Homebaker’s Cookbook: Almond and Sesame Biscuits / Il Ricettario di Homebaker: Biscotti alle mandorle e sesamo

Some time ago I discovered reginelle palermitane, very simple but delicious biscuits. This recipe is simply inspired by the original biscuits, which I thought were the result of a mix between wheat flour and almonds an ingredient in fact missing in the original recipe, as found out after a fairly detailed study, nonetheless I decided to put in the mixture to make my own version for Homebaker’s Cookbook. I chose to use homebaker’s farina 400, a flour specific for biscuit baking. Since I started using it in my recipes for biscuits and crackers I keep a package in the pantry…the difference, compared to biscuits baked with all purpose flour, is tangible and all the baked goods resulting are definitely more crisp! These almond and sesame biscuits are not too sweet and are ideal for both breakfast and a coffee break.
Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Homebaker’s Cookbook: Lemon and Vanilla Olive Oil Biscuits / Il Ricettario di Homebaker: Biscotti all’olio di oliva, limone e vaniglia

Once you crunch you can’t stop, don’t you agree with me? Usually I’m more of a crackers and grissini fan, but won’t say no to a crumbly sweet biscuit. And that’s what I propose for today’s Homebaker‘s Cookbook. What’s the secret to achieve such a result? Well with a calculated mixture of durum wheat semolina and cornstarch. In order to have healthier cookies I used olive oil instead of butter, so I suppose they will be lighter on your conscience as well as on your thighs compared to a common cookie! Flavouring is the most classic vanilla and lemon zest combo but I have no doubt that this recipe can be customized with the most disparate additions, from chopped walnuts, to chocolate chips, and spices like cinnamon, cardamom or saffron as well. I can’t wait to do other experiments myself…what are you waiting for? Roll up your sleeves and bake these delicious biscuits, it’s easy peasy!
Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Vegan Rye flour, Almond and Dark Chocolate Cookies / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Biscotti Vegani alla farina di segale, mandorle e cioccolato fondente

Has been quite a long time since the last time I baked cookies for Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook. Taking a look at the past recipes I realized that all of the cookies baked so far contain butter, eggs, milk or cream. Not even one vegan recipe. Surprising, as these vegan cookies have been a staple of my famous brunches! I adapted the original recipe to the use of Maroggia’s Mill rye flour, but you can always replace with any other kind of flour. These cookies are chewy, a word I tried to translate into Italian with not much success. If, just like me you love chewy cookies this recipe is the one you are looking for!

Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Semlor / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Semlor

The carnival is almost over, but in Ticino opportunities to celebrate do not lack. For this post for Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook I propose a typical Shrove Tuesday recipe, from Sweden. No one will notice, we are still having fun after all aren’t we? In fact even in Sweden these soft rolls, flavoured with cardamom and filled with almond paste and cream, have become the national breakfast cake and snack and are sold in bakeries all over the country. And there’s no wondering why, they are simply irresistible!
Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

ZZAFF!: Ciambella ticinese

The ciambella ticinese is a crunchy and crumbly biscuit, spiced with anise seeds or sometimes fennel or cumin seeds. The typical shape of the ciambella is a ring with a hole in the middles, and its diameter is of about 8 cm. Apparently the ciambella ticinese was born in Lugano, at the hands the baker Bianchi who baked these biscuits in the early 20th century, flavouring them with different spices. It was he who made famous the ciambella ticinese, which spread in Ticino thanks to pastry chefs in urban areas. Once upon a time ciambelle could be bought in a bakeries or grottoes, bars and restaurants, usually stored in a typical glass jar. It was a daily consumer product, like bread. They were often eaten as afternoon snacks, dipped in red wine or milk. Widely popular in taverns, the ciambelle were strung into wooden rods resting on the bar counter and the customers enjoyed them accompanied by a glass of wine. Unfortunately ciambelle have lost importance in Ticino due to the competition from industrially produced biscuits. Today, family recipes are handed over, like the one I am presenting to you today which my aunt Luciana passed on to me.
Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Rye flour, Cranberry and Orange Zest Scones / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Scones alla farina di segale, cranberries e scorza d’arancia

Nothing’s better than an old good cup of tea and scones on these cold, cold winter mornings. For Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook I wrote this recipe thinking of lazy sundays and something rewarding to eat on a well deserved day of relax. I used the Mill’s rye flour and white AP flour. Easy to make, soft and sweet, they keep for a couple of days (though I suggest warming them up in the oven at 100°C for 8 minutes). Let’s put the kettle on!

Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Rye Flour and Ginger Biscuits / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Biscotti alla farina di segale e zenzero

This is not the first time that I talk about Maroggia’s Mill rye flour which is sold by Migros Ticino among the Nostrani selection. I used it before to cook pillowy soft blinis and a spiced Babka. An aromatic flour which can be used in sweet preparations (but I will soon develop recipes for pasta and savoury bread). This time around I decided to bake biscuits which are the perfect accompaniment for a moment of pause and chatter while sipping a damn good coffee.

Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Hazelnut and Liquorice cake / Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Torta di nocciole e liquirizia

torta-di-nocciole-e-liquirizia-1

Some time has passed since the last cake recipe for Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook. One of those simple cakes, easy and quick to bake and offer to friends who come over for a tea or a coffee, or as the perfect finishing touch to a casual dinner. This recipe lends itself well to be customized using other nut-based flours such as almond flour, pistachio flour, or walnut flour. This cake (which I baked in a 15×8 cm mould with 1/3 of the amount of ingredients shown in the recipe written for this post, which requires the use of a ring mould of approximately 23 cm diameter) marries the warm and enveloping taste of hazelnut with the slightly bitter sweetness of licorice. What a perfect match!
Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Rice flour, Matcha and Lemon Cookies / Biscotti di farina di riso, matcha e limone

biscotti-the-e-matcha-2

Tea time with a friend. Rice flour which has been sitting in the pantry for too long, as well as a jar of matcha powder which might as well be a find from an archaeological site. Consider lemons are never missing in my fridge. Put all of that above together and what you are left with is a batch of sensational cookies. And here’s the recipe!

Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

MTChallenge: Macarons / Dell’MTChallenge e dei Macarons gemelli diversi: il macaron gnocco e il macaron cesso

macaron-1

I’m quitting. This is the last one, I swear. I have been repeating the same thing for quite a while now. Too much stress, brainstorming, tetris-like scheduling strategies. What about the anxiety, the overwhelming sense of inferiority I feel every time I check out the other contestants’ recipes, every time a picture gets posted onto the group’s facebook page. And then a new month comes along with a new challenge. I can’t help but participate, I can’t resist to the call of the MTChallenge. Even though I felt a shiver down my spine when I read the theme for this month’s challenge. Our dear Ilaria chose one of the most fearsome recipes…the macaron! A few years back I did experiment a bit and produced dragon eggs for a first attempt and got only close to proper macarons with these Luxemburgerli-like sweets (a swiss version of macarons but of a smaller size) on my second attempt. Fear and Loathing in Chiasso. And on top of it all the tap in the kitchen has been out of order for almost a month and I was forced to wash dishes, bowls and kitchen accessories in the bathtub. You can just imagine my state of mind. And what about the firm conviction that both the shells of the macarons had to be flavored, which led me to test and photograph them a second time because the first one I had forgotten to spice up the shells of one of the two recipes I baked for the challenge. The first macarons batch turned out to be perfect (I have pictures to prove it!!!) but I decided not to fill them in order not to waste time and ingredients. And of course the second time around something went wrong with the cardamom macarons. Virtually they came out in the shape of tits. I think the problem lies in the fact that the mix was very thick and maybe I should have work it a little harder in order to break the air bubbles. Or maybe it just needed a little more egg white having added the cardamom powder and poppy seeds. However having no time nor desire to whip up a third batch I decided to participate in any case, with both macarons: the beautiful and the ugly.
Continue reading / Continua a leggere…