Archive for April, 2012

goat cheese galette

Adapted from  food52

Micheline made this galette today. Instead of the radishes she stir fried onions, red peppers and mushrooms. Will definitely make it this weekend. Looks great!



for the crust

4 ounces  unsalted butter

2 cups unbleached all purpose flour

6 ounces sour cream (not low fat or fat free)

2-3 tablespoons

1 pinch salt


Combine flour and salt

Cut butter into flour / salt mixture, mix should be dry and crumble easily

Slowly add sour cream, while cutting flour / butter mix with a fork

If dough still looks a bit too dry add a tablespoon of icewater at a time until dough is a fully formed ball, wrap and refrigerate 10 minutes



for the galette

5 ounces chevre goat cheese

1 tablespoon sour cream (optional)

salt / pepper to taste

1 sour cream pie crust, see above

stir fry of onions, red peppers and mushrooms


In a small bowl, combine goat cheese and use sour cream to soften to a spreadable texture, season to taste with salt and pepper

Roll out chilled pie crust to a roughly round shape and an even thickness

Spread the raw crust first with a thin layer of dijon mustard then with the goat cheese mixture

Fold the edges of the galette in, pinching or folding as you go

Bake the galette on parchment paper on the middle rack of a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes, check frequently for varying oven temps

Crust should be lightly brown and flaky, the goat cheese mix will be lightly cracked. Remove from oven to cool


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polenta al forno

My mom’s caregiver, Marilou, will be going to the Philippines next Tuesday for a family visit that she has been looking forward to for a long time. When she left the Philippines, her daughter was eight years old. After 5 long years, the reunion will be quite emotional. We wish her a safe trip and hope she has a wonderful time.

For such a happy occasion, this is the way we celebrated!

Maila and Marilou made this delicious polenta casserole.

I baked the cake.

and my aunt Lucia brought this beautiful and delicious plate of nocche.



for the polenta al forno / oven roasted polenta


veggie stir fry

parmesan cheese

grated mozzarella cheese

1  tbsp olive oil


Prepare a quick vegetable stir fry with your favorite vegetables and set aside

Prepare the polenta   (for more flavor you can season the water more with your favorite seasonings)

In a rectangular pan start layering,  first the vegetables, sprinkle with parmesan cheese

Pour in a layer of polenta, sprinkled with more cheese

a second layer of vegetables, more cheese

a second layer of polenta, more cheese

Finish off with a layer of veggies and sprinkle a generous amount of parmesan cheese and a little mozzarella if you like

Drizzle the olive oil over the polenta

Bake for 40 minutes uncovered in a preheated 350* oven


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Found this short explanation of these delicacies on Mangia Bene Pasta.

Not very long ago, many rural homes in southern Italy didn’t have stoves with ovens, so it was impossible to bake.  For most special occasions, families enjoyed fried treats.  Today even homes in remote areas have ovens, but the fried pastry tradition remains.  The names and shapes of these fried delicacies differ from region to region.  Zeppole are a traditional treat made for St. Joseph’s Day which is March 19.  Fried pastries are also a typical sweet made for Carnevale which is similar to Mardi Gras in the US, and is the final celebration before Ash Wednesday and the season of Lent.

Delicate strips of sweetened fried dough are eaten throughout Italy and are know by a variety of regional names.  Southern Italians call them “chiacchiere”, meaning gossip. Nocché,  Guandi  and Fritelle are other names used in and around the Molise region.
The strips are also know as nastri delle suore (nun’s ribbons), cenci (rags and tatters), crostoli in Trieste and Fruili, galani in Veneto, and frappe in Umbria. Just as the names are different, the recipes for bow ties vary slightly from one region to another.

(makes about 40)

1 1/2 – 1 3/4 cups flour
4 tbsp unsalted butter (or oil)
3 eggs
1 tablespoon brandy (vanilla or other liquor)
rind of one lemon
a pinch of salt
Vegetable oil for frying
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

Mix the ingredients and work into a rather firm dough. 
The dough should be smooth and elastic.
If dough is too soft, add more flour. 
Flour it, wrap it in a cloth, and allow it to rest. 
Divide the dough in half.
Roll out one piece of the dough to about 1/8-inch thick in a rectangular shape.
Using a pastry cutter, cut the dough into strips 4 inches long by 2 inches wide.
Cut a small slit in the center of each strip.
Take one end of the strip and pull it through the slit in the center.
This will give you a bow tie shape.
Continue rolling and shaping all the dough.
Heat oil in a deep fryer to 375 degrees F.
Drop a few of the bow ties into the oil.
Only fry 4 to 5 pieces at a time so they are not crowded in the oil.
Fry 1 to 2 minutes, until lightly browned on both sides. 
Remove the bow ties from the oil with a slotted spoon and transfer to paper towels.
When cool, dust with confectioners’ sugar.

Variations of recipe online & from friends

500 gr flour
3 eggs
100 gr sugar
50 gr butter
grated rind of one lemon
3 tbsp milk (brandy, grappa, orange juice)
8 gr baking powder
pinch of salt

Vegetable oil for frying
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

Video from Giallo Zafferano


Video from for chiacchiere (nocche)

Video for zeppole / crispelle – Traditional christmas recipe from Nonna Cenzina

Video of zeppole made at home by Benedetta

Video of zeppole (very similar to our scr’pelle) 


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rice cake



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rice and ricotta cake

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pasta with arugula

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Taken from Edmonton Journal

Recipe by Sally Vaughan-Johnston



Serves 6 to 8

Finish with a whirl of whipped cream if you like.

1/2 cup (125 mL) brown sugar, divided

6 eggs

2 cups (500 mL) whole or 2 per cent milk

2/3 cup (150 mL) whipping (35 per cent) cream

1 teaspoon (5 mL) ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. (1 mL) ground ginger

12 slices white bread, crusts left on

1/3 cup (75 mL) butter, softened

3/4 cup (175 mL) ginger marmalade

3 ripe pears, peeled, cored, chopped


Preheat oven to 350 °F (180 °C).

Grease a 13- by 9-inch (22- by 33-centimetre) baking dish. In a bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup (60 mL) of the sugar, eggs, milk, cream, cinnamon and ground ginger. Set aside.

Butter one side of each bread slice, then spread thickly with marmalade. Arrange six slices of the bread in the bottom of the prepared dish, squeezing to make them fit if necessary. Pour half the egg mixture over top. Sprinkle with pears. Cut remaining 6 slices of bread in half diagonally. Arrange in two rows lengthwise in the dish, overlapping bread if necessary and covering pears. (it’s fine if a few pieces of pear poke through).

Pour remaining egg mixture over bread. Using a spatula, gently push on bread to submerge as much as possible. Some of the crusts might still be poking up — don’t worry. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours or overnight.

Use spatula again to push crusts under egg mixture if necessary. (It’s easier once the bread has softened) Sprinkle casserole with remaining sugar. Bake, uncovered, for about 40 minutes until set, puffy, golden and crispy on top. Serve immediately.

TIP: For best results use stale bread. An easy way to stale bread is to spread the slices in a single layer on a couple of baking sheets and leave uncovered on the counter at overnight.


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