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Visualizzazione dei post da Marzo, 2014

RISOTTO WITHOUT A RECIPE

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I could eat risotto everyday. It is a staple in my family and in the area of Italy where I live.
As you probably already know, in the Northern part of our country there are several risaie, where our special rice is grown.
There are so many types, but as far as I know, typical rice to be used for risotto could be Arborio, carnaroli and originario.
The first two kinds are more aristocratic, if I can use such an adjective for food: longer and rounder grain that usually keep better cooking times and are less at risk of overcooking.
Originario is the humblest and friendly round small grain rice, still lovely and probably the one that was most used in my childhood without supermarkets, at the time people used to grow their vegetable gardens, keep some hens for eggs and shop at the local convenience store.
We eat risotto very often: I am always quite surprised when I compare to other areas of Italy where rice pops up only every once in a while on the table.
I believe we have never used a recipe…

ancora sulle parole

Il mio bel Pipu oggi era un po’ triste, stanco ed affranto che la mamma andasse al lavoro: come avrei voluto restare accanto a lui a fargli mille coccole invece di tornare qui tra le mie carte polverose.
Sono estasiata di sentirlo pronunciare nuove parole: ieri diceva “miele” mentre guardava Winnie Pooh cercare la agognata colazione, e “sciarpa” mentre sfogliava la rivista della Peppa Pig e c’erano i consueti animaletti sui pattini. 
Mi sono sentita anche un po’ meno in colpa di allevarlo a colpi di televisione e riviste spazzatura, visto che tutto sommato aiutano a sviluppare la conoscenza della nota lingua italiana, o almeno così mi son detta.
Ieri ha anche detto “Paolo” in onore del suo babbo festeggiato che era ligio al lavoro. Non e’ poi mancata la consueta declinazione “la palla è mia”, oppure “(d)ammi” appena ha visto le zeppole di San Giuseppe in pasticceria.
Poi ora quando vuole fare qualcosa, dice "e' Pipu!" e procede emancipato nelle sue nuove avventure.

Ora …

COCONUT RAISIN QUICK BREAD

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I have just enjoyed a lovely bowl of pasta with tomato sauce. Simple things can make your day, especially if the tomato sauce is made out of vine ripened red jewels: an ode to nature and to my own very pleased taste buds.
Today though I am sharing one recipe I use every once in a while to get a sweet and satisfying quick bread.
I found the recipe in Susan J. Cheney's Breadtime, that I bought in a market for very cheap and I am glad I own. 
The recipes often calls for healthy alternative I do not have in my fridge (soy milk, just to name one or unfriendly tofu) but I usually substitute what is available and it is just fine.
What I like in this book, is that the recipes for quick breads and muffins (I am not much into making my own bread, unless it is dealt with by my bread machine) are not loaded of sugars and fat and can be a healthy alternative to store bought items.
What you need: 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour 1 ½ cups quick cooking oats (recipe calls for wheat bran) 1 tsp baking powder ½ …

BANANA MUFFINS

Among the cookbooks I purchased lately, my favorite is A Lighter Way to Bake by Lorraine Pascale.
I actually already own two of her previous books, so I did try to refrain to get this one, but alas, I am still working on my compulsive buying habits.
Yet I have to admit this was a great addiction to my bookshelves: I have already baked several recipes and they are simply lovely just as they are (most of the times).
Now I am very poor at following recipes, so I always mingle here and there based upon the distraught status of my pantry. Lorraine strongly advise against it, but so far I have to say that substitutions of like ingredients (such as almond milk instead of cow’s milk) have not had a noticeable impact on the outcome.
This is the recipes I tried (and barely mingled with) yesterday:
300 g whole wheat flour 1 tsp baking powder ½ tsp baking soda 1 pinch of salt Juice of one lemon and of one orange each. Add milk to equal 200ml (it will curdle). 2 eggs 50 ml sunflower oil 2 tbsp honey 3 overrip…

pranzo in studio

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There are many things I would like to improve in my life and I guess that small steps are better than huge and forever procrastinated big projects, at least for me.
I am trying to focus but worries from my work desk keep popping up in my restless mind that I would like to shut them up momentarily.
Probably that is why cooking is fascinating to me, because for a few minutes or some hours I just focus on ingredients, tools and actions while dreaming of a possibly edible and sometimes flavorful outcome.
Yet I must admit that sometimes lately (that means in the last decade or so) I have been far too lazy to cook and I indulged in horrible ready meals, that not only cost a fortune, but taste relentlessly the same all the time.
I am always wondering how the food industry manages that. I have been preparing the same muffin recipe for ages and I cannot recall a single batch being exactly like the other (circumstance that is at times highly appreciated and other times is instead bitterly regrett…