Sunday, October 3, 2010

Champions breakfast








Tomatoes scrambled eggs, baked beans, hash browns and fried bacon.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Smoked Chicken


Dry Rub:

1 table spoon paprika
1 table spoon sugar
1/2 tea spoon black pepper
1/2 tea spoon garlic powder
1/4 tea spoon cayenne pepper 

Mix all the ingredients well and sprinkle over the chicken breasts (serves 2), massage gently and leave at room temperature for 1 hour.

Mop:

1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup extra dry Martini
4 table spoons orange marmelade
1/2 tea spoon salt
1 tea spoon dried thime

Mix in a blender all the ingredients. Put a metal pot containing the mop sealed with aluminium foil in the smoker to keep it warm.


Preparation:

Carve the chicken with light rhombus cuts on the roud side, top, inject the meat with pineapple juice, massage the rub on the breast and let the meat rest for at least 1 hour. During this time I usually set the fire, prepare and enjoy a coktail, set the table.
Once the fire reaches the desired temperature 200-220° F or 90-110° C place the breasts round side up in the smoker. Cook for 2,5 hours depending on the wait of the breast. Chicken must be eaten well cooked, you might want to use an digital termometer to check its doneness.
Brush the chicken every half hour with the mop starting from the first hour.
I have used cherry wood to flavour the meat and smoked the chicken heavily, during the last half hour increase lightly the heat of the smoker to give an extraordinary brownish finish, be carefull with excessive heat as the sugar contained in the mop and rub might becomes black and ruins in seconds the hard work done....

Buon appetito 










Sunday, May 30, 2010

Carpaccio di bresaola

















Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Cold pasta





Ingredients:
Shell pasta 180 gr or 6 ounces
1 cup black olives cut in half
1 cup mozzarella diced
2 cups cherry tomatoes cut in half
6 leaves mint minced
black pepper, olive oil, balsamic vinegar to taste

serving 2
can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days.




Suggestions:

this is a perfect spring-summer dish, refreshing, quick, cheap and very easy.
Once the pasta is cooked drain and set it under cold running water to stop the cooking process and to keep it "al dente".
Once cooled add the ingredients and finish with the proposed condiments.


Variations:

Replace the mint with fresh basil, add pickled onions and canned tuna.





Buon appetito

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mojito





Ingredients:
One small handful fresh mint about 6-7 large leaves
A quarter of fresh lime cut in half
One shot,1.5 oz, white rum
Two tablespoons of brown , raw sugar for a more authentic taste
Ice cubes and club soda to fill glass


Preparation:
Place mint and lime slices in cocktail glass. Muddle gently with muddler or wooden spoon. Though muddling is necessary to release the essential oils of the fruit. Add sugar and let it rest for a minute.
Fill the glass with ice, add rum, and enough soda water to fill the glass.
Stirr gently, garnish with an extra lime slice and sprig of mint, and 2 straws.










This Fiday night Mojito was made with Glacial mint, an extraordinary fresh, balsamic and limy mint home grown.


Enjoy

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Country potatoes




















Sunday, April 25, 2010

Spinach - ricotta beads


Ingredients:

for the beads:

1/2 kg or 1,1 pounds cleaned spinach
1/2 kg or 1,1 pounds fresh ricotta
200 gr or 7 ounces grated parmigiano
2 eggs
170 gr or 6 ounces plain flour
salt, pepper, nutmeg to taste


for the sauce:

1/2 cup mountain butter
5-7 leaves sage


Preparation:

Cook, squeeze and mince the spinach, add the ricotta, eggs, parmigiano, salt, pepper and nutmeg: mix well all the ingredients.

Add flour to the mix untill dense, consolidated.
Prepare beads of the size of a quarter and roll them in flour, place them over oven paper.

In a capacious soup pot bring water to boil, add a half hand full of cooking salt and put the beads in.

Fry the butter with the sage in a saucepan untill golden brown.

As soon as the beads bob up, a couple of minutes, drain them and place on a serving plate, cover with the butter sage sauce and sprinkle with parmigiano.


Buon appetito


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Mozzarella di bufala and date tomatoes






Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Linguine alla carbonara



Ingredients:

6,3 ounces or 180 grams of linguine
1 vacuum packed bacon (sliced)
2 egg yolks
1/2 red onion
2 table spoons of extra virgin olive oil
3 table spoons milk or cream
1 handfull cooking sea salt
Parmigiano or Pecorino and black pepper to taste

Preparation:

Fill a deep saucepan with water and set it on high heat with cover on.
while the water boils, chopp finely the red onion, save 4 slices of bacon and chopp coarsely the rest of the bacon. In a wide saucepan over medium heat, add the extra virgin olive oil and cook the onions for 5 minutes then add the chopped bacon and keep cooking untill crispy. In another saucepan sauté or in the microwave toast the remaining 4 slices of bacon, we will use this for decorating the plate.
Once the water boils add a handfull of cooking seasalt and the linguine. Linguine usually cooks between 10 and 13 minutes depending on the brand of pasta you like. Check always the cooking time on the package but the most important thing you have to do is, reaching the cooking time, taste the doneness and the saltiness of the pasta every once and then.

In the meantime in a mixing bowl stirr together the egg yolks, Parmigiano or Pecorino, the milk or cream and black pepper.



By this time the onions and the bacon should be crispy, let them cool and rest in the saucepan. Heat from now on is not needed.

Once the linguine are done, drain and put the pasta in the wide saucepan with onions and bacon and stirr well. Then add the yolks mix and gently stirr untill nicely blended.

Use 2 forks to place the linguine on the plate, sprinkle some black pepper and garnish with the  bacon slices.

Buon appetito.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Green peppercorn sauce






Ingredients:
1 table spoon of green peppercorns (preserved)
2 tea spoons of original grain mustard (Maille à l'Ancienne)
2 tea spoons white onions minced
1 table spoon cooking cream
1 table spoon of strong french mustard


Serves 3 burgers

Preparation:
Grind the green peppercorns with the onions in a mixer untilll very fine, add the french and grain mustard, the cooking cream and stirr well untill all blended.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Green peppercorn-scamorza burger

This is a great and easy variation of a normal bacon cheeseburger, it is called green peppercorn - scamorza burger.

A good mix of spices and smoked tastes, you will love it!!!

I have added cherry wood on my brace to give extra flavour to this simple recipe, you'll be surprised on how the combination of these ingedients will blend perfectly together.




Treat the patties as for a normal hamburger (see previous post), but add 1 1/2 table spoons of preserved green peppercorns in the mix.



Once the burghers are done, add on each patty slices of smoked scamorza cheese and let it melt.


Place some lattuce leaves on the bottom of each bun, set the burger on it and distribute on the scamorza cheese the green peppercorn sauce.

 Finish with a couple of slices of crispy bacon on top.



Buon appetito

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Gin-ger Tonic





Fill a baloon glass with crushed ice, pour 1/3 gin, 2/3 tonic water, add 1 tbs of finely grated fresh ginger root and 10 rosemary leaves finely cut.




Stirr well, add 2 staws, enjoy...

Gin suggestion: Tanqueray 10




Friday, March 26, 2010

Fiorentina - T-bone steak

Here below is how I prepare my favourite cut of meat Fiorentina, T-bone.




The breed of the bovine for a steak to be called Fiorentina is Chianina, beef grown in Valdichiana.
Beef are big size animals used both for work both for meat. Nowadays mainly for meat. The coat after one year of age is white, cream.

T-bone has in it two sides divided by the bone the strip loin and the tenderloin.
Portehouse is nothing but a T-bone with a bigger tenderloin (fillet).

This cut contains the two most serious part of the beef, that is why it is so expensive.

T-bone usually are also thick cuts to be shared with more than one person.

The Fiorentina I cooked is a Porterhouse 7cm or 2,7 inches thick and weighted 1,3 kg or 2,8 pounds.



In the picture above you can see the thickness of the cut and its size. The photo is taken from the strip loin side. Below is the meat upside down with the extra fat removed I have left only the first membrane attached to the meat wich actually seals all the juices inside.That membrane is very gummy and removing it might result in damaging the cut.





I have covered the Fiorentina with Tuscan extra virgin olive oil (of course) and sprinkled on each side black pepper, cooking sea salt, dried garlic and onions  flakes. Massage gently the meat.

 As you can see the fillet is so tender that you can see the fiber spreading just touching it.






Above is a fillet detail so juicy and tender that can be cut by using a fork.









Put the meat over high heat (if you pass you hand over the grill and can't leave it on the same spot for more than 2 seconds, you know it is high heat) and cook 5-7 minutes per side (turning the meat upside down) than turn the meat 90° and cook again 5-7 minutes per side.

 End its cooking on the bone for about 3 minutes just the time to heat well the thickest part.

Cooking time really depends on the thikness of the meat and how you like it done.

Fiorentina has to be raw inside so if you follow my suggestion you won't be disappointed.





The texture of the meat after the 90° flip.





Here above the doneness of the meat a very crusty outside perfectly grilled and the juicy raw inside.

To slice the meat set it vertically and start from the top next to the bone all way down, turn the kife orizontally untill the meat is totally removed. Repeat the process also for the other side.

Once the meat is removed from the bone, slice it against the grain of meat.

The meat is so tender you will enjoy 1 cm or 0,4 inch thick slices.

 

Above the plate composition: fillet on the left, strip loin on the right and to exalt the red-pinkness of the meat inside some pickled zucchini.


A close up of the fillet fiber.



How do you like T-bone steaks cooked ??