31 October, 2013

Chocolate Spider Muffins


Chocolate Spider Muffins

Beware!!!
I've just found a spider nest in my house... Scary spiders are all over the place... Let the hunt begin!
Get them before those scary, hairy creatures get you...

This is a really easy and quick treat you can prepare last minute for your kids and they'll love it.
Who could resist those cute little spiders? Especially when there's a chocolate treat bellow.


Chocolate Spider Muffins


Chocolate Spider Muffins

(for 15 muffins)
* 2 eggs
* 250 ml heavy cream
* 150 ml sweetened condensed milk
* 220 g flour
* 20 g unsweetened cocoa
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 120 g sugar (white or brown)
* 100 g dark chocolate
* for "spider" decoration:
nutella,  chocolate sprinkles or ground oreo cookies,  30 Mikado chocolate sticks,  about 30 M&M's or Smarties,  a little melted chocolate

Sift the flour with the cocoa and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Add the sugar and whisk them together.
Melt the chocolate and set aside to cool.
In another mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, the heavy cream and the condensed milk.
Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and whisk together or stir with a wooden spoon.
In the end, stir in the melted and cooled chocolate.
Divide the batter into prepared muffin tin lined with paper cups filling them up to 3/4.
Bake the muffins in an oven preheated to 180°C for 15-18 minutes (check with a toothpick if they are done).
Remove the muffins from the pan and let them cool on a cooling rack.
Cut the Mikado chocolate sticks into 2 or (better) 3 pieces and "glue" two pieces together with a little melted together to form spider legs. Put them on a piece of baking paper and let the chocolate dry and set.
Spread some nutella on top of the muffins and cover with chocolate sprinkles or ground oreo cookies (only cookies without cream) to create that "hairy" spider effect.
Put a tiny drop of melted chocolate on M&M (or Smarties) candies for eyes.
Put a drop of chocolate on the bottom side of the candies, too, to "glue" them on top of the muffins.
Stick 6 "legs" (3 on each side) into the muffins and your scary spiders are ready.


Chocolate Spider Muffins


Muffin Ragno al cioccolato

(per circa 15 muffin)
* 2 uova
* 250 ml di panna fresca
* 150 ml di latte condensato zuccherato
* 220 g di farina "00"cucchiaino di lievito per i dolci
* 120 g di zucchero (bianco o di canna)
* 100 g cioccolato fondente
* per creare i "ragni":
nutella,  codette di cioccolato o biscotti oreo grattugiati (solo biscotti, senza crema), circa  30 bastoncini Mikado al cioccolato,  circa 30 caramelle colorate tipo M&M's o Smarties,  un po' di cioccolato fuso.

Setacciate insieme la farina, il cacao e il lievito in una ciotola. Aggiungete lo zucchero e mescolate con una frusta a mano.
Spezzettate il cioccolato fondente e fatelo sciogliere a bagno maria o nel forno a microonde e lasciatelo raffreddare.
In un altra ciotola mescolate con una frusta a mano le uova, la panna e il latte condensato.
Versate questo composto umido dentro la ciotola con gli ingredienti secchi e mescolate con un cucchiaio di legno o la frusta a mano.
Aggiungete alla fine il cioccolato fondente.
Distribuite il composto nella teglia per i muffin foderata con i pirotini di carta riempendoli per 3/4.
Metteteli a cuocere nel forno già caldo a 180°C per circa 15-18 minuti (vale la prova stecchino).
Togliete i muffin dalla teglia e lasciateli raffreddare.
Tagliate i Mikado in 3 pezzi e poi unite due pezzi alla volta con un po' di cioccolato fuso per formare le zampette dei ragni. Metteteli ad asciugare su un pezzo di carta da forno.
Spalmate un po' di Nutella sui muffin e cospargeteli con le codete di cioccolato o dei biscotti oreo grattugiati per creare l'effetto "peloso".
Mettete una goccia di ciocolato fuso sui M&M's per creare gli occhi spaventosi. Mettete anche un po di cioccolato sotto le caremelle per incolarle sui muffin.
Infine infilate 6 zampette in ogni muffin (3 da ogni lato) e i vostri muffin "ragno" spaventosi sono pronti.




Chocolate Spider Muffins


Čokoladni pauk muffini

(za 15 muffina)
* 2 jaja
* 250 ml svježeg slatkog vrhnja (mliječnog) za šlag
* 150 ml zaslađenog kondenziranog mlijeka
* 220 g brašna
* 20 g nezaslađenog kakaa
* 1 žličica praška za pecivo
* 120 g šećera (bijelog ili smeđeg)
* 100 g tamne čokolade
* za ukras:
nutella,  čokoladne mrvice ili izmrvljeni oreo keksi,  čokoladni štapići,  bombonice u bojama (poput M&M's ili smarties),  malo čokolade

Stavite u jednu zdjelu prosijano brašno, kakao i prašak za pecivo. Dodajte šećer i izmiješajte.
Otopite čokoladu i ostavite je da se prohladi.
U drugoj zdjeli izmiješajte pjenjačom jaja, slatko vrhnje i kondenzirano mlijeko. Ne mutite previše, samo toliko da se sastojci pomiješaju.
Istresite sad vlažne sastojke  u zdjelu sa suhim sastojcima i izmiješajte pjenjačom ili drvenom kuhačom da se dvije smjese spoje.
Umiješajte na kraju otopljenu i prohlađenu čokoladu.
Rasporedite smjesu u kalupe obložene papirnim košaricama - punite ih do 3/4 visine.
Pecite muffine u pećnici zagrijanoj na 180°C oko 15-18 minuta.
Izvadite ih na rešetku i ostavite da se ohlade.
Čokoladne štapiće prerežite na dva ili tri dijela pa ih spojite pod kutom uz pomoć malo otopljene čokolade. Ostavite ih da se čokolada stisne.
Premažite svaki muffin nutellom pa pospite čokoladnim mrvicama ili samljevenim oreo keksima (bez kreme).
Za oči, napravite prvo točkice od čokolade na obojanim bombonama a zatim ih uz pomoć malo čokolade zalijepite na muffine.
Na kraju utisnite sa svake strane po tri  nogice od čokoladnih štapića.

Chocolate Spider Muffins

30 October, 2013

Spelt salad with chickpeas and zucchini


Spelt salad with chickpeas and zucchini

A very simple, but valuable dish from nutritional point of view is what I'm sharing with you today. One of my favourite summer meals. Ok, I know, summer is nothing but a vague memory by now (at least where I live)... but I like to prepare this any time of the year. Especially suitable for someone who, like me, is a busy mom of a 14-month old baby, often eating quick meals and not always warm ones.
This salad, prepared with spelt, chickpeas and vegetables is a great solution. It can be prepared in advance. You can put it in your lunch box to take to work. It will not only provide you with a complete meal, with carbs, proteins, vegetables, but it will make you feel full for several hours without making you feel heavy or sleepy. Lots of pluses and reasons why you should give it a go.
The great thing is that you can also vary the vegetables you add. For example, you can substitute the zucchini (or simply add ) some grilled eggplants or roasted bell peppers, or oven roasted cauliflower and broccoli. Create your favourite combination or choose a different one every time.

As I've said many times, chickpeas are my favourite legumes. I used to buy canned ones, but often had probles with quantities and leftovers etc. So I started buying dried chickpeas and cooking them at home. It's really easy and they taste better, too. And I'm sure there's nothing else added.
If you have never cooked dried chickpeas at home, here's how to do it: First soak the dried chickpeas in a large bowl (at least twice as big as the initial quantity of dried chickpeas) with lukewarm/cold water, for at least 12 (to 24) hours. Drain them, put them in a pot and add fresh water. Cook them for about 2 hours. Let them cool, then drain and they are ready to be used in any recipe. I usually portion them and freeze, because I never cook less than 500 g dried chickpeas, that become almost 1 kg once they are cooked.
For more chickpeas recipes, click HERE.

Spelt salad with chickpeas and zucchini


Spelt salad with chickpeas and zucchini

* 320 g pearld spelt (farro)
* 240 g precooked chickpeas
* 500 g zucchini
* 300 g cherry tomatoes
 * fresh basil and thyme
* extra virgin olive oil
* salt and pepper
* 1 clove of garlic

Cook the spelt in a pot with slightly salted water for about 40 minutes. Drain it and set aside to cool. Season it with 2 TBspoons of extra virgin olive oil and fresh thyme.
Wash and dry the zucchini, cut both ends off and shred them or cut into small sticks.
Heat 2 TBspoons of extra virgin olive oil in a deep skillet, add a whole garlic clove and the shredded zucchini. Stirfry the zucchini for about 10 minutes until they start getting soft.
Add the precooked chickpeas (drained and rinsed if using the canned ones). Cover and cook on low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionaly and adding a couple TBspoons of warm water if necessary. Season with salt and pepper. Set them aside to cool a little bit.
Cut the cherry tomatoes into wedges and season them with a tablespoon or two of extra virgin olive oil, salt and finely chopped basil leaves.
In a large salad bowl, mix everything together, the spelt, the zucchini with chickpeas, and the cherry tomatoes, and serve.



Spelt salad with chickpeas and zucchini


Insalata di farro con ceci e zucchine

* 320 g di farro perlato
* 240 g di ceci cotti
* 500 g di zucchine
* 300 g di pomodorini
 * basilico e timo freschi
* olio extra vergine d'oliva
* sale
* 1 spicchio d'aglio

Mettete a cuocere il farro in una pentola con l'acqua leggermente salata per 40 minuti.
Scolatelo e lasciatelo raffreddare.
Aggiungete al farro 2 cucchiai di olio extra vergine d'oliva e le foglioline di timo.
Lavate e spuntate le zucchine, grattugiatele con una grattugia con fori grossi oppure tagliate a bastoncini piccoli.
Scaldate 2 cucchiai d'olio EVO in una padella. Unite lo spicchio intero di aglio e le zucchine e saltatele a fuoco medio per 10 minuti mescolando spesso.
Unite i ceci (scolati, se usate quelli in scatola), coprite,  abbassate la fiamma al minimo e continuate la cottura per altri 10 minuti aggiungendo, se necessario, qualche cucchiaio d'acqua calda. Condite a piacere con sale e pepe.
Lasciate che le zucchine si raffreddino un po'.
Tagliate i pomodorini a spicchi. Conditeli con uno o due cucchiai di olio EVO, sale e le foglie di basilico sminuzzate.
Mescolate in un'insalatiera il farro, le zucchine con i ceci e i pomodorini. Mescolate e servite.

Spelt salad with chickpeas and zucchini


Salata od pira sa slanutkom i tikvicama

* 320 g pira
* 240 g kuhanog slanutka
* 500 g tikvica
* 300 g cherry rajčica
 * bosiljak, timijan
* maslinovo ulje
* sol i papar
* 1 češanj bijelog luka

Stavite pir kuhati u malo posoljenoj vodi oko 40 minuta. Ocijedite ga i ostavite da se ohladi.
Dodajte mu 2 žlice maslinovog ulja i listiće timijana.
Tikvice operite, odrežite im krajeve i naribajte ih na krupni ribež ili ih narežite na štapiće.
Zagrijte u tavi 2 žlice maslinovog ulja. Dodajte cijeli češnjak i tikvice pa pirjajte par minuta na srednje jakoj vatri miješajući.
Dodajte zatim slanutak i nastavite pirjati na najnižoj vatri pokriveno oko 10 minuta (ako je potrebno dodajte par žlica tople vode). Posolite i popaprite po ukusu.
Ostavite da se prohladi.
Rajčice narežite na kriškice. Dodajte im žlicu-dvije maslinovog ulja, sol i sitno nasjeckane listiće bosiljka.
U većoj zdjeli pomiješajte sve, pir, tikvice sa slanutkom i rajčice, i poslužite.

28 October, 2013

Caramel Panna Cotta



Caramel Panna Cotta

You know that feeling when your heart is full, when you feel like jumping and embracing everyone? When you see your daily sacrifice bear fruits? Those little momentes of happiness are not only precious but make life big.
To see my daughter yesterday at the swimming competition made me feel so proud of her, forgetting in one moment all the sweat and fatigue day after day following her, encouraging and even pushing her when she feels low and tired, when she feels she's not up to something. The moment she won her heat (even though she only qualified third in the end) for her was as if she had won the gold olimpic medal. For us, too. She's only nine, but I'm sure these are great lessons for her. The best things in life are those you earn with effort and sacrifice, when you put the last atom of your force into what you're doing.

Fortunately, when it comes to Mondays, there's a less difficult way to feel like you've just climbed the top of Mount Everest.
Want to know what?
The one that follows.
Is there anything more gratifying than a smooth, silky dessert that melts in your mouth and you hope won't finish anytime soon?
Panna cotta often doesn't match this description. Panna cotta often has that excessively gummy texture due to inappropriate quantity of gelatine in it. It's often flavourless, because, let's admit it, there's nothing special about it, it's just cream thickened with some gelatine, what is there so special about it? Maybe the topping is what can save the situation. Maybe.
My favourite topping has always been the caramel sauce. Even more than fruit or chocolate, although I love them all.
And I've made some really good panna cotta before, where ingredients were well balanced, but...
nothing like this.
This is far the best panna cotta you'll ever taste. Don't get discouraged by the long preparation. You can do million other things while the dessert is being baked.  You read correctly, "baked" not "cooked". And there isn't a gram of gelatine in it...


Caramel Panna Cotta

Caramel Panna Cotta
(adapted from here)

* 250 ml fresh heavy cream (with 30-35% m.f.)
* 3-4 TBspoons of caramel sauce 
* 2 egg whites
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1/4 vanilla bean
* milk chocolate and a little milk (for topping)

Put the cream and the caramel sauce in a sauce pan and heat almost to a boiling point to make sure all the caramel has melted. Set aside to cool.
You can also melt and caramelize 3-4 TBspoons of brown sugar, then pour in the hot cream and cook on low heat until the caramelized sugar has melted in case you don't have any caramel sauce ready in the fridge.
Add the vanilla extract or the scraped seeds from the vanilla bean.
When the cream mixture has cooled down, add the just lightly broken egg whites and stir them into the cream with a whisk.
Pour the mixture into 4 (100 ml) panna cotta moulds /or ramekins,  and place them into a deeper baking pan. Pour enough water into the pan to reach up to 2/3 of the panna cotta moulds.
Bake the panna cotta in an oven preheated to 140°C for 1 1/2 hours.
Remove from the oven, let cool to room temperature and then chill in the fridge for a couple hours.
Remove the panna cotta from the moulds onto serving dessert plates and serve with chocolate topping.
To prepare the chocolate topping, chop some milk chocolate and melt it with the addition of a little milk to get a fluid consistency. Serve over the panna cotta.
*for a lighter version, you may substitute half the quantity of cream with milk, but the taste is much better and fuller if using cream only.



Caramel Panna Cotta


Panna cotta al caramello
(adattata da qui)

* 250 ml panna fresca (con 30-35% di grassi)
* 3-4 cucchiai di  salsa al caramello 
* 2 albumi d'uovo
* 1/2 cucchiaino di estratto di vaniglia o 1/4 di baccello di vaniglia
* cioccolato al latte e un po' di latte (per la salsa al cioccolato)

Mettete la panna e la salsa al caramello in un pentolino e scaldateli quasi fino al ebollizione mescolando per far sciogliere il caramello. Togliete il pentolino dal fuoco e lasciate raffreddare.
In alternativa (se non avete la salsa al caramello già pronta), sciogliete e fate caramellare 3-4 cucchiai di zucchero di canna, poi versateci dentro la panna calda e cuocete finché lo zucchero non si sarà sciolto nella panna. 
Aggiungete l'estratto di vaniglia o i semi tolti dal baccello.
Quando la panna si sarà raffreddata, unite gli albumi, solo leggermente sbattuti per romperli, mescolando con un frustino ma senza incorporare l'aria.
Versate la panna nei 4 stampini per panna cotta e sistemate i stampini in una teglia alta. Versate l'acqua nella teglia fino a 2/3 di altezza dei stampini.
Infornate a 140°C per circa 1 ora e 1/2.
Togliete i stampini dal forno e lasciateli raffreddare prima a temperatura ambiente e poi nel frigo per un paio d'ore prima di servire.
Preparate la salsina al cioccolato sciogliendo il cioccolato al latte con un po' di latte per ottenere una salsa fluida.
Sformate la panna cotta, sistematela su un piattino e servite con la salsa al cioccolato.
*Per una panna cotta più leggera potete sostituire metà della panna con il latte, ma il sapore e la consistenza saranno sicuramente migliori se fatta con solo panna.




Caramel Panna Cotta


Karamel panna cotta
(recept prilagođen odavde)

* 250 ml svježeg slatkog vrhnja za šlag (s 30-35% m.m.)
* 3-4 žlice gotovog karamel umaka
* 2 bjeljanjka
* 1/2 žličice ekstrakta vanilije ili sjemenke iz 1/4 mahune 
* mliječna čokolada i malo mlijeka (za umak)

Zagrijte skoro do vrenja slatko vrhnje s karamel umakom da se karamel otopi. Ostavite da se potpuno ohladi.
Ako ne želite praviti posebno karamel, karamelizirajte 3-4 žlice smeđeg šećera i dodajte zagrijano slatko vrhnje, polako kuhajte dok se sav karamelizirini šećer ne otopi, pa ostavite da se ohladi. 
Dodajte nastrugane sjemenke vanilije ili pola žličice ekstrakta.
U ohlađeno vrhnje dodajte malo razmućene bjeljanjke (ne mutite ih mikserom već samo malo "razbijte" vilicom ili ručnom pjenjačom). Izmiješajte pjenjačom.
Ulijte smjesu u kalupiće (metalne, keramičke, silikonske) i stavite ih u dublju posudu. Naspite vode da dopire do 2/3 kalupića.
Stavite u pećnicu zagrijanu na 140°C i pecite 1 i pol sat.
Izvadite iz pećnice i kad se ohladi stavite u hladnjak na par sati.
Prije posluživanja, posudice uronite nakratku u vrelu vodu da panna cottu lakše istresete van (eventualno prođite nožem između panna cotte i stijenke posude).
Otopite mliječnu čokoloadu s malo mlijeka pa poslužite uz ovu panna cottu.

* za malo lakšu verziju, možete umjesto vrhnja koristiti pola vrhnje, a pola mlijeko, okus je naravno bolji i puniji ako se radi samo s vrhnjem.



Milk chocolate topping



25 October, 2013

Flax Seed Bread With Olive Oil


Flax seed bread

Things are a little bit in ferment here, within the next 20 days we'll be moving into a new house. And it's a big mixture of feelings. We are happy, worried, disoriented even. There are so many things to do, so many decisions to make. 
One of the most painful things for me will be moving into a smaller kitchen. The one I have now is already small (Ok, I've seen much smaller ones, but considered how much time I spend in there it will never be big enough for me or my tools, kitchen utensils, bowls, plates, pots and pans). So that "Baker's corner" will kind of literally turn into a "corner" of the house.
If at least "someone" would listen to me and buy me a new kitchen, the passage might be less painful...
So far as I see things, my old oven will not retire any time soon, and neither will the kitchen furniture, except those things that won't fit in there any more. 
I'm really not looking up to packing up everything. But I know it will also be an opportunity to get rid of lots of stuff sitting around the house without being used in years. I wish there were yard sales in Italy, I'm not really glad to just throw things away when they can still be useful to someone else. 

Talking about old things, I came to another "oldie". A recipe for the most delicious loaf of milk, sandwich bread I've ever made. Except that I haven't baked it since summer 2012. I was pregnant then, and yet I baked it through all that hot summer because we really loved it. 
It's great in any way you decide to eat it, just with a little butter or jam, or in a sandwich. In fact, since we often went to the swimming pool that summer, I simply prepared sandwiches with cheese and grilled vegetables. So delicious.
I also discovered later, that flax seeds when used whole in bread have a slight laxative effect. No wonder my little problems never appeared in that period, despite of my pregnany. 
Well, the baby, as I told you earlier, is out and running by now, and I thought it was about time to share this recipe here on blog as well. Especially, because my camera hasn't been repaired yet, and all I can do is keep pulling some old recipes and old photos.
So, happy baking... have the most beautiful weekend and remember... All you knead is love!

Flax seed bread



Flax Seed Bread With Olive Oil

* 20 g flax seeds
* 300 ml water
* 500 g flour (only white, or mixed, white and wholegrain)
* 100 ml milk
* 150 g sourdough starter with 100% hydratation
* 1 teaspoon powdered malt extract
* 2 teaspoons salt
* 2 TBspoons extra virgin olive oil

Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread

Put the flax seeds in a saucepan with 300 ml water. When the water starts boiling, lower the heat and let them simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Dissolve the sourdough starter in milk.
Sift the flour into a mixing bowl. Add the powdered malt extract and then pour in the milk with the sourdough starter and mix partially.
Add all the other ingredients: the cooked flax seeds, salt and the olive oil.
Knead until you get smooth and soft dough.
Put the dough into a clean bowl, cover and let it proof for about 3 hours or until it doubles in volume.
Transfer the dough to a floured kneading board and flatten slightly with your hands to form a rectangle.
Fold the upper third of the rectangle towards the middle, and then do the same with lower third, too.
Cut this roll into three equal parts. Fold each of the three portions to form three balls. Cover them and let rest for 30 minutes.


Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread

When the dough has rested, shape each one into a rope. I use the same way I use for shaping baguettes: Flatten each portion of the dough with your hands. Fold the upper quarter towards the middle, and do the same with lower quarter. The two ends should meet in the middle. Then fold the upper half over the lower one and press the edges with the palm of your hand. Now just roll the dough with both your hands to form a rope.

Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread  Flax seed bread

Join the ends of the three dough ropes and form a simple braid.
Place the braid into a slightly oiled loaf pan or lined with baking paper.
Cover with a piece of plastic wrap sprayed with oil and let it rise until the bread has reached the edges of the pan. Uncover and let it rise a little bit over the edge.
Mix a little milk and oil mixed together before baking it in the oven preheated to 200°C.
After the first 10-15 minutes lower the heat to 180°C and bake for about 30 more minutes or until your bread has reached nice brown colour.
Remove the bread from the pan and put it back into the oven, directly on the oven rack for 5 minutes.
Let the bread cool completely covered with a clean cotton cloth before cutting it.

* If you don't have sourdough starter, you may prepare this bread with 25 g fresh yeast or 7 g dry instant yeast.
* If you, like me, have sourdough starter with 50% hydratation, here's how you can transform it into 100% hydrated one:
  1. Take 10 g of your sourdough starter with 50% hydratation and mix it with 10 g of flour and 6 g of water. Let it ferment for 6-8 hours at room temperature.
  2. Take 25 g of previous starter and mix it with 25 g of flour and 18 g of water. Let it ferment for 6-8 hours.
  3. Take 50 g of previous starter and mix it with 50 g of flour and 45 g of water. Let if ferment for 6-8 hours.
  4. Take 50 g of previous starter and mix it with 50 g of flour and 50 g water. Let it ferment for 6-8 hours.
You've got now 150 g of sourdough starter with 100% hydratation necessary to prepare this bread.
Since the process is a bit long, you may want to do this only once and keep the starter for future uses. In that case, don't use all 150 g of starter immediately, but refresh it all or only 100 g (adding the same quantity of flour and water), let it ferment for 6-8 hours, use the quantity you need immediately and keep the rest in the fridge, feeding it regularly at least once every 5 days.
  



Flax seed bread

Pane al latte con semi di lino e olio di oliva

* 20 g di semi di lino
* 300 ml di acqua
* 500 g di farina (mista "0" e "00" o "00" e integrale)
*  100 ml di latte
* 150 g lievito madre con 100% di idratazione
* 1 cucchiaino di malto d'orzo in polvere
* 2 cucchiaini di sale
* 2 cucchiai di olio extravergine d'oliva

Mettete i semi di lino in un pentolino con 300 ml di acqua. Portate a ebolizione, poi abbassate la fiamma e cuocete per 5 minuti. Lasciate raffreddare completamente.
Mescolate il lievito madre con il latte e fatelo sciogliere completamente.
Setacciate la farina nella ciotola e aggiungete il malto in polvere (se non lo trovate potete sostituirlo con un po' di zucchero o miele). Unite il latte e cominciate a mescolarlo alla farina.
Aggiungete tutti gli altri ingredienti: semi di lino con tutta la mucillagine, il sale e l'olio di EVO.
Impastate tutto insieme e lavorate la pasta finché diventi liscia e morbida.
Mettete la pasta in una ciotola pulita e lasciatela lievitare per circa 3 ore o fino al raddoppio del volume.
Trasferite la pasta su una spianatoia infarinata e stendetela leggermente con le mani formando un rettangolo.
Piegate la parte superiore verso il centro e fate lo stesso con il lato inferiore. Dividete il rotolo così ottenuto in tre parti uguali. Piegate i lati tagliate e formate tre palline. Copritele e lasciatele riposare 30 minuti.
Riprendete le palline di pasta e formate un rotolino con ogni una: io lo faccio usando lo stesso metodo che uso per le baguette - stendete un po la pasta con le mani. Piegate il quarto superiore verso il centro, e così anche quello inferiore. Piegate il tutto a meta premendo bene i bordi e arrotolate per allungare il rotolino a lunghezza desiderata.
Intrecciate i tre rotolini tra di loro. Trasferite la treccia in uno stampo per plum cake leggermente oleato o coperto con la carta da forno.
Coprite lo stampo con la pellicola spennellata con un po' di olio. Lasciate lievitare il pane in un luogo caldo. Quando la pasta ha raggiunto i bordi dello stampo, togliete la pellicola e lasciatelo lievitare un altro po' finché non supera leggermente i bordi.
Prima di infornarlo, spennellate il pane con il latte al quale avete aggiunto un po' di olio EVO.
Cuocetelo a 200°C per i primi 10-15 minuti. Quando comincia a prendere colore, abbassate la temperatura a 180°C e proseguite la cottura per altri 30 minuti. Togliete il pane dallo stampo i rimettetelo nel forno, direttamente sulla griglia per altri 5 minuti. 
Lasciatelo poi raffreddare completamente coperto con un canovaccio. 
Non tagliate il pane prima che sia completamente freddo.

* se non avete il lievito madre potete sostituirlo con 25 g di lievito fresco o una bustina (7 g) di quello secco, bilanciando un po' la quantità necessaria di liquidi. I tempi di lievitazione saranno più brevi se usate il lievito di birra.
* se come me, avete il LM a 50% di idratazione portatelo a 100% in modo seguente:
  1. Impastate 10 g di LM a 50% di idratazione con 10 g di farina e 6 g di acqua. Lasciate fermentare per 6-8 ore a temperatura ambiente.
  2. Impastate 25 g di lievito madre precedentemente fermentato con 25 g di farina e 18 g di acqua. Lasciate fermentare per 6-8 ore a temperatura ambiente.
  3. Prelevate 50 g del lievito madre precedente e impastatelo con 50 g di farina e 45 g di acqua. Lasciate fermentare per 6-8 ore.
  4. Prelevate di nuovo 50 g del LM precedente e impastatelo con 50 g di farina e 50 g di acqua. Lasciatelo fermentare per 6-8 ore. 
Avete ottenuto così 150 g di LM con 100% di idratazione necessario per impastare questo pane.
Il processo di trasformazione è un po lungo. Se volete tenere il LM con 100% di idratazione (licoli) non usatelo subito tutto una volta prodotti i 150 g, ma rinfrescatelo ancora una volta, tutto o solo 100 g per produrre una quantità maggiore, usate quello che vi serve per il pane e conservate il resto in frigo, rinfresandolo regolarmente, e usate per altri impasti.



Flax seed bread

Mliječni kruh s lanenim sjemenkama i maslinovim uljem

* 20 g sjemenki lana
* 300 ml vode
* 500 g brašna (bijelog, ili mijesanog, bijelog i integralnog)
*  100 ml mlijeka
* 150 g kiselog tijesta/kvasa (sa 100%-tnom hidratacijom)
* 1 žličica ječmenog slada u prahu
* 2 žličice soli
* 2 žlice maslinovog ulja

Stavite sjemenke lana u lončić s 300 ml vode. Kad voda prokuha, smanjite vatru i kuhajte 5 minuta. Ostavite da se potpuno ohladi.
Kvas pomiješajte s mlijekom (vilicom ili rukom) da se skoro potpuno istopi.
Prosijte brašno u zdjelu i dodajte mu ječmeni slad. Dodajte kvas s mlijekom i pomiješajte djelomično s brašnom.
Dodajte sve ostale sastojke: lanene sjemenke (sa svojom tekućinom koja se hlađenjem pretvorila u sluz), sol, maslinovo ulje.
Umijesite glatko i podatno tijesto.
Izradite ga par minuta na lagano pobrašnjenoj radnoj površini.
Stavite tijesto u zdjelu, pokrijte i ostavite da se diže oko 3 sata, odnosno dok se ne udvostruči.
Istresite tijesto na malo pobrašnjenu dasku i lagano ga rastanjite rukama.
Preklopite gornju trećinu prema sredini, pa preko nje preklopite donju.
Prerežite dobivenu štrucu na tri dijela i svakom preklopite prerezane rubove da dobijete loptice.
Ostavite ih pokrivene pola sata.
Izdužite kuglice u deblje "kobasice" valjajući ih pa ih upletite u pletenicu.
Stavite pletenicu u duguljasti kalup za kruh (malo nauljen ili obložen papirom za pečenje).
Pokrijte kalup nauljenim komadom prozirne folije i ostavite kruh da se diže dok ne dosegne rub kalupa. Otkrijte kruh i ostavite da se diže još dok lagano ne naraste preko ruba (u međuvremenu zagrijte pećnicu).
Prije pečenja premažite kruh mlijekom ili vodom.
Stavite peći u pećnicu zagrijanu na 200°C.
Nakon 10-15 minuta smanjite temperaturu na 180°C i nastavite peći još oko 30 minuta ili dok lijepo ne porumeni na površini.
Izvadite kruh iz kalupa i stavite ga izravno na rešetku pećnice još 5 minuta, a zatim ga izvadite, stavite na rešetku za hlađenje i pokrijte čistom pamučnom krpom.
Pričekajte da se potpuno ohladi prije nego ćete ga rezati.
* ako nemate kiselo tijesto/kvas, stavite kvasac (25 g svježeg ili 1 vrećicu-7g suhog). Naravno, ako koristite kvasac nije neophodno da se tijesto diže 3 sata, vjerojatno će biti dovoljno oko 1 ili 1,5 sat.
** umjesto ječmenog slada u prahu možete dodati šećer, med i sl.

Budući da je moj kvas s 50% vlage prvo sam ga sljedećim postupkom dovela do 100% vlage:
1. Pomiješala sam 10 g kvasa s 10 g brašna i 6 g vode i ostavila da fermentira 6-8 sati, pokriveno na sobnoj temperaturi.
2. Pomiješala sam 25 g prethodno fermentiranog kvasa s 25 g brašna i 18 g vode, pa ostavila da ponovo fermentira 6-8 sati.
3. Uzela sam 50 g od prethodno fermentiranog kvasa (ne sve) i dodala još 50 g brašna i 45 g vode, dobro izmiješala i ostavila da fermentira 6-8 sati.
4. Na kraju sam opet uzela 50 g od prethodnog kvasa i dodala 50 g brašna i 50 g vode, pomiješala dobro i ostavila da fermentira 6-8 sati.
Sad je kvas dostigao 100% vlage i takvog sam ga upotrijebila za ovaj kruh.
Budući da je proces transformacije kvasa iz jednog oblika u drugi (od 50 do 100 postotne hidratacije) podugačak, ako ga želite sačuvati za dalje nemojte odmah upotrijebiti svih 150 g koje ste dobili. Nahranite ga još jedanput, svih 150 ili samo 100 g (s istom količinom brašna i vode koliko i kvasa), tako da dobijete veću količinu kvasa. 150 g upotrijebite za kruh, a ostatak čuvajte u hladnjaku i prihranjujte redovno, barem jedanput svakih 5 dana, kao i kod 50%-tnog  kvasa. 

Flax seed bread

23 October, 2013

Noccioletti - Hazelnut cookies

Noccioletti

Tell me it's time to bake a batch of cookies... Please do... I need a quick refill of energy and it's only Wednesday and this little man running through the house is a real menace. Lose the sight of him for 10 or 20 seconds and he's sure to come up with something for you to clean or reorder. Can't find him, just follow the unrolled toilet paper... and then you can't miss him, he's just behind the pile of laundry. Sure, he's helping you, he even emptied the laundry basket for you, now you only have to put everything into the washing machine. You see, he must have read your schedual. And while you are taking care of that, he'll be good and play with clothes you just ironed and folded neatly, just to make sure you're never bored.
Hey, people, if you are bored, I could "lend" you my little joker for a couple hours, while I bake a batch or two of cookies. Promise to share them with you, 'cause you, too, will need a good cup of coffee or tea and a tray of cookies when he leaves your house.

These cookies are the most irresistible ones you can imagine, just like my little naughty cookie I told you about. They'll smile at you from the cookie tray and you'll be reaching for another one, again and again.
Did you know that eating hazelnuts you'll gain multiple benefits? They are rich in vitamin E that, with its powerful antioxidant potentials, helps skin, nervous system and heart to stay in good health. There, now I have another good excuse to bake this morning.
I toasted some really nice hazelnuts the other day with intention to make some cookies, but I've been eating them all the time, so if I don't make any immediately, I'll have to toast another batch.

This recipe is my adaptation of the Luca Montersino's recipe for Nocetti (Walnut cookies), from his book Peccati al cioccolato. I made only 1/4 of the original recipe because using 880 g of butter seemed like crazyness to me and I still got lots of cookies (although the original recipe says it makes 60 cookies with 4 time ingredients you can see below, I just think that someone should have learned to count better). Another little adaptation on my part was using hard boiled egg yolks instead of raw ones. One because hard boiled egg yolks make this type of cookies really melt-in-your-mouth type of cookies, and second because they are much easier to weigh and work with.
Last but not least, I used hazelnuts instead of walnuts because I like them much better, but I'm pretty sure the recipe would work well with any other nuts as well.


Noccioletti



Noccioletti - Hazelnut cookies

Light dough:
* 110 g butter
* 70 g powdered sugar
* 15 g hard boiled egg yolk
* 160 g flour
* 30 g corn starch or potato starch
* a pinch of salt
* 1/4 vanilla bean

Dark dough:
* 110 g butter
* 70 g powdered sugar
* 25 g hard boiled egg yolk
* 160 g flour
* 25 g corn starch or potato starch
* 15 g unsweetened cocoa
* a pinch of salt
* 1/4 vanilla bean
* 85 g hazelnuts

First thing, prepare hard boiled eggs. For both doughs (40 g) I take 3 medium sized eggs. Put them into a saucepan with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook for 8 minutes. Then cool down completely, remove the egg yolks and press them through a fine mash sieve.

Light dough:
Chop the butter and let it soften at room temperature.
Using a wooden spoon, mix the softened butter with powdered sugar, egg yolks (15 g), scraped vanilla seeds and salt.
Mix and sift together the flour and the corn starch and add to the batter. Bring everything together quickly without kneading too much. Wrap the dough and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.

Dark dough:

Chop the butter and let it soften at room temperature.
Using a wooden spoon, mix the softened butter with powdered sugar, egg yolks (15 g), scraped vanilla seeds and salt.
Mix and sift together the flour, the corn starch and the cocoa powder, add them to the batter.
Add the chopped hazelnuts (use a food processor, but make sure you don't grind them completely, so you can have that crunch element in your cookies).
Divide the dough into 3 equal pieces (use a kitchen scale) and shape each portion into a 3-4 cm wide logs. Wrap each log separately and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.

How to prepare the cookies:
Roll out the light dough into a rectangle (shorter side of the rectangle should be the same as the length of the dark dough logs.
Brush the dough with water and place one of the dark dough logs at the begining of the rectangle.
Wrap the dark logs completely with the light dough.
Cut the light dough and repeat with the other two logs.
To make this process easier, make sure you roll the dough out on a piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper.
Wrap each log again and chill in the fridge or in the freezer until stiff enough to slice easily.
At this point just cut each log into 5 mm slices, place on a baking sheet with the cut side up/down.
Bake in an oven preheated to 180°C for 12-15 minutes.
Once the cookies are cold, store them in an airtight container.


Noccioletti


Noccioletti

Impasto chiaro:
* 110 g di burro
* 70 g di zucchero a velo
* 15 g di tuorlo sodo
* 160 g di farina "00"
* 30 g di amido di mais o fecola di patate
* un pizzico di sale
* 1/4 di baccello di vaniglia

Impasto scuro:
* 110 g di burro
* 70 g di zucchero a velo
* 25 g di tuorlo sodo
* 160 g di farina "00"
* 25 g di amido di mais o fecola di patate
* 15 g di cacao amaro
* un pizzico di sale
* 1/4 di baccello di vaniglia
* 85 g di nocciole

Come prima cosa preparate i tuorli. Per 40 g di tuorli sodi di solito metto a cuocere 3 uova medie.
Mettete le uova in un pentolino con l'acqua fredda, portate a ebollizione e lasciate cuocere per 8 minuti. Raffreddate le uova ed estraete i tuorli. Passateli al setaccio con maglie fitte.

Impasto chiaro:
Tagliate il burro a pezzettini e lasciatelo ammorbidire a temperatura ambiente.
Usando un cucchiaio di legno, mescolate bene il burro morbido con lo zucchero a velo, il sale, i tuorli e i semi di vaniglia.
Unite la farina e l'amido setacciati insieme e impastate velocemente.
Avvolgete l'impasto nella pellicola alimentare e lasciatelo nel frigo per 1 ora.

Impasto scuro:
Tagliate il burro a pezzettini e lasciatelo ammorbidire a temperatura ambiente.
Usando un cucchiaio di legno, mescolate bene il burro morbido con lo zucchero a velo, il sale, i tuorli e i semi di vaniglia.
Unite la farina e l'amido setacciati insieme al cacao.
Alla fine unite le nocciole tritate grossolanamente nel mixer.
Dividete l'impasto in 3 parti uguali e formati dei rotoli di 3-4 cm di diametro.
Avvolgete ogni uno nella pellicola e lasciateli nel frigo per 1 ora.

Come formare biscotti:
Stendete la pasta bianca con un mattarello formando un rettangolo con il lato più corto lungo quanto i cilindri di pasta scura.
Spennellate la pasta stesa con un po' di acqua.
Appoggiate uno dei rotoli di pasta scura al inizio della pasta chiara e avvolgetelo completamente. Tagliate la pasta dove finisce il primo rotolo e proseguite formando gli altri due.
Per facilitare questa operazione, consiglio di stendere la pasta sopra un pezzo di pellicola o carta da forno.
Avvolgete tutti i rotoli nella pellicola e metteteli nel frigo o nel freezer finché diventino abbastanza duri da poterli tagliare a fettine.
Tagliate quindi i rotoli a fettine spesse circa 5 mm. Sistemate i biscotti sulle placche da forno e cuoceteli a 180°C per circa 12-15 minuti.
Una volta freddi, conservateli in una scatola di latta.

Noccioletti


Noccioletti - Keksi s lješnjacima

Svijetlo tijesto:
* 110 g maslaca
* 70 g šećera u prahu
* 15 g kuhanog žumanjka
* 160 g brašna
* 30 g škrobnog brašna
* prstohvat soli
* 1/4 mahune vanilije

Tamno tijesto:
* 110 g maslaca
* 70 g šećera u prahu
* 25 g kuhanog žumanjka
* 160 g brašna
* 25 g škrobnog brašna
* 15 g gorkog kakaa
* prstohvat soli
* 1/4 mahune vanilije
* 85 g lješnjaka

Pripremite prvo žumanjke. Za oba tijesta trebat će vam otprilike 3 srednje velika žumanjka.
Stavite kuhati jaja u hladnu vodu. Kuhajte ih 8 minuta od trenutka kad voda provrije.
Ostavite da se ohlade pa odvojite žumanjke i propasirajte ih kroz mrežasto cjedilo.
Svijetlo tijesto:
Narežite maslac i ostavite da odmekne na sobnoj temperaturi.
Dodajte maslacu šećer u prahu, propasirane žumanjke, sastrugane sjemenke vanilije i sol. Izmiješajte dobro drvenom žlicom.
Dodajte oba brašna prosijana skupa i zamijesite tijesto.
Omotajte tijesto prozirnom folijom i ostavite u hladnjaku 1 sat.
Tamno tijesto:
Narežite maslac i ostavite da odmekne na sobnoj temperaturi.
Dodajte mu šećer u prahu, propasirane žumanjke, sastrugane sjemenke vanilije i sol.
Umiješajte obje vrste brašna koje ste prosijali skupa s kakaom.
Na kraju dodajte krupno mljevene/usitnjene lješnjake (ja ih usitnim u el. sjeckalici/multipraktiku, tako da nisu skroz samljeveni već samo isjeckani na manje komadiće).
Tijesto podijelite na 2,3 ili 4 dijela (kako vam je lakše) i oblikujte valjke promjera 3-4 cm.
Omotajte svaki valjak prozirnom folijom i stavite u hladnjak na oko 1 sat.

Kako oblikovati keksiće:
Razvaljajte svijetlo tijesto u pravokutnik kojem je jedna stranica duga koliko i valjci od tamnog tijesta, a druga stranica bi trebala biti toliko duga da se svaki valjak može omotati tijestom jedanput (ja sam to sve otprilike izmjerila papirom za pečenje koji sam izrezala na potrebnu veličinu i tijesto onda razvaljala na tu veličinu).
Razvaljano tijesto premažite vodom uz pomoć kista.
Položite prvi valjak na tijesto i zamotajte toliko da cijeli tamni valjak bude pokriven bijelim tijestom. Prerežite svijetlo tijesto, pa nastavite uvijati ostale valjke tamnog tijesta.
Da bi vam ovo omotavanje bilo lakše najbolje je tijesto razvaljati na papiru za pečenje ili prozirnoj foliji.
Zamotajte svaki valjak opet u prozirnu foliju i stavite u hladnjak ili zamrzivač dok tijesto ne postane potpuno čvrsto.
Izrežite zatim rolnice na kriške debljine oko 5 mm, položite ih na pleh i ispecite u pećnici zagrijanoj na 180°C oko 12-15 minuta.
Nakon što se potpuno ohlade spremite ih u metalnu kutiju.


Noccioletti

21 October, 2013

Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto


Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto

 I think it was about time I published a recipe for a risotto again, I haven't done so in a long time. As a matter of fact, I hadn't prepared one in a while. And I really wanted one for lunch yesterday. I love making and eating risotto. Probably even more than I enjoy cooking pasta. That's why I'm sad and angry when it doesn't turn out as I want or like. I had some frozen porcini mushrooms that I thought would be great in a risotto. They turned all mushy and ugly looking, the risotto was almost as black as the one with squid ink. No, no, no... it just didn't turn out right. The taste was off and the smell... Kids were turning their heads away :))  
Good ingredients are absolutely indispensable, essential if you want to make a good risotto. I promised myself that next time I make the mushroom risotto, it will be with some good quality, fresh porcini mushrooms or I won't try at all.
One risotto, however, that never failed me is the one you can see in the pictures. It's rich and tasteful. I almost always use frozen shrimp but that has never influenced it negatively. 
I so love to dig into that plate. It can turn any Sunday lunch into feast.
I like my risotto to be really creamy and this one is just like that. Since I don't normally add any cheese like parmigiano to fish dishes, to add some creaminess to rice I use rather neutral cream cheese. And I'm always generous with pepper when making this, although it's not normally my habbit elsewhere.

Before  you are off to the recipe I wish you a good week ahead, mine is going to be pretty busy but I do hope I'll be  back with anther recipe soon.


Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto


Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto

* 350 g rice (arborio, carnaroli or vialone nano)
* 1 small shallot
* 500 g shrimp
* 2 zucchini
* 1 glass of dry white whine
* about 1 l of vegetable or fish stock
* 2 TBspoons butter
* 2 TBspoons extra virgin olive oil
* 1 TBspoon cream cheese
* salt and pepper
* parsley

Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto  Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto  Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto  Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto  Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto

                 
Carefully wash and dry the shrimp. If using frozen ones, thaw them first.
Wash the zucchini. Cut off the ends and slice them lengthwise 1/2 cm thick first, then into sticks.
Finely chop the shallot and add it to a pot where you heated 1 TBspoon butter and 1 TBspoon olive oil. Cook the shallot on low heat stirring until soft and translucent.
Add the rice and toast it for 2 minutes on medium-high heat until you feel it starts sticking to the bottom.
Pour in 1/2 glass of wine and let it evaporate completely. Then start adding the stock and cook the risotto on medium heat. Add 1 ladle of stock at a time, making sure the rice has absorbed the previous addition first, but never let it get too dry.
In the meantime, heat 1/2 TBspoon of butter and 1 TBspoon of olive oil in a skillet. Add the shrimp and cook them on all sides. Add the remaining 1/2 glass of white wine and let it evaporate completely. Then add the zucchini sticks and cook everything together for 3-4 minutes stirring often. Remove from heat while the zucchini are still crunchy.
Add the shrimp and the zucchini to the rice and cook until the rice is cookes al dente (it takes 16-18 minutes in all, from the beginning to the end, for these types of rice to be cooked).
When the rice is cooked, remove from heat, add the butter and the cream cheese, stir energetically until the butter and cheese have melted, cover and let rest for 1 to 2 minutes.
Plate the risotto, sprinkle with some finely chopped parsley and serve.          




Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto


Risotto alle zucchine e gamberi

* 350 g di riso per risotti (arborio, carnaroli o vialone nano)
* 1 scalogno
* 500 g di code di gamberi o gamberoni interi (freschi o scongela
* 2 zucchine
* 1 bicchiere di vino bianco secco
* circa 1 l di brodo vegetale o di pesce
* 2 cucchiaio di burro
* 2 cucchiai di olio extra vergine d'oliva
* 1 cucchiaio di formaggio cremoso tipo Philadelphia
* sale e pepe macinato fresco
* prezzemolo tritato

Se usate dei gamberi surgelati, scongelateli prima.
Lavate bene a asciugate i gamberi. 
Lavate e spuntate le zucchine. Tagliatele prima a fettine da 1/2 cm nel senso di lunghezza e poi riducetele a bastoncini.
Tritate finemente lo scalogno. Soffriggetelo con 1 cucchiaio di burro e 1 cucchiao di olio EVO a fuoco basso facendolo ammorbidire.
Alzate la fiamma e aggiungete il riso. Tostate il riso per 2 minuti mescolando continuamente. Quando sentite che il riso inizi ad attaccarsi, sfumatelo con 1/2 bicchiere di vino bianco e lasciatelo evaporare. Iniziate ad aggiungere uno o due mestoli di brodo caldo, facendo sempre assorbire prima di aggiungere altro, ma senza lasciar asciugare troppo il riso.
Nel frattempo, scaldate 1/2 cucchiaio di burro e 1 cucchiaio di olio EVO in una padella. Rosolatevi dentro i gamberi da tutti i lati sul fuoco medio.
Sfumate con 1/2 bicchiere di vino bianco e lasciatelo evaporare.
Aggiungete le zucchine ai gamberi e cuocete insieme per 3-4 minuti, lasciando comunque le zucchine leggermente croccanti.
Salate e pepate le zucchine e i gamberi. Aggiungeteli poi al riso e completate la cottura. Per il riso ci vogliono in tutto 16-18 minuti perché sia cotto al dente.
Aggiustate di sale e pepe, unite il formaggio (philadelphia) e il burro rimasto (1/2 cucchiaio). Girate il tutto energicamente, coprite e dopo 1-2 minuti distribuite nei piatti guarnendo con il prezzemolo tritato.


Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto

Rižoto s tikvicama i kozicama

* 350 g riže za rižoto (arborio, carnaroli ili vialone nano)
* 1 manja glavica crvenog luka ili luka ljutike
* 500 g repova kozica ili cijelih velikih kozica
* 2 zelene tikvice
* 1 čaša suhog bijelog vina
* oko 1 l povrtnog ili ribljeg temeljca
* 2 žlice maslaca
* 2 žlice maslinovog ulja
* 1 žlica krem sira
* sol i papar
* list peršina

Kozice dobro operite i posušite kuhinjskim papirom. Možete koristiti i smrznute, ostavite ih da se odmrznu prije pripreme.
Tikvice operite, posušite i odrežite im krajeve. Izrežite ih prvo na ploške po dužine širine oko 1/2 cm, a zatim po širini da dobijete štapiće.
Sitno nasjeckajte luk/ljutiku.
U dubljoj šerpi za rižoto, zagrijte žlicu maslaca i žlicu ulja. Dodajte nasjeckani luk i popržite ga na laganoj vatri da odmekne i postane staklast, pazeći da ne izgori.
Pojačajte vatru, dodajte rižu i popržite je oko 1-2 minute stalno miješajući dok ne osjetite da se riža hvata za dno posude.
Ulijte 1/2 čaše bijelog vina i pustite da ispari, a zatim dalje podlijevajte postepeno vrućim temeljcem (dodajite po 1-2 grabilice svaki put kad vidite da je riža upila skoro svu tekućinu, i promiješajte nakon svakog novog dodavanja).
Ove vrste riže kuhaju se ukupno 16-18 minuta da bi riža ostala al dente.
U međuvremenu, u tavi zagrijte 1/2 žlice maslaca i 1 žlicu ulja.
Dodajte kozice i popržite ih 3-4 minute sa svih strana, na srednje jakoj vatri.
Dodajte 1/2 čaše vina i pustite da ispari.
Dodajte tikvice u tavu s kozicama i uz miješanje popržite sve skupa još 3-4 minute. Neka tikvice malo omekšaju, ali ne toliko da se raskuhaju, već da ostanu pomalo hrskave. Posolite i popaprite.
Oko pet minuta pred kraj kuhanja, dodajte kozice i tikvice riži i skuhajte rižoto do kraja, pazeći da vam se riža ne raskuha već ostane al dente.
Nakon zadnjeg dodavanja temeljca ne dopustite da se skroz osuši. Dotjerajte okus - dosolite ili popaprite prema ukusu.
Maknite s vatre, dodajte preostali maslac (1/2 žlice otprilike) i krem sir. Energično promiješajte da se sir i maslac otope i rižoto postane kremast. Poklopite i ostavite da odstoji 1 do 2 minute.
Rasporedite u tanjure i pospite obilno sitno nasjeckanim peršinom.

Shrimp and Zucchini Risotto

18 October, 2013

Speculoos Parfait


Speculoos Parfait

When you think of fall/autumn, is your first association weather related? Or else?
Do you imagine those beautiful colours in all shades of yellow, orange, red and brown, with low sunshine light coming through the leaves? Or, being a person who sees a glass half empty, with the first morning chills you start imagining rainy, dreary days without light?
Whether you are one or the other type of person, one thing fall will certainly bring to your mind are food related thoughts. We inevitably stop thinking about just quick salad for lunch or a cold, vegetable soup for dinner.
I, personally, start thinking about warm food. Literally warm, like soups and stews, or spice-warm desserts. It's my favourite thing about fall. Cinnamon and the rest of the company are welcomed with a big smile in this period, and they are not leaving soon, I assure you.
So I start with my favourite cookies... you've already met Speculoos cookies here, haven't you? And after you've met the cookies you couldn't resist preparing the Speculos spread as well, am I right? And now you can't wait to start all over again... cookies... spread... cookies... spread... And then at some point you decide there must be something else to do with those two, apart from dipping your cookie into the jar of speculoos spread.
If you took that small, pleasant effort of baking some cookies and turning one part of the batch into spread, then the next step is just a question of minutes. Mix, chill and serve.
If you got caught in a change-of-season-lazy moment, a quick trip to the store might solve the problem, too. I'll forgive you for using store-bought cookies and spread, but make sure you use some good stuff.
So a quick, spice warm, although refreshing dessert to cheer you up your boring weeknight or to end a pleasant dinner with friends, is served. Grab your spoon and enjoy.
In case you should really get caught in the speculoos wheel, I'd like to share this recipe for speculoos spice mix, it's good to have a jar ready and on hand once you decide to bake or just spice up a little your cup of hot chocolate.

Speculoos spice mix (by belgian pastry chef, Eddy van Damme)

* 30 g ground cinnamon
* 7,5 g ground ginger
* 7,5 g ground cardamom seeds
* 6 g ground cloves
* 4 g ground white pepper

Just mix everything and store in an airthight glass container.


Speculoos Parfait


Speculoos Parfait
(for 2 servings)

* 5-6 speculoos cookies
* 100+20 ml whipping cream (30-35% mf)
* 100 g mascarpone
* 100 g + 2 TBspoons speculoos spread
* 1 TBspoon powdered sugar

Grind or crumble the speculoos cookies and divide between two dessert glasses or bowls simply putting them on the bottom.
Put a tablespoon of speculoos spread over the cookies.
Whip 100 g of cream with powdered sugar.
In another mixing bowl, mix the mascarpone cheese with the remaining 20 g of cream and 100 g of speculoos spread.
Add the whipped cream to the mascarpone mixture and mix well on low speed.
Distribute the thus prepared cream over the cookies and speculoos spread.
Chill the parfaits for 3-4 hours in the fridge or 1/2 to 1 hour in the freezer before serving.
You may additionally decorate the parfaits with some whipped cream and speculoos cookies.


Speculoos Parfait


Speculoos Parfait
(per 2 persone)

* 5-6 biscotti speculoos
* 100+20 ml panna fresca (30-35% di grassi)
* 100 g mascarpone
* 100 g + 2 cucchiai di crema di speculoos
* 1 cucchiaio di zucchero a velo

Sbriciolate o tritate i biscotti. Distribuiteli sul fondo di due bicchieri o coppette da dessert. 
Mettete un cucchiaio di crema di speculoos sopra i biscotti.
Montate 100 g di panna con lo zucchero a velo.
Mescolate il resto della pana (20 g) con il mascarpone e i 100 g di crema di speculoos.
Unite la panna montata alla crema di mascarpone mescolando con lo sbattitore a bassa velocità.
Dividete la crema tra i due bicchieri e mettete in frigo a rassodare per circa 3-4 ore o 1/2 ora /1ora nel freezer prima di servirlo.
Volendo decorate i parfait con altra panna montata e qualche biscotto.


Speculoos Parfait


Speculoos Parfait
(za 2 osobe)

* 5-6 speculoos keksa
* 100+20 ml svježeg slatkog vrhnja za šlag (30-35% mm)
* 100 g mascarponea
* 100 g + 2 žlice speculoos namaza
* 1 žlica šećera u prahu

Sameljite kekse i stavite ih na dno dvije čaše ili zdjelice.
Preko keksa stavite po jednu žlicu speculoos namaza.
Umutite 100 g slatkog vrhnja u šlag s dodatkom šećera u prahu.
Također mikserom izmiješajte u drugoj zdjeli mascarpone s 20 ml slatkog vrhnja i preostalim speculoos namazom (100 g).
Dodajte umućeno slatko vrhnje i nježno izmiješajte ručno ili mikserom na najmanjoj brzini.
Rasporedite pripremljenu kremu u čaše preko keksa i stavite u hladnjak na 3-4 sata ili 1/2 do 1 sat u zamrzivaču i poslužite.
Po želji ukrasite umućenim slatkim vrhnjem i keksićima.