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Scones with feta cheese and olives

Scones with feta cheese and olives
(for 6 pieces)

unsalted butter for oven plate
less than 2 cups (200 gr.) all purpose flour + other for the work surface
1 pinch of salt
3 tablespoons (40 gr.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon of instant yeast
1.7 tablespoon (25 gr.) pitted black olives
1.7 tablespoon (25 gr.) dried tomatoes
2.8 ounces (80 gr.) crumbled feta cheese
0.4 cup full fat milk + more to glaze
1 generous pinch of pepper

Preheat the oven to 425° F. (220°) and butter an oven plate. Sift flour, salt, pepper and baking powder into a bowl, and stir in the butter, working with your fingertips. Cut coarsely pitted olives and cut dried tomatoes in small pieces. Put in the dough olives, tomatoes, feta cheese and milk, and work it again with your fingertips until the mixture is smooth and homogeneous. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work table in 1.57 inch (4 cm.) thick rectangle and cut it into 6 square pieces. Place the pieces on the oven plate, brush with milk and bake for about 20 minutes, or until they are golden.

Maccaroni in green sauce (Tortiglioni)

Maccaroni in green sauce (Tortiglioni)
(serves 4)

11 ounces (320 gr.) macaroni (Tortiglioni)
3 small zucchini
2 spring onions
7.054 ounces (200 gr.) peeled beans
7.054 ounces (200 gr.) goat Robiola (or goat fresh cheese)
4 tablespoons heavy cream
4 tablespoons full fat milk
½ glass of dry white wine
1 bunch of basil
olive oil
1 pinch of salt

Shell the beans. Put them in boiling water for a couple of minutes and peel them. Wash the zucchini, trim both ends and cut into sticks. Fry the onions in a saucepan with 3 tablespoons oil, add the white wine and stir. Combine the beans and zucchini and cook over medium heat for 7-8 minutes, adding a few tablespoons of water, if necessary. Cook pasta in salted water. Meanwhile, melt the Robiola in a large pot, add slowly cream and milk. Drain the pasta “al dente”, pour in the pan with the cream, add zucchini, beans and a pinch of salt. Add ground pepper and flavor with basil leaves. Serve hot.

Asparagus muffins

Asparagus muffins
(12 muffins)

1 cup (125 gr.) all purpose flour
1/5 cup (50 gr.) full fat milk
1/5 cup (50 gr.) heavy cream
5.3 ounces (150 gr.) medium asparagus, trimmed
2 tablespoons (30 gr.) unsalted butter
2 tablespoons (30 gr.) grated Parmesan cheese
1 whole egg
1 generous teaspoon of instant yeast
1 pinch of salt
butter for the mold
flour for the mold

Preheat the oven to 350°F.(180°). Trim the asparagus, removing the hardest parts. Put the asparagus to cook for 5 minutes in a pot, with lightly salted boling water. Drain them, let them cool and cut into chunks. Put the flour into a bowl and mix it with the egg, dissolve the mixture with the milk and heavy cream, then incorporate cooled melted butter, asparagus chunks, grated cheese, baking powder and a pinch of salt. Mix the dough and divide the mixture in 12 muffin buttered and floured molds 2.7 inches (7cm.) in diameter, filling them up to ¾. Bake for about 30 minutes. Remove the muffins from the oven and serve them warm.

Honey goat cheese

Honey goat cheese
(serves 4)

2 semi-seasoned goat cheese (Tomino)
4 slices of whole-wheat bread with sesame seeds
1 tablespoon (15 gr. peeled) hazelnuts
3 fresh thyme twigs
4 teaspoons of wildflower honey

Heat the oven to 400°F. (200°). Cut the goat cheese in half horizontally. Chop the nuts roughly and toast for a few minutes in a pan. Wash and dry thyme. Spread a teaspoon of honey on each half of Tomino, sprinkle with a teaspoon of chopped nuts, flavor with a few leaves of thyme. Place the bread slices on a baking tray with baking paper. Place on each slice of bread the seasoned cut-in-half tomini. Bake in preheated oven for 7-8 minutes until the cheese starts to melt. Serve hot.

Vegetarian couscous

Vegetarian Couscous
(serves 4)

1.4 cup (320 gr) whole-wheat couscous
1.35 cup (320 ml.) vegetable stock
12 cherry tomatoes
3 small zucchini
12 asparagus, medium size
2 celery stalks
2 teaspoons (10 gr.) parsley
2 teaspoons (10 gr.) mint
2 teaspoons (10 gr.) basil
6 tablespoons olive oil

Prepare the vegetable stock and keep it lukewarm. Put the couscous in a salad bowl, and pour a little bit of broth and start shelling the couscous with the hands. Put the bowl with the couscous on top of the pot with the broth covering it with a plate in order to let the cooking continue. Repeat this procedure 3 times until the broth is used. Add to the mixture 3-4 tablespoons of oil, stir thoroughly and put aside.
Clean the parsley, basil, and mint and chop the leaves roughly. Trim and clean the celery, tomatoes, zucchini, and asparagus and cut them to very small pieces. Unify the couscous, the herbs and the vegetables in a large bowl, season with salt, add 2 tablespoons of oil, stir and serve.

Halibut fillets “with overcoat”

Halibut fillets “with overcoat
(serves 4)

4 halibut filets, approximately 7.05 ounces (200 gr). each
15.8 ounces (450 gr.) Pachino tomatoes
2 tablespoons (30 gr.) capers from Pantelleria
5.2 ounces (150 gr.) olives Taggiasca, pitted
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons of olive oil
4 tablespoons of breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon ground chili
1 teaspoon of dry oregano

Clean and cut the tomatoes in slices, remove the seeds and drain their water. In a large saucepan let burnish the oil and crushed garlic (which has to be removed in the end) add the tomatoes, capers, olives and fish filets. Cook on low heat for about 5 minutes and add a little bit of water, if necessary. Turn the fish delicately with a scoop, being extremely careful not to crush or break them and complete the cooking (the duration of the cooking can vary, based on the size of the filets). In another pan leave the breadcrumbs to toast with the chili and oregano. Sprinkle the filets with the breadcrumbs mixture and serve.

Small strawberry bavarian creams

“Per capire che una risposta è sbagliata non occorre una intelligenza eccezionale, ma per capire che è sbagliata una domanda ci vuole una mente creativa”.
La riflessione sia teorica sia pratica su qualsiasi professione che preveda la proposizione di domande e includa la prerogativa di attendere, o addirittura pretendere, delle risposte deve tenere conto della verità custodita in questa massima.

tratto da L’arte del dubbio di Gianrico Carofiglio

Piccole bavaresi di fragole
(per 4 – 5 persone)

400 gr. di fragole al netto del peso (senza foglioline verdi)
50 gr. di zucchero a velo
2 dl. di panna fresca
4 cucchiai di rhum
12 gr. di gelatina in fogli
4 – 5 fragole
zucchero a velo

Small strawberries bavarian creams
(serves 4-5 )

14 ounces (400 gr.) strawberries (without green ones) + 4 or 5 to garnish
½ cup (50 gr.) powdered sugar + more to dust
0.846 cup (200 ml.) heavy cream
4 tablespoons of rhum
0.4 ounce (12 gr.) isinglass (gelatin sheets)

Soften isinglass in cold water. Clean and wash the strawberries quickly under water, dry and cut into pieces. Blend with sugar and pass the mixture through a strainer. In a small pot, put the wringed isinglass with the rhum and let melt over low heat and blend by stirring quickly to the strawberry sauce. Leave the mixture to rest, stirring often. Whip the cream stiff, and only when the strawberry sauce begins to thicken, stir in the cream. Stir the mixture gently until you obtain a smooth cream without lumps. Pour into individual portion cups (capacity of 1.4 dl – 140 ml.) and put in refrigerator for at least 3 hours. Just before serving, cut 4 or 5 strawberries into small pieces, garnish the top and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Verres de fraises

Verres de fraises
(serves 4-6)

1.763 pound (800 gr.) strawberries
½ weak ounce (12 gr.) isinglass (Gelatin sheets)
1 very generous cup (150 gr.) powdered sugar
5 tablespoons (75 ml.) heavy cream Cream
1.4 tablespoon (20 gr.) unsalted shelled Pistachio

Soak the gelatin sheets in cold water. Quickly wash and cleanse the strawberries under water and cut into small pieces. Mill with sugar and pass the mixture through a strainer. Bring the strawberry sauce to boil, stirring constantly, add the well-wringed isinglass to the cream and cook for another minute to dissolve the gelatin entirely and stir the mixture. Remove from heat, let cool and pour into 4 tumbler glasses. Allow to cool and put in the refrigerator for 3 hours. Just before serving, whip the cream, fill the glasses to your preference and sprinkle the surface with the chopped pistachios. Keep in refrigerator up until you serve.

Raviolocchi from Campania


Raviolocchi from Campania
(serves 4)

½ kilogram (500 gr.) potatoes
2 cups (250 gr.) soft-wheat flour type “0”
3 egg yolks
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 generous pinch of salt
1 egg white

For the filling
½ kilogram (500 gr.) spicy pork sausage
3 bundles of broccoli rabe
2 garlic cloves
4 tablespoons of olive oil
chili peppers (optional)

For the sauce
½ kilogram (500 gr.) fresh tomatoes
5 tablespoons olive oil
10 basil leaves

Prepare the filling. Peel the broccoli rabe, removing stems and damaged leaves. In the meantime, put the sausage in a pan and cover entirely with water. After about 10 minutes, prick the sausages with a fork so that excessive fat exits and cook for 5 minutes. Eliminate all the water formed and, in the same pan, add 2 tablespoons of oil, a clove of crushed garlic and let cook slowly for about 10-15 minutes. In a separate pan, brown the other garlic clove with the remaining oil , add the broccoli rabe, add salt and cover with a lid. As soon as the rabes have slightly softened, remove the lid, flavor with chili and continue cooking over high heat for 5 minutes. Along with the broccoli rabes let the sausages cook for another 5 minutes. Let it cool, remove any remaining water, put the sausage and vegetables in a blender and blend everything in order to obtain a smooth and compact cream.
Prepare the dough.
Wash the potatoes and cook in salted water for 40 minutes or until they are cooked. Drain, peel them while still hot, and pass through a potato masher, place the puree on the work surface, add the salt, flour, egg yolks, oil and quickly knead the ingredients until dough is stiff, firm and smooth. Form a ball and let it rest for about a quarter of an hour covering it with a towel.
On a lightly floured tray, roll the dough into 2 layers with a thickness of about 0.11 – 0.15 inches (3 or 4 mm.) Form the filling into little balls of about 1.57 inches (4 cm.) diameter. Place them on one of the layers well distanced from each other. Cover the filling with the dough, pressing with your fingers around the filling to seal the two layers of pasta, paying attention to release air in order to avoid bubbles. Trim the “Raviolocco” using a pastry ring of 2 inches (5 cm.) in diameter and put one by one on a dry and slightly floured work surface.
Prepare the sauce. Wash and cleanse tomatoes from excessive green. Blanch in water, peel, remove seeds and blend the pulp with 2 tablespoons of oil and a pinch of salt. Brown the garlic in the remaining oil, add the chopped tomatoes, half of the basil leaves, coarsely chopped, and cook for 4-5 minutes over high heat and keep warm. Boil the “Raviolocchi” in plenty of slightly salted water. As soon as they are float on the water surface, drain with a slotted spoon, divide on the plates, pour the tomato sauce on top and sprinkle with remaining chopped basil.

Aperol Spritz on the beach

Aperol Spritz on the beach
(For 8 shot glasses: width 1.57 inches (4 cm.) in diameter – Height 2.55 inches (6,5 cm)

0.84 cup (200 ml.) Aperol
0.63 cup (150 ml.) Prosecco
0.21 cup (50 ml.) Tonic water
0.2 ounces (8 gr.) isinglass
1 untreated orange

Put the isinglass in cold water to soften. In the meantime prepare the cocktail. As soon isinglass is softened, wring, and put it in a little pot with the cocktail. Leave on low heat for a few moments until it is entirely melted. With the help of a funnel put the content in the shot glasses, leave them to cool down in room temperature for about 10 minutes and eventually put the glasses in the fridge for about 6-8 hours (otherwise over night). Before serving, cut the orange in slices and make out of them 8 little pieces to put on the shot glasses.