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The authentic Italian “Crema di caffe’ freddo”

Discover  the tastiest italian  iced “crema di caffe’ freddo as it is prepared in Italians bars  and your coffee willl never be the same again.

A creamy and fluffy alternative to traditional coffee.  Crema di caffe’ is an icy mixture of espresso  and whipping cream served in small transparent glasses. Enjoy!

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Spread the inside surface of the glass with Nutella before pouring the cream.  

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Ingredients:

  • 150 ml espresso coffee
  •  300 ml whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp of sugar
  • 1 tbsp Nutella (optional)

Method:

1. Prepare an espresso.

Dissolve the sugar in the espresso . At this point if you desire you can add 1 tbs of Nutella. Mix  to dissolve

2. In a deep mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream  (300ml) until soft peaks form.

3. Add the espresso coffee

4. Whip again 1 min until homogeneous

4. Pour the mixture into a plastic container and leave in the freezer  for 2-3 hours.

Leave larger quantities in the freezer for longer

5. Once cooled, take the desire amount , whip it or blend it with a handblend until smooth and creamy

Serve immediately with a sprinkle of cocoa powder on the top. You can decorate the inside of the glass with some Nutella to give color & chocolate flavor. Enjoy!1-2017-05-263

 

 

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Eleni’s “amigdalosalata” sauce (Yogurt, dill & almond sauce)

My lovely cousin Eleni (excellent lawyer and mother) who lives in the beautiful Heraklion in the Greek island of Crete gives me this savory recipe for “amigdalosalata”.  A fresh and healthy sauce that will get your mouth watering, made by greek strained yogurt, mustard,  mayonnaise, almonds and a good amount of fresh dill (Anethum graveolens).

If you’re looking for a herb perfumed sauce to serve alongside steak, this is the right one. Amigdalosalata doesn’t require any cooking and can be ready in no time. Enjoy!

( Many thanks to Eleni, Filimon & Nikolas for the exciting moments that we have lived together last month)

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Ingredients: 1 kg strained greek yogurt,  1 cup mayonnaise,  2 tbsp mustard,  1 bunch of fresh dill,  1 cup of almonds without skin

Method: Cut each almond in 2-3 parts.  Chop the bunch of dill.

In a large bowl place all ingredients together (Yogurt , mayonnaise , mustard , chopped dill & almonds).  Mix it well and season to taste.

Get grilling and enjoy you summer!

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Portobello stuffed mushrooms

Portobello stuffed mushrooms with 3 different cheeses. When rich and fresh ricotta pairs well with earthy mushrooms in a timeless hot appetizer. Stuffed mushrooms with spinach/fresh ricotta mixture, savory cheddar bottom,  freshly grated parmesan on top. Eat it hot!1-vegetables61-vegetables3

 

 

Ingredients: 5 handfuls mushrooms – 80 gr ricotta cheese – 5 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese – 50 gr cheddar cheese – handful of spinach -1 garlic clove – olive oil

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F)
  • Remove the stalks (they come out easily) and cut them into pieces
  • Heat a pan with olive oil,  when hot add garlic & stalks. Sauté the chopped mushroom stems for about 5 min, then add a handful of spinach & salt. Cook for 3-4 min stirring often. Turn off the heat .
  • Add ricotta to spinach & stir to combine
  • Brush the mushroom caps with oil, salt (and pepper if you desire)
  • Place pieces of cheddar cheese at the bottom of each mushroom cup
  • Fill  with the ricotta stuffing,  place on a baking sheet. Sprinkle grated parmesan cheese over each mushroom.
  • Bake for 20 min or until the cheese is golden. Bon appétit!
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Fettuccine Alfredo

Fettuccine Alfredo  is a traditional Italian pasta dish – incredibly tasty in their semplicity-made from fettuccine tossed with a soft Parmesan cheese and butter . As the cheese melts, it emulsifies the liquids to form a smooth and rich coating on the pasta. Original Alfredo sauce should  never  include heavy  cream,  double cream  or italian panna.  The creaminess of this sauce is the result of an emulsion between the pasta water (rich of starch),  grated fat parmesan (not aged) and melted butter. 

Fettuccine Alfredo has been invented by Alfredo Di Lelio in 1892 in his restaurant in piazza Rosa in Rome.

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Ingredients for 2 servings : 200 gr. egg fettuccine

1 cup grated fat parmesan (not aged)

200 gr  unsalted butter

black pepper

1 cup pasta cooking liquid

Method:

1. In large pot, cook fettuccine as directed on package until “al dente”, reserving 2 cups pasta cooking liquid.

2. While fettuccine is cooking, tranfer 1 cup of pasta cooking water to a large skillet and bring to a boil. Add the butter and whisk gently to melt.

3. Gradually add parmesan.  Stir to incorporate.

4. Quickly drain the pasta and add it to the skillet, gently toss fettuccine to coat in the    Alfredo sauce. Adding more pasta cooking water as needed to form a velvet cream.

5 Top with pepper and more grated cheese.Serve immediately

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Herb crusted rack of lamb

Extremely inviting , flavorful & delicious rack of lamb. Green crust outside, juicy pink inside. A colorful idea for Easter. Incredibly easy recipe in 4 simply steps. Enjoy!1-CARNE58-002

 

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Ingredients: 2 large racks of lamb cut in half with their bones per serving

salt – ground pepper – olive oil – 2 tablespoons Dijon or other mustard of your choice

For the crust:

  • 1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • sprig of parsley
  • sprig of mint
  • sprig of thyme
  • sprig of rosemary
  • sprig of basil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • CRUST: Place all ingredients for the crust  into a blender and pulse several times until is homogeneous green. Set aside.

Method:

Preheat oven to 200°.

  1.  Sprinkle lamb with salt and pepper. Heat some olive oil in a large non stick skillet over medium-high heat.

    Add 1 lamb rack to pan and “seal it “. Cook few minutes (about 4min) on each side enough to develop color. Remove lamb from pan. Repeat with remaining lamb rack.

    2. Brush Dijon mustard over every side of each rack ,

    3. Then press green breadcrumb mixture all over.

    4.Transfer the pan with the lamb into the oven and bake for 7-8 min.

    Let stand 10 min, then cut into chops. Serve with herb  roasted baby potatoes, stuffed mushrooms and a fresh glass of Leone Rosso wine, doc Orcia 2010 (By Donatella’s Cinelli Colombini factory). Enjoy a happy Easter!

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Herb roasted baby potatoes

Crunchy, herb scented roast potatoes with a pinch of grated cheese.  A lovely accompaniment for meat dishes. They’re easy to make and the variations are endless. You can add ground pepper, paprika, dry garlic, dry onion, herbed breadcrumbs, fresh or dry herbs of your choice. Enjoy them with herb crusted rack of lamb or with your traditional easter lamb recipe and a fresh glass of wine.1-20170320_160832

Ingredients: 1 kg baby potatoes,  garlic powder,  1/2 cup grated parmigiano Reggiano, 1/3 cup olive oil, 4 tbs chopped parsley, 4 tbs chopped thyme, 4 tbs chopped rosemary.

Method: Preheat oven to 200°C  (400°F). In a large bowl mix oil ,  parmigiano Reggiano, garlic powder & chopped herbs. Add potatoes,  sprinkle generously with salt and toss to coat.

Spread potatoes in single layer on large baking sheet, spacing them evenly apart.

Roast until tender and golden brown for about 1 hour- 1 h 15 min Stirring occasionally.

Sprinkle with additional herbs mix & salt. Serve hot or warm.

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Beetroot pickled eggs

A trick to getting your kids to eat eggs? Beetroot colored pickled eggs is the perfect solution. Beautiful and full of proteins. Easy, tasty, cheap & kid friendly. Try these pickled eggs in a green salad or alone such an appetizer and enjoy a happy Easter!1-CARNE73

  • 6 hard cooked eggs, peeled
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup beetroot juice
  1. Place eggs in saucepan, cover with water. Bring to boil for 12 min. Lift into a bowl of cold water and cool. Peel and put into a sterilised jar.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring the sugar, vinegar and beet juice to a boil.
  3. Pour liquid over eggs in the jar. Seal well & cool.
  4. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours before serving.

 

 

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Marinated Greek lamb souvlaki

Delicious , succulent , crispy outside – juicy pink inside – lamb souvlaki previously marinated in olive oil , oregano , thyme, onion, lemon or lime  juice, coriander , garlic , salt and pepper

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Ingredients for 3 souvlaki 

250 gr lamb leg or shoulder cut into 2cm cubes

1 red onion

1 red pepper

Marinade: Olive oil,  1 lemon, mediterranean herbs such oregano,  thyme, mint, coriander. Onion,  garlic, salt & ground pepper

Method:

  1. Cut the meat into 2 cm cubes
  2. In a large bowl mix all ingredients for marinade.
  3.  Put the lamb pieces into the bowl with the marinade, cover with a plastic wrap. Refrigerate the lamb for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight.
  4. After 4 hours (or after one night) peel and cut the onions, chop the peppers into 2cm pieces and assemble the lamb souvlaki alternating lamb, wedges of onion and pieces of pepper.
  5. Brush the lamb with olive oil and cook over hot grill for about 8-10 minutes,  until cooked to your liking.
  6. Serve with hot Greek pita bread,  tzatziki sauce and fresh Retsina of Attica “Kourtaki” (Greek resinated – with pine resin – wine)

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Pita (Greek flatbread)

Pita bread is flat, round bread that originated in Greece, and is commonly found in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean kitchens. The first known mention of “Pita” is in Aristophanes’s comedies.

Traditionally, the pita bread is made with wheat flour and yeast. It is traditionally accompanied by hummus, tzatziki, or tabouleh. In Greece, pita is a component of pita-souvlaki. These types of sandwiches involve the wrapping of souvlaki or gyros with tzatziki, tomatoes, onions, fries, and condiments into a pita bread

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Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 250 ml warm water
  • 320 g strong flour
  • 1 teaspoon  salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil + extra for brushing

Method:

  • In a bowl combine the sugar, yeast and warm water. Set the bowl aside for 5 minutes, until the mixture starts to froth.
  • In another bowl, combine the flour & the salt . Mix to combine.
  • Add the oil to the yeast mixture and stir to combine.
  • Add the yeast mixture to the flour mixture in batches. Make sure each batch is incorporated before adding the next.
  • Transfer mixture to a lightly floured working surface. Knead for 4-5 minutes until the dough becomes smooth.
  • Brush a bowl with some oil and add the dough.
  • Cover with a towel and let it rest for about 40 minutes, until it rises and doubles in size.
  • Place a pan over medium heat.
  • Press on the dough to remove the air and cut into 6 equal sized pieces.
  • Place pieces of dough on a lightly oiled working surface. Use a rolling pin to roll out each piece of dough to a circle 20 cm in diameter.
  • Cook the pita bread for 1-2 minutes on each side in the pan, until they puff up slightly.

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This pita recipe has been adapted from http://www.akispretetzikis.com


Stuffed bread / Γεμιστο ζυμωτο καρβελακι

Stuffed bread. Transform the usual bread dough into a savory meal that you can enjoy for brunch, lunch, dinner, at school or at work. Great idea for Easter picnics. Easy, flavorful, fragrant. Feel free to use different ingredients as options such mozzarella, bolognese sauce, bacon, sausage, salami, meatballs, peperoni etc.1-PANE

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Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 3/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Method:

  • In a large bowl stir yeast into 1 cup lukewarm water until dissolved. Let sit until small bubbles form around edges.
  • Whisk in sugar &salt until blended.
  • Gradually add flour and olive oil , mix with your hands until a soft dough forms . Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface and knead in remaining flour, continuing to knead for about 10 min until the dough is very soft.
  •  Return dough to cleaned bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours. Turn out dough onto work surface and gently squeeze out air bubbles.
  •  Fill and shape as desired. Feel free to use different ingredients as options such mozzarella, cheddar cheese, Greek feta, bolognese sauce, mushrooms, bacon, sausage, salami, peperoni, asparagus, olives, meatballs etc.
  • Brush every bread with olive oil . Bake in hot oven at 200°C (375° F) for about 20 min or until surface is golden brown.
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