How to make fresh ravioli

Do you think is difficult to make homemade ravioli? I do not think so… here what you need, a pasta machine, flour and eggs nothing more nothing less. Would you like to try?

Then follow this step by step pictures and you will end up with the best ravioli you ever made. The ingredients are: 400gr white flour, 04nos whole eggs. As you see for every 100gr of flour you will need an egg. Let’s start….

Make a well with flour and add eggs.

Start working the eggs by adding flour and when flour is fully incorporate start to work the dough with both hands.

Keep kneading the dough for 10 minutes, excellent arm workout, when ready should look smooth and firm. Let the dough rest (well covered) for 30 minutes in the fridge before using.

Let the fun begin. Most pasta machine numbers go from 01 been the thickest to 6 or 7 to the thinnest. Start by dividing the dough in half, keep the other half wrap till you need it, press the dough with your hands to a 1/2cm thick. Sprinkle some flour on the rolls of pasta machine and let’s start passing the dough trough it. After you pass the pasta sheet the first time fold pasta in half and pass it again on number 01. Do this 2-3 times.

Pasta will start to stretch. Pass pasta sheet on each number 2 times, don’t fold it in half anymore, till you get the thickness that you need. For my ravioli I like to stop at number 5 and a pull the pasta 4 times to the same number. I like to feel the bite when I eat fresh homemade pasta and realized that number 5 it’s perfect for my taste.

Here is the really long pasta sheet that you will have when done.

With the help of a cup make rounds.

What you see here is simple plain Pesto sauce, will have more complex filling coming soon. Wet with water the edge of the ravioli. Fold in half and press to seal.

Take your half ravioli and bring together the two corners and press.

This is how it should look like.

Finish to make your ravioli.

Perfect recipe for the perfect meringue

 

My husband has a huge sweet tooth and guess what, both kids took after him… One of the easiest dessert that I usually prepare are meringues

simple meringues, chocolate one, filled with whipped cream and the Pavlova…now you understand the love for meringues in our house. Here are few ideas for you to try.

Fantastic berries Pavlova drizzled with dark chocolate

Mini Pavlova for a great tea time

Crushed to cover a cake.

This was my daughter 2nd birthday Fairy Castle cake….most of the decorations are made out pink meringue.

 

When we lived in Addis Ababa I used to have cooking classes once a week and one of the recipes that all my friends were not convinced to make on their own was the meringue one. I think there is a lot of confusion when it comes to meringue recipes.
If I look online for recipes I will find so many different ones and will feel pretty confused. My recipe is very basic you only need 2 ingredients egg whites and superfine sugar….never fail me.
I know many recipes will tell you to use cream of tartar to stabilize eggs and to make meringue harder and easier to pipe in different shape.
There are few tips that I suggest you to use
1 Use a clean and dry bowl, preferably made out of glass, ceramic or stainless steel.
2 Egg whites should be room temperature.
3 Add sugar 1 tbsp at a time (I know it takes forever but the end result will be perfect).
The biggest enemy for meringue is humidity so try to pick a day that is not too humid to try this recipe.
Lets enjoy a nice easy meringue recipe.
Follow my step by step recipe here.
Let’s start with the ingredients
200gr superfine sugar
02nos medium size egg whites
Start to beat the whites to a medium speed.
At this point the whites are soft peaks.
Let’s start to add one tablespoon of sugar at a time.
At this point increase speed to high.
Keep beating whites and adding sugar till you finish the sugar.
Insert a star nozzle in piping bag and fill it with meringue mix.
Make meringues
My meringues are ready for the oven.
Bake for 2 hours at 100C.
Keep the oven door slightly open.
Have fun making your meringues.

 

 

Sfoglia with almond custard and apples

I wonder how this sfogliata was created….yes…. now I remember it happen by mistake. My father loves a quick strudel that I usually prepare for him when in Italy. I just use puff pastry instead of making the dough for the real deal. This time I was busy chatting with mom and asked her to peel 3 apples and when I realized that it was to much I decide to make something slightly different. I made an almond custard to give extra flavor to the apples, I then enclosed everything in two layers of puff pastry sprinkled with sugar and baked till golden brown.

Let me tell you my father was super happy about the mistake…..He informed me that I should make this kind of mistakes more often. Never to say, that we finish the sfogliata in 2 days and that I will have to make it for hubby. Hope you will enjoy it too.
Find details recipe under Desserts.

Artichokes, orange and red radish salad

Check the recipe for this super colorful salad. Go to Salads section and enjoy it.

Fiorentina

Does world-renowned Fiorentina need an introduction? I don’t think so. This are  just few info for the best steak that you can make at home even without a bbq grill.

Make sure that the meat is at room temperature.
Don’t salt meat before cooking, it will make it dry.

The grill pan must be super hot and that means smoking hot.

Grill meat for to 2-3 minutes on both sides.

Coat meat with EVO, fresh herbs and pepper on both side. Finish cooking it on very high temperature oven. Should not be baked for more than 20 minutes.

Before cutting the meat let it rest for few minutes.
Sprinkle with salt before serving it.
I add on mine some thinly sliced garlic for extra flavor.
And now you have no more excuses not to make Fiorentina at home without the bbq grill.
Find detail recipe under Meats.

 

Amaretti

 

Amaretti make me go back in time when I was a kid and my grandma from Sardegna will bake this cookies. I can still picture her in the kitchen and my grandfather busy in a smaller room next to the kitchen, that will open to the garden, cracking almonds for amaretti. Grandma will collect the almonds, dry them in the oven for few minutes and then ground them.

By the time the almonds were ready she will great lemon zest and beat egg whites to stiff peaks. Then the magic will begin, she will combine sugar, almonds and lemon zest and then she will start slowly adding the egg whites.

At that point my grandfather will have sliced in half other almonds to put on top of the amaretti before baking.

My grandma will say that the mixture should be a thick paste but still sticky and if by any chance you will be able to find real bitter almond than you will be able to make the perfect Amaretti.

Baking was done at medium high temperature to give the time to the amaretti to expand and crack a bit on top…I still remember the aroma of almonds lingering in the house. The end result was just amazingly good.  As you see Amaretti is a work of magic and love.

Hope you will try and make Amaretti.
Find detail recipe under Desserts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring salad with asparagus,smoked salmon and quail egg.

         

We are back in Nairobi and I finally found the time to upload all the pictures from Italy of our family Easter lunch. This salad was the perfect opening for a great Easter meal. Spring was definitely not in the air in Brescia during our stay, rain was our companion almost every day….but Easter day was a glorious sunny day.  This colorful salad worked perfectly well with the tulips to make the table look like a garden.  Kids had their fun as well by painting eggs and entertaining  grandparents.

If you want to try this recipe you will find it under Salads.

Saute artichokes and potatoes

     

Which is your favorite variety of artichoke? My favorite is the Spinoso Sardo or Ingauno or Spined, the ones in the picture. Then you have Verde Palermo, Catanese,  Niscemese,  Romanesco, Violetta di Chioggia those are only few of the Italian varieties, there are so many more on the market. My father is from Sardegna, where they grow the spined variety. I started eating artichokes at a really young age and my love for this vegetable/flower never stopped. I love artichokes simply sliced topped with orange wedges and radish as a light salad, in the picture above,  just raw enjoying every bit for every leaves till you get to the heart and the sweetness of it will capture you.  You can as well simply boil it or like in the recipe pair with potatoes, an easy and fast side dish that can turn in a vegetarian meal. Earthy flavor of Sardegna and if you cannot get to the original tough luck,……just joking…….enjoy it with the many varieties that I mention above.

Check the recipe under Vegetarian.

 

Dairy free saffron and peas spaghetti

What is your favorite pasta shape? In our house is spaghetti after liking  penne, conchiglie, tortiglioni, gnocchetti sardi, tagliatelle, pappardelle and the list could go on and on and on….. I think the kids are truly enjoying spaghetti because they can showcase the proper way to eat them without using a spoon….they said that it is an art to eat spaghetti…

This recipe was a last minute quick dinner idea. Kids were hungry and didn’t want to wait for daddy to come home from office. I bought fresh peas few days back and steamed them to add in salads. Little one would eat peas everyday lately and what better way to enjoy it than with dairy free cream saffron and their favorite pasta? And this is how this recipe came to life.

Paris here we come…Spring break 2018

Paris here we come

Spring break if finally here… Paris will be our first destination…Perfect first stop to celebrate our 15th Anniversary and then Italy to enjoy family and friends.

Get ready for great new recipes from Italy and plenty of yummy pictures from Paris.

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