Butternut Squash and Licorice Muffins / Muffins alla zucca butternut e liquirizia

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Butternut squash mon amour. I started appreciating pumpkin and butternut squash quite late into my twenties, but since my father grows these vegetables in his garden I now cannot wait for the arrival of the cold season in order to taste sweet and savoury dishes cooked with this versatile ingredient. Its natural sweetness makes it an excellent ingredient for cakes and muffins so why not do a little experiment and combine it with one of my favourite ingredients ever? And here it is…the omnipresent liquorice! Needless to say the pairing is superb, these muffin are soft and sweet (but not too much). You can’t get any better than this!
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Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Liquorice Bagel / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Bagel alla liquirizia

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Bagels. If I’m not mistaken this is the second recipe I tried after discovering my passion for bread baking. The first one was the Cottage Loaf, a bread which has been the staple of my baking when sixteen. Around that time my father used to travel a lot to the United States, something which I guess summed up with my passion for american tv series and MTV played a role into feeding my interest for this bread. I then did a 10 day holiday in N.Y. where I religiously followed my plan to eat a typical american breakfast every single morning, with the rule of changing both menu and place every single day. Amongst the breakfast I had there where bagels too, of course. I would opt for a classic philadelpia cheese and smoked salmon bagel, straight from the oven and still warm. No doubt one of my favourite breakfasts during my american holiday. I haven’t been baking bagels since, for no reason really. This time a pretty weird idea to use Maroggia’s Mill flour came to my mind. Liquorice flavoured bagels! Take a look into Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook with me and let’s see how these beauties can be baked at home.

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An Easter treat: Colomba / È quasi Pasqua! Colomba Giorilli dei Fables de Sucre

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It’s almost April, the time to test your baking skills with difficult doughs, the time for Colomba! I tried this recipe last year and I am very sad not to be able to replicate it this year too, due to a lack of time. This Colomba, the original recipe is by Giorilli and this it the re viewed by Fables de Sucre, is simply perfect. A fragrant cloud with a compact, soft, buttery and well developed dough. Scent of vanilla and citrus, perfectly balanced, blend very nicely with the buttery texture. My guinea pigs loved it! As with all very rich doughs, such as panettone, there are some basic rules. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Liquorice Torrone and Christmas Wishes / Torrone alla liquirizia e Auguri di Buon Natale

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This is my last recipe before Christmas, I don’t know yet if there will be more confectionery/sweets recipes next year as sugars and dairy product are the biggest no no in my new diet, and I would like to avoid falling into easy temptations even by having a little taste. But change is inevitable, the whole evolving as the days go by. I really wanted to post this recipe to show how sometimes the simple addition of a single ingredient can change a product, making it more special. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Daring Bakers: Venetian Easter Breads / Daring Bakers: Veneziana (Fugassa de Pasqua)

Veneziana 1The April Daring Baker’s Challenge was hosted by Wolf of Wolf’s Den. She challenged us to Spring into our kitchens and make Easter breads reflecting cultures around the world.

You can’t imagine my happiness when I read this month’s theme for the Daring Baker’s challenge, Easter Breads! I had just tried out this gorgeous recipe by Fables de Sucre and was so amazed by the perfect result at the first attempt. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Chocolate Éclairs / Éclairs al cioccolato

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This is a story about obsession, bitter disappointments, tossed dough and tears. Six times I have rolled up my sleeves and got my sac à poche from my cakes and pastries drawer. Five times the depressing results have flown directly from the baking tray to the garbage bin, not without a sense of frustration for not finding an answer to my question: What am I doing wrong? Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Saffron and pistachio marshmallows / Marshmallows allo zafferano e pistacchi

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Marshmallows, there’s something addictive, joyful and yet quite childish about the fluffy pastel colored candies. The danger of eating these candies lies in two factors, one being the effective impossibility of stopping munching on them resulting in stomach ache and nausea, the other would be appearing a little childish to the eye of anyone older than 14. But let’s face it, how many of you have to fight the urge of grabbing a marshmallow packet while waiting in queue at the petrol station counter? Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Cake is… forgetting your baking soda??? / Cake è…dimenticarsi il lievito???

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As previously discussed in my post Cake is… I decided to enroll in a contest launched by Rossella at ma che ti sei mangiato?. I took this occasion to experiment different mixes and flavours for the cake in question, because as you can see in the dedicated post the only clear clues are the basic ingredients and no other instructions to bake this cake are given. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…