I simply love brunch. If and when I have the occasion of indulging into some proper brunching I never miss out to eat both savoury and sweet dishes, even if it often means I will leave the table with a bloating stomach. It’s simply irresistible. With this premise you can well imagine my reaction when I was asked to think up two recipes for a brunch themed episode of “Cuochi d’artificio”. I was over the moon and of course my main concern was to present two recipes that would incarnate well the whole concept of brunch. At first I obsessed quite a while around crumpets, which I still have to nail, then resigned to downshifting to the most easy pikelets (since I doubt anyone in Ticino would buy crumpet rings just for the thrill of attempting to cook crumpets when it is really difficult to pull out a proper result). Of course crumpets and pikelets are best eaten with salted butter and honey or jam but I had to add another recipe in order to fill up the many minutes I was given to illustrate both recipes so I thought they would be definitely scrumptious if paired with a velvety lemon curd. As for the savoury part of the brunch what is more suitable than proper crispy english muffins topped with an avocado cream and a well poached egg? I can’t tell you how many eggs I have poached (luckily my aunt’s hens have started producing an incredible amount of egg and there is nothing better than a fresh egg to achieve the perfect poaching) but in the end, through internet surfing and tips studying and many trials I finally made it! So here you will find the video illustrating all steps to cook english muffins and pikelets, make a heavenly lemon curd and poach perfectly eggs. Here you will find all the quantities and instructions you can google translate (hopefully something intelligible will turn out) and print. And don’t forget to call your friends over for a Sunday brunch!
P.S.: The blog is on holiday until January the 8th!
What is creativity? An impulsive motion triggered by sudden illumination which moves the pen, the brush, the fingers on the keys of a computer or a piano? Or rather is it an education to see, to hear, to reinterpret things that surround us? As Bruno Munari well says in his book “Fantasia”it is both. A reading I much enjoyed during my university study and which I’ve picked up lately to help me coming out with new ideas for the theme of the second episode of “Cuochi d’artificio” I have been cooking for. Obstacles are often an instrument for the development of new projects so I started from the assumption that the recipe should be prepared in a limited time and shouldn’t pose too many practical problems as long proofing times or handling a messy dough. The simplicity of a flat bread, modest, versatile, provides with a thousand possibilities of interpretation. And what if this piadina wanted to be something else? Maybe it would like to be turned into cannoli…or ravioli! To be able to come up with new ideas we need to subvert all preconceptions we have. Piadina is a staple of Rimini’s street food, stuffed with sweet or savoury filling. Is this recipe untouchable or can play with it to transform it to our liking? I decided to play with it, transforming it in a bite sized treat. One bite and the hand is already reaching out to the next “ravioli piadina”. Soft ricotta whipped with just the right amount of grana padano hits the tastebuds. Enough to salt and not cover the flavour of pistachios, which now creak under the teeth, and the one of chives, refreshed by a touch of lemon zest, an ingredient which is always able to bring back the dead. Blessed zest, blessed citrus flavours that make our palate sing! The hand is reaches out, but the plate is now empty.
This is the recipe told in words. Here you can find the videowhere it is explained step by step, and hereyou will find all the ingredients and quantities needed to make your taste buds dance. If you not so much into some of ingredients just be creative, customize the recipe, play with it, have fun. Use your imagination!
I have been keeping a secret from you. Since August I’ve been biting my tongue out of superstition. Ok some of my closest friends knew and eventually, when drawing nearer to the first recording, I disclosed the news to some acquaintances. A new adventure has started for me since I’ve been called to collaborate with “Cuochi d’artificio” the newest cooking show on La1, the first channel of the Swiss Italian Broadcasting Corporation. On the 13th of October my first recording was aired, and to much of my surprise it went down very well even though all my friends underlined the fact I came across as quite bossy towards the tv presenter, who I say in truth I simply adore and must thank once more since without her by my side I would never have been so “relaxed”. And lets face it I was funny bossy not bossy bossy…I just hope people at home got the playful mood! Here is the link of the episode which of course is in Italian. I baked a saffron and cardamom flavoured bread to accompany a beetroot and mango gazpacho. Unfortunately due to copyrights reasons I am not able to post the recipe directly on the blog, so if you’re interested you will have to click directly on the link and use a translating tool. I’m pretty sure you won’t have any problems, the recipe is easy peasy! The bread pictured is different from the one I baked for the tv. Since the whole process was too long I had to skip the first proofing. To achieve a more brioche-like texture like the bread picture i suggest you proof the dough untile doubled in size, shape it and then go to the final proofing. To help fermentation I use a little trick putting a pan of boiling water in the bottom of the oven. Moisture and heat help a lot proofing of the dough, speeding up the overall time of fermentation.