Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Parmesan and Chive Polenta Muffins / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Muffins alla polenta, parmigiano e erba cipollina

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Polenta. For centuries it has been the staple of our grandparents and great-grandparents diet, accompanied by meat, cheese, or more commonly by milk (even though I’m aware it is a quite childish on it’s my favourite combination). Corn is a tenacious plant with a very good yield, two features which make of this plant the most commonly cultivated and the staple of many peoples diet all around the world. It can also be toasted and reduced to a fine powder to produce farina bona, a special flour which is typical of the Valle Onsernone, a Valley in Ticino. Corn flour can be used in many different ways, as coating meat or bread sticks instead of using breadcrumbs, and can also be used in sweet preparations such as cakes (like amor polenta) and biscuits. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: La resta, Easter sweet bread from Como / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: La Resta di Como

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Easter is around the corner and this year instead of the traditional colomba I decided to venture into new shores and try a recipe of which my friend Rita told me so much about last year. Rita has been a good friend for many years and over the time I also had the chance to meet all of her family. Back in the days they used to run the most famous pastry shop in Chiasso. Her father often told me about the pastries that they sold and also lent me several books (although pastry is not really my field, even though I always promise myself to sooner or later and bake some of the delicacies illustrated in these magnificent volumes). In short, they know their pastries. So, last year speaking of colomba and various Easter cakes and breads Rita asked me whether I knew this sweet bread which is traditionally baked and eaten in Como, la resta. Characteristic of this sweet loaf is the insertion of a branch of olive tree in its centre. I was immediately fascinated by this traditional bread and promised myself to try this recipe sooner or later. Luckily this year Easter falls shortly after my column of recipes for Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook.

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Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: White Chocolate Sachertorte, or Gio’s cake / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Torta Sacher al cioccolato bianco, o anche detta torta della Gio’

White Chocolate Sachertorte - Torta Sacher al cioccolato bianco

It has been quite a while now since I last posted a cake recipe for Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook. As you know by now my diet unfortunately does not allow me to eat sweets, although on rare occasions I happen to cheat (better not mention the Christmas festivities, which have been a disaster as far as diet is concerned). But this cake is simply divine and I could not keep myself from posting the recipes. It’s a reinterpretation of the most famous Sachertorte, the original recipe I have worked on comes from a recipe which I have been baking for nearly 20 years ripped from an old issue of a magazine which I cannot tell anymore whether it was “A Tavola” rather than “Italian Cooking”. However, the recipe of the original Sacher is superb but this white version is not far behind. I used Maroggia’s Mill Nostrana flour and the result is soft and spongy to perfection, very moist and sweet without being sickening (to avoid it being to sweet I decided not to cover it with a white chocolate glaze, which is to my taste a bit too sugary). A bite leads to another bite, melting quickly in the mouth. The first person to test the recipe was my friend Gio’, which I found out loves white chocolate both reasons why I decided to rename this recipe “Gio’s cake”. I also tried to make a bigger cake using a classic 20 cm diameter mould ring and it was met with great enthusiasm, but keep in mind a bigger cake requires different temperatures and times for baking. What are you waiting for, why don’t you try it too?

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“Cuochi d’artificio”: Focaccia Pudding

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For this episode of “Cuochi d’artificio” I did no kneading, at least not in the tv studio’s kitchen (of course I could not stop myself from baking the focaccia I used for this recipe) but found myself using my beloved focaccia as the main ingredient for the dish. Too little time and too many steps to bake a well honeycombed and fragrant focaccia, not to mention the structure of the dough which is very wet and difficult to handle and this might put off some viewers. But who knows, maybe I will have the opportunity to present my own recipe for focaccia on tv sooner or later. But no more talk. Pudding is a great way to recycle old bread and focaccia leftovers (even though it never occurred to me to have focaccia leftovers) and in this case instead of the usual sweet pudding dessert I decided to make a savoury version. To flavour it I used formaggella ticinese, a very fat cheese, anchovies and the right dose of one of my favourite ingredients…licorice! Are you curious? Then click here to access to the episode with the recipe and here for all the ingredients you need and the steps to follow to bake the recipe. Bon appétit!

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Paris Brest

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The Paris-Brest, a jump into the void. Yes I admit, not without shame, that I never had one before trying the recipe at home. No romantic breakfasts with a view on the Eiffel Tower in Paris, no foodie raids at Hermé’s. My last trip to Paris probably dates back more than twenty years ago. Just a child, fascinated by Loire’s Castles and Diane de Poitiers. So what got me into experimenting with this classic gem of French pastry? Definitely my passion for beauty, the challenge of being able to obtain a product not only palatable but also aesthetically appealing (do you remember the ordeal I had gone through to make “simple” éclairs?) and an innate curiosity.

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Maroggia’s Mill Cookbook: Savoury Muffins with Salami and Cheese / Il Ricettario del Mulino di Maroggia: Muffin salati con salame e formaggio nostrani

muffin nostrani

It’s Maroggia’s Mill Friday again! This recipe wasn’t meant to be published, well…not really. In fact I made it up for Azione, a quick job that was commisioned to me in a short time and I was able to pull together in just one hour prior to leaving home and going to the shop where I work part time. Needless to say there are just few pics I shot for my own database. But then my friend Michela, whom is always up to date and informed of my experiments, tried the recipe out and asked me to please please please post it so she could then make her own blogpost. That’s how much she loved the muffins, and trusting her as I trust my own judgment well…I could not decline!

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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…

Depressed soufflé, Shrimp, Turnip and Redo Oranges zest Soufflé with Licorice sauce / Del soufflé deprimé o anche un soufflé ai gamberi, rapa bianca e scorza d’arancia rossa con salsa di liquirizia per l’MTC

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I will be very straightforward and come clean to all of you. This month my participation to the MTC Challenge was more painful and depressing than ever. I’ll try to be brief and exhaustive listing the various problems that I encountered. I’m not a soufflé lover, which doesn’t help. Definitely more prone to be attracted to the sweet version of this recipe I had to deal with the strict rule imposed by Tiziana, aka Tagli e Intagli, MTC‘s hostess for this month: only savory recipes. Panic. I admit that although the blog post date had already been written down on my blog-schedule after the “recipe of the month post” came out (the last day of the contest as usual) I did not have a single idea until the end. Or rather, until the day that I set out to cook the recipe. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Daring Bakers: White Chocolate and Pistachio Flower Brioche / Daring Bakers: Fiore di brioche al cioccolato bianco e pistacchio

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Beauty surrounded the Daring Bakers this month as our host, Sawsan, of chef in disguise,
challenged us to make beautiful, filled breads. Who knew breads could look as great as they taste?

This month Daring Bakers is hosted by one very good blogger I’ve been following since the early days of my blog, Sawsan of Chef in disguise. Her choice fell on a recipe and shape I know quite well, a recipe that brought a good share of luck to my life landing me to Azione with whom I collaborate every now and then and to an interesting collaboration with Maroggia’s Mill: the Brioche Flower. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…

Maria’s Spiced Cauliflower Flan / Lo sformato al cavolfiore e spezie di Maria

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Since the 4th of December, when I started working part time at a goldsmith shop, my weeks have been quite hectic. Recipes and blog post scheduling, the weekly appointment with Wing Chun training, trying to be present on my usual social networks and fitting in multiple appointments hasn’t been easy. Let’s add my Panettone Obsession and the picture is quite clear. But chaos is my element, stress has always been my cup of tea (or loaf of bread) and even though feeling a bit tired I wouldn’t change a single thing. Continue reading / Continua a leggere…