamate well all the ingredients with the mixer: you start mixing the sugar and the butter together. After that, you add the flour, the vanillin and the baking powder. In the end, you add the eggs and two-three spoon of milk. Continue mixing the ingredients at maximum speed until the dough will turn into a soft and yellow cream.
Pour the mixture in a  muffin pan (every mould must be half-filled) or use directly the cupcake wrappers. Cook the cupcakes in the oven for 15-20 minutes till they become lightly golden on the surface: now let the sweets cool down before decorate them.

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For the chocolate butter cream: use the whisks to amalgamate well 200 gr. of powdered sugar – previously sifted – with 100 gr of butter at room temperature. Now you can flavour the cream: I added the liquefied milk chocolate. (molten at bain-marie) Amalgamate again with the whisks till the mixture will be uniform. Use a pastry piping bag to decorate the cupcakes with the chocolate butter cream. Add some coloured sugar flowers on the top.

SWEET VALENTINE/2

Hello! This Friday I was busy preparing a cake for Davide, my sweetheart. This year I choose something so quick to make that I’m a bit bashful of my choice, dictated from the lacking of available time.
However, the result is similar to a Margherita cake, with chocolate chips inside, with a decoration of chocolate and caramel. I mean, everybody can make this cake!I’m really attached to this recipe, because my granny teached me: it reminds me at my childhood. Here the recipe (so late for FiestaFriday!):

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INGREDIENTS:

– 300 gr flour 00
– 250 gr sugar
– 150 gr of butter (not too cold)
– 1 bag baking powder for desserts
– 3 eggs
– juice of an half lemon (or orange, if you prefere)
– chocolate chips
– a glass of whole milk

PREPARATION:

First of all, put the butter chopped in cubes and the sugar in the mixer, to obtain a soft and grainy mix. Put the mixture in a bowl, and add the egg yolk – which you had previously divided from the egg whites-  to the mixture, one after another. Every time you add a yolk, mix with a spoon to amalgamate better.

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Aside from this, add the baking powder to the flour and mix them together. Start adding the flour and the baking powder to the mixture of sugar, butter and egg yolks: add it inch by inch, mixing every time. In the meanwhile, you could start adding also the lemon juice, and after the glass of whole milk, always in several times.

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At this point you must have obtained a great yellow, elastic dough. Put the chocolate chips in the dough and mix again from bottom to the top to amalgamate them.
Aside, beat the egg whites until stiff, and then add it to the mixture as final ingredient. Mix again from bottom to the top in two-three times.

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Now the dough is ready to be cooked: light up the oven at 180°-200° C, and cook the cake for 45-50 minutes. For Valentine Day I used a heart-shaped mold, of course.

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Let the cake cool down and when ready, sprinkle it with powdered sugar: now it’s just ready to serve. This time I have added a decoration also with caramel. This cake is perfect for those who love the ciambella dough and the soft cakes. You’ll love it! Hoping that a spent a lovely Valentine’s day. Cris

THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: PISTACHIO CREAM TART

Oh my! Last Friday I missed the first part of the Fiesta Friday party, I had really few time – not a bit news, right? Do you think I could join now? Am I in time for desserts? 😉
I was tired of the simple fruits tart, as well as the chocolate and the Nutella ones: so, I wanted to try a Pistachio Nutella, a special product that is not so easy to find in Northern Italy. The consistency is like the Nutella, but this cream has a light green colour and a delicate sweet taste of pistachio. Really yummy!One of my colleagues brought me from Sicily. For this special edition of Fiesta Friday, I prepared a Pistachio Cream Tart with dark chocolate chips and whipped cream. I found it just delicious to eat. Here’s the recipe:

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FOR THE SHORTCRUST PASTRY (PASTAFROLLA)

INGREDIENTS:

– Flour 00: 250 gr
– Butter: 125 gr
– Powdered sugar: 100 gr
– Eggs: (yolk): 2 or 3 if small
– a pinch of salt
– a hint of vanillin

FOR THE FILLING:

– 250 ml cream to whip
– dark chocolate chips
– 250 gr pistachio nutella cream

PREPARATION:

The preparation of the shortcrust pastry starts with a process called “sabbiatura”: first of all sift the flour, and put it in the mixer, together with the cold butter chopped in cubes, and a pinch of salt. Blend the ingredients till you’ll obtain a sandy-like and floury mixture, then transfer it on a floury pastry board. Now you could add the powdered sugar. (always sifted before), and the vanillin.
Make a well in the centre of the flour, then pour in the center the 2-3 egg yolks and the grated lemon peel; start to amalgamate with a fork till the egg yolk will absorb the flour, then follow kneading powerfully till you’ll obtain a compact and elastic dough. Shape a block and wrap it into the plastic wrap, then put it in the fridge for 30 minutes before using it. Spread out the dough on a pastry board, then transfer it in a baking tray covered with wax paper. Riddle with holes the dough, fill the tart with dry beans and then cook it in the oven for 15-20 minutes at 180° C. When the borders are golden, remove the beans and then replace the tart in the oven, and cook again for other 20 minutes.

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You could also cook the Pistachio Nutella, but I prefer it cold in the filling, it’s more creamy; when the shortcrust tart is ready, fill it with the pistachio cream mixed with the dark chocolate chips, and put the tart in the fridge for a while.

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Then, you could start prepare the whipped cream: be careful to use a cold bowl and cold whisks; put the cream in the bowl together with the powdered sugar and start mixing at maximum speed, always in the same direction. When the whipped cream is ready and fluffy, you could decorate the tart on the top. When you cut it, you’ll have three coloured layers. Pretty, isn’t it?
Put the tart in the fridge for at least two hours before serving.

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THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: CHRISTMAS CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

Hello, good morning to all of you! I hope that you spent beautiful Christmas days! I’m late for Fiesta Friday this week, but I thought first to stay with my family and take a little break. Today I would like to share with you the recipe of the cuppies I made on Christmas’ Eve day. Hope you’ll enjoy it!

INGREDIENTS: (12 cupcakes)

– Flour 00: 120 gr
– Granulated Sugar: 120 gr
– Butter (room-temperature): 120 gr
– 2 Eggs (medium)
– Dark chocolate: 80 gr
– Baking powder: 1 teaspoon (4 gr)
– Cocoa powder: 20 gr

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PREPARATION:

To prepare the cupcakes, you start with melting in a bowl all the ingredients “in powder”: sift out the flour, then the cocoa powder, finally the baking powder.
Make the chocolate liquefy at bain-marie, and hold it by. In the meanwhile, whip the butter (already at room-temperature) together with the sugar – help yourself with an electric mixer – and after add the eggs, one after another. Continue whipping till you obtain a spumy and fixed mixture.
When you’re done with the butter and the sugar, you add to the mixture the dark chocolate. Mix a bit before adding the flour, the cocoa powder and the baking powder. The powders have to be added little by little with a spatula, making circular mouvements from the bottom to the top.
When the cupcakes mixture seems homogeneous – during this step you could add also other ingredients like chocolate chips, or chopped hazelnuts – transfer it in a sac-à-poche.
Lay down the cupcakes’ wraps into the muffins’ mold and fill them for 3/4 in height. Cook the cupcakes in the oven for 15- 20 minutes at 180 °C, watching the cooking with a toothpick. When the cupcakes are ready, let them cool down before starting with the decoration.

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DECORATING THE CUPCAKES: THE BUTTER CREAM

INGREDIENTS:

– Butter: 125 gr
– Powdered sugar: 250 gr
– one (or two) spoon of milk
– vanilla flavouring

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PREPARATION:

Chop the cold butter in cubes and put it in the mixer; work it at the maximum speed for 30-40 seconds; after that, you could start adding the powdered sugar, a little at a time: I added every time two spoons of sugar, always mixing at the maximum speed, often opening the mixer to remove the sugar stuck on the borders.
When you finish the sugar, you could finally add the milk and the vanilla flavour: mix again the last time for 30 seconds. Let the cream cool down in the fridge for a while, then use a baking syringe to decorate the cupcakes. If you wish, add also some decorations with coloured sugar paste.

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