Food & Recipes

welcome to my cooking lab!

here is where I’ll post pics of the things I happen to cook.. for quantities conversions there are several charts which come quite handy, here is one I just googled.. I hope it’s reliable! 😀

if you happen to have better ones you want to suggest me, just leave a comment on this page, I’ll be happy to swap them!

[this is a work in progress page.. you’ll have to be patient and come from time to time as I update it.. it just takes me a while to translate each recipe from Italian to English, write them down, add pics, .. I’ll try to add one every now and then.. and in case you spot mistranslations, typos, whatever! 😉 just add a comment or write me at thegreytail at gmail dot com.. I’ll happily improve my English cooking-vocabulary! :D]

crespelle alla caprese

time: 2 hours

difficulty: ** medium

ingredients for 4 (I prepared twice as much so that I’d get plenty of leftovers):

for the crespelle:

  • 70g “O” flour
  • 1 egg
  • 125 g cow or soya milk
  • 15 g EVO oil
  • a pinch of salt

for the stuffing:

  • 150g mozzarella
  • 200 g cherry tomatoes
  • enough fresh basil and salt

for the Béchamel sauce (besciamella):

  • 500 cl cow or soya milk
  • 100 g “O” flour
  • 100 g sunflower seed oil
  • 50 g parmigiano cheese

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1. preparing the crespelle: in a medium bowl add the eggs, milk, oil and salt.

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mix well and add the previously sifted flour. warm up a pancakes pan, add a bit of EVO oil and pour a spoonful of crespelle mixture.

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rotate the pan to make a medium sized crespella, wait until it gets cooked, turn and let it get slightly golden on the other side too.

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let all the crespelle rest, fill them with the stuffing and fold in three like a letter.

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2. preparing the Béchamel sauce (besciamella):

bring the milk to boil, stir well during the entire process and never let it burn. leave to rest.

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in a pot, mix well the oil with the flour.

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simmer gently for about 5 minutes. let it go below boiling point and add to the milk. mix vigorously with a whip, then season with salt and grated parmigiano cheese.

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3. preparing the stuffing:

finely dice the mozzarelle and cherry tomatoes, torn the Basil leaves into bits and add them to the mix. season with a pinch of salt.

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4. preparing the casserole:

oil the bottom and layer half of the crespelle into the casserole. pour some of the besciamella and alternate it with another layer of crespelle.

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add the remaining sauce to the top and spread evenly. cover with a thick layer of grated parmigiano cheese.

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place into the preheated oven at 180°C for about 10 minutes. the top has to turn slightly gold.

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get all the help you need, it’s a pretty long process.. 🙂

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..but the final result is really worth your time!  YUM! 😋

– – –

cooking for Laura’s party – 7/8 June 2012

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list of recipes:

1. salsa di aglio ed erbe (garlic and herbs sauce)

2. insalata di pasta (pasta salad)

3. cuscus e crudità (cuscus and crudités)

4. maialini di sfoglia (puff pastry little pigs)

5. pannocchie saporite (savoury cobs)

6. torta salata alle verdure (veggie pie)

7. torta salata al tonno (tuna and veggie pie)

8. quadratini friabili alla ricotta e ortaggi (crumbly squares with ricotta cheese and veggies)

9. verdure al formaggio (cheese & veggies)

10. spiedini di frutta (fruit skewers)

– – –

Spelt flour cake with fruits of the forest filling and icing sugar

torta al farro

torta al farro

time: about 1 hour and a half

difficulty: ** medium

ingredients for 6:

– mixed fruits of the forest (raspberries, wild strawberries, berries, currants, blueberries) 350g

– powdered sugar 225g

– icing sugar 60g (and a bit more for the final decoration)

– raw sugar 50g

– butter 100g (and a bit more fort the greasing)

– spelt flour 100g

– 00 flour 50g (and a bit more)

– 2 eggs

– 2 yolks

– 1 lemon

– salt

optional  a bit or liquor (in this case grappa)

– – –

  1. let the butter out of the fridge during a nighttime, then work it together with the icing sugar, a pinch of salt, the lemon’s juice and a pinch of its grated peel. work until it gets soft, shining and foam-like
  2. on the cooker, whip up the eggs, the yolks, 50g of powdered sugar and 50g of raw sugar using the bain marie/double boiler method. whip up until they become soft, again foam-like
  3. softly add the eggs to the butter, and then the 00 and spelt flours (always sieve flours in order to  avoid lumps). pour the resulting creme in a rounded mould (∅ 19cm, perviously covered with butter and 00 flour) and let it cook in the oven at 180°C. after 30 minutes the cake is ready (leave it to cool down before taking it out of the mould) – I used an electric oven, placed the cake on the middle shelf and poked a stick in the middle at the end of the 30 minutes to see if it was perfectly cooked (in this case the stick comes out clean)
  4. press all the fruits of the forest together with the remaining  powdered sugar (175g), then bring them to the boiling point in a pan. lower the flame and let them cook for about 20 minutes, then turn them off and add (optional) a few spoons of liquor/grappa
  5. cut the cake in 3 layers with a slicer-thread (it’s a specific tool called cake wire or slicer, I found a very cheap one in my local department store – I’ll take a picture and add it to the post so you can see what it looks like). fill the layers with the forest fruits, add some to the top layer too (without the reaching the border of the cake). add some fruits of the forest and icing sugar as decorations.

suggestions: remember to turn on the oven beforehand, make sure you have all the necessary tools, the pan, the bain marie/double boiler pots and small enough mould. this cake takes quite some time, effort, and looks really small.. but will taste tremendously good in return, it’s a promise! 🙂

I use a frozen mix of fruits of the forest, organic flours and eggs. in case you need help with quantities conversions, specific terms or anything else, don’t worry just email me at thegreytail at gmail dot com, I’ll be happy to help you out! 🙂

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