February 7, 2013 by Giulietta
This recipe marks the end of my “once on shore we pray no more” serie, born to remember Christmas holidays, which now are just a distant memory.
Between the recipes I proposed starring Mr. Capon (with capital C), perhaps this one is the most holiday-related … sure, tortellini are no joke, but I think that you could eat tortellini any day of the year, while stuffed capon immediately recalls Christmas holiday. Stuffed capon is a sort of culinary party: how else you can call, in fact, a fat and tasty, when you stuff it with other delicious things?! It’s a party, there is no other definition.
For my stuffed capon I drew inspiration from this Piedmontese recipe, making some changes here and there.
Category Capon, Christmas, Holidays, Meat, Piedmont, Regional Italian cooking, Second course | Tags: capon,chestnut,Christmas,dried prune,eggs,holidays,meat,minced meat,Piedmont,regional italian cuisine,sausages,second course,stuffed capon | 4 Comments
April 18, 2012 by Giulietta
Third (and fourth) and last buttery recipe (always for the Occelli butter contest), and this time the key word is not just "butter", but also "quick".
Thinking about quick and buttery recipes, the first thing that jumped to mind is the combination between butter and eggs, so I decided to propose two minor changes to this "theme".
I replaced chicken eggs with quail eggs and I paired them with brown butter; I also made an hard-boiled version (to serve as a finger food) and a sunny side up version (in Italy we call this "uovo all'occhio di bue" aka "beef's eye egg").
Two super-easy recipes, that can sort out a last minute dinner with elegance and easiness.
Category Appetizer and Finger food, Contest, Cooking for dummies, Second course | Tags: appetizer and finger food,brown butter,butter,eggs,quail eggs,second course | 10 Comments
February 22, 2012 by Giulietta
Here we are … Alterkitchen, a year later.
Exactly one year ago I wrote my first posts, my because and my first recipe. It's amazing, when I look back at this year, how many things have changed in my life and how much I have changed … maybe changed is not the right word, but I certainly came back to be someone that I left dormant for too long.
So many things changed, in my business life and even more in my personal life… some people got out of my life, some others entered it on tiptoe, others knocking down the door, and then there are some people who have always been there, and that perhaps will always be (and it's what I sincerely hope).
Between all these changes and this weird and unlucky 2011, I realized that constants (but not too many of them, otherwise things get boring) are important .. and this blog was, despite my breaks and my syncopated or loose rhythms, an important constant. It was something to cultivate, to let grow, to follow and to love, something that brought me small and great satisfactions, warmth, laughter, sharing and new friends … and I think that friendships born around a real or a virtual table are going to last much more than what we eat together, with the mouth or with the eyes.
I close this panegyric (a bit too mushy) with a THANKS, for your attentions, your comments and your mere presence, a THANKS to all of you who read my posts and to those who are reading me now, and I hope you'll continue to do so.
To thank you I thought I could make you gift … from a word and paper (printed or not) fetish, I chose to give away to one of you a Moleskine recipe journal and a book (I already chose it, and I hope that will please the one who will receive it).
After the recipe you'll find all the information about taking part to my little giveaway .. and now, to celebrate, what would you say about a piece of tiramisù?!
Category Birthday, Dessert and Sweets, Giveaway, Holidays, Thoughts and words | Tags: birthday,coffee,dessert and sweets,eggs,giveaway,holidays,ladyfingers,mascarpone,thoughts and words,tiramisù,unsweetened cocoa powder | 28 Comments
December 14, 2011 by Giulietta
It is mid-December, already … The most prepared of you have already finished their Christmas presents and will be satisfied, some others will have to think, buy and wrap up gifts (and how come the fundamental gifts are always the last to be crossed off the list?!) and then some other will wait till Christmas Eve to buy the first thing that comes to mind. Well, I usually fall within the first category, 'cause I usually start thinking about Christmas gifts while I'm still wearing flip-flops, and I usually buy every single gift with a disturbing advance .. but this year Christmas will be a little different for me, and this Christmas will include a lot of home-made gifts and a little more calmness .. and it will probably become panic when I'll realize that I forgot the gift for grandma 10 minutes before Christmas dinner.
But I can't, at least in part, give up my proverbial timing and, although I know that Christmas is yet to come, I'm so ahead of you that today I don't suggest you some home-made and last-minute gift, but a recipe to get rid of nougat leftovers. Today I'm the Grinch, who fights the thought of Christmas, almost as if it was already gone!
Torrone (nougat) is a very popular sweet in Italy, and we eat it especially during Christmas holidays. There are at least a thousand different kinds of torrone: hard, soft, semi-hard, with hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios, covered in chocolate, covered in glaze, big, small and so on..
Well, the funny thing is… I don't like nougat! My mom could practically eat a ton of it (so it's not genetic), and instead I don't like it so much, basically 'cause it's too sweet for my tooth.
But, after Christmas holidays, it's practically impossible living in an Italian house without seeing nougat all around, since it's a very common gift and it's also very used in Christmas goodie baskets.
So, if you want to use some of those leftovers or if you actually love nougat and you'd like to make a very Christmas sweet, very easy and very sensational, here it is my semifreddo al torrone (nougat semifreddo).
Today you can find my recipe also here, on Nami's fabulous blog Just One Cookbook (I'm a blogsitter, today), together with a little interview with the undersigned. If you're interested or if you don't know Nami's blog, yet, please pay a visit, and you won't regret it.
Category Chocolate, Christmas, Dessert and Sweets, Holidays, Ice cream semifreddo and sorbet | Tags: chocolate,Christmas,dark chocolate,dessert and sweets,eggs,hazelnut,holidays,ice cream semifreddo and sorbet,nougat,semifreddo,whipping cream | 30 Comments
July 22, 2011 by Giulietta
On summer you should eat plenty of vegetables, lots of fruits, eat light foods and drink a lot.
The key is "you should": I love vegetables (while I simply like fruits), but it would be a sad life without a nice "boost of life" from time to time?!
So why don't indulge, once in a while, and enjoy a nice and fresh dessert, although not a very light one?! And what's better than a Nutella cheesecake, to spoil yourself?!
I know, I sound like a Nutella spot (but Nutella is a product of my homeland, so I might be entitled to publicize it), but actually all started with another idea and another recipe, by Alessia of Muffins, cookies ed altri pasticci for a Ferrero Rocher cheesecake (and Rocher aren't so far away from the Nutella … they came from the same family), that I tried a year ago, and won me for its simplicity and for its great taste.
So, for a nice Piedmont-themed dinner with friends (but not too Piedmontese … at least I wanted to skate over the tradition for the dessert, 'cause Russian salad, Barbera risotto, and castelmagno risotto had already given an adequate taste of Piedmont – to quell any criticism, you have to know that I made a goodie-bag bonet for all my guests … none should leave my house unhappy!) I wanted to repeat the successful cheesecake experiment, but I reminded of a tragic truth: in summer, because of the hot weather, no Ferrero Rocher (you can't find them in the stores).
So I had to fall back on what, making everybody unhappy? I had to fall back on the hated Nutella (I'm kidding, uh .. let's say that if I spent a nanosecond more to photograph the cake, maybe I wouldn't be here talking … and I start to think that the blurred area in the top of the picture can be a fingerprint of some impatient friend on the camera)!
In short, a little reworking that left everyone with full-mouthed (and not open-mouthed).
Category Cakes and pies, Chocolate, Dessert and Sweets, Dried fruit | Tags: cakes and pies,cheesecake,chocolate,dessert and sweets,dried fruit,eggs,hazelnut,nutella,ricotta cheese | 32 Comments
July 18, 2011 by Giulietta
It's a fact that there are no more middle seasons, we know that young people are no longer as they used to be, it's a harsh reality that strawberries don't taste like strawberries anymore (these are all Italian clichés) … but you need to shake if we have no certainty about meat loaves!
Who doesn't know a recipe for meatloaf (which it's usually the same recipe for meatball, but it's a larger one), a comfy wintry food, cooked in a frying pan and then in the oven?!
I hear your voices, already: "Who wants a warm meatloaf NOW?". In fact, the meatloaf I'll talk to you about is a cold one … you have to cook it (I think that eating raw chicken and raw eggs is not so good), but in boiling water, like rice, for example. And, since everyone prepares a nice rice salad in the summer, even if he/she has to stay near the stove for 20-30 minutes, you have no excuses! I'll tell you more, unlike rice, meatloaf doesn't need any attention: you could just forget about the meatloaf and go get it after half an hour, so you'll see the stove just for a few seconds.
Aren't you persuaded?! Then perhaps the ingredients will persuade you: chicken breast, mortadella, egg and pistachio, nothing more and nothing less.
If you still aren't persuaded, I'll draw the last card, its easiness! Not only this meatloaf is easy to prepare, but it has a for dummies recipe: in fact, the proportion between the ingredients is stable (1:1) and easy to remember, so you can multiply and divide as you want without being wrong (and you won't have to face an unformed monster unformed)! Years ago I "stole" this recipe from my aunt, after I tasted this meatloaf, and every year I make it for dinners, lunches, picnics and days at the beach, and everyone agrees on it!
Category Appetizer and Finger food, Chicken, Cold cuts, Cold dishes, Cooking for dummies, Dried fruit, Meat, Meatballs and meat loaves, Second course | Tags: appetizer and finger food,chicken,cold cuts,cold dishes,dried fruit,eggs,mayonnaise,meat,meatballs and meat loaves,mortadella,pistachio,second course,single course | 28 Comments
July 11, 2011 by Giulietta
Here we are at the end of the parties (and I feel a strange relief) and here it is the second long-awaited (really?!) recipe for a fresh dessert, perfect for a summer birthday.
This was my first experiment with layered ice-cream cake, and it went very well: you can choose the flavors you like and match them as you prefer. I immediately chose pistachio ice cream, my favorite, and then I matched it with a more "neutral" flavor, cream, with a slight lemon flavoring.
The pictures are ugly enough (don't worry, I know), but I should be satisfied I took some … if the result is not the best, who cares?! The important thing was the taste! In the lower picture of the composition you should be able to see the color contrast light green/light yellow – from outside it was more difficult to see it (they were two pale colors, so there wasn't a striking difference: if you choose chocolate and fiordilatte and you don't see the difference, I would worry). You'll see the contrast even better in the final photo: its quality is slightly higher, but always in the category "not so good".
I imagine that you are not here to hear me whining about the quality of my pictures, so I give you the recipe right away, before you take the pitchforks.
Category Birthday, Cakes and pies, Dessert and Sweets, Holidays, Ice cream semifreddo and sorbet, Ice-cream cakes | Tags: cookies,cream,dessert and sweets,eggs,ice cream semifreddo and sorbet,ice-cream cake,lemon,pistachio,whipping cream | 28 Comments
June 6, 2011 by Giulietta
The short (maybe too short) cherry season, that red and juicy fruit that we let go with considerable difficulties (raise your hand if you have never really thought that one cherry leads to the other!), is about to end, and it deserve, as a requiem, a tasty recipe that values its harsh sweetness (I love oxymoron).
Therefore, I chose the par excellence dessert that can be prepared with cherries, so that this dessert change its name depending on whether you prepare it with cherries or with other fresh fruits. In fact, while this dessert is called clafoutis, if you prepare it with the same procedure, but with different fruit, is called flognarde, instead.
This is a French recipe, especially typical of the Limousin region (before this dessert, I knew this region for enamels and miniatures … professional bias), and its preparation is easy and fast. The name comes from the dialectal clafir , which means garnish, fill, because to prepare this dessert you fill a cake mold with cherries and then cover them with a soft batter, similar to the one you use to make crêpes or flapjacks . This is a traditional and poor dessert, which farmers brought with them in their working days, and it was prepared with wild cherries deprived of the pit and the stem, even if they said that with these parts the dessert became tastier (because in this way cherries release less water). For the the eaters' comfort, I wasn't faithful to this ancient tradition.
Category Cakes and pies, Dessert and Sweets, French cuisine, Fresh fruit | Tags: cakes and pies,cherry,dessert and sweets,eggs,french cuisine,fresh fruit | 40 Comments
April 13, 2011 by Giulietta
To paraphrase the well-known Italian motto "Either France or Spain, as long as we can eat", today I present to you the happy marriage of a Spanish recipe with an Italian one.
The two recipes do not come together, but I just tried the combination and the result was quite convincing, so I present it to you! Of course you are perfectly free to prepare and eat these desserts (yes, today we talk about desserts, two of them!) separately, but at least you'll know that eating them together it's not going to hurt you … Indeed, quite the opposite!
In addition, these two desserts are very easy to prepare (these recipes could be useful on many occasions) and, more interesting, they are perfectly complementary, since one uses only egg whites and the other uses only egg yolks… then, as for the pork, we don't throw anything away (I already showed you here that you shouldn't throw anything away, even egg whites)!
I have at least intrigued you a little?! So come and find out what sweets I'm talking about!
Category Cookies, Dessert and Sweets, Egg whites only, Egg yolks only, Pudding, Spanish cuisine | Tags: cookies,cream,dessert and sweets,eggs,italian cooking,pudding,spanish cuisine | 14 Comments